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Cactus521

A bit of FSDS 2 fun.....

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After a few weeks of trying to get the basics, I've started my first "project"--a two seat exp. microlight loosely based on the RANS 12. Spent a few hours playing around today, just to see if I could build something even somewhat shaped like the Rans 12.This is the result. Note that I've used trasparent textures and specular lighting for the windows, and the entire cabin is one part.... I use the alpha channel as a window "mask", and the specular lighting gives it a somewhat solid look. As Brian said last week, it's an old techique, but for a beginner like me, it's the quickest way I know to create a clear canopy....The interior cabin, is built in its own model. Basically, after I built the exterior model and applied the textures, I copied the cabin and flipped the polys. Even though the cabin is the first part in the "list" in the exterior model, using this method seems to keep the odd window issues from cropping up.Don't laugh at my effort--we all have to start somewhere... But I know beginners read this forum, and as I work on this over the next several weeks, perhaps I'll share a tip or two to make a beginner feel like they can make something "interesting", and have fun along the way...-John

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Hey John.Laugh at your effort? Please! It is looking good! And besides that, the point of this forum is to share information, not judge other people's attempts. But trust me, it is looking very nice.John, this is exactly the kind of encouragement newbies need. It is definetelly easier to see how a plane shapes up in a sort of step-by-step example than just looking at the final product and being absolutely overwhelmed by its complexity. Thank you very much for taking this initiative.

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Hey, no laughs about your modeling skills from me... I have trouble dwawing a @#%*ing stick figure! That model looks really great even this early, keep at it and that could be one SWEET plane!Keep up the good workDavid Swindle

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Here's a shot showing the evolution.... I'm not going for perfection--just trying to get "close".... I'm flying to California for a few days, so I'll post some more pics in a week or so. Note the box on the top of the aircraft is where I'll place the engine and prop...

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"Even though the cabin is the first part in the "list" in the exterior model, using this method seems to keep the odd window issues from cropping up"Found out after some playing that in spite of this technique, care still has to be taken in making anything with transparent textures the last part in the list. I noticed from certain perspectives, the wings would "vanish" when viewed through the "glass". I shuffled the part order, making the fuse the last part, and the issue went away. The same was true with the virtual cabin, which includes virtual wing views. I had to place the cabin last in the parts list in order to keep the wing visible from inside the cabin. Without this forum, I would have spent hours tearing my hair out over this. Instead, it was a simple five minute edit. Probably dumb of me to make a fuss over such a simple aircraft, but it's my first "FS" child...what can I say?The issue with transparent textures and sort order--I don't believe it is just an FSDS 2 issue. The recent Lago ultralight GMAX release includes a Rainbow, and that aircraft has issues with transparent textures. Do GMAX users have to use similar care when ordering parts?

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Hey John,Looking very nice! I'm not acquainted with FSDS2, but it looks like you will be making quick progress with this. I was just trying the specular lighting on mine. It really adds a nice touch, but a little goes along way.Keep up the good work!! Looking forward to more updates.Bob C.

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Hey Bob.Decided to break the protocol here, and ask you a question without searching (it is too late and I haven't slept nearly enough last night ;-)). You can chew me if there has been a thread on this lately, but I don't remember seeing one.Any tutorials laying around the web on how to do specular lighting (or "dynamic shine", as I hear people referring to it) in gmax/3ds?And by the way, I see you are another Night Owl around here. I'm usually up until 3a.m., which is probably noticed by my teachers next morning at my 9 o'clock classes, but hey, I got an FS plane to get done!

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Last shot for now.... I have to fly to California and won't be in the forum for several days.... I've animated the control surfaces, recentered the gear (courtesy the tips I received on copying parts), played with the engine a bit, and added a temp prop (borrowed from Brian Gladden's Lancair--hope you don't mind :) )-John

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Spent a couple of days fiddling with it. Added the supports for the wings, updated the tires, and built and animated a 3-bladed prop. The pilot and seats are borrowed from B. Gladden's Lancair. Last, I updated the textures.... It's amazing how such a simple project can become so addictive!-John

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Now that you've modeled it...it's time to delve into the flight dynamics. Get ready to lose some sleep!

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"Now that you've modeled it...it's time to delve into the flight dynamics. Get ready to lose some sleep!"The FDE was the easy part. Have always had an easy time tinkering with those. I used the default 172 FDE as a base, then adjusted the dynamics from there. I'm very pleased with the results, and I hope others (if I upload the project) will feel the same. I also finished the panel. Very simple, but I tried to include the essentials. I made something which would offer high visibility, and present as much information to the pilot as possible.-John

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Hey John.She's a beaut. Can't wait to fly her!

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Wow John,Really looking GREAT there guy! >>It's amazing how such a simple project can become so addictive!Man I couldn't agree with you more! As intense as my regular job is, I find myself stealing moments to think about the current design problem at hand, and how I am going to solve it. Then waiting anxiously to get back to the computer so I can push a few more points. (OK I know, "Get a life", well, this is how the creative process works. Especially if it's a passion. More should try it!)Keep up the awesome work!!Bob C.

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This project is now released, and is avail in the file library....-John

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