Time to talk cabs

Rail Simulator brings full and high detail 3D cabs to Train Simulation (though by no means the first to do so). Instead of using 2D images you can now create detailed 3D cabs with fully animated controls, here's the place to learn how.

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Sly401
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Time to talk cabs

Post by Sly401 »

Ok bin putting this off, but I've got to tackle a cab sometime or other.

Few Questions for Derek or anyone who knows.

I presume the normal way of building a cab is to take the low (ish ) poly model that has been made for the actual model and detail it.. do you have to reduce its size to fit inside ?

I have noticed that the actual model is still rendered in game as you look out the windows or hack the camera positions to see it. So my question is this ....

Can I just make my loco model cab high detail (relitavely speaking) and use that as my cab view ?
Or would this mean that the locomotive would be rendered twice in exactly the same location giving rise to Z fighting etc etc.
Are the bits of the external model that you see through the windows using a redudced LOD?

I presume a seperate model is normally used to raise performance levels, however there are advantages if the cab view was actually "On Board" the loco model.
for eg.

Moving the regulator on the Britannia model would move the external linkage on the outside of the model.
Altering the cut off would raise or lower the die block actually putting the loco into gear and giving full movement to the motion.
It may well be possible to control these external animations from the cab view anyway but in some ways it would be simpler to have everything on one model.

BTW can you define exactly what is meant by " Cab Occlusion" ?

Thanks

Sly

There are probably lots of other external movements that could be controlled from the cab but I am sure you get the gist of things
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pendolinofan
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by pendolinofan »

Animated valve gear... that sounds fun!

Adam
Sly401
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by Sly401 »

MMMMMM Yep I suppose I am thinking out loud here, but I haven't seen anything that would preclude such things so ...... the glass is still Half full :D

Sly
kevmt
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by kevmt »

Sly, have you actually tried this?

I've had a go at trying to animate the reverser lever on a loco so that it animates when you press S key (in simple mode) (Talking loco model and not a cab model). Although, I've been able to get it to move in one direction I've never been able to get it to move backwards and forwards.
Also noticed that you had to press the key twice to get the animation to work. I gave this up due to lack of time, but if you have had some luck in getting it to work, I might resurrect it and try again.

Cheers,
Kevin
RSAdam
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by RSAdam »

Hiya,

If I may be permitted to interject (even though im not an artist).

My take on the situation is that a cab (steam locomotives especially) could have when detailed fully, just as many polys as the external model of the locomotive. Couple this to the fact that from the driving position you are not going to see all the wheels and linkage from the cab, it doesnt make sense to build the cab view into the main external model. This would just be excessive rendering. It is therefore better and more efficient to seperate out the two views to different models.

To answer some of the setup questions:
  • Which Rail Simulator default models have you witnessed the external model being present even when on an internal camera view? It may be that so much is visable from the internal position that just as you thread is question, the authoreed has used the external model. Although of the default stock I am doubtful that Derek would have allowed it. :)
  • If you are building a seperate cab model, it does not need to fit inside the external model as this will not be rendered when the camera is in the cabview mode. It does however make sense that it fits as it will then match its real life counterpart :) If it is possible to see external panels through cab windows, you would need to include these in the cab model. The Class 08 Shunter features such inclusions. With this in mind, if you were to venture outside the cab model while in this mode you would see the cab interior floating at the front of the train. Where appropriate, other cameras such as 'Headout' seamlessly switch between external and internal models to maintain immersion.
  • Yes, it is perfectly possible to reference the main locomotive IGS in the cab geomnetry field of the engine blueprint. We have used this method to setup camera positional data before the finished cabs and interior views become available. Technically though, there is no requirement to have a seperate model for the cab or passenger views.
  • Of the animations you specified, which of them would you be able to see completely from within the cab position, or would they only be visable externally? I ask this because it is perfectly possible to have external animations of any kind (within reason) affected by cab controls (wipers and headlights being the most common...).
  • Cab Occlusion is the effect of noise reduction from cab insulation. The Cab Occlusion blueprint specifies how much the noise is reduced. This effect along with several others requires the X-Fi Extreme Gamer sound card to be present.
kevmt
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by kevmt »

Sly, the way I did my cabs was first to finish off the external model. Once this was done I then saved a copy of this model as a basis for my cab. Then I deleted any part of the loco that couldn't be seen if I were standing in the cab.
Once this is done it's just a case (!) of adding the extra detail to the cab that you feel necessary to finish it off to your satifaction.

A couple of pictures of one of my corris cabs to show what I mean:-






RSAdam wrote:Of the animations you specified, which of them would you be able to see completely from within the cab position, or would they only be visable externally? I ask this because it is perfectly possible to have external animations of any kind (within reason) affected by cab controls (wipers and headlights being the most common...).[*]Cab .


