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Johnny
05-08-2006, 12:02 PM
I have a client who needs me to save out my Lightwave work in a form he can open in Strada (strata?).

He's said obj and dxf formats are the best choices, but I'd like to hear any advice or pitfalls to avoid from anyone who's actually done this.

I just want to make sure that what I hand off to him works for him smoothly, so that he doesn't have to tinker..

It's a good client, and I'm doing this as a favor to hel them out, so the diplomatic angle is key here.

thank you!

J

MLynch
05-09-2006, 07:52 AM
I was using Strata for about a year before I came over to Lightwave. Strata can be a little twitchy about .obj's that come out of LW. Your best bet is to use FBX or VMRL2 ...FBX works very well, and I would suggest trying that first - it even retains animation. However, it won't work for particles and things handled by third-party plugins that do anything other than generate geometry.

If you don't already have it, you can grab the FBX import/export plugin for LW here: http://www.newtek.com/lightwave/downloads/FBX.php

Of course, if your client is using anything prior to Strata 3D CX 4.2 I can't vouch for how well this will work.

Strata has it's strong points - such as it's renderer, but it is rather old-school in many ways and can be rather frustrating to use on a professional level - especialy when it needs to be used in conjunction with other 3D apps. One of it's key issues there is it's limited import capabilities, and it's complete lack of export capabilities. ...sorry, just my $0.02 gripe.

Good Luck. :)

MLynch
05-09-2006, 08:16 AM
Oh, one other thing: I would recommend against DXF - if you've done any UV mapping you run the risk of your UV coordinates being stripped during export, it'll tessellate the model which will increase the overall geometry and make Strata choke as it imports it, and it may import into Strata with some creased edges in odd places.

Again - good luck. :)

- Mike

Johnny
05-09-2006, 09:31 AM
MLynch;

thank you for the link to the plug and the advice against dxf!

I grabbed the plug in and installed, but I'm not seeing where I access it...I loaded plug ins, quit and restarted Lightwave..

Is there some trick to using this export plug in? I don't see a manual or read me in what I downloaded...

thank you!

J

MLynch
05-09-2006, 10:28 AM
The model or scene needs to be exported form Layout. ...It's been a while since I did it, and I just got a new work station last week, and I still have a few lesser-used plugins to install. But if I remember correctly you had to go to your Utilities, open Generics in your Plugins menu and choose "Export FBX" ...There were a few other options you had to go through after that...

...Actually, I seem to rember a page that gave some pretty good details on how to do it. Let me see if I can find it and I'll post the link. Gimmie a sec to run through Google.

MLynch
05-09-2006, 10:43 AM
OK. Here you go. This gives a really detailed run down on how to export an FBX from LW.

http://tikiwiki.otee.dk/tikiwiki/tiki-index.php?page=HOWTO-importObject#LightWave

This actually relates to using an app called Unity, so you can ignore step 3 of the export instructions since that won't apply to what you're doing. The rest of the info should get you were you need to be.

I hope this helps.

Johnny
05-09-2006, 11:25 AM
Thank you...reading that wiki now..

after your last help, I poked around in Plugs and assigned FBX export to a key, and walked my way thru it.

there was a bunch of stuff it didn't support, but it seemed to work.

I guess my client will let me know if not!

J

Johnny
05-09-2006, 05:18 PM
Turned out he was happy with OBJ Modeler files and the texture maps...guess he'll have to set up the lights and camera the way he wants to.

Again, thank you for helping me out with this.


J

MLynch
05-09-2006, 09:10 PM
Of course he was... :D

Sorry you went through all those hoops just to end with the .OBJ. Well, either way - I'm glad he was happy with what he got.

No problem. And anytime. :thumbsup: