Helipad for 3d Warehouse Model

Hello,
Over the past few days, I created a thread "MDL File Issue," where I talked about my project involving converting a hospital model into a landable helipad for FSX. In that thread, I was able to get some of my questions answered. However, now I need a little help with some additional tweaks that need to be added to the model I'm using with tools like Sketchup and MCX. GaryGB, the user I communicated with on that forum, suggested that I create a new topic to discuss the rest of the project. The topic I am referring to is located at the following link: https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/mdl-file-issue.444693/page-2#post-816480. Right now, I would like to figure out how to adjust the elevation of some of the objects to coincide with the real-world models. Any help you can provide is appreciated.
Regards,
Kevin Davis
 
Hi Kevin:

I assume you plan to modify and use this downloaded Sketchup 3D Warehouse model by "PeterX":

https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/model/cdd878e06df577397688e67ac1793ffc/Columbia-St-Marys-Hospital

Ascension Columbia St. Mary's Hospital Helipad

"Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz"


Recommended Procedure to Import "Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz" into Sketchup

1.) Run Sketchup; then:

2.) Sketchup Menu > File > New

a.) When the default 'person object' appears:

(1) Sketchup Menu > Edit > Select All

(2) Sketchup Menu > Edit > Delete

(3) Sketchup Menu > File > Import

(a) Set Import Type: "Google Earth Files (*.KMZ")

(b) 'Click' [Options] button > 'check' "Validate KMZ File" and "Merge Coplanar Faces"

(c) Browse / Select: "Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz"

(d) Click [Import] button


3.) You should now have the 3D model imported

4.) Sketchup Menu > Window > Model Info > Model Info Dialog Box > Geo-location


NOTE: Although Sketchup says "This Model Is Not Geo-located" ...it actually already is 'Geo-referenced':


a.) Click [Set Manual Location...] button > ('Set Manual Geo-location' dialog box shows Lat / Lon values entered)

b.) Click [Cancel] button to exit that dialog box without making any changes


5.) The 3D model should now be ready for any modifications you wish to make in Sketchup.


BTW: Although we discussed a number of options that I would consider to be a "must have" at a Heliport, it is your project. ;)

Please state what modifications you wish to make for this project 'initially', and I'll post further information ASAP on how to implement them if I can.


I'd suggest that we first import the un-modified 3D Warehouse model "Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz" into MCX and step through the brief work-flow to: :idea:

* convert / re-size the texture materials

* output them into a target \Texture folder path

* generate a MDL

* compile the MDL as a FSX Scenery BGL output into a target \Scenery folder

NOTE: The \Scenery folder will be locally paired with the \Texture folder containing the mapped textures.


When the FSX Scenery BGL is loaded in FSX, you will be able to see how the 3D model aligns with terrain textures draped onto the ground using default land class versus MegaScenery Earth Wisconsin custom land class. :cool:

The results of testing alignment of the Helipad and contiguous building(s) might compel some relatively minor modification of what would otherwise have been precisely specific Geographic coordinates for 'placement' of the WS03 ARP in the FAA database, so visual building alignment may be best achieved with a particular Geo-referenced imagery that you select for ongoing use as local land class 'ground' textures.


FYI: This should not cause any problems, as that Heliport is not included in the default FSX airport database, and therefore any custom ARP you create will not conflict with AI traffic (...because there will be none at WS03 until you create some there).

However, as you may already know, any custom ARP you create will ultimately appear in the FSX airport database pick-list.


Once the Geographic coordinates are established for 'placement' of the WS03 ARP in visual building alignment a particular Geo-referenced imagery, the modifications required for elevation of the building and rooftops relative to the known and fixed Altitude of the Helipad can be discerned and implemented via Sketchup and the SDK BGLComp placement parameter values.

PS: I shall plan to post more info here tomorrow ...pending your reply. :)

GaryGB
 
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Hi Gary,
As far as I can tell, I now how the correct model imported into Sketchup. The model I imported is spot-on - looking at my computer screen, I actually feel like I'm driving/walking past the building! I see it at least once a week when I go to my sister's house, which is right across from the hospital. If I understand correctly, after I do steps 1 to 5 along with the sub-steps, I don't really need to make any changes in Sketchup. Am I on the right track here? Finally, out of curiosity, what version of Sketchup do you use? I am using Sketchup 8 to do my project. As for your question about the changes I want to make, because this model is so realistic, the only changes I think I would need to make are:
Adding a hardened surface to the helipad that a helicopter can land on
Making the approach easier where I won't crash (per your post, I am NOT an experienced helicopter pilot in FSX)!
Making a separate model for the staircase on the top of the building, which you suggested on post #27 on yesterday's thread
Because the helipad is already in the model (see screenshot), I don't think I need to re-invent the wheel and create another one. I would like to try to add the staircase. The suggestions you made in post #27 are the route I would like to take going forward. I look forward to your reply!
Regards,
Kevin Davis
 

Attachments

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816523

Hi Gary,

As far as I can tell, I now how the correct model imported into Sketchup. The model I imported is spot-on - looking at my computer screen, I actually feel like I'm driving/walking past the building! I see it at least once a week when I go to my sister's house, which is right across from the hospital.
I am familiar with that area, from my occasional visits to Milwaukee.

I have enjoyed seeing the progressive developments occurring in that neighborhood, and in very cold weather such as we have had recently, I especially appreciate the enclosed lower level garage under the Whole Foods store across the street. :)

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816523

If I understand correctly, after I do steps 1 to 5 along with the sub-steps, I don't really need to make any changes in Sketchup. Am I on the right track here?
I believe we should set the Altitude of the Helipad to match that of the real world, even if the Geographic coordinates are adapted slightly to align with a particular imagery you choose to use for the ground under the Hospital campus and/or the immediate neighborhood, where you will be closer to ground level and able to see very high resolution textures.

The alternative option for a horizontal offset would be to create a land class polygon "decal" draped onto the ground, or a flat 3D model "Ground Polygon" textured with photo-real imagery, either of which has been edited to more closely align with real world Geographic coordinates in an effort to minimize the "Off-Nadir" artifacts seen in satellite imagery ...in the vicinity of the hospital campus / park area etc.


Either way, we'd need to 3D model a copy of the Helipad texture area as a separate Face ...above roof level by ex: 10 feet to:

138.358 Feet / 42.17152 Meters - WS03 Heliport Altitude (AGL)


I can walk you through this process (it should be fairly easy to do in Sketchup).

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816523

Finally, out of curiosity, what version of Sketchup do you use? I am using Sketchup 8 to do my project.
I use Sketchup version 8 (32-Bit) for most 3D modeling processes as it works fine, has the most plugins still available for it, and is very responsive compared to switching between certain tool modes in the newer / 64-bit versions.

Furthermore, all its functions work correctly (unlike Sketchup 2017, that reportedly has a 'broken' "Combine Textures" feature ...which AFAIK, was never fixed by the developers).

And, since IIRC, it is the last version allowed to be used for commercial output purposes without incurring a separate license fee, it is always used for all 'final' Sketchup output)

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816523

As for your question about the changes I want to make, because this model is so realistic, the only changes I think I would need to make are:

* Adding a hardened surface to the helipad that a helicopter can land on

* Making the approach easier where I won't crash (per your post, I am NOT an experienced helicopter pilot in FSX)!

* Making a separate model for the staircase on the top of the building, which you suggested on post #27 on yesterday's thread

* Because the helipad is already in the model (see screenshot), I don't think I need to re-invent the wheel and create another one.

* I would like to try to add the staircase.


The suggestions you made in post #27 (of my prior recent thread ...here:):

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/mdl-file-issue.444693/post-816422


...are the route I would like to take going forward. I look forward to your reply!

Regards,

Kevin Davis
OK, so since you "would like to try to add the staircase", which in real life ascends from roof level vertically in elevation by ex: 10 feet up to the level of the Helipad, I shall present a work-flow to 3D model in Sketchup, the stair way and Helipad support structures from a 'copy' of the Helipad texture area as a separate Face (inside a Group) ...above roof level to:

138.358 Feet / 42.17152 Meters - WS03 Heliport Altitude (AGL)

This process incidentally requires a slight modification of the existing building roof elevation AGL, and that can be accomplished by adjusting the position where the 3D model of that building underneath the Helipad meets the "ground" in Sketchup, and perhaps as well, a small adjustment of the building rooftop height AGL ...relative to the Helipad in Sketchup.

