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I'm new - Trying to better understand ground polys and resampled imagery.


I'm attempting to build a small airport near my hometown, primarily in 3DS Max, for use in P3D4 as freeware. I'm looking for a bit of guidance from those with experience.

Up to this point, I've been able to create a resampled photo of the area around the airport that clings to the terrain mesh and I've begun the creation of taxiways, runway, and apron over a reference image. I have some experience in Max, coming from a background in concept art and illustration, and I've been spending a lot of time reading through the P3D SDK documention as well as the forums and wiki here. I've run into some hurdles, however.

- The satellite imagery that I've used for the resampled photo is sourced from Google, and cannot be released as part of the scenery package unless I purchase the rights to use it as such. Is there any way around this in the United States? Maybe a USGS source?
- Following the tutorials (mainly the one from Tic) I was able to gain some exposure to creating ground polygons. I did run into an issue with the sizing of the reference plane in Max not matching up with the scale of my satellite photo. Why do both negative and positive values for x and y dimensions need to be input for the reference plane? In doing this, when I create a rectangle for my runway and input its size in meters, it's only half the size of the one in the reference image. I do have Max's units set to meters.
- Do people typically use ADE for flattening and exclusions, or SBuilderX? Is one better than the other at any of these tasks?
- Lastly, beyond the taxiways, apron, and runway, what's the most common method for handling the rest of the ground around the airport? Relying solely on the resampled image doesn't appear to be ideal, as it's quite low resolution. I watched a video on Youtube where the tutorial showed slicing up the satellite image into 1k squares and essentially tiling the texture onto a subdivided plane in Max, but the person demonstrating it seemed to not fully understand how to properly carry this out and ended up with an imprecise scaling of his airport ground over the resampled satellite photo. Is there any further illumination of this technique anywhere?

It's this last point which has been really eating away at me for the last few days, as I can't seem to find anything concrete on the subject. I have even deconstructed a couple of payware sceneries I own that seem to use this tiling method, just to see if there was anything telling, but it hasn't revealed a whole lot to me. One of them seemed to use multiple planes of equal size, underneath or along with the ground polys, rather than a single subdivided plane, with cuts made to suit the surrounding terrain (it was a coastal airport at the mouth of a river).

Hopefully I'm asking the right questions. Thanks in advance to anyone willing to help me out, as well as those who have already helped via their tutorials and forum posts.
Hi there ! :wave:
I just recently started building airports my self, so yeah :), for the first time in my life... and came across a very useful tutorial series ...(it's 5 or 6 videos i think)
Right now i am using <<SbuilderX 3.15>> , together with ""airport design editor v.177_7018_beta"". I use P3D 4.5
...don't know if it helps but i 'm gonna post this anyway here, you know, THAT guy's video helped me a LOT to get good image for my airport :
...... especially in tutorial #2. I hope this helps you somehow ....

I found out that, google sat images, in most areas (such as military for example), don't give you the best resaults,
sometimes even "blurring" these areas purposely !!
In this video i linked above, you 'll see some altenative tricks how to get a good image for your airport.
;) regards

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