Unfold tutorial (Satchmo III)

Satchmo III

Well-Known Member
Hail four-oh-five.

I put together the video below to illustrate the practices and methods I employ when creating an unfold for a 3D model. Effective unfolds allow those assembling the paper to work quickly and efficiently. Unfolding models effectively involves more than simply specifying a scale and hitting the (not magical) unfold button in Pepakura Designer. I'm hoping to help community members that are interested in improving their unfolding skills. I neglected to mention it in the video but the best advice I can give those that are looking to improve is to practice.

The video is fairly long so I suggest putting it on in the background while you work on new unfolds. If you know absolutely zero about unfolding or Pepakura Designer please visit the Tamasoft website (Pepakura Designer) to check out the program and learn its basic functions. This tutorial does not cover the very basic.

If you'd like to follow along with the tutorial using the specific model I used for it, below is a link to the raw OBJ file just as it was exported from the 3D modeling software. Also below is a link to the PDO file which contains the unfold final result of the tutorial for reference. Thank you to SavedbyGraceG12 for the suggestion.

Initial OBJ - Halo 4 helmet warmaster.obj
Final PDO - Halo 4 helmet warmaster (2014-04-06).pdo

If you'd like any unfolding tips or suggestions from me please post in this thread or a private message if you're bashful (other people are welcome to chime in to help too). Thank you and be well.


Shorter segmented videos have been uploaded if you'd like to watch just a portion (Pepakura unfold tutorial - YouTube).

Below I've compiled a list of PDO files (with links to each) that I've put together but need to be unfolded. If you'd like to practice on one of these please do so and you're more than welcome to work up an unfold and share it with the community. If you do, I'd appreciate you sharing the file in this thread, at my model portfolio thread (link), or in a private message, and you may submit it to the armory or upload elsewhere too (like a personal unfold portfolio). When an unfolded is completed, it will come off this list.

ID# MODEL / LINK ................... UPDATED .. (NOTES)
-------------------------------------------------------
76) Halo 2A bicep hoplite .......... 2018-12-30 (Unfold needed)
77) Halo 2A foot-plate hoplite ..... 2018-12-30 (Unfold needed)
71) Halo 2A forearm hoplite ........ 2018-12-09 (Unfold needed)
70) Halo 2A hand-plate hoplite ..... 2018-12-09 (Unfold needed)
69) Halo 2A helmet hoplite ......... 2018-12-08 (Unfold needed)
78) Halo 2A hip-guard hoplite ...... 2018-12-30 (Unfold needed)
72) Halo 2A knee hoplite ........... 2018-12-10 (Unfold needed)
73) Halo 2A shin hoplite ........... 2018-12-15 (Unfold needed)
75) Halo 2A thigh hoplite .......... 2918-12-27 (Unfold needed)
74) Halo 2A torso hoplite .......... 2018-12-16 (Unfold needed)
68) Halo 3 helmet recon ............ 2018-11-04 (Asset mod, unfold needed)
67) Halo 5 helmet deadeye .......... 2018-10-24 (Asset mod, unfold needed)
80) Reach shoulder S-III concept ... 2019-01-08 (Unfold needed)


I'm a proponent of giving credit and keeping track of names and dates for record so I like to put a place in my file names for the modeler and the unfolder and the date the file was last worked on. Within the PDO files I work on I enter a title block like is shown below. You aren't required to do this but I think it's an effective way to keep track of names and dates (I use courier new font at size 64 if you'd like to follow the example).

Naming example.png


Log ... 2014-04-06 (Uploaded unfold video)
Log ... 2018-04-29 (Split out full tutorial into a playlist with shorter videos, see link below)
Log ... 2018-04-30 (Added links for users to download the model used in the tutorial)
Log ... 2019-01-26 (Added needed unfolds list)


Disclaimer #1: The methods I use per this tutorial help me to more efficiently assemble paper. If you prefer different methods I encourage you to pursue and develop them.
Disclaimer #2: This is the my first video tutorial. I'm not the greatest speaker so I hope you're able to assimilate most or at least some of the ideas presented.
 
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tumbucu

Member
hey satchmo III awesome tutorial I know that there are other unfold tutorials out there but I really like how you go into detail on all the steps needed. I wish I had a guide like this when I first started with pepakura it would have saved me a lot of time and frustration lol. I did want to ask you about a few things when you use the symmetrical edge function when you unfold not every model 3d model can be unfolded using that function is there a way that I could edit the model so when I start my unfold in pep this function will be available ? I hope that you do other tutorials? maybe do other tutorials on how to make a 3d model of a helmet or how to edit and add details to game ripped models? thank you again for doing this your tutorial is very informative.
 

Satchmo III

Well-Known Member
hey satchmo III awesome tutorial I know that there are other unfold tutorials out there but I really like how you go into detail on all the steps needed. I wish I had a guide like this when I first started with pepakura it would have saved me a lot of time and frustration lol. I did want to ask you about a few things when you use the symmetrical edge function when you unfold not every model 3d model can be unfolded using that function is there a way that I could edit the model so when I start my unfold in pep this function will be available ? I hope that you do other tutorials? maybe do other tutorials on how to make a 3d model of a helmet or how to edit and add details to game ripped models? thank you again for doing this your tutorial is very informative.
I don't know of a way in Pepakura Designer to modify a model to use the mirror point function but it can be done with modeling software such as Blender outside of Pepakura Designer. Firstly, the model must be 100% symmetrical, then the plane of symmetry must be aligned with the YZ plane (all vertices are at X=0) in the 3D space in order for the mirror point function to recognize it when the model is brought into Pepakura Designer. If the model isn't 100% symmetrical there are ways to make it so with the tools in the modeling software...but you should be cognizant of who's model you're working with and whether or not it's okay with them for their model to be modified.