Adam, would it then be possible to animate the reverser or regulator in, say, the black 5 loco (not cab) so that they match the position of the levers in the cab view and can be seen to move in the external views when using keyboard control? This is what i tried to do with my loco, didn't have to much success with it.

Cheers,
Kevin
Sly401
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by Sly401 »

Hi Kev, Adam

Kev
yep, I have made a simple animation using the light switch and, like you at present its on or Off, however looking through the blueprints and at how cab animations , levers etc work I could see no reason why I shouldn't be able have a stepped reversible animation just as the Brake handle or regulator do..
One way to test would be to make a die block movement animation and label it as say... the 5mt reverser wheel using the S & W keys should move the die block
I am really still just thinking out loud and investigating possibilities, I will share anything I find straight away as I think it would be pretty cool if it can be cracked.
The bit I have'nt got my head around yet is the hierarchy of the linkages as in essence you have two animations in opposition ,One sorced from the crank and the other from the die block.

Adam
Thanks for the input
the first point about the external model being present was because when I used the 5MT cab aliased to the 8F, Head out views show parts of the 8F but as I have just checked the cab view does indeed show the 5MT (so my mistake there :D , but that was the reason I chose to do the 8F first ).

Need to clarify what i would like to achieve as i suppose its two seperate issues
If you are in cab view and press "S" or "W" the reversing gear rotates, I also want it to raise or drop the Die block in the motion (which you would see in external view)so I presume i can just add another animation as a child using the same input data ?
Similarly operating the sanders moves the sander lever in the cab but I presume it could also release a steam release animation in external view... whistle steam likewise.
And as you have just verified these do not have to have their source in the cab view.

I actually like the Idea that the cab can be actually on board (performance limitations excepted)

Thanks again

Sly
Sly401
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by Sly401 »

Kev

Thanks yet again. I will give a cab a shot nice to know I can use my existing cab ( I must be on the 10th incarnation ) :D

Then I can start on the control animations :D

Sly
RSAdam
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by RSAdam »

Hiya,

To link an animation on the exterior model to any cab controls, simply add an Exterior Animation to the Interface Element of the specific Control Value found in the Control Container Component. The Animation ID within this references the Animation ID used under the Render Component > Anim Set.

Sounds really complicated I know, not sure myself why its so long winded, but the ability is there and it works. The wipers on the default stock are done this way :)
Sly401
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by Sly401 »

My You are up late :D

Thanks for verifying that Adam, I had some success with the regulator linkage tonight... the valve gear is going to be tricky if not impossible to do fully because it will mean two seperate animations linked, there are some workarounds possible to give the impression of full valve gear (in forward or reverse gear) movement.

Next question is ... in the matrix are any of the settings for scale ?

We obviously now the positional elements, X,Y, Z and guess that some of the others could be rotation about the axes... but that still leaves some :D

Any chance of a breakdown on the elements?

Sly
kevmt
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by kevmt »

RSAdam wrote:Hiya,

To link an animation on the exterior model to any cab controls, simply add an Exterior Animation to the Interface Element of the specific Control Value found in the Control Container Component. The Animation ID within this references the Animation ID used under the Render Component > Anim Set.

Sounds really complicated I know, not sure myself why its so long winded, but the ability is there and it works. The wipers on the default stock are done this way :)
Thanks Adam. This was the method I used to try and link the reverser position in the cab with the reverser position in the exterior model. I found that the number and type of animation modes in the exterior animation setting were more limited than those available for the interior cab animations and I could not achieve a successful tie up between the two.

This is not a knock, as I wouldn't have thought they were designed for this.

Would agree that doing wipers, fans etc acould be simply done using this method.

Cheers,
Kevin
Sly401
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by Sly401 »

Mmm something not right :-?

Hi Adam

If I reference my main loco IGS as my cab view and apply an animation to a control input such as regulator linkage movement, whilst in the cab view I will see the regulator linkage move...
If I then switch to external view should I then see the regulator in its new position? or is it just that the cab view is using a copy of the main loco IGS?

(It may be I have got lost with all the different variations of the IGS and IA files I have around, :lol: .......... but any repositioning does not appear to be seen when I switch to external view)


Sly
cromerobrill
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Re: Time to talk cabs

Post by cromerobrill »

Hi all,

I think my following message is about this thread's topic:

When adding an Exterior Animation to a Control which have only two values i get success. I mean Interior levers with Digital input sensitivity equal to 1. But when adding an Exterior Animation to a Control like Reverser or Train Brake it seems that internally digital input sensitivity goes to 1 even though the blueprint says 0.25. When in Cab View and acting with the mouse all is OK but not with the keyboard that reduces all to On-Off. In external view the same occurs...

Maybe RS doesn't allow Exterior Animations for things such Reversers or Brakes? How to animate a cylinder brake? I didn't find any example in the bin files of standard rolling stock...

Best regards,

Carles Romero, "Brill"
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