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    Renumbering Locomotive

    Hi Guys,

    Am attempting to renumber a locomotive, my first, and to cut a long story short, utilising Neil's (qballbandit) post #2 https://www.trainsim.com/forums/foru...sts-locomotive have managed to see the locomotive in the Consist Editor (still sporting the original loco number) and via TgaTool2 open the .ace file in MSPaint.

    After much Googling and YouTubing I am none the wiser as to how to physically change the loco number on the sides and number boards. I need to change the fourth digit from 2 to 3 and obviously preserve the font and size.

    Any guidance navigating the MSPaint programme for a simple variation would be much appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Duncan

    Share your videos with friends, family, and the world

    #2
    What I do, and I'm no expert at reskinning, is to black out the existing number with the background color/ texture, and the rewrite the entire new number in a font and color, in size as close as I can find to the original, this way any difference is not readily noticeable.

    Trying to match the existing font, size, and color is going to be difficult, as they may not be in a standard font or size.
    Last edited by oper190; 04-10-2024, 12:12 PM.
    Owner and CEO of Hart Rail Lines & Hart Commuter Railways, and Hart Rail Cars.
    It's my Train Sim world so I run HART RL anywhere I want.

    Comment


      #3
      This is sometimes where pixel editing becomes necessary.... use the eyedropper tool to match colors on the numbers you're preserving.
      If you like what you see here at Trainsim.com, be it the discussions and knowledge in the forums, items saved in our library or the ongoing development of our TSRE Fork, I hope you'll consider a paid membership to help support keeping the site operating.... Thanks!

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        #4
        Duncan,

        As a rule, always save a copy of the original ACE file before you alter anything so if something goes wrong you can go back and start over and not mess the model up.

        So you see the ACE file converted by TGAtool in MSP and are able to paint the new number in, correct?

        If so, save the new version of the file you altered in MSP in a location of your choice. After doing so return to TGAtool and select Reload Data from the pull-down menu under Image in the upper left of the TGA window. You should see the new file from MSP appear with the new number in TGAtool. If not, there is a routing issue between TGAtool and MSP. I use Photoshop as my editor and that's how it works for me, so I hope I'm not leading you in the wrong direction.

        If you see the new file appear in TGAtool after selecting Reload Data, then you can Export the file with the proper transparency value selected. If you're not sure about what transparency value to use there is plenty of valuable info to help you decide if you search this subject in the Forum files. That's how I learned.

        When you Export the file, make sure it goes back in the same locomotive's folder and has the same file name as the original ACE file did. As I mentioned before, I don't use MSP so hopefully this method will work for you.

        For proper free numbers and fonts for certain railroads, check out Pete Willard's wonderful site at http://www.railsimstuff.com/. Pete has created a fantastic library of fonts, stencils and logos for a number of railroads, and many of the numbers and fonts can be used for other roads too. This site has been a Godsend for many of my renumbering/skinning projects.

        Hope this all makes sense,
        -Tom

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          #5
          It is better to cover the number using an image editor with a number of similar size. I have a GMD SD40-2W that they made for Rolling Line but I didn't like the number and changed it to number 5346 with a number of similar size in MICROSOFT Paint
          Attached Files
          I Like Classic Freights Diesel Locomotive GMD SD40-2W I Like Classic Passenger Diesel Locomotive EMD F40PH-2M and I Like Metra NS GALLERY Car and Cab Car

          Comment


            #6
            Worth mentioning Pete's library of railroad fonts:
            RailSimStuff.com
            These could help you match a number style to what you're overwriting.

            Comment


              #7
              And here I was hoping against hope that the mouse cursor 'backspace' could just knock the 2 out and then I might insert 3 and all done Immediately now have a much greater appreciation for the skills of the repainters amongst us.

              Appreciate all the responses and certainly has given me much to consider, not least of which is 'reward for effort' as I start from a very low knowledge base. Think I first might come up with a plan of attack, perhaps as a combination of suggestions made, and see where it leads.

              Thanks for the guidance offered everyone.
              Duncan
              Share your videos with friends, family, and the world

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                #8
                I use TGAtool and MS Paint as well. To up load an .ace for edit, I have assigning TGAtool as the APP to open .ace files with. In TGAtool the image can be viewed in MSPaint as a .bmp image for edit, and renamed something like T22403img.bmp. On my old XP system it is put in the Temp Folder, but can be saved anywhere you want. On my Win11 you put it wherever you want. Now once done editing, simply close MSPaint, but to keep a .bmp image then save from MSPaint first wherever you want and named as you want. The revised image will now appear in TGAtool. If you like what you see you can save as a .tga image or covert it to an .ace. I usually do both. If you don't like what you see simply close the image in TGAtool without a save, the .ace is not changed. As mentioned, save a copy of the original .ace first, that never hurts.

