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Import Scenery object into FSX

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74
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us-northcarolina
I regret to go into so much detail but how else can I present this problem properly?
After the usual learning curve I have made a custom hanger model with detail in Sketchup.
The conversion process to FSX scenery was to export the model by COLLADA file (WASP4.dae) into Arno's ModelConvertX.
The COLLADA conversion process also had a texture folder in addition to the dae file.
The Sketchup model appeared accurately in the display and I proceeded to convert to FSX MDL.which was saved to a folder. I also converted the jpg texture files as dds which were saved back to the original texture folder. The dds texture files were then saved to Addon Scenery/Avenger/Texture sub-folder
I opened Arno's LibraryCreatorXML and created a new library; Avenger. Then added the MDL file (WASP4.MDL) to the new library.and saved the library.. (Avenger.xml)
The last step was to compile the BGL file which was successful and saved as AvengerH1.bgl to Addon Scenery/Avenger/Scenery sub-folder.
The Avenger folder was then added to the FSX Scenery Library.
The Object Placement Tool did not show my hanger on the scenery list.
Since that did not work, I tried to place the new hanger into ADE using Generic Building Manager.
Since that is not possible, I then used the Object Placement Manager.
I was able to save the folder Avenger from FSX addon scenery.
The Manager added 1 object and it displays in FSX but without textures (roofs, windows, etc.).
Also the Hanger is not clear and does a lot of flashing.
How does the textures get included?
Is there a better method to import scenery made by Sketchup into FSX?
Would appreciate any advice you can give.
Thanks,
Zeb Gardner
Fayetteville, NC
 

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Zeb, you have the same problem that I need to get resolved. I have been working for weeks and cannot get a model to show properly in FSX. I have FS Design Studio by Wilco that works fine for placing models in FSX. I just don't want to go through the learning curve required for the program as I find Sketchup easier to use. Hopefully you will get an answer to your problem and that should help me.

Wayne
 
You should see the model in the Object placement tool list, you have to add a zero to the guid, and will find it, if you have e67c in OPT will be 0e67c. if not something is wrong.
the library must be active before you try to place any custom object.
 
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You seem to be doing everything correctly that I can see. You might want to check the Material Editor in MCX after the texture conversion and make sure all your textures are listed correctly (name, extension, visible in the preview window, etc.).

The flashing in Sketchup models is usually caused by multiple polygons present on a single surface - the polygons fight each other for visibility. This problem is often created when adding door or window polygons to a building (i.e. just adding the polygon over the top of an intact building). Avoid this when modeling. Either put the windows and doors into the texture itself (thus avoiding the extra polygons), or cut out the building polygon behind the window or door (etc.).

Hope this helps,
 
To Barnardo:
Your are correct. I found the guid in the list with a 0 in front. I was able to display the model on the airport. It had walls, windows and doors but no roofs. That means the textures are not included with the scenery package or they are corrupted.

To Tom:
As you read above, there may be a problem with the texture files. Your suggestion to open the Material Editor was started but as the attached photo shows there are no bars at the top or tabs on the bottom. Strange.
Regarding the multiple polygons, consider this: Sketchup component creation offers the options of “Glue To” and “Cut Opening” I used both, so there should not be any polygons with in the openings.

I would be satisfied to fight the polygon problem after the texture battle is won.
Thanks.
Zeb Gardner
Fayetteville, NC
 

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Hi Zeb:

Please state which mode are you running FSX in: DirectX-9 (aka "DX-9") or DirectX-10 preview (aka "DX-10") ? :confused:

As Tom Gibson points out, (in DX-9 mode) if there are 1 or more 'polygon' surfaces ("Faces" in Sketchup terminology) superimposed over another on a 3D model, "flickering" and/or Moiré patterns may be seen in both Sketchup and FSX (...regardless of whether either, neither, or all such faces are textured).

Sorting this out can be complicated further if an object with superimposed faces is displayed in FSX DX-10 preview mode.


WHY: Although most object flickering in FSX DX-10 mode has recently been solved via innovative edits to default FSX Shaders, some objects on the ground still flicker when viewed at various altitudes / angles of view.

