View Full Version : Hrmm

03-11-2003, 04:27 PM
How would i get some text onto an airplane, like a bunch of numbers or letters? I tried drill:stencil and could not get it to work, any help would be nice. Thanks.

03-11-2003, 05:36 PM
Here's what I'd do:

Select the polygons where your letters will go and make a new surface (named "letters" or something like that). Then hide all but that area of your model and take a screen shot.

Then paste the screen shot into a paint/photo-editing program and make a texture map of your letters. Make sure the area around the letters is masked so that the background will be transparent when you apply it to your model.

Then, back in LW, open up the Surface editor and choose your "letters" surface, and click on the "T" button next to the color channel. You can then load your color texture and click "Automatic Size" to get it to fit.


03-11-2003, 08:20 PM
Thanks man :)

03-11-2003, 10:00 PM
Stencil is the normal way of doing it.... (faster too)

read the manual if you have problems,

I usually have the wrong object in the wrong layer,
or am choosing the wrong Axis!

Sometimes it's the wrong surface name too.....
But it does usually work, when you get the right combo...

I having a brain fade, but i believe their are two stencil commands, template drill and another one, one lets you choose the axis, and one does not!

I usually prefer actual geometry, to textures in cases like that..

03-12-2003, 02:05 AM
Interesting... I don't think I've ever used Stencil to put letters on a plane or spaceship...

I'd really recommend doing it with textures rather then 'modelling' the letters for a couple of good reasons...

1. Because you can change it real easy later on if you decide that the 'JX93Z' should be 'QPS001' instead. Imagine trying to 'remodel' that after you'd drilled it into the side of your plane! (It would be easy if you kept the 'base' version of your model)

2. Adding scrapes, scratches, dirt, worn paint, etc onto modelled letters. Sure, you can do it, but well, its just a lot easier with an image map... Modelling chipped paint on the edges of the letters is a pain! :)

Have fun!


03-12-2003, 08:52 AM
I'd really recommend doing it with textures rather then 'modelling' the letters for a couple of good reasons...

A third reason is Stencilling or other boolean operations can make for some really screwy smoothing errors, especially on something like a nice rounded airplane fuselage. But hey, try both ways and see what you prefer!


03-13-2003, 12:00 AM
Used to be incredibly important to be able to stencil them onto your model, but now, with glossiness maps there`s little need.

Unless of course you intend to give them seriously beveled edges! :)


03-15-2003, 07:28 PM
Hey.. Thanks for all the posts. I tried the way you guys said to do (the one pixildust said to do) and i could not get it to work. I mostly did not understand what he meant. If there is anyway when someone has free time, to write down step by step how to do it, it would be most appreciated. I need to do like 25 of them and would like to know a good/effective and fast way. Thanks again for your time and patience.

03-15-2003, 11:53 PM
Its not too hard - Basically you are just going to paint the letters as image maps in your graphics package, and then texture them back onto your object - If you know how to map an image onto a surface, your 99% of the way there! :-)

The way PixelDust described it is if you wanted a separate image layer of text to appear on top of *existing* textures (ie. limiting the number of polys to just those requiring the letters, then making sure you mask the text to create a nice alpha so that the letters will overlay on top of the texture), however for this kind of thing, I find just painting the texture on directly if possible is less work. I sometimes use Photoshop .PSD files, since I can keep all the layers separate for editing in Photoshop, however LightWave will use them as a single image.

See this post I made last year - I mixed the letters and details into my existing texture maps (go about half way down the post for more details). Essentially, I first did a snapshot of the top of the object to get a nice flat 'template' to paint onto, the painted the images to fit the template in the background...


Hope that was of any use? :)