I'll try to post a tutorial for all the steps required to do that today. :coffee:

GaryGB
 
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Hi Kevin:

Before starting the 3D modeling, lets take a look at the real world site to see what is 'practical' to emulate for FSX via Sketchup.

(Ascension) Columbia St. Mary's Hospital, Milwaukee, From the southeast in Water Tower Park




AFAIK, The following are photos of the WS03 Helipad site (and/or a very similar site ?) ...taken by the construction company:

http://www.priceerecting.com/portfolio/


Helipad Fabrication and Install – Milwaukee, WI











We can also gain some insight from these images of a Google Earth "New 3D Building Mode" rendering of the WS03 Helipad:


Google Earth 'new' 3D buildings:



Same view in "Legacy Mode":




Google Earth 'new' 3D buildings:



Same view in "Legacy Mode":



Obviously, we might wish to emulate the "look and feel" of this site by using some methods in Sketchup that keep the work-load and complexity of the 3D model less overwhelming to achieve, and also less demanding on the FSX run time rendering engine.

That can be done via 'flat' 2D Faces with texture materials that use 'transparency' where needed to create a '3D' appearance for the stairs, railings, perimeter fencing spans etc..

Even the support beams for the real world platform that supports the WS03 Helipad can be created using that same technique, to keep 3D modeling complexity to a minimum, if desired. :idea:


BTW: Where an angled view of a structure might be distorted when a photo is draped onto a flat face, one can use the texture material positioning pins to make a 'straight' and evenly-spaced texture image on a small section of a Face inside a Group, then use the "Move" tool in "Copy and Move" mode to transfer a copy of the Group onto a Construction Guide Line / Point or Face Edge / Point target location.

One can immediately afterwards use the "Array" option by typing a number followed (without an interposed space character) by a letter "X" and a numeral to specify how many copies of the Group are to be 'iterated' ...in the exact same plane, and at the exact same distance apart ...as the first Group was positioned to.

This would allow one to simplify the task of creating a 'non-warped' 1-piece texture material for ex: a railing as a single Face made from a multi-part image via the "Combine Textures" feature, which can merge the image pixels from adjacent Grouped Faces by 'exploding' their Group bounding boxes and deleting Edges between the coplanar, contiguous Faces. ;)

More to come ASAP...

GaryGB
 

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Hi Kevin:

Although I will be on the road today, I will try to post some additional information as time permits. :)


BTW: Before proceeding into 3D modeling of the WS-3 Helipad, here's the FAA criteria that applies to hospital Heliports: :pushpin:

https://www.faa.gov/documentlibrary/media/advisory_circular/150-5390-2b/150_5390_2b_part3.pdf


While not an FAA document, there is also a relevant equivalent document from the UK which also quite informative ...here:

https://publicapps.caa.co.uk/docs/33/CAP1264 final Feb 2016.pdf


Whether you may be developing as a FSX hobbyist pursuing the "entertainment" aspect of FS, or if you may have a goal of developing this and other such helipads to be used in FSX or P3D for "academic" learning of Helo flight and hospital heliport navigation procedures, I believe a review of these latter documents may help with making your FS project "as real as its gets".


PS: As you consider your options for making the raised platform for the WS03 helipad, and the contiguous stairways, you may wish to explore resources available in the 3D Warehouse. :idea:

https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/search/?q=metal stairs


Also, you may wish to explore the FS scenery library objects developed by Gary Mills (aka "Gman" here at FSDeveloper):

https://library.avsim.net/esearch.php?CatID=root&Name=&FileName=&Author=Gary+Mills&DLID=&Sort=Author&ScanMode=0


More to come soon...

GaryGB
 
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Hi Kevin:

Another task I mentioned that we will need to complete during the 3D modeling steps to be posted soon, is adjusting the "Crash Boxes" for the building model in areas adjacent to where the Helipad will end up.


