Your support is hugely appreciated.

I created NextCraft™ in 2000, and have continuously added content to it since then, (all free) in the hope that it would serve as a helpful reference to other designers and builders. Most of my design work begins in 3D, so as I diversified, I created in 2007. Today, I'm no longer doing fabrication, and make my living doing 3D work, and am continuing to provide a large number of (free) 3D-related articles and tutorials here as well.

This work requires a multi-thousand dollar computer system, expensive software, additional plug-ins, the continuous purchase of new training materials, annual updates to nearly everything, and of course, quite a bit of time, for training study, research, 3D modeling, and the continuous updates to these web sites. If you've enjoyed my work here over the years, and would like to help support my ongoing work, please click the "Donate" button at the right, and pitch in what you can. All donations, large or small, are greatly appreciated, and all go to support the continuous development of this kind of work, which is my passion. Thank you!

MODO Tutorials: (Latest releases at the top)


I'm no longer shipping physical DVD's. All products are available for direct download, and due to their file size, require the use of FTP. Enjoy!

Click the (blue) links in the left-hand column below for more detailed product information on each set:

Tutorial Info Link

General Description

Purchase ALL FIVE "Modeling with MODO" Volumes for $195.

Save $25 by ordering all five volumes shown below, for $195.
(I'll offer a discount which includes the upcoming Volume Six, when it's released.)

"Modeling with MODO, Volume Six
Building High Resolution Models with Catmull-Clark Subdivision Surfaces"

$45 plus $5 handling

When this tutorial is available in late April, 2014, a "Buy Now" button will appear here.

This tutorial focuses on creating very high resolution, detailed models, using Catmull-Clark subdivision surfaces. ("Psubs", in MODO) We'll use my new 2014 Piaggio P180 "Avanti II" model as the primary example, (See that article here.) which is all sub-d from start to finish, resulting in meshes with nearly all quad polygons (very few triangles) and no Ngons.

Meet our new best friend, "MeshFusion". I've included a variety of examples showing some of the potential of this new magical plug-in. I'm also introducing a "kit" for MODO users which is a set of all-quad, sub-d meshes suitable for kit-bashing your own aircraft and spaceship models, all designed to play nice with MeshFusion. This should be available at about the same time as this tutorial.
See the MeshFusion page here.

Detailed descriptions, examples, and videos discuss how to create the initial geometry from your documentation, how to make clean cuts in subdivision surfaces while avoiding smoothing errors, how to adapt to changes as the project moves forward, how to avoid various "traps" this sort of modeling can produce, more on how to extrapolate dimensions from unknown parts, and of course at the end, texturing, rendering, and animating all of these parts. This is my most advanced project to date, and I've learned a lot of handy tips and methods during the process, all shared here. Coming in late April, 2014!

As most of you know, my main use of MODO is design, modeling, and visualization. Although I tend to specialize in aviation/aerospace projects, the last couple of years have been filled with an enormous variety of subjects, including 3D patent drawings for a new kind of hair clip, a new Volvo hybrid bus, some organic visualizations for physical art installations, graphics for TV and print publications, and the biggest one, (still under NDA) the design, visualization, and animated rendering of an entire theme park, based on a popular kids TV franchise. Thanks to the "Power SubD - NURBS" plug-in, I've also started to produce machine ready files for manufacturing of some large-scale, radio-controlled aircraft, and I've learned some tips to make this process pretty painless. This variety has forced me to find some new methods of doing things, and to solve problems in a timely, practical way, and that's what this training set is about. Hence, the title, "Modeling with MODO, Volume Five - Problem-solving methods". (All of these methods are valid in both MODO 601 and 701.)

Two scale aircraft projects illustrate a variety of methods to extarpolate scale information from less-than-ideal documentation, and then to create all kinds of details, including an internal structure, cabin and cockpit detail, interior and exterior lighting, basic rigging for animation, and more. Several other scene files and tutorials, including the complete T-38 file, and a huge library of parts you can use in your own models.

As you can tell from the title, this set focuses on the creation of modern jet aircraft. I've included examples of fighter, bombers, business jets, and two major airliner projects. The same techniques apply to any modeling subject, so even if you're not an aircraft fanatic, I think you'll find a large variety of information that may improve your results.

"Modeling with MODO, Volume Two"
$40 plus $5 handling

Right brain/Left brain…
First, a very large aircraft project focusing on the construction of the King Air B200 model, as well as a variety of systems, including animated versions of the de-ice system, fire suppression system, heating/cooling system, fuel system, and a fully-animated cockpit.

And, something completely different…
A variety of large, organic visualizations for other artists, making extensive use of MODO's sculpting and painting tools. Several model and scene files are included too, in LXO format.

"Modeling with MODO, Volume One"
$35 plus $5 handling

A huge variety of projects, from museum scale aircraft, to architectural visualizations, organic art, displacement exercises, future gadgets and vehicles, boolean operations, and modeling with spline cages. Several model and scene files are included too, in LXO format.

"CAD for Modelers, Volume Two"
"CAD for Modelers, Volume One"
$35 plus $5 handling for BOTH

Recommended for those NOT familiar with 3D tools. This two-volume series was produced to introduce and explain the basic uses of 3D in the design and modeling process, and includes an explanation of basic modeling, texturing, lighting, and animation techniques. It's generic in nature, so that users of different software packages can get started with the tutorials and files. (Included files are in DXF format.)

These two tutorials will be replaced by an updated version this year, which is why I'm offering the special price. They're still valid as introductions to 3D, but are starting to show their age, technology-wise.

Specific information for those designing and fabricating flying, radio-controlled models:

"How to Do Everything, Volume One"
$30 plus $5 handling

Advanced tutorials and reference information for those interested in the design and fabrication of flying, radio-controlled models and UAV's. Includes aerodynamics, structures, weight prediction, material selection, plug and mold making, composite fabrication, including vacuum bagging. Also includes the entire contents of my archive site at

"How to do Everything", Volume One

(Design Methods for Molded Composite Products)

Multimedia tutorial includes Research, Design, CAD/3D Tools, Plug & Mold Design and Fabrication, Vacuum Bagging, Movies, Data, and Assorted Building Tips.

Click here for a preview movie of the "How to do Everything", Volume One. (About 2.5MB QuickTime)

The title, "How to do Everything" is meant to be humorous, and I don't portray myself as some "super guru". If you've enjoyed the content on my site, then you'll like this set. The content is better, in some cases, since I can include larger, uncompressed photos and movies. Since I've often been forced to adapt methods to work on a limited budget, I think you'll appreciate the many options in each section that you can use when time and/or money is a problem. This information is applicable to any composite field, including aircraft, automobiles, boats, surf boarding and snow boarding, etc..

The HTML-based navigation system makes browsing thisset the same as viewing a web site, except faster. Of course, you can also browse the files manually. For comparison... The entire content of my NextCraft™ web site at the time this set was created was about 300 MB, and all of it is included. Bonus... The set also contains over 200 MB of additional information, images and movies, that were not published on the site.

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Unless otherwise noted, all content on this site is ©Copyright by Mike James -
NOTE: I am not at liberty to redistribute any of the documentation used to build any of the 3D models on this site.