Possibly with further inquiry at the MDL and texture attribute level, we might be able to solve that residual flickering as well. ;)


FYI: For detailed info on the considerable progress the FS Community has made with getting DX-10 mode to work properly in FSX, see:

http://forum.avsim.net/forum/569-dx-10-discussions-hints-and-help/


Hope this helps ! :)

GaryGB
 
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GaryGB
Thanks for your comments.
DirectX-9 is running. I have not tried DX-10. While I am working on the Avenger Field project, the fewer the problems the better.
It is an interesting subject. I have noticed runways flashing and continuously moving on the near level plain. Just thought it was a characteristic of FSX.

The texture problem is baffling. Could you tell me how the texture folder, which is a sub-folder and the scenery folder, another sub-folder are handled to be made active together. Is reference made to textures when compiling to bgl?
I see the guid in the FSX scenery list and can place the building. But there are no roofs and glass in the windows which is the texture files.
Wonder if anyone would be willing to load this scenery model to verify it?
Thanks.
Zeb Gardner
 
Some people have problem with the skethup models which part of them have desappeared, some suggested that sketchup materials can't be used, but I don't think that be the problem, I have used the dae files and never cope with such problem. not sure about all this. you have checked the model in MCX for sure, then there you can look for the textures and look for something weird.
 
That Material Editor will work fine, click on the names of the materials in the upper left and scroll down on the right to see the texture file names.

There is a new Material Editor with tabs, etc. in the latest development version of MCX.

Hope this helps,
 
Hi Zeb:

If you ZIP the scenery project and attach it to a post here at FSDeveloper some of us could take a look at it and try to offer helpful feedback.

Alternatively, setting up a (free) account at ex: http://www.mediafire.com/ or https://www.dropbox.com/DropBox.com will prove helpful with making a link to download your projects(s) if they are too big to attach here at FSDeveloper's server.


The texture processing done by ModelConverterX (aka "MCX") with various input file formats is of course Arno's area of specialty, and perhaps when he has a chance, he can offer some insight with what is happening with your import / export process.

One should always maintain a proper folder structure for scenery projects output from MCX when added as an "active" Area layer to FSX Scenery Library ...For example:

My Computer\
__d: [Your FSX install drive letter]
........|__[Your FSX install folder name]
..............|__Addon Scenery
..............|.....|__[Your FSX scenery project folder name]
..............|.........|__Scenery
..............|.........|.....|__[Your airport facilities data file name].bgl <-- May also "place" airport Generic Buildings / Windsocks (ex: "[airport ICAO]_ADEX.bgl")
..............|.........|.....|__[Your scenery object library file name].bgl <-- Custom 3D MDL(s) in library BGL 'mapped' to pixels in texture(s) (ex: "[airport ICAO]_LIB.bgl")
..............|.........|.....|__[Your scenery object placement file name].bgl <-- All Scenery library object placements (ex: "[airport ICAO]_OBJ_PLC.bgl")
..............|.........|.....|__[Your airport 'FLAT' flatten file name].bgl <-- Central airport flatten(s) (ex: "cvx_[airport ICAO]_FLAT.bgl")
..............|.........|.....|__[Your airport 'SLOPED' flatten file name].bgl <-- Terrain skirt outside central flatten (ex: "cvx_[airport ICAO]_SKIRT.bgl")
..............|.........|.....|__[Your scenery custom land class file name].bgl <-- Custom Photoreal Land Class (imagery+placement=1-BGL) (ex: "[airport ICAO]_PHOTO.bgl")
..............|.........|__Texture
..............|.........|.....|__[Your texture file name].dds <-- Texture(s) 'mapped' to vertices of Custom 3D model(s) (ex: "[airport ICAO]_LIB.dds")
..............|.........|.....|__[Your Autogen annotation file name].agn <-- Autogen Objects ('mapped' to "relative" QMID Grid vertices in ex: "[airport ICAO]_PHOTO.bgl")
..............|__Scenery
...................|__World
........................|__Scenery
.............................|__[Your airport_elevation_adjustment file name].bgl <--- Created automatically by ADE when ALT is set for ARP / RWYs etc.



