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Thread: Sketchup Users

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noisemaker View Post
    it's easy to encounter 'just slight difference' that can take a entire model out of whack.
    Because I work from another document that has the building data marked in I can do almost everything by typing in the exact length for the boundary lines. That helps enormously WRT keeping everything at right angles. I also avoid inches as much as I can. When I have to make something smaller that a foot long or across I'll only use integer inches and will try and keep them at 3, 6, 9 or 4, 8 as those are common construction distances. It's not like I'm thinking these things are going to be built as real buildings but it is the discipline that matters. I'm not going to let slop slide in somewhere when it is easy to do because I know from experience the odds are good it will bite me hard a few hours later.
    Dave Nelson

    Seldom visiting, posting less often that that.

  2. #12
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    May 2010
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    Spurgeon,TN
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    Hi,

    This high poly thing isn't limited to Sketchup. There are a number of TSM, Gmax, and Blender based models in the file library here that suffer from the same syndrome. It's more a learning process thing than anything else.

    Not a city simulator? Nope, its a World Simulator. Don't like the big city, then don't go there. Leave the cities to those of us who see it as a challenge, not something to be avoided.

    So I guess I should not worry about uploading my stuff anytime soon as stand alone uploads.
    InternationalBoiler2interior.jpg
    International Boiler in East Stroudsburg, Pa, circa 1919 (based on footprint in 1919 DL&W Val map, and a grainy postcard view photo set) Interior became necessary because the siding goes thru the building. Be cool if someone else has some models of the machines used, and some horizontal and vertical stationary boilers.

    BeamBridge.jpg
    Bridge that carried the Erie's line to Avoca over the L&WV by Hillside Junction.

    DIRSketchupfiles.jpg
    Shown to demonstrate what can happen in 6 years. I'll be optimistic and say 2,660 of those files will never go thru the conversion for various reasons. That means 5000 models have been converted and have been placed in a route somewhere.

    IIRC, there is a thread in this forum about those particular warehouse models, and the modeller pointed the finger at himself, but provided the occurrence as a lesson learned about using the Endpoints on as a means of avoiding the high poly syndrome.

    Doug Relyea

    P.S. By the time most of you read this post, I figure there'll be two more .skp in that folder.
    Making stuff that works, using outdated Software on outdated Hardware.

  3. #13
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    A bit late, following-up on all this. What we' re seeing, overall, is that there are folks who are primarily Route Builders, and others, primarily, Model... Builders. Most of those who "responded", here, are in fact those rare ones, who do both.

    All-in-all, personally, I prefer running Trains, in a suitable "environment". Even though I have friends / am part of some "rivet-counting" / prototype / Historical ( model railroad ) groups, I fully understand Train Simulator, is about "simulating" Train Operation .

    3D / "real-world" model railroading, is best suited , for those "Museum Quality" / highly "intense" models, than MSTS, really is.

    I much prefer the "Less is More" , approach, to building scenery models, and yes, I will use photo-textures, as my "default" whenever I can, to reduce poly counts.

    And yes, sure enough , as of late, I have been doing more than my fair share, of "cloning" models, from others, which are simply "inefficient", as far as frame rates, especially.

    Jean Brisson MSTS Route Builder

  4. #14
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    Jun 2003
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    Alexandria, Va, USA.
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    Like Vince, in the models I've made I've generally painted the windows on the flat surface, or sometimes recessed them if that is a prominent feature. In general I've really tried to minimize the polygons to the point where they remind me of cutout paper buildings. Sometimes I've worried that I'd gone too far in that direction, and I didn't want to disappoint people who download my routes that include my homemade models. But as much as I like looking at a detailed building model, I'm aware that in an activity, the building may be in view for only a few seconds, or maybe a minute if it's a station where the train stops. So like bcrailfan, I'm aiming for an environment that makes running the trains seem somewhat realistic.
    Steve Dunham
    Alexandria, VA
    www.stevedunham.50megs.com

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Literalman View Post
    Like Vince, in the models I've made I've generally painted the windows on the flat surface, or sometimes recessed them if that is a prominent feature. In general I've really tried to minimize the polygons to the point where they remind me of cutout paper buildings. Sometimes I've worried that I'd gone too far in that direction, and I didn't want to disappoint people who download my routes that include my homemade models. But as much as I like looking at a detailed building model, I'm aware that in an activity, the building may be in view for only a few seconds, or maybe a minute if it's a station where the train stops. So like bcrailfan, I'm aiming for an environment that makes running the trains seem somewhat realistic.
    I think it matters a lot whether the building in question is going to be seen up close to a stopped train, be it a station or an industrial spot.


    IMO there's not a lot of sense putting 8000 polys into a building that's 0.5km+ from the nearest track -- mainline at that -- no matter how much you enjoy doing 3d modeling. OTOH if you are pushing a car right up to the freight door and your building has all of 125 polys, your textures had better be PDG to cover for the fact there are no 3d details.

    It also matters (a lot) if you are doing your models for MSTS or for Open Rails. The underlying technology is so great you can probably do 10x the polys -- or more -- for Open Rails than for MSTS, all other things equal.

    See polys are not what kills performance, the number of texture files is, extended by the material types used therein. Open up your model in Shapeviewer, head over to the View Hierarchy window and start counting the brown squares. Each one is a draw call, probably also a hardware interrupt. Anything more than a handful (what number equals a handful varies by CPU speed so for an actual number, YMMV) will cumulatively lead to bad performance. In Open Rails the cumulative number is seen on the last f5 screen as the Primitives count. Watch that number AND your FPS and you'll quickly get a sense of how many on your PC is too much.

    In many cases the worst offenders are cars and locomotives, not buildings.
    Dave Nelson

    Seldom visiting, posting less often that that.

  6. #16
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    The mention about the number of texture files required per model, does matter, also. This is where models built in what I call a "paint-by-number" manner ( read : one dedicated .ace texture file, for each "color"/ "trim" / material" / etc ... ), often create unnecessary draw calls, that could be eliminated, by using .ace texture files, which incorporate many..., smaller textures ( as long as such, do not need to be "tiled") . Yes, this is more work "texturing" models, this way, but more efficient.

    I had to redo a few of my own models, as I had originally was too "gregarious", about using a number... of individual .ace texture files ( "filenames" ), while using "texture plates" ( not unlike for locomotives / freight cars, etc... ), would be more efficient.

    As well, I was revisiting a ( signal bridge ) model I had built barely 4 years ago, and based on "what I know, now", was equally appalled by a very large number of excess polys, and multiple, and barely visible, "errors".

    In "revisiting" models, in Sketchup, I can now easily slash both the number of texture .ace files used, as well as reduce the overall poly count by a good 60%, on average, simply by ( well... ) "cleaning-up", the modelbuilding work.

    As they say, "it all adds up", and I always look for overall "efficiency", and would never use the excuse of using Open Rails, to close my eyes on models which could benefit, from a "tour" / "inspection", back to the Sketchup drawing board.

    As far as "Level of detailing", as mentioned by both Steve Dunham, and Dave , Yes, I had to revisit some models of mine, mostly immediate trackside... industries / warehouses, and make those more..."3 dimensional" ( as while switching cars, InGame, some of those will blatantly ( now ), be "in your face") . For those immediate trackside models, "Cardboard flat" / basically "2 dimensional" warehouse side walls, then, become distracting, and worth the extra level of 3D detailing (and polys ).

    Jean Brisson MSTS Route Builder

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