Rhino Rubiks cube exercise


Rubiks Cube Example

Intro to CAD modelling and curves (presentation)

Operations & Commands

Panel > Layers
object snaps
Rectangle (tool)
Line (tool)
Polyline (tool)
Move (tool)
Scale1D (tool)
Rotate (tool)
ExtrudeCrv (tool)
Array (tool)

Default key commands and flow

Pan & Orbit

Right click and hold : Orbit in perspective view, pan in ortho view
Shift + Right click and hold : Pan the view
Middle mouse button scroll : Zoom in and out


Left click + drag to the right : Select only what is entirely in the box
Left click + drag to the left : Select everything that touches the box

Middle button click : command popup menu

Inputting commands

Rhino can be typing and click based. The standard typing flow is:

1. Type command (all or part) and click space bar to confirm

2. Follow prompt:

* Either insert value and space bar to confirm
* Or click on first point and space bar to confirm

Etc… Continue to follow the prompts until command is completed


1. Download the above file as an example

2. If you would like to change your panning and orbiting settings to something else you are used to (like Alias)
File > Properties > Mouse > Manipulate View

3. Setup the environment so you have Object Snap windows turned on (object snaps) and your units are set to millimeters. Make sure Gumball is turned on.

If you do not have the Selection Filter showing then turn it on by typing selectionfilter into the command line. You can then dock it above your Osnaps

If you do not have the units set to millimeters, right click on the units and change them. If you have drawn anything you will want to scale it appropriately. Otherwise it does not matter.

4. Create a new layer in the panel (instructions how) where you will model your cube.

5. Create a 57mm by 57mm rectangle (rectangle tool). You should always start from the origin.

Click the origin (with Grid Snap turned on)
Then type 57 and hit space
Repeat this for the other side and confirm

6. Create 3 polylines (line tool, polyline tool) end to end that are of equal length, holding shift to make sure they are all in line with each other.

7. Move (move tool) the lines so the base is at the origin.

8. Scale1D (scale1D tool) so that the line is equal to the length of the rectangle base.

The base point will be the origin.

9. Make another Rectangle.

Click first at the end of the first segment. Make sure your Osnap is turned on and it is set to include End and Knot. For the next step it is also beneficial to have Near turned on as well.

Hold SHIFT to lock the rectangle to a square and click on the other line. You now have one “cubelet” of a 3×3.

10. To know how high this cube is we are simply going to take our 3 segment line and rotate it to be vertical.

Select the line

Use the Rotate (tool) command. Select the origin as the base point. Hold shift and in any of the other views than Top. Rotate the line so it is standing vertically. Click to confirm.

11. To make this into a solid we are going to use the ExtrudeCrv (tool) command.

Click on the “cubelet” rectangle in the perspective view. Drag the cube upwards until your mouse is hovering over the end of the first segment.

Make sure you are creating a solid before you click to confirm.
If you are not, type “s” or simply click on “solid” in the command line.

12. Change your view to display Shaded in the perspective view.

13. In this tutorial we will not be detailing the cube. So lets skip straight to the Array (tool).

Type array into the command line and select the “cubelet” extrusion. Press ENTER or SPACE to confirm.

Note: Double click on the perspective viewport label to isolate that view. You can always double click on it again to return back to 4View.

Type 3 for all axis, hitting SPACE or ENTER to confirm after each entry.

Instead of entering a value, click the origin to start. Then click the opposite point on the same plane.

Finally, click the point above it.

All will turn pink and it will ask you to review your settings.

To change any of these settings, click on one of the parameters and input a new value into the command line.

When you are satisfied with your settings Press ENTER or SPACE to confirm.

14. Congrats! You’ve made a rudimentary Rubiks cube! We will detail this with fillets and stickers another day.