Generally speaking, if RWYs flicker, there is a need to be sure the FSX terrain mesh is "flattened" to match the intended elevation of your RWY by creating (1) or more 'central' airport "Flatten" BGL(s).

Such a 'central' airport "flatten" can be made either as part of the FSX airport background creation process and be included in the same BGL as the airport background CVX vector polygon, or a 'central' airport "flatten" can be made as a separate "Flatten" CVX vector BGL.

In ADE, one would refer to the options in section 15.2.2 Airport Backgrounds of the ADE version 1.5x Manual for creating flattens at airports.

"Sloped" flattens can also be made as a 'terrain skirt' ...to better integrate the airport "central" flatten into the surrounding terrain.


Hope this helps a bit more ! :)

GaryGB
 
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Thanks to all for the advice.
I will now digest all this info and go back into Sketchup and remove the double walls behind the doors and windows. I hope that will help to solve the polygon problem. Next I will re-process the model through MCX and LCXML. The newer Library Creator will not make a new library. Have to use the previous edition.
If that does not solve the problem I will certainly ask for help.
Eventually I would like to distribute the Avenger Field 1843 project for the WASP ladies.
There will be some questions regarding files that need to be included in the package There are 45 flights departing and arriving along with static a/c,
which seems to be working smoothly.
Still much work to do.
GaryGB - I don't have the file structure that you list. My airport is listed in Addon Scenery as the folder KSWW_1943 with a scenery sub-folder with two files, KSWW_WASP1943_ADEX.bgl and KSWW_WASP1943_ADEX_CVX.bgl
There is no texture file. I have not yet combined the scenery object placement files into libraries of aircraft.
If you would like to look at the project I have included these two bgl files from the scenery folder and also the problem hangers. All in a zip file. I did not include the flight plans and WWII aircraft.
Thanks to all,
Zeb Gardner
 

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Hi Zeb:

Indeed there appears to be flicker (caused by duplicate faces ?) in various portions of the large hangar models, and on lower portions of the smaller hangar model roof in both FSX DX-9 and DX-10 modes. :idea:

Also, the textures for the hangar in "Avenger6.BGL" would not load (they are mapped *.JPGs instead of *.DDS files required by FSX-format MDL files).


I'd recommend:

1.) Set MCX texture path to the \Texture folder paired with the \Scenery folder containing the object BGL to which the textures are mapped under "Options" in ModelConverterX

2.) Import the BGLs

3.) Examine the imported object models in MCX "Materials Editor"

4.) Convert all mapped textures to FSX compatible *.DDS format, in sizes that are in "powers of 2" proportions.



BTW: You may also wish to texture the inside walls and ceiling of the big hangar(s) so one can taxi inside etc..

When you export that particular object (which is textured "inside") from Sketchup, click on the "Options" button and be sure that "Export 2-Sided Faces" is checked.

Of course to minimize vertices and maximize FPS, solid buildings which have no transparent windows / no open doors should be exported without checking "Export 2-Sided Faces".



FYI: I got a kick out of reading a few historical articles on the web about Avenger / Sweetwater Field, especially how a few of the WASPs "shamed" some male pilots into flying the B-29 (which some men had initially had not wanted to fly due to its intimidating poor safety record.) :p



A few links:

http://b-29.org/fly-girls/fly-girls1.html

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/flygirls/sfeature/waspsb29.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avenger_Field

http://www.wingsacrossamerica.us/photo/avenger_field.htm





Oh, and Arno will probably enjoy reading about the several noted Asian women pilots that served in the WASPs back then (gotta' keep the wife supportive / tolerant of one's extensive FS involvement ! ) :D

http://www.nwhm.org/online-exhibits/chinese/war.html


I'm thinking she should have a FSX Pitts S1 series outfitted with custom livery and a "Fifinella" logo on it ...to keep her spirits "flying" high ! :cool:

http://b-29.org/fly-girls/fly-girls1.html#Fifinella


01-fifinella-disney.jpg



< Hmmm... could this be Arno and his beloved Flying over Texas ? > :rotfl:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xuIAnZBFe_Y


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1tSa8SCGtc4&feature=related


....And with the Pitts, there always has to be a "Joy Flight" !

