I was asked a few days ago if curves can be used to create cables with blender. Well, the answer is: Yes, of course – and this is the tutorial on creating cables.

Open a new project, delete the cube and add a bezier curve. This curve will be your cable:

Add bezier curve

Add bezier curve

Move handles of bezier

Move handles of bezier

You can select each handle of your curve with the right mouse button (the red lines) and apply default operations like moving (G key) or rotating (R key). You can also add handles in between two other handles by subdividing. First select two handles (right mouse button and Ctrl key), then press the W key und select Subdivide. Now a handle is generated in between your selected handles.

After that you have to add an object that defines the form and radius of your cable. Let’s add a circle curve for this purpose:

Add a circle curve

Add a circle curve

Then select the bezier curve again and add the circle as Bevel Object in the Object data panel of the bezier curve:

Use bezier circle as bevel object

Use bezier circle as bevel object

That’s it basically, your cable is generated now:

Generated cable

Generated cable

To add more thickness to the cable you can use a Solidify modifier for it. Select the cable in Object Mode and add the Solidiy modifier from the modifier panel. Define a thickness of about -0.03.

Solidify modifier for cable

Solidify modifier for cable

Keep in mind that you can always change the radius of the cable by scaling the circle bezier curve.

After you added the thickness you can define a material for the cable or a matcap to make it look more realistic:

Cable with matcap

Cable with matcap

To use your cable as a mesh there is a convert function in Blender: Press Alt + C key and select Convert to Mesh:

Mesh from Curve

Mesh from Curve

After this operation you can see the polygons of the object in edit mode:

Convert curve to mesh

Convert curve to mesh

With that knowledge at hand you can create combined objects like the following one:

Cable render

Cable combined with other objects

So, be creative, it’s all up to you now.

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