View Full Version : setting up

09-04-2018, 12:44 PM

How do I set up a glass surface in LightWave 2018.0.6?


09-04-2018, 02:16 PM

How do I set up a glass surface in LightWave 2018.0.6?


1. Select your object (or the polys that you want to apply the glass surface to).

2. Click Set Surface at the bottom of the Modeler interface.

3. In the Change Surface dialogue, change the name of the surface to something descriptive; Glass, Glass window, etc.

4. For this purpose, don't worry about changing the other settings. Just click "OK". When you create a wholly custom surface, you will need to review these settings and many others.

5. Open the Surface Editor panel.

6. Select your surface in the left side of the Surface Editor (if you changed the name, you should see two surfaces in the editor; Default and the new surface you created with the name you chose).

7. In this case, for the sake of speed, we will use a preset. With the Surface Editor panel selected, press F8. The Preset panel should open.

8. At the top of the Preset panel is a drop down list. Choose Built In > Glass and you will have a selection of glass surfaces available. Double-click the glass type you want to use and a dialogue will pop up that asks if you want to load that preset. Click OK.

Now the object or polys you selected should have the glass surface on them. Be aware that the glass surface won't look like much without something in the scene to reflect; a background or other objects.

Check out the Lightwave 2018 documentation for more detailed information.


09-04-2018, 02:33 PM
LW2018 uses a radically different method of surfacing and rendering, surfaces being mostly "Principled BSDF" which hypothetically simulates real-world materials, and "Physics Based Rendering" (PBR), which hypothetically simulates the real-world interaction of Light with materials, volumetrics, environment, etc.

For a lot of Surfaces, you can go back to the LW2015 or earlier method of surfacing by changing the Material type to Standard (as Tim Parsons suggested in the Brick image mapping thread). HOWEVER, in their infinite wisdom, LWDG has completely removed (as far as I can tell) the LW2015 and earlier Surface Editor tab called "Shaders" in the Standard material, which included shaders that I personally used all the time such as Fast Fresnel, Edge Transparency, Thin Film etc. So trying to get a Glass surface with a Standard material in LW2018 may be difficult.

I've ended up using a Google search on the LW2018 documentation very regularly to try to find methods in LW2018 to create effects that I've known and used for 20+ years in LW2015 and prior. For example, doing a Google search on "LW2018 glass" results in the first entry being a Google pointer to this page:


As RPSchmidt indicates, you can use the Preset Shelf from the Surface Editor to load some presets, but it may be worthwhile to learn the underlying "base" materials, such as Dieletric, Metallic, CarPaint, Standard, etc. The Hulk images at the top of this page:


shows a small example of each "base" Material.


09-04-2018, 07:21 PM
I always thought that the old method was to have a glass surface and then a copy of the mesh with the normals flipped and slightly shrunk which would end up being the 'air' surface. That's how I use to do it with glass and gems but maybe that is too old school. I think that the current PBR shaders should be able to handle glass surfacing with just the one 'layer' of your model.

Revanto :p

09-05-2018, 01:37 AM
The old method hasn't applied since lw 9.5 or 9.6...

The dielectric material, or 100% transparent pbsdf work exactly the same, very easy. Set an absobtion colour, set your absorption depth (How far till it becomes that colour) set a roughness value above 0, done...

Shaders conflict and interfere with nodal shaders, and the standard physically based materials should suit 99% of your needs, and are easier to use than the old ones.

Tim Parsons
09-05-2018, 10:47 AM
In most cases you can just apply the dielectric material and call it a day. But you can also use the Principled BSDF to dial in a specific glass look too. That is the nice thing about the new system - it is so easy to get the look you are after!