                Editing the alpha is done the same way if needed.

                Note: When using MSPaint the only fonts and sizes you can use are those on your computer. So to try to change one number will be hard to match in both font style and size. Why I suggest replacing the number in it's entire. As I have done on occasion, you sometime need to stretch the numbers to make them fit properly. Therefore it will be very difficult to match later.
                Last edited by oper190; 04-11-2024, 02:10 AM.
                Owner and CEO of Hart Rail Lines & Hart Commuter Railways, and Hart Rail Cars.
                It's my Train Sim world so I run HART RL anywhere I want.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Guys, a dumb question here, but does openrails have the ability to plop down these numbers dynamically?
                  I've noticed other sims where the number is just a property that's set, and a single model can then be used 100's of times - with the number on the side being rendered from code.
                  I assume nothing like that existed for MSTS but it seems feasible that someone would have extended openrails with that feature.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Hi Jack,
                    You are correct - there was no such facility in MSTS, and it's not (currently) available in Open Rails, but who knows what the future holds?

                    Cheers,
                    Ged

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I never could get MS Paint to do what I wanted so I started using PaintDotNet. It's free, https://getpaint.net . It'll do .dds images without any fiddling.
                      While TGaTool will export textures ShapeViewer will export with the alphas intact and it preserves the texture names.
                      You'll want the new Shapeviewer that will show .ddss. It's here in the library somewhere.

                      Randy

                      Shapeviewer .dds

                      Comment


                        #12




                        "Note: When using MSPaint the only fonts and sizes you can use are those on your computer. So to try to change one number will be hard to match in both font style and size. Why I suggest replacing the number in it's entire. As I have done on occasion, you sometime need to stretch the numbers to make them fit properly. Therefore it will be very difficult to match later.
                        "


                        True, matching fonts can be a pain and redoing the entire number string is better because it makes it harder for the eye to detect the change. If you are using a paint program that uses Layers and had a unit numbered '1234' and wanted to change it to '1233', you could copy the number 3 as a seperate layer and place it over the original's 4 and wind up with '1233'. But of course that only works with numbers already present in the original number string. GIMP is another free image editor which operates similarly to Photoshop and uses Layers but is a little more complex than MSP, and therefore more flexible. It may look daunting at first, but is user friendly once you get down the basic functions and there are tons of tutorials out there to get you started with the basics.

                        Even with MSP, if you download any of the free font packages from Pete Willard's site RailSimStuff.com​ and install them on your computer, they will appear as a font choice in MSP, which may help with font matching.

                        -Tom

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Thanks much guys for all the guidance.

                          Only exposure to MSPaint has been the resize facility for YouTube thumbnails. I don't wish to renumber locomotives per se but a format change in a future video sees me require more weathered leaders WITHOUT the flintstone wheels. I hoped renumbering might solve the problem. As it stands I suspect I would need to become proficient at repainting, whether a total loco or the minor changes I propose. Will suss out what I'm capable of and how steep the learning curve is.

                          Again appreciate the input.

                          Cheers
                          Duncan
                          . https://www.youtube.com/@carlray7224/videos

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Doing repaints takes practice as you really need to know how your 'tool of choice' does things before you go blindly hacking on someone's texture files. But, practicing is free and only consumes your free time... so hack away and get good like so many others have done. There are plenty of people still left who know how so you *can* get your questions answered.

                            You *really* want to use something more *capable* than MSPaint. Since the 1980's, Microsoft has always admitted that MSPaint is just a filler until you get something better. Even with recent updates in Windows 11, it still leaves huge room for improvement compared to other tools that have had the required features for ages... like true LAYERING and MASKING capabilities.

                            Note: Paint.net is also free...

                            Pete Willard http://www.railsimstuff.com
                            Last edited by pwillard; 04-12-2024, 06:20 AM.
                            http://www.railsimstuff.com
                            Just Blender now, 3DCrafter only when I have to.
                            formerly The Keystone Works (All Permissions Granted)
                            https://github.com/pwillard/MSTS-replacement
                            sigpic

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                              #15
                              I hear ya Pete. If I persevere then Paint net could well be an improvement I expect. Just as an aside have today progressed to actually amending the rear number boards (not pretty) and have returned the amended ace file to Tgatool2 but when I then export as an ace file and confirm 'yes' to replacement in the eng file the original number remains on display. All just trial and error, maybe the alpha reference applies to my ace file.

                              Cheers
                              Duncan
                              Share your videos with friends, family, and the world

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