Although, IIUC, we will first need to adjust the building vertical (aka "Z-Axis") position relative to the "ground" level at the 'Origin of Axes' in Sketchup before changing the crash boxes in MCX, to prepare for that task, you may wish to start familiarizing your self with that crash box re-sizing process via these online learning resources: :coffee:

https://www.google.com/search?q=site:www.fsdeveloper.com+crash+box+ModelConverterX+MCX&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8



More to come soon...

GaryGB
 
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Hi Gary,
I hope your road trip went well! Good call on reviewing the FAA documentation on hospital heliports. In the FAA document, is Figure 4-5, on page 109 of the PDF file the image we should focus on? Also, I looked at the 3d Warehouse page on metal stairs that you posted, and compared the search results to the r/w images you posted in post #5 in this thread. Based on the search results, this seems to be the closest to the r/w stairs https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/model/b6b5f49b4ca6ee8c250fec4f5c0d612e/Metal-stairs.
If I understand your last post correctly, we will need to adjust the z-axis position before we complete the steps outlined in the Crash Box YouTube video you posted on post #7. Is this right? I'm excited about the progress we've made so far!
Regards,
Kevin Davis
 

Attachments

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816646

Hi Gary,

I hope your road trip went well!

Good call on reviewing the FAA documentation on hospital heliports. In the FAA document, is Figure 4-5, on page 109 of the PDF file the image we should focus on?
Indeed, there are some similarities in the layout of the Helipad and building in that illustration.

There are also additional directives in that document which we may wish to take note of, for example the height AGL of the penthouse roof for the enclosed building stairwell at the NW Helipad corner, needing to end up at- or below- the level of the Helipad surface when the 3D building model is adjusted, so that it does not present a hazard to in-flight approach / take-off maneuvering of the Helicopter when there are cross-winds etc.

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816646

Also, I looked at the 3d Warehouse page on metal stairs that you posted, and compared the search results to the r/w images you posted in post #5 in this thread. Based on the search results, this seems to be the closest to the r/w stairs:

https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/model/b6b5f49b4ca6ee8c250fec4f5c0d612e/Metal-stairs.
That looks like a good possibility; and there are a few others I noticed on a cursory scan which I can provide links to later.

If we should find that the (2) Platform attachments to the Helipad significantly impact FPS in FSX on your computer when rendered along with the 3D Warehouse stairway model(s), we can take screenshots of the stairway 3D models via the Sketchup camera in a on-axis Parallel mode view ...from each side.

Those images can be edited in a graphics application to modify them by adding 'transparency' to the texture in areas in-between- and outside of- the 'solid' areas of the stairway objects.

These texture images of the stairways can then be applied to Faces on a 'Box' object ...rather than using the full 3D model with all its complex geometry (...which would otherwise impact FSX run time performance much more significantly).

If necessary, the support structures underneath the Helipad may be created by this alternate method as well, :idea:

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816646

If I understand your last post correctly, we will need to adjust the z-axis position before we complete the steps outlined in the Crash Box YouTube video you posted on post #7. Is this right?

I'm excited about the progress we've made so far!

Regards,
Kevin Davis
Yes; after we adjust the z-axis position of the building in Sketchup, we can proceed with other needed modifications to the building, and 3D modeling the raised Helipad object itself.

Once that is done, we can export the 3D model from Sketchup, and import it into MCX to perform the task of re-sizing the building Crash Boxes, and adding (2) Platforms to the Helipad surface area.


BTW: I have not yet been able to identify where the rooftop-level Wind Sock(s) is / (are) located for the WS03 Heliport.

Have you been able to see where that is when you have looked that the building in person from the ground ? :scratchch


Hopefully I will have a chance to get substantially more of the steps for the pending work-flow posted today. :)

GaryGB
 
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Hi Gary,
From the ground, I can't even tell where the heliport is. At the point I'm at, the helicopter disappears behind the building, and I never see it land. Is the windsock a necessity?
Regards,
Kevin Davis
 
https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816652

Hi Gary,

From the ground, I can't even tell where the heliport is.

At the point I'm at, the helicopter disappears behind the building, and I never see it land. Is the windsock a necessity?

