This was a personal project that I went ahead with; I've been using 3ds Max for two years, and more recently I've started using more than just Mental Ray. For this project, I decided to use V-Ray, simply for its fast calculations and realistic results. Plus it's easy as hell to use once your passed rendering a million spheres just because you can and just for the hell of it!
Now, this is my first ever tutorial so be kind... I will be using textures from the 3DTotal Textures V1: R2 DVD
Collection. So let's get on with it!
First of all, I had to come up with a concept that I was capable of. I'm a drummer and know drums like the back of my hand, but I still used reference images for help. I used a photograph of my own drum kit (Fig01), plus a reference image which I found on the Internet (Fig02).
I started off with a simple cylinder, five segments in height. I created a cylinder for each of the pieces of the drum kit, so that was 5 cylinders in total. I then created another cylinder which was much skinnier and taller, and placed it in the centre. I went to Create Compound Objects and ProBoolean (if you're using a version of Max 8 or lower, use Boolean). I then had the shell of a drum, then all I had to do was to instance it five times and re-size them - there's no point in actually making five separate pieces for a model like this (Fig03 & 04).
Next to be modelled were the details of the kit. All the fixtures are the same on a drum kit - screws, bolts and so on, so all I had to do was to make them once and duplicate them for as many as required!
I kept duplicating the required parts until I achieved what can be seen in Fig05, 06 and 07. Don't skimp on the details as these are what really make an image!
I continued with the same process until my drum kit took shape and looked like what can be seen in Fig08.