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twharrell

Questions about QW Avro RJ Paint Kit

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I'm have very limited experience doing repaints and the ones I have done have been with simple paint kits. I'm trying to do a repaint of the Quality Wings Avro RJ70, but the paint kit layout and manual are somewhat confusing. This will be the first airliner I've tried to paint. In the paintkit, each aircraft has a main fuselage psd file where you can basically can layout your entire paint. There are several other psd files that have only sections of the fuselage, tail, and nose. According to the manual, these are the files that are used for the actual aircraft in MSFS.

 

So my question is, what use is the master psd fuselage file for if it isn't used for the actual aircraft? I've painted that master file, now what? The manual talks about flattening the image - not sure what that means. Would anyone be willing to walk me through the process? I have read many painting tutorials but none talk about a master psd file.

 

Oh, I am using Gimp for my paints, FYI. I also use FS9 and Windows XP sp3.

 

Thanks,

 

Todd

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I just started painting myself. From what I gather, you would use the fuselage master to create your art, then you cut it up and paste the pieces onto the PSD's used for the aircraft. The fuselage master is helpful and easier to paint on. You can probably paint directly on the other ones, but if you have a painted line going down the length of the fuselage, it’s hard to line it up when the fuselage is broken into pieces.

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OK, that makes sense and kind of what I thought. However, the master fuselage psd is only for the left side. What about the right side? Do I compress the layers, flatten, then make a mirror image? Also, any tricks to know where to cut up the master psd to paste on the texture files?

 

Todd

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I don't have that kit, but most good kits have some kind of witness marks to help you align the copy. Look for little "+" signs or odd blocks of pixels that show up on both the full side and the individual .bmp files.

 

I use Photoshop, so you may not be able to, but I don't bother with flattening the full side.

 

I just select all (Ctrl+A), then I can "copy all visible".

 

Then I paste it on the individual .bmp files as a new layer so I can move it around.

 

I reduce the opacity of that layer so I can see through it to help with the alignment.

 

You commonly will have to flip horizontally your full side for the other side.

 

Usually this means you will have to adjust any text.

 

regards,

Joe

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For the right side, you're right, flatten and flip.

 

I was just cutting a large enough area but not too big, and then I paste onto the other image and line it up. Make the layer you pasted transparent until you can see through it a bit, and then line it up using something like a door. Also, if you paste and find its too big or overlaping onto other parts, you can cut off what you don't need right on that pasted layer.

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Great tips, guys. I really appreciate the help. So, I've finished my left and right main fuselage paints, and then flattened both. Quick question, on what layers, other than the ones that have nothing to do with the side I am painting, do I turn visibilty off before flattening? More specifically, there are two layers that are completely white (one each for right and left sides). Should I turn the visibility on for each respective side before flattening?

 

Next question, when I transfer the main painted fuselage image to the actual texture files and line up the sections using the small crosshairs (or by reducing the transparency as also suggested), I notice not all the crosshairs line up, rather only 1 or 2 line up. Is this OK? I'm using Gimp so perhaps that is why all my crosshairs don't line up exactly. I am able to match the images well by reducing the transparency of the main fuselage. However, as suggested, I then cut out the extraneous part of the fuselage that isn't needed. I would expect to see the underlying background image/colors when I do that, but what I get is a completely white background where I make my cut. Again, is this a problem?

 

And lastly (for now), once I finish a texture file, do I merge or flatten the file? Then, I assume I save the file as a bmp file. What type of bmp file is best?

 

Once again, I appreciate the tips. This is all starting to make sense!

 

Todd

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OK, so I decided to download the trial version of Photoshop CS6 and what a difference does a $500 program make. Now, if I can only find $700 laying around......

 

Seriously, it has made the repaint go so much easier, but I have hit another road block. Now that I've finally finished the texture files for the sim, I need to convert them from psd to bmp. Here's my issue - all of the psd files contain the alpha as a layer, which is turned off. Before I flatten the psd files, do I turn on the alpha layer first? Or, should I turn all layers off except the alpha layer, then save the alpha as a separate bmp file (32-bit?)? Then turn off the alpha layer and turn all other layers on, then flatten and save the psd as a 32-bit bmp file? Then, open the bmp in DXTBMP, import my saved alpha, and save as an extended bmp 32 bit 888?

 

Basically, how do I deal correctly with the alpha layer in my psd files?

 

Thanks,

 

Todd

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No need to flatten the file.

 

"Save as" a 32bit .bmp or a Targa.

 

Open that file in DXTBmp and save as Extended Bitmap.

 

32 bit (888-8) will retain all the detail and give you the biggest file size.

 

This may hurt sim performance. If so, save as DXT3.

 

regards,

Joe

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Thanks for all the help, guys. I'm always glad to be part of such a helpful group of enthusiasts more than willing to share their experiences. I finished my repaint and here it is for you to see. If interested, I put on Flight 1.

 

-2012-aug-15-005.jpg

 

Todd

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You should upload it to AVSIM too!

 

And you should definitely consider converting this to the BAe-146 when QW releases that upgrade.

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