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Thread: Flattening Stock Terrain Mesh: FSX

  1. #1

    Default Flattening Stock Terrain Mesh: FSX

    Greetings All --- wondering what might be the easiest utility to use to flatten stock terrain in FSX? I am planning a new airport design and will need to flatten an area for it.

    Any suggestions as to approach and utility???

    Many Thanks ---

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by apollomaker View Post
    Greetings All --- wondering what might be the easiest utility to use to flatten stock terrain in FSX? I am planning a new airport design and will need to flatten an area for it.

    Any suggestions as to approach and utility???

    Many Thanks ---
    This program - Airport Design Editor - (free) can create flattens as well as much, much more:

    http://www.airportdesigneditor.co.uk/

    Good luck on your project!
    David "Opa" Marshall

  3. #3

    Default

    Hello --- Many thanks -- I will check it out!!!!

    Regards,



    Quote Originally Posted by opaplano View Post
    This program - Airport Design Editor - (free) can create flattens as well as much, much more:

    http://www.airportdesigneditor.co.uk/

    Good luck on your project!

  4. #4

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    -- well, the recommendation of Airport Design Editor worked fine -- I already had the required FSX SDK installed so it dropped right in. There are so many other great features that the author of ADE could include like better lighting control, runway characteristics like markings, etc. That would be a real marketable tool if it could cover most bases.

    But as far as flattening, it worked just great. I was able to add some more features as well.

    Thanks ---

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by apollomaker View Post
    -- well, the recommendation of Airport Design Editor worked fine -- I already had the required FSX SDK installed so it dropped right in. There are so many other great features that the author of ADE could include like better lighting control, runway characteristics like markings, etc. That would be a real marketable tool if it could cover most bases.

    But as far as flattening, it worked just great. I was able to add some more features as well.

    Thanks ---

    As the author of ADE I would be very interested in what you consider to be missing. Perhaps a more detailed list?

    ADE does allow control of all runway markings but they are not all displayed in ADE - is that what you mean or is it something else?

  6. #6

    Default Hello ScruffyDuck

    Hello Jon ----

    Well nice to meet you. I have been away from making add-ons for MS sims that it is super to see products like yours and others emerging for enthusiasts. Thank you for a great product.

    As far as additional features, I could suggest a couple.

    1. A selectable "autogen" exclusion switch (option) in your exclusion area menu. AFX incorporates that feature and it is real handy.

    2. Runway lighting selection. Ability to select types of lighting, intensity, etc. including strobes and approach systems. See AFX on that one too for reference.

    3. Runway marking selection. Ability to set various standard markings on runways.

    I am not sure if anything can be done with it, but one of my great frustrations with this type of "add on" approach, is that with these compiled airports, the information about the presence of installed operational ILS systems (user added) does not get into the ATC AI --- and always views an add on airport as a "visual approach and use" airport, not ILS. Everything else works well with ATC but will not give you a proper ILS setup for approach as it does so well with "stock" airports with ILS. Just thought I would mention that.

    Thanks again for a great product -- my new airport is coming along fine.

    Bob

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by apollomaker View Post
    Hello Jon ----

    Well nice to meet you. I have been away from making add-ons for MS sims that it is super to see products like yours and others emerging for enthusiasts. Thank you for a great product.

    As far as additional features, I could suggest a couple.

    1. A selectable "autogen" exclusion switch (option) in your exclusion area menu. AFX incorporates that feature and it is real handy.

    2. Runway lighting selection. Ability to select types of lighting, intensity, etc. including strobes and approach systems. See AFX on that one too for reference.

    3. Runway marking selection. Ability to set various standard markings on runways.

    I am not sure if anything can be done with it, but one of my great frustrations with this type of "add on" approach, is that with these compiled airports, the information about the presence of installed operational ILS systems (user added) does not get into the ATC AI --- and always views an add on airport as a "visual approach and use" airport, not ILS. Everything else works well with ATC but will not give you a proper ILS setup for approach as it does so well with "stock" airports with ILS. Just thought I would mention that.