Regards,
Kevin Davis
I found a WindSock (...but I wonder if there are others more accessible to pilot visibility during approach / take-off ? ) :scratchch

You'll see it also, if you un-ZIP and double-click the attached *.KMZ to open a zoomed view in Google Earth Desktop Edition.


FYI: We would not need to add 'static' WindSocks in Sketchup, but we can add fully functional animated ones for FSX.


You might be surprised to see how FSX can simulate a realistic weather impact on flight in a cross-wind landing at WS03 ! :cool:

GaryGB
 

Attachments

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Hi Kevin:

To adjust the z-axis position of the building 'datum' ...so that the raised Helipad will be 10 Feet AGL in Sketchup:

1.) Import the 3D Warehouse model "Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz" into Sketchup as described in my post above:

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816505


NOTE: The Sketchup 'Origin of Axes' for this 3D Warehouse model is by default at the SW corner of the building

This can be seen if you un-ZIP / double-click the attached *.KMZ to open a zoomed view in Google Earth Desktop Edition.


2.) Position the Sketchup Tape Measure Tool at the bottom SW Edge of the building

[EDITED]

a.) Left Mouse-click, then drag the Tape Measure Tool cursor vertically up the SW Edge Z-Axis to a distance at least 21 Feet, then hold that position firmly

b.) Release the Left Mouse button, and immediately Left-click to place a Guide Point on that Edge position

c.) Immediately type on the keyboard: 20' 5 3/8", and press the < Enter > key


3.) Place the Move Tool into position over that Guide Point (watch for the "Guide Point" inference tool-tip pop-up)

a.) Once the Move Tool is in position over that Guide Point, Left Mouse-click+hold that position firmly (do not move it now):

(1) Press and hold down the keyboard "Down Arrow" key (not the one on the Numeric Keypad)

(2) Left Mouse-click+hold+drag the 'Guide Point' vertically down the SW Edge Z-Axis to the Sketchup 'Origin of Axes'

NOTE: Watch for the "Origin" inference tool-tip pop-up


(3) Once the Move Tool is in position over the Sketchup 'Origin of Axes', Left Mouse-click (do not move the "Move" tool yet)

(a) Release the keyboard "Down Arrow" key

(b) Immediately press keyboard <ESC > key


(3) Once the Move Tool is in position over the Sketchup 'Origin of Axes', Left Mouse-click (do not move the "Move" tool yet)

(a) Release the keyboard "Down" Arrow key

(b) Immediately Press keyboard <ESC > key


You should now have the 3D building 'datum' positioned so the raised Helipad will be 10 Feet AGL in Sketchup (and FSX). :pushpin:

Save the project in Sketchup as a standard *.SKP file for now. :coffee:

[END_EDIT]

More to come soon...

GaryGB
 

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Hi Kevin:

Now lets prepare for working on this 3D model by moving the building Axis into alignment with 2 walls closer to the Helipad:

NOTE: Some of the building walls in this 3D model are otherwise not "square" to the local Helipad axes :alert:


To (temporarily) adjust the building Axis position ...aligned with the WS03 Helipad in Sketchup:

1.) Sketchup Menu > Camera > Standard Views > Iso

2.) Sketchup Menu > Tools > Tape Measure

a.) Position the Sketchup Tape Measure Tool on the Green (North) Axis line of the Sketchup work-space

b.) Left Mouse-click+hold+drag horizontally to the Right (East) for a distance at least 600 Feet, then hold that position firmly

c.) Release the Left Mouse button, and immediately Left-click to place a Guide Line on that Edge position

d.) Immediately type on the keyboard: 600', and press the < Enter > key


3.) Sketchup Menu > Tools > Tape Measure

a.) Position the Sketchup Tape Measure Tool on the Red (East) Axis line of the Sketchup work-space

b.) Left Mouse-click+hold+drag vertically Up to the top (North) for a distance at least 360 Feet, then hold that position firmly

c.) Release the Left Mouse button, and immediately Left-click to place a Guide Line on that Edge position

d.) Immediately type on the keyboard: 360', and press the < Enter > key


4.) Sketchup Menu > Draw > Rectangle

a.) Position the Rectangle Tool cursor on the Sketchup 'Origin of Axes', Left Mouse-click, then hold that position firmly

b.) Left Mouse-click+hold+drag vertically up along the Green (North) Axis for a distance at least 360 Feet

