UVW Mapping in Gmax

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UVW Mapping in Gmax: tutorial series

After spending an age building my first decent-quality model I didn't realise how much more work was needed to map the thing. After reading a number of tutorials on mapping I got the job done, but thought a fairly complete mapping tutorial series would help a beginner like I was. None of the methods here are new and this isn't the Definitive Method or the One True Path To Mapping Success, but I hope it gives a single resource to get you started.


This six-part tutorial series starts with the basics, introduces LithUnwrap for making templates and goes on to cover use of the UVW editor, mapping multiple objects simultaneously, use of material IDs to colour-code selections and grids for custom views. Making good use of texture space, distorting objects to simplify mapping and problems encountered are also covered.

The series is aimed at both aircraft and scenery builders. Building, aircraft and virtual cockpit examples are used.

Sample meshes and texture files are included together with the Quake III plugin, LithUnwrap and the Harlequin gmax source used in the tutorials. You also get to see a little of Milton Shupe's XA-38 Grizzly mesh (used with permission)!

Just make sure you download all the parts and resources and work through it in order. I've tried not to repeat myself, so if you're struggling, say with Part 4, you should read Parts 1-3 again.

UVW Mapping in Gmax Part 1 -- Getting started: Mapping simple objects. Using LithUnwrap to make templates. Mapping more than one object on a template​.

UVW Mapping in Gmax Part 2 -- Mapping in more detail: Basic UVW editing. Multi-layer master templates. Mapping gizmo alignment. Grid helpers for custom views​.

UVW Mapping in Gmax Part 3 -- Mapping more complex objects: Stretching. Mapping sizing. Colour–coded poly selections. Mapping with material IDs.

UVW Mapping in Gmax Part 4 -- Mapping more than one object at once.

UVW Mapping in Gmax Part 5 -- Using texture space efficiently: Mapping to different sizes. 'Unfolding' geometry on the template. More on Grid views

UVW Mapping in Gmax Part 6 -- More mapping wheezes: Fitting a mapping to an existing graphic. Mapping scenery to pre-prepared artwork. UVW editor scaling vs UVW Mapping sizing. Distorting objects to simplify mapping​

Essential resources

Samples for part 1

Samples for parts 2 and 3

Samples for parts 4 and 6