Category Archives: Work In Progress

My 3D modelling journey started 9 years ago in the winter of 2001. I made a few static models for MSTS1 and a pump trolley but my first “proper” rollingstock model was the GWR 4 Wheel Siphon and it has never been updated – till now….

Here’s the initial test in Rail Sim, hopefully I’ll get it working in MSTS/OR, TRS and Rail Sim.

First wagon

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A flock of Birds

Finally! – my BA Swallow 2 aircraft for FS9 and "true" FSX is nearing completion.
I have now mastered the XML gauge system – all quite simple really. The Virtual Cockpit all works and the chaps over at Classic British Files have been an invaluable help with flight tuning and beta testing. 
It will be my first release into the flight sim community. It will also be the first native FSX model from 3D Canvas. Matt Ivey beat me to releasing the first FS9 model from 3D canvas when he put out a drivable Challenger tank a few years ago.
 
I was looking for the collective noun for a group of Swallows. Flocks of birds usually have unusual names, for example – from wikipedia:
A siege of bitterns
A peep of chickens
A clattering of choughs
A covert of coots
A herd of cranes
A murder of crows
A trip of dotterel
A dole/dule of doves
A mob of emus
A charm of goldfinches
A train of jackdaws
A parliament of owls
 
So what is a collection of Swallows?
 
A flight of Swallows
 
Oh well, quite apt I suppose, here they are – click to see the bigger picture Smile
 


MDL file viewer

Getting closer to displaying an FSX MDL file, just a bit more work needed to sort out the matrices from the scene graph….
 
 

The Ghostly Teapot!

Now one of the “small” contributions I made to the Train Sim community was a little program I wrote called Shape Viewer.
This was made up from a few modular components, a 3D viewport, MSTS model loader and Trainz Model loader. These were then embedded in a standard windows form which added extra functions such as loading consists, display stands, grass etc.
This worked quite well and the modules were used by several other Train sim utilities to display models.
The program was written using Visual Basic 6 which restricted me to using DirectX8.1. Both are now well out of date and the program needed a bit of an overhaul to upgrade.
I finally bit the bullet last week and converted the 3D viewport module to .NET 2, using the SlimDX library (after Microsoft saw fit to remove .NET 2 support for DirectX)
The conversion was relatively smooth, I was almost able to copy and paste the code with a few small changes. The result was a ghostly teapot rendered using DirectX9.
I have nearly completed my FSX MDL file reader, it should only be a matter of time before I have FSX models viewable without having to start up FSX.
If I can work out how to use the shaders, they may even look exactly like they do in the simulator!

Smooth

 This one has only taken me a few evenings so far.

Coming along nicely at about 13,000 polygons at the moment.