    Thanks again for a great product -- my new airport is coming along fine.

    Bob
    Thanks for the feedback I will take a look.

  8. #8

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    If I may insert some comments, as someone who has utilized all three of the airport design tools for FSX? The comments will be bulleted with asteriks, like this ***

    Quote Originally Posted by apollomaker View Post
    Hello Jon ----

    Well nice to meet you. I have been away from making add-ons for MS sims that it is super to see products like yours and others emerging for enthusiasts. Thank you for a great product.

    As far as additional features, I could suggest a couple.

    1. A selectable "autogen" exclusion switch (option) in your exclusion area menu. AFX incorporates that feature and it is real handy.

    *** Autogen is properly excluded in one of two methods, that adhere to the SDKs. First, change the texture beneath the area for the airport that calls for the autogen placement or second, apply an exclusion polygon to remove the autogen without changing the textures. Both of these are easily handled from within ADE. That's what the green polygon tool button is for. The methodology within AFX to use an invisible scenery MDL file to make autogen disappear is , er, effective, but not good design practice.

    2. Runway lighting selection. Ability to select types of lighting, intensity, etc. including strobes and approach systems. See AFX on that one too for reference.

    *** If you double click on the runway it brings up a window where all the lighting can be controlled. Appropriately enough, it's on the tab named Lights.

    3. Runway marking selection. Ability to set various standard markings on runways.

    *** See above, but this time look for the tab named Markings. Some don't always show within the ADE environment, but it's easy to copy a compiled BGL file directly into FSX, hit Alt-W-S and Enter to have FSX rebuild and refresh the scenery displayed. On my older, mid-level (now) system it takes about 30-45 seconds to go from compiling to seeing what FSX shows. Note, there are limitations within FSX itself that preclude making exact displays of runway markings. An example would be Kalaeloa - PHJR on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Runway 4R is precision marked, 22L isn't. FSX doesn't give you that option, regardless of the tool used to design the airport. Someone ought to make a scenery package of all the different markings....

    I am not sure if anything can be done with it, but one of my great frustrations with this type of "add on" approach, is that with these compiled airports, the information about the presence of installed operational ILS systems (user added) does not get into the ATC AI --- and always views an add on airport as a "visual approach and use" airport, not ILS. Everything else works well with ATC but will not give you a proper ILS setup for approach as it does so well with "stock" airports with ILS. Just thought I would mention that.

    ***That's an interesting concept! And you might want to make your way to the ADE sub-forum at FS Developer; http://www.fsdeveloper.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=95 Version 1.40 is making it's way to release. But approaches aren't for wimps or the timid, so be careful of what you wish for.

    Thanks again for a great product -- my new airport is coming along fine.

    Bob

    If I may respectfully offer an opinion, which the good Dr. Duck knows I'm famous for, there's plenty to learn about the tool and plenty of documentation that can be used. It speaks poorly to list out items for inclusion, when they are already implemented. The developer is receptive to constructive input and should be commended for his efforts to date, but it must be demoralizing to see a wish list for work that's already been finished and properly documented. But I speak only for myself.

  9. #9
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    If I may respectfully offer an opinion, which the good Dr. Duck knows I'm famous for
    -----and most instructive and valuable opinions they have always been Lance.

  10. #10

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    Hello All ----

    Well, as you can tell, I am still learning the tool (ADE) and I quickly found the editing panel for the runways

    This is great -- I think I am meeting the resident gurus and getting some great advice as I stumble up the learning curve here. Good stuff.

    BTW, I did use the autogen suppression when I did the terrain flattening with the polygon feature. That worked nicely for laying out the ground for the airport area. Thanks for the pointers there as well.

    Another question popped into mind as I was typing --- do animated objects, like radar antennas and rotating lighted beacons, have to be handled differently than the "fixed" objects available in ADE? Most likely is my guess, but your comments appreciated.

    Regards --- Bob

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