NOTE: When the "On Line" inference tool-tip pop-up appears:

c.) Continue to drag horizontally to the Right along the Red (East) Axis for a distance of 600 Feet to the Guide Line

NOTE: Watch for the "Intersection" inference tool-tip pop-up; when the "Intersection" inference tool-tip pop-up appears, hold that position firmly, then:

d.) Release the Left Mouse button, and immediately Left-click to place a Rectangle 'End Point' on the Guide Line 'Intersection'

c.) Immediately type on the keyboard: 600', 350', and press the < Enter > key

NOTE: A 'Face' should now appear on the Sketchup 'Ground' plane


5.) Sketchup Menu > Tools > Axes

a.) Place the Axes Tool cursor in position over the bottom NW corner of the Helipad building stairway encasement

This can be seen if you un-ZIP / double-click the attached *.KMZ to open a zoomed view in Google Earth Desktop Edition.


NOTE: Watch for the "Intersection in Component" inference tool-tip pop-up; when the "Intersection in Component" inference tool-tip pop-up appears, hold that position firmly, then:

b.) Immediately move the Axes Tool cursor to the Left along the baseline of the stairway encasement

c.) When the "Perpendicular to Edge" inference tool-tip pop-up appears, hold that position firmly, then Left Mouse-click 3x)


You should now see that the building Axis position has been moved ...aligned with the WS03 Helipad in Sketchup. :pushpin:


More to come soon...

GaryGB
 

Attachments

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Hi Kevin:

To adjust the z-axis position of the building 'datum' ...so that the raised Helipad will be 10 Feet AGL in Sketchup:

1.) Import the 3D Warehouse model "Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz" into Sketchup as described in my post above:

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816505


NOTE: The Sketchup 'Origin of Axes' for this 3D Warehouse model is by default at the SW corner of the building

This can be seen if you un-ZIP / double-click the attached *.KMZ to open a zoomed view in Google Earth Desktop Edition.


2.) Position the Sketchup Tape Measure Tool at the bottom SW Edge of the building

a.) Left Mouse-click+hold+drag vertically up the SW Edge Z-Axis to a distance at least 21 Feet, then hold that position firmly

b.) Release the Left Mouse button, and immediately Left-click to place a Guide Point on that Edge position

c.) Immediately type on the keyboard: 20' 5 3/8", and press the < Enter > key


3.) Place the Move Tool into position over that Guide Point (watch for the "Guide Point" inference tool-tip pop-up)

a.) Once the Move Tool is in position over that Guide Point, Left Mouse-click+hold that position firmly (do not move it now):

(1) Press and hold down the keyboard "Down" Arrow key (not the one on the Numeric Keypad)

(2) Left Mouse-click+hold+drag the 'Guide Point' vertically down the SW Edge Z-Axis to the Sketchup 'Origin of Axes'

NOTE: Watch for the "Origin" inference tool-tip pop-up


(3) Once the Move Tool is in position over the Sketchup 'Origin of Axes', Left Mouse-click (do not move the "Move" tool yet)

(a) Release the keyboard "Down" Arrow key

(b) Immediately Press keyboard <ESC > key


You should now have the 3D building 'datum' positioned so the raised Helipad will be 10 Feet AGL in Sketchup (and FSX). :pushpin:

Save the project in Sketchup as a standard *.SKP file for now. :coffee:


More to come soon...

GaryGB
Hi Gary,
I'm totally lost now! I imported the file and was lost on how to do the axis thing. I used the tape measure tool and clicked on the very bottom of the model. I released it and entered the dimensions as described in step 2c. When I did this, nothing happened. Would you like me to post any screenshots? I'm using Sketchup 8.0.16486.
Regards,
Kevin Davis
 
Hi Kevin:

Which part of the (2) separate procedures are you attempting at this time ? :scratchch


FYI: We must first adjust the z-axis position of the building 'datum' before any other procedure is performed.


