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FSXA Texturing my Airport Terminal in Gmax

Hi all,
I am building an airport in ADEX and have begun to build the 1st terminal in gmax. Now this terminal is quite large and has a lot of details on it, and I do not really know how I should do to texture it and place textures in the right directory to appear in FSX. Can somebody pls. help?


Resource contributor
My sequence for texturing buildings:

1. Build the building mesh. For simple buildings start with a Box, using the number of segments you will eventually need for each side and the roof (for complex buildings). Then use Edit Mesh if necessary. Extrude polygons out to make complex buildings. Or, you can just put lots of Boxes together. :)
2. If for FS9 select the roof and Detach (avoids multi-materials if you use a separate roof texture). In FSX its usually better to keep them all one piece, and add the roof to your main texture. In FS9 I use the default roof textures, which are small textures that will tile themselves all over the roof.
3. Now look at one wall of your building. Get it in the correct viewport (Left, Front, etc.). Press Alt-Print Scrn. Paste this into your graphics program.
4. Create a blank texture in your graphics program. Most people use 1024 x 1024, but if this is a small building you can use 512 or even 256. I often just use Save As on an existing texture of that size and use that.
5. Select the wall area in the screen capture image, copy it, and paste it into the blank texture. If it is too big or too small, resize it first, but *keep* its current proportions. Most people will make the wall either the full width of the texture or one half that width, but it can really be any size that gives you a reasonable resolution.
6. Repeat this process for the 3 other walls. If the two opposite sides can use the same texture, then you only need two walls in your texture - front/back and left/right. Do this for the roof too, if necessary. Do not push the walls right next to each other - leave a little space.
7. Paint in your walls and roof, keeping to the lines you pasted in. Extend the paint a little extra distance at the edges of your walls (i.e. outside the wall lines from GMAX) - see below.
8. Save this as a 24 bit (millions of colors) BMP file. If you want to get fancy with layers and such you can save it as a PSD file, but for buildings I usually don't get that fancy. Save it in the same folder that contains your GMAX file, or wherever you like.
9. In GMAX, choose a view of the largest side of the building (I usually start with the front side). Get this into the selected viewport so you are seeing that side of the building without distortion (Left, Front, etc.). I.e. you are facing that front side.
10. Open the Material Editor (red ball) and click New. Choose Standard.
11. In the Maps section, click on Diffuse Color. Double click the Bitmap square.
12. Browse to where you saved your texture, and select it.
13. Click the little blue and white box next to the Name.
14. Click the Apply button. The building should change color. Close the Material Editor.
15. Select UVW Map from the Modifier List.
16. Click the View Align, Fit, and Bitmap Fit buttons in that order. Select your texture and click Open.
17. Select Unwrap UVW from the Modifier List. Click the Edit button.
18. Click on the cube at the lower right corner of the window that appears to resize your object. You will see your wall outline and the texture underneath that.
19. Click on the 4 headed arrow at the top left of the Unwrap window (Move). Then drag your mouse across the entire object. All the nodes will turn red.
20. Select the Uniform Scale button of the Unwrap window. Now put your mouse on one node and drag. The wall will change size. Make it about the same size as the wall on your texture. If you make it much larger or smaller, click the cube again to adjust your zoom.
21. Click on the Move button again (in the Unwrap window) and put your mouse on a node. Drag the entire wall so it lines up with your wall texture. You can view this in the Perspective view, if you have the wall visible there, or make the view you are using Smooth + Highlights.
22. Use the solid view in the normal viewports to make sure that your wall looks just like you want it to. Repeat using the Move and Uniform Scale until perfect. I map these so a little bit of the texture remains *outside* the wall on all sides. This avoids mipmapping errors when in FS, often leading to off color edges. When done close the Unwrap window with the red X.
23. Now we have textured the front (and the back, if that looks OK). Now we'll do the sides. Choose the viewport (or change it) so one side of the building is facing you.
24. Choose Mesh Select from the Modifier List. Click the little black + next to the name in the list and choose Polygon.
25. Click on the Select object button (large arrow cursor button). If you want to texture both sides at once, drag across the building *inside the outer walls* so you get all polygons selected. I like to highlight these selected polygons, so in that viewport right click the view name (Left, etc.) and choose Configure. Then check the box Shade Selected Faces. Don't drag across the entire building or you will select the front and back too! If you only want to texture one side, click the Ignore Backfacing box and carefully click the side. If you need to extend your selection (i.e. more than one polygon) hold down the Ctrl key and keep clicking. Holding down the Alt key will remove selections.
26. Once you have your polygons selected as you like, choose UVW Map from the Modifier List.
27. Repeat steps 17-21 to texture this side wall.
28. Repeat this process for any other wall you want to texture (if they have separate textures, are flipped the wrong way, etc.).
29. Repeat this process to texture the roof (for FSX). If you uses a small separate texture for the roof (usually only in FS9), then select the roof object, go to Top view, and set up another Material just as in steps 10-14, but browse to your roof texture (or use one of the BMP roof textures in the main FS TEXTURE folder). This is a small texture containing only a few shingles (for example).
30. Add a UVW Map from the Modifier List.
31. Press the View Align button. Now set the Length and Width values to around 6' (2m) each. They should be the same value. Change this value until the roof looks the way you want it to.
32. Export your building from GMAX as a Scenery MDL file.
33. Use a program like Library Creator XML to insert your MDL into a library BGL file and place the terminal using a program like Instant Scenery. Or you can insert the MDL file directly into your airport BGL file using a program like ADE9X and place it right in ADE.

Now we need to get the texture into FS. For FSX you can use DDS textures, which I don't know how to create (exactly). I hear the best program for that is imagetool, which I don't use. Anyway, you load your BMP building texture into that tool, and then Save As a DDS texture.

Finally, place the resulting BGL file into an active SCENERY folder, and place the DDS texture into the adjoining TEXTURE folder.

Hope this helps,
got back to my model after some time and I have 2 problems / questions.

1. How to start to texture this terminal? I have read and tried a lot throughout this forum but not really successfull.

2. The archs which are spanned over the roof do not appear in FSX when exported and placed in ADEX. All the rest sshows up exactly as in gmax.

Hope you can give me some help as I really want to continue with my airport.

thanks a lot!:)



Resource contributor
How are the arches formed? You didn't use the Mirror button at the top of the screen, did you? They may not be showing up simply because they are not textured, but your material specifies one (or something similar).

As for the textures, I would examine other building textures and see how they were done, then follow their example.