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Thread: I'm a noob with a very ambitious project, seeking help

  1. #1
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    Oct 2019
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    Default I'm a noob with a very ambitious project, seeking help

    Hello Trainz community

    My goal is to create a 3d scale model of the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. The prototype for this project is the Pacific Harbor Line (PHL), a switching railroad that services both ports and connects the ports to BNSF and UP. For more on PHL, see https://www.anacostia.com/railroads/phl

    This is kind of a crazy project to undertake, given that I am new to the whole model railroading scene in general and Trainz in particular. I am at the front end of a very steep and long learning curve. Nonetheless, I have been here before with other projects, so I know that all problems can be solved eventually somehow.

    I am looking for any members of the Trainz community who would be willing to act as mentor or adviser, whom I can ask dumb questions and get some guidance.

    I am the developer of the Naval Gaming Education Center (see https://navalgaming.com ) and this is part of that project. I have done some work using Transport Fever, but I believe that Trainz would be a better platform to accomplish what I am envisioning.

    This is a hobby project, but I like to connect my hobbies with the real world. The grand vision is to create a 3d model of the ports that is interesting, immersive and educational.

    I am also planning to create a YouTube channel with videos that will document the development of this project and showcase the finished product.

    For more about me, see https://jimbursch.com

    I can be reached by email: [email address removed] or of course you can reply here, or private message me.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by oknotsen; October 10th, 2019 at 03:58 PM. Reason: Email address removed

  2. #2
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    Default

    Hi there, if I were you I would start small, like one baseboard at a time or even just a smaller project altogether. Also you should look up approach medium on YouTube he's a route builder for the site JointedRail I myself have learned a lot through watching him. And if you ever need a beta tester I'd be more than happy to help.-MK
    How Tomorrow Moves

  3. #3

    Default

    Two tips:


    1. Keep in mind that "Rome wasn't build in a day". These projects take a lot of time. Even small projects, assuming you want to do it good. Many large projects have never seen the light of day because people simply gave up. Start small (like maybe just a tiny part of the harbor) and then slowly extend. Cities take time to build.
    2. Ones you have the game, look up my content.
      • I build a lot of assets that could help you create the Alameda corridor (follow this link for more details; probably not accessible till you have a version of the game registered to your account). If you are missing assets for this corridor, can share pictures and don't mind having to wait a few months, I will even consider adding the parts I apparently overlooked.
      • Once you are a bit farther away from the harbor, you might end up wanting to model Naval Weapon Station Seal Beach, for which I made a bunch of assets already (follow this link for more details; same access requirements).


    ... but start with getting a version of the game (... and register it to your account) .

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default

    You need to register your game so it will show up next to your username

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Default

    Welcome to the forums Jim.

    I too recommend starting small at first even if your very first project is fictional. The purpose of this fictional route is for testing and learning how to use the tools. In addition to building a test route of your own, we also recommend downloading and opening up other people's routes. You can download routes directly from the Download Station (DLS) into the program using the built-in Content Manager. Once downloaded, open up the route and look around at how they did things. Each person has his or her, mostly his, own style of doing things. In the end you'll develop your own, but use this to get ideas on how to do this.

    For real world projects, we highly recommend a third-party program called TransDEM. TransDEM has its own learning curve, but like anything else like it the results are what you are looking for. TransDEM, which is available for about $35 thereabouts, allows you to import DEM-data files from the USGS National Server and then place actual orthographic photos, or US topographic maps in place on the surface. Once compiled together, the software will allow you to export everything as a route ready for buildings, roads, tracks, and everything else. With the package together, you can then use the map on the terrain as a template to place the tracks, roads, and objects because everything is now a 1:1 scale.

    http://www.rolandziegler.de/StreckeU...ansDEMEngl.htm

    We will all gladly assist you with your route through the forums here, and for some of us with a bit more time on our hands, we maybe can assist you offline.

    But before we do any of this and provide more help, we do recommend you ensure your program is registered on the N3V servers. By registering, your software will link up to the forums here and display the program next to your name on a timeline. The purpose is twofold. First it ensures to us you're not trolling (Not that I'm saying you are or not), and secondly it will ensure we know what version of Trainz you are using. With so many versions, although quite similar in some cases and features, there are subtle differences with how somethings are done and how things work or not so knowing which version you are using will ensure we can provide the best advice.

    Note: if you have purchased Trainz via Steam, there's a possibility that the software didn't sync up properly. To ensure things get sync'd contact the helpdesk here: http://support.trainzportal.com/
    John
    Trainz User Since: 12-2003
    Trainz User ID: 124863
    T:ANE Build: 94829
    TRS2019: 98592

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
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    Default

    Thank you everyone for the terrific replies! This is very encouraging.

    I got TRS2019 through Steam, so I'll follow up with Support to get it registered here.

    I'll reply more fully later.

    Thanks again everyone! To get such quick and thorough replies indicates a solid, living community.

  7. #7
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    Default

    Yes this really is a good community.
    How Tomorrow Moves

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by oknotsen View Post
    Two tips:


    1. Keep in mind that "Rome wasn't build in a day". These projects take a lot of time. Even small projects, assuming you want to do it good. Many large projects have never seen the light of day because people simply gave up. Start small (like maybe just a tiny part of the harbor) and then slowly extend. Cities take time to build.
    2. Ones you have the game, look up my content.
      • I build a lot of assets that could help you create the Alameda corridor (follow this link for more details; probably not accessible till you have a version of the game registered to your account). If you are missing assets for this corridor, can share pictures and don't mind having to wait a few months, I will even consider adding the parts I apparently overlooked.
      • Once you are a bit farther away from the harbor, you might end up wanting to model Naval Weapon Station Seal Beach, for which I made a bunch of assets already (follow this link for more details; same access requirements).


    ... but start with getting a version of the game (... and register it to your account) .
    Thanks @oknotsen ! Next time I'm in the area, I'll get you some on-the-ground photos of the Alameda Corridor

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