NOTE: The very first "adjust the z-axis position" process requires that we:

2.) Position the Sketchup Tape Measure Tool at the bottom SW Edge of the building; now:

[EDITED]

a.) Left Mouse-click, then drag the Tape Measure Tool cursor vertically up the SW Edge Z-Axis to a distance at least 21 Feet, then hold that position firmly

[END_EDIT]

NOTE: You should see a measurement for the distance you (slowly) moved the Mouse in a ToolTip Pop-Up at the Mouse cursor.

After dragging the Mouse (Tape Measure) cursor vertically at least 21 Feet:


b.) Release the Left Mouse button, and immediately Left-click to place a 'Guide Point' on that Edge position

c.) Immediately type on the keyboard: 20' 5 3/8", and press the < Enter > key


Let me know if you have a need for further explanation of this process. :)

GaryGB
 
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Hi Gary,
Is the circled part what I should use for the starting point? That is part of the confusion for me. The issue is starting literally occurring right after I import the model into Sketchup. If I understand correctly, the software automatically centers the model, so it's just a matter of placing the ruler. I did a screenshot of the image, saved it as a JPEG, and circled that part this image with the native Paint program in Windows 10.
Regards,
Kevin Davis
building screenshot.JPG
 
https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816780

Hi Gary,

Is the circled part what I should use for the starting point?
Please read my clarification below, of exactly what position on the building I am referring to ...for setting a Z-Axis 'Guide Point'.

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816780

That is part of the confusion for me. The issue is starting literally occurring right after I import the model into Sketchup. If I understand correctly, the software automatically centers the model, so it's just a matter of placing the ruler. I did a screenshot of the image, saved it as a JPEG, and circled that part this image with the native Paint program in Windows 10.

Regards,
Kevin Davis
View attachment 47768
Hi Kevin:

To adjust the z-axis position of the building 'datum' ...so that the raised Helipad will be 10 Feet AGL in Sketchup:

1.) Import the 3D Warehouse model "Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz" into Sketchup as described in my post above:

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816505


NOTE: The Sketchup 'Origin of Axes' for this 3D Warehouse model is by default at the SW corner of the building

This can be seen if you un-ZIP / double-click the attached *.KMZ to open a zoomed view in Google Earth Desktop Edition.


2.) Position the Sketchup Tape Measure Tool at the bottom SW Edge of the building

a.) Left Mouse-click+hold+drag vertically up the SW Edge Z-Axis to a distance at least 21 Feet, then hold that position firmly

b.) Release the Left Mouse button, and immediately Left-click to place a Guide Point on that Edge position

c.) Immediately type on the keyboard: 20' 5 3/8", and press the < Enter > key


3.) Place the Move Tool into position over that Guide Point (watch for the "Guide Point" inference tool-tip pop-up)

a.) Once the Move Tool is in position over that Guide Point, Left Mouse-click+hold that position firmly (do not move it now):

(1) Press and hold down the keyboard "Down" Arrow key (not the one on the Numeric Keypad)

(2) Left Mouse-click+hold+drag the 'Guide Point' vertically down the SW Edge Z-Axis to the Sketchup 'Origin of Axes'

NOTE: Watch for the "Origin" inference tool-tip pop-up


(3) Once the Move Tool is in position over the Sketchup 'Origin of Axes', Left Mouse-click (do not move the "Move" tool yet)

(a) Release the keyboard "Down" Arrow key

(b) Immediately Press keyboard <ESC > key


You should now have the 3D building 'datum' positioned so the raised Helipad will be 10 Feet AGL in Sketchup (and FSX). :pushpin:

Save the project in Sketchup as a standard *.SKP file for now. :coffee:


More to come soon...

GaryGB

The author of the 3D model determines where it is placed, and whether it is aligned- or NOT aligned-...to the N-S / E-W Axes.

Sketchup loads and positions the 3D model in the orientation the author placed it ...in relation to the "Origin of Axes".


NOTE: When I stated:

"If you import the 3D Warehouse model "Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz" into Sketchup as described in my post above:"

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816505

...and:

"The Sketchup 'Origin of Axes' for this 3D Warehouse model is by default at the SW corner of the building",


...I was referring to the corner of the building closest to the intersection of N. Prospect Avenue and E. North Avenue.


