I just watched that section and after the extrusion I accidentally say hit the d-key which was a mistake but corret it and say hit the "delete" key to delete the back face (Like I showed above).
Then after pulling the face forward (as I did in the video above) I mentioned the edge may look odd because their normals were soft and to select Normals>Harden Normals (which I had put on my shelf bar) so the edges have a faceted look and are easier to see.
When you add polygons maya will look at the angle between faces and if it is below a threshold (usually 30%) it will soften the normals of the edges between the two polygons to give a smoothed appearance. Since the final intent is to smooth the overall model I like to harden all the edges from time to time as I model to give the model a faceted appearance so that it's easier to see the edges without having to turn on wire frame on shaded mode.
I think that might be what you are referring too.
There are a small number of modeling tools that I use alot that I pull to my shelf bar and harden and soften normals are two of them.
I also have center pivot, freeze transform, and delete history on the shelf. These are all under the modify tab.
"If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." Sir Isaac Newton, 1675
Last edited by ctbram; 31-12-2012 at 12:54 PM.