How to bend a cylinder evenly in Blender 2.6

Cylinders can be hard to work with if you try to shape them manually. In this tutorial we’ll show you how to use the simple deform modifier to create a perfectly smooth curved cylinder bend.

Written instructions:

In this video you’ll learn how to bend a cylinder in a perfectly even manner.

Start by deleting the default cube and adding a cylinder.

Next enter edit mode and scale it up on the z-axis.

Then divide it with some loop cuts. Let’s make exactly 31 so we get 32 segments. You can see the count here.

We forgot to create the cylinder without caps, so let’s just delete them now quickly.

Next go back to the object mode and add an object to the scene. We’ll use this new object as the origin point for controlling our cylinder shape. It doesn’t have to be a circle, you could just as well use a different object or an empty for the controller.

Select the cylinder and add the simple deform modifier to it. Select the new object you just created as the origin. Then start playing with the deform angle. Let’s also choose bend as the deform type. If the cylinder doesn’t bend in the way you hoped for, you’ll probably just have to rotate the origin object 90 degrees on either the x or y axis.

If you want a full circle, type in 360 degrees as the angle.

Now we can apply the deform modifier in the object mode. If we check the results in edit mode, we see a very nice looking mesh.

Let’s add a subsurf and make the shading smooth to see if we have any issues with our geometry.

We can see a thin line in our mesh, which usually means it has double vertices. So let’s go ahead and hit remove doubles in edit mode. Blender tells us there were 32 double vertices.

Now when we go to object mode the mesh looks great!

This technique can be used to create hooks and other shapes that benefit from curved cylinders.

Thanks for watching!

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