Please note that I also stated:

"You can see this if you un-ZIP / double-click the attached *.KMZ to open a zoomed view in Google Earth Desktop Edition."


If you have not already done so, please download / install Google Earth Desktop Edition before proceeding further. :pushpin:



PS: Regarding the Sketchup Axes and the Geographic "Cardinal Directions":

https://help.sketchup.com/en/sketchup/adjusting-drawing-axes




Again, let me know if you have a need for further explanation of this process. :)

GaryGB
 
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gfxpilot

Resource contributor
Hi Gary, just wondered if Kevin could utilise the "geo location " application in Sketchup. It could at least allow a fast placement guide that in conjunction with a quick visual from google earth where he can use the measuring tool to help get a location and datum. Sketchup free version is a little bit of a pain in the APU when you import from other sources as we know, where the texture location can skew from slightly to "start again" mode.

Gareth
 
https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816794

Hi Gary, just wondered if Kevin could utilise the "geo location " application in Sketchup. It could at least allow a fast placement guide that in conjunction with a quick visual from google earth where he can use the measuring tool to help get a location and datum. Sketchup free version is a little bit of a pain in the APU when you import from other sources as we know, where the texture location can skew from slightly to "start again" mode.

Gareth
Aside from the fact that the Sketchup Geo-location mechanism was discontinued for older and freeware versions of Sketchup, the quality of the data now provided for that feature in newer payware versions of Sketchup is inferior to that which was previously provided via Google Earth / Maps.

IMHO, it is now more accurate to instead use a "Path" object drawn in Google Earth (imported via a plugin Ruby script to Sketchup version 8 as a *.KML object), then aligning / scaling imagery downloaded via ex: SBuilderX onto a Face superimposed over that "Path" object once it is imported into Sketchup.


Also, the 3D object horizontal positioning must be adjusted to accommodate the Geo-referencing of the custom photo-real imagery Kevin intends to use in FSX, and whether that imagery contains distortions as a result of it being taken "off-nadir".


Additionally, the 3D object vertical positioning must be corrected for the extended building base the author used to accommodate the Google Earth legacy terrain mesh onto (into !) which it was originally intended to be placed (embedded !)


There is another step which will be required to place the Helipad at the correct real-world distance from the local ground that compels performance of the preceding (2) steps I have already recommended above.


I'm confident Kevin will soon discern Sketchup's 'tool procedures', implement the (2) steps, and proceed further with WS03. :)

GaryGB
 
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Please read my clarification below, of exactly what position on the building I am referring to ...for setting a Z-Axis 'Guide Point'.






The author of the 3D model determines where it is placed, and whether it is aligned- or NOT aligned-...to the N-S / E-W Axes.

Sketchup loads and positions the 3D model in the orientation the author placed it ...in relation to the "Origin of Axes".


NOTE: When I stated:

"If you import the 3D Warehouse model "Columbia+St+Marys+Hospital.kmz" into Sketchup as described in my post above:"

https://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/threads/helipad-for-3d-warehouse-model.444746/post-816505

...and:

"The Sketchup 'Origin of Axes' for this 3D Warehouse model is by default at the SW corner of the building",


...I was referring to the corner of the building closest to the intersection of N. Prospect Avenue and E. North Avenue.


Please note that I also stated:

"You can see this if you un-ZIP / double-click the attached *.KMZ to open a zoomed view in Google Earth Desktop Edition."


If you have not already done so, please download / install Google Earth Desktop Edition before proceeding further. :pushpin:



PS: Regarding the Sketchup Axes and the Geographic "Cardinal Directions":

https://help.sketchup.com/en/sketchup/adjusting-drawing-axes




Again, let me know if you have a need for further explanation of this process. :)

GaryGB
Hi again, Gary,
I downloaded the "Origin of Axis" KMZ file you posted in Google Earth - which I didn't know was a requirement earlier. Sorry! So is the yellow pin in that file where I should put the axis in the model? Also, where does the windsock KMZ come in?
Regards,
Kevin Davis
 
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