I may approach more tutorials but would suggest searching out modeling tutorials on youtube or google if it's something you're interested in pursuing. There is a wealth of information out there especially for Blender. Since Blender is shared software there is a large community of users that actively share information on how to use it.

I learned so many things in that 1 1/2 hours. Many thanks for making and posting the tutorial.
Thanks much, glasscutter. I'm glad to hear it was informative.
 

Satchmo III

Well-Known Member
You wouldn't happen to have a link to the obj file of your war master helm?
I don't, but I don't think you need one anyway. If you'd like to practice unfolding the war master helmet you can revert the PDO file back to the start in Pepakura Designer by clicking the [undo unfold] button and then selecting [reset edge properties] from the [3D menu] drop down menu.
 

glasscutter

Jr Member
Satchmo just wanted to let you know what I learned just saved me a lot of headache. Scaling a chest piece left a ton of pieces to large for a page. Instead of a massive headache, the pieces were easily modified. Knowing how to rotate them also saved me fifteen pages of cardstock.
Again, thank you.
 

CommanderPalmer

Well-Known Member
Thank you very much for the tutorial! It's very helpful.
Chernobyl - what would you think, maybe make it a sticky? It could help a lot of people... o.o
 
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Chernobyl

Sr Member
Thank you very much for the tutorial! It's very helpful.
Chernobyl - what would you think, maybe make it a sticky? It could help a lot of people... o.o
Actually working on this - we have a tutorials section online and I'm hoping to get everything consolidated onto that at some point. The idea is to try and reduce the number of Stuck threads we have and put all the relevant info in one easily-accessed place.

EDIT: if you'd like to help out, I could certainly use a hand. But it's a lot of work, be warned.
 

CommanderPalmer

Well-Known Member
Actually working on this - we have a tutorials section online and I'm hoping to get everything consolidated onto that at some point. The idea is to try and reduce the number of Stuck threads we have and put all the relevant info in one easily-accessed place.

EDIT: if you'd like to help out, I could certainly use a hand. But it's a lot of work, be warned.
Oh! Happy to hear you're working on a solution, it sound's like a good one!
And yeah, I'll be happy to help out. :)
 

Satchmo III

Well-Known Member
It's a bit difficult for me to grasp that four years have passed since I made this tutorial (time flies and all that). I haven't done much paper crafting lately, and although I enjoy developing a good unfold, it makes me happy to know I may have helped a few people improve their process with this tutorial.

I spent some time today splitting the full tutorial apart into shorter videos collected in a playlist to hopefully make them more palatable (no new content). The original video has clearly defined sections and I probably should have done this from the start. I left the full video up also in case anyone wanted to watch all of it while they work (instead of streaming a movie or something). Below is link to the tutorial series.

Pepakura unfold tutorial series - YouTube

Keep building, Nobles.
 

SavedbyGraceG12

Well-Known Member
Satchmo III

Not sure if I ever said thank you? So I'm gonna say it now. Thanks! Your tutorial has definitely help me out. Also, maybe have a link to the file, that way people can follow along. I know it's in your other thread, but newcomers may need a little help in finding it. Cheers!
 

Satchmo III

Well-Known Member
Thanks Satchmo III. It's been a while since I saw it.....I think I'll schedule myself for a refresher session.
You're quite welcome. I actually re-watched it last Friday myself and although the unfolding knowledge is still ingrained in my head it's been long enough since making the video that I didn't quite remember everything in it. So as I was watching it I was thinking to myself what I would say and then video me would usually say it (maybe I was half-remembering).

Satchmo III

Not sure if I ever said thank you? So I'm gonna say it now. Thanks! Your tutorial has definitely help me out. Also, maybe have a link to the file, that way people can follow along. I know it's in your other thread, but newcomers may need a little help in finding it. Cheers!
You're absolutely welcome. I've seen some of your unfolds and think you're doing a bang-up job. Thanks for sharing with the community. I took up your suggestion and added download links to the file at the beginning of this thread should anyone wish to follow along with the tutorial using the same model. Take care.
 

Satchmo III

Well-Known Member
Calling anyone interested in learning a neat skill and taking up an opportunity to give back to the community. I've added a list at the beginning of this thread compiling the models I've made that yet need to be unfolded. Please take a look and work on any if you'd like. I know PerniciousDuke is already working on the E318 helmet.

I'm not bad at unfolding and would be happy to provide suggestions or tips for those that want to learn and improve. You may post questions here so others can read/learn from the same info (if you're bashful you can private message me or post on my profile wall thing). Everyone is welcome to respond to questions with your thoughts and experiences...there is no one correct way to do anything. Do work four-oh-fivers!
 

Satchmo III

Well-Known Member
So...if the length of the tutorial video(s) is daunting I might suggest using youtube’s 1.5x or 2x speed settings to hustle things along. That way you don’t have to waste as much time listening to that dorky presenter prattle on.
 

PerniciousDuke

RXO & BCO
405th Regiment Officer
Community Staff
79) Halo 6 helmet E318 ............. 2019-01-06 (Unfold COMPLETED) !
Infinite.png

I haven't uploaded it yet because there is no section for Halo Infinite yet. But you can find the zip below and I have asked Art to make a new section in the armory.
 

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