X-Plane development

euroastar350

Resource contributor
#1
Hi guys,

I am considering developing for X-Plane, but I'm not sure where to start or what the requirements are. I use 3DS Max 9 and 2012 currently for FSX development, can I use this to convert some of my models for XP? what about an SDK availability? I'm sure I'll have loads of questions regarding development of XP aircraft, but it is something I am willing to learn. I am open to any help, tips, advice, etc regarding XP development.
 
#3
Hi guys,

I am considering developing for X-Plane, but I'm not sure where to start or what the requirements are. I use 3DS Max 9 and 2012 currently for FSX development, can I use this to convert some of my models for XP? what about an SDK availability? I'm sure I'll have loads of questions regarding development of XP aircraft, but it is something I am willing to learn. I am open to any help, tips, advice, etc regarding XP development.
First of all, you need to create the physical model in PlaneMaker. This is actually a 3D object that is your base for the flightmodel. This does not need to be a pretty model, but dimensional accurate. Then you can export it as a OBJ mesh to AC3D or Blender and recreate the 3D model with more detail. This model or parts is then imported/attached to your physical model. Your physical model can then be "hidden". I use AC3D which is very simple to use. The newest X-Plane plug-in support the new features in X-plane, but I have not been doing X-Plane stuff for years. But they also have a great forum for developers (x-plane.org).

AC3D is a well known tool for X-Plane content creation. The UI in AC3D is very simple to use, and most likely you can do your 3D work and mapping in 3DS Max, and export it to AC3D. OBJ from 3D Max would probably work ok. Animations would need to be done in AC3D and then exported. You can download a trial and install the X-Plane plugin. Open one of the supplied models in Planemaker, and see how they are put together. http://www.inivis.com/
 
#4
Rotorhub,

What about a workflow for us? Do we have to totally rebuild a model? Why couldnt we import our model into their sim? Would you export to a Blender format, then from Blender, export into XP format? Surely we can re-use our existing model. (I know nothing about the process... )

I tried going into XP long ago and never got far. I didnt really put all my efforts into it, though.

Also, for some reason, and hopefully its gone now, but there was an existing 'negativity' of XP people (developers) against anyone that was a FS developer. They treated me and other FS people harshly. Maybe/hopefully that is gone now.
 
#5
Hi George

I think Tom Woods is your man here. Try to contact him and for sure he will be your guardian angel in the XPlane development battle field.

Take care and happy modeling!
Sergio.
 
#6
Rotorhub,

What about a workflow for us? Do we have to totally rebuild a model? Why couldnt we import our model into their sim? Would you export to a Blender format, then from Blender, export into XP format? Surely we can re-use our existing model. (I know nothing about the process... )

I tried going into XP long ago and never got far. I didnt really put all my efforts into it, though.

Also, for some reason, and hopefully its gone now, but there was an existing 'negativity' of XP people (developers) against anyone that was a FS developer. They treated me and other FS people harshly. Maybe/hopefully that is gone now.
X-Plane uses blade element theory for their interpretation of flight dynamics. So for X-Plane to be able to calculate the body forces and surfaces, the dynamics model must be created within the X-Plane enviroment aka PlaneMaker. It has been discussed many times, if models from other platforms could be imported. But I don't know about any tools for this procedure. But I could be wrong...

In regards of workflow, it may seem a little odd that you have to create the plane twice. But you don't. Your PlaneMaker model is a complete aircraft. But since our demand for beatifully rendered aircrafts is endless, the "work around" is to attach the external detailed 3D model to the PlaneMaker model. At least older versions of PlaneMaker did not support the advanced modelling or texture maps that is common today. I have not looked at XP11. I stopped at XP9, and I only did models for my Home Cockpit Project.

The endless discussion of what is the best simulator, is just sad. There is no such a thing. But people get carried away in meaningless arguments. I have noticed this as well. Development communities should welcome any designer that want to do freeware, or commercial development. That is good for all of us. And we will probaly see more content creators, doing mutliple platforms in the future.

Carenado has obviosly found a workflow that support both platforms.

It would be fun to see one of your models in XP. I only have the Learjet, and it is a nice model. Thumbs up and thank you!

For 3D Max export to XP OBJ, have a look at this;
http://steptosky.com/index.php/software/14-3dsmax-x-plane-obj-exporter
 
#7
There are 3ds Max export plugins for XP now. Watch some of the live streams from JRollon Planes on YouTube, he uses them for the conversion of his CRJ-200 for XP11. (Be forewarned though, his videos are VERRRRRRY long. Thank God for YT's time preview.)
 
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