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Guest FelixFFDS

What programs are needed to make aircraft?

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:-newbie hello guys :). i am very new to making aircraft for fs2002. im new to this website and this forum as well. hope we get along well :). so i decided to try designing airplane for use with fs2002. what programs do i need? i have fs2002 of course, i installed gmax, and i have photoshop and paintshop. im currently reading gmax's user reference guide and tutorials trying to figure out how to use it. i dont need any help on that so far...but do i have all the programs needed to start making my airplane? and how should i start? with gmax right? im planning to make small single engine props...P.S. expect many more posts with me asking for help :-spacecraft hehe i love these smilies here :)

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First question--do you have FS2002 or FS2002 Pro? Only FS2002 pro has the needed interface file for GMAX.I use FSDS 2--I found it more suitable for a beginner, despite the cost. My first project (a microlight found in the file library here) took only a couple of weeks to complete.What I like about FSDS 2 is, for the beginner, the process from object to something appearing in your FS2002 library is fairly seamless. Painting is a whole other matter. For the time being, I've just used paintbrush and DXTBMP (a freeware tool), but I'm designing light GA aircraft, which seem easier to paint than some of today's sophisticated airline liveries.FSDS 2 paid for itself, in my eyes. I always wanted a Microlight similar to the one I created, and no one had come close to releasing one. I was absorbed for hours in the making of it--entertainment that you just can't put a price on.-John

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i got pro. what is FSDS 2? and how much does it cost? i dont know i think ill try to stick with gmax. most planes are made in gmax right? and also for painting can i just use painsthop or photoshop? hey what is the file name of your project, i want to download it :)

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hey newb, Just a bit of friendly advice. If you go with gmax, please start with SIMPLE projects first. Dont start out trying to build a plane, its just to complicated with gmax. I assume your new to 3d design. Take a look at your desk... pick an object and make it, say.. a pencil, sounds simple enough right? doing this will develop your eye for detail. If you start with a plane first off, chances are good you'll have a giant hotdog with wings. then you have to deal with animations and textures and on and on and on... If you need a beginners tutorial do a search for Max tutorial on google... even 3ds max (gmax's big brother) uses a nearly identical interface and you can apply the learning material to gmax. Trust me on this one, seen many aspiring designers just get swamped by diving in head first with aircraft design.in short, my advice is to "become a modeler, then model a plane."once you have a good feel for gmax, dig around the archives to this forum. I doubt you have a question that hasnt been answered already. And if you do... fire away, we'll try to help you.have fun, say good bye to the family and start another pot of coffee.:-)joewww.geocities.com/odog812/index

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The filename for my Microlight project is microlgt.zip..As for painting, you can use either of the tools you mentioned, but you'll still need a utility to convert them to DXT format. As for most planes being made in GMAX, I think it's only that FSDS 2 was a late addition to aircraft design in FS2002. Go to Eaglesoft (www.eaglesoftdg1.com) to take a peek at some of the amazing work that can be done in FSDS 2 (the 400a was done in GMAX, and the Premier in FSDS 2).The other advice given is excellent, even for FSDS 2. Start simple. Make a "Flying Pencil".... Work yourself up to an aircraft. I progressed fairly fast in FSDS 2, and those here got to see the progression as I shared my project. Time constraints have kept me from working on my next original project, although I just completed work (with the kind blessings of Chuck Dome) on an upgrade to his Malibu Mirage. -John

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You have FS2002 Pro - install gmax properly, etc and learn it. If you're starting from "0" learn gmax.As a modelling program, it has a bit of a steep learning curve. Some people take to it like a duck to water ....Because gmax is a general game-modelling program, it has more features than MS flight sim can handle ... HOWEVER - both gmax and FSDS have one very important "intangible" feature that makes the learning process less painful - a great user community that is willing to answer questions; flightsimmer developed tutorials and utilities to make it easier...Of course, I'd be remiss if I don't suggest that you browse the TIPS and TUTORIALS sections at Freeflight Design Shop (http://www.freeflightdesign.com) where you can also find gmax source files...>i got pro. what is FSDS 2? and how much does it cost? i dont>know i think ill try to stick with gmax. most planes are made>in gmax right? and also for painting can i just use painsthop>or photoshop? hey what is the file name of your project, i>want to download it :)Felix/FFDSPegasus Aviation Design

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So which one should i pick? I don't want to learn basics of gmax and then realize FSDS2 is much better. What does majority of designers use? FSDS2 does seem to be better since its made specificaly for aircraft design...P.S. so how much FSDS2 costs?

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First, FSDS 2 is currently priced at $49...I can't say FSDS 2 is better. The majority of FS2002 designers fell into using GMAX, because it was free and FSDS didn't support FS2002's feature set at that time. For me, GMAX just seemed hard to learn, as the process of turning an object into an aircraft wasn't as intuitive.I believe GMAX is more flexible in what it can do--I often hear a feature called "Boolean Cut" which allows you to cut windows. In FSDS 2, windows take time to get right. My Microlight was a fudge--I used an old technique of applying trasparencies (via an "alpha" channel) to create the windows, vs. cutting them out. I don't think anyone can tell you which app to decide on. Try GMAX out--it's free. That's what I did. In my case, I just didn't quite catch on. In FSDS 2, I had something that looked like an airplane, built from scratch, with simple animations, in less than an hour. But just as some people learn Spanish like they were born speaking it, some learn GMAX in the same manner. That's why I suggest you try it first, as it's sittin' on your doorstep :)

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OK thats some valuable advice from you John. Thanks :). OK so ill go with gmax. As im building the exterior look of my plane (maybe ill do that pencil first) ill add landing gears and all that, make animations. And only after that is done then ill have to worry about textures and painting right? So now i should just go read some tutorials and make the shape of my plane...After thats done get ready for many more ?'s about how to put it in fs2002pro :)

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#1 - Do ALL the tutorials that come with gmax, they'll give you the feel for the program.As you do the tutorial - take time and make your "flying pencil"Ask questions if you get stuck.There are things in gmax we all have to learn from reading the forum(s) and asking questions.>OK thats some valuable advice from you John. Thanks :). OK so>ill go with gmax. As im building the exterior look of my plane>(maybe ill do that pencil first) ill add landing gears and all>that, make animations. And only after that is done then ill>have to worry about textures and painting right? So now i>should just go read some tutorials and make the shape of my>plane...>After thats done get ready for many more ?'s about how to put>it in fs2002pro :)Felix/FFDSPegasus Aviation Design

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>#1 - Do ALL the tutorials that come with gmax, they'll give>you the feel for the program.Thanks Felix...that was exactly what i was thinging about. I was about to ask if i should do them all...:)

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No problem - giving suggestions (I refrain from qualifying "good" or "bad") is the fun part of this hobby.There are many other "specific-issue" tutorials on gmax and modelling that are useful, but starting point #1 is to do the "native" tutorials.Getting the feel for the program is possibly the most important step.>>#1 - Do ALL the tutorials that come with gmax, they'll>give>>you the feel for the program.>>Thanks Felix...that was exactly what i was thinging about. I>was about to ask if i should do them all...:)Felix/FFDSPegasus Aviation Design

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