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&v=y7o4BbkDwqY&NR=1


< AHEM... But I digress >



Feel free to post an updated version of your objects after the Sketchup / texturing fixes are implemented for some more feedback. ;)



PS
: The file content groupings and names are just suggestions... the BGLs can be named anything you like, but were presented as examples of what many FS Developers might use to distinguish different project components.

Have fun, and keep up the nice work ! :)

GaryGB
 
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Hi,

Gary's comments are very valuable only if you have a strong stomach, otherwise you may indeed suffer from indigestion from the amount of info he manages to include in one single reply:D.
But this, meant to be funny, comment is only a means to draw his attention to my question in a thread to come afterwards, hoping he may give me as much sound advice as he did for you.
Roby
 
Hi,

Gary's comments are very valuable only if you have a strong stomach, otherwise you may indeed suffer from indigestion from the amount of info he manages to include in one single reply. :D.

But this (meant to be funny) comment is only a means to draw his attention to my question in a thread to come afterwards, hoping he may give me as much sound advice as he did for you.
Roby
Hi Roby:

It takes "guts" to say that ! :p

And it also takes "guts" to admit that I have thus far not tinkered with transparency on my Sketchup models (although I will be doing so in the future). ;)

I looked over a few older tutorials that I recalled seeing from various folks which were essentially based on GMAX, so I don't have a full course "Info Buffet" (with my usual infamous super-sized servings) ...to offer on that topic with regards to Sketchup.

But I see that Arno may be willing to apply his considerable knowledge to help you "redouble your efforts, and see your way through to a clearer perspective" ...on implementation of transparency (with and without graduated color tints): :D

http://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/showthread.php?goto=newpost&t=374676


Sorry I'm not able to 'elucidate' on that particular subject quite yet. :eek:

But rest assured that I'll cook up a sumptuous repast of massive info overload for you when I have a chance to learn a bit more on that topic. :stirthepo

And for those that can't quite "finish the whole thing at one sitting", 'carryout containers' are available to allow offsite intake ad libitum via one's web browser: :idea:

FireFox Menu > File > Save Page As... > [descriptive file name].htm (Web Page, complete)

MS Internet Explorer Menu > Page > Save Page As... > [descriptive file name].htm (Webpage, complete)


Hope at least this last suggestion might be of some help ! :)

GaryGB
 
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Morning Gary,

You cannot be omniscient. Thanks anyway and apologize for thinking of you as an alternative for "Google Search":D.

Roby
 
Regarding flickering I have the same problem. I build my airport terminal with doors and windows created with superimposed polygons. But I noted the only blue colored ones flicker, instead those colored in yellow (only for my utility schema) do not flicker at all.

I'm using FSXSE in DX-10 preview with SteveFX's Fixer.

sincerely I don't understand how to avoid the flicker, what do you mean to cut out the building polygons behind windows/doors? Do you mean with a Boolean function for those of use that use gmax/Max?
 
I assume he means to remove the building polygon behind the window/door polygon. In Sketchup you would draw an identical rectangle on the wall, then delete the resulting small polygon.

It's simpler in GMAX/3DMax (and in Sketchup) to just cut a separate polygon for the window/door out of the building wall polygon, then texture it separately from the rest of the wall. I normally use Splice Plane for this, starting with an ePoly to minimize extra vertices. Even simpler is to add the window/door to the wall texture instead, and leave the wall polygon intact.
 
Thanks Tom, texturing windows/doors it's quite simple. Sincerly I don't now splice plane function in Max. Does it allow to make an hole of the same area of the door/window and then insert the door/window into that hole?
 
I assume he means to remove the building polygon behind the window/door polygon. In Sketchup you would draw an identical rectangle on the wall, then delete the resulting small polygon.
Too funny! "He" was you and not quite three years ago:
Either put the windows and doors into the texture itself (thus avoiding the extra polygons), or cut out the building polygon behind the window or door.
 
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