Meadville Space Center

Project Apollo - NASSP => Modeling => Topic started by: FordPrefect on December 26, 2007, 12:57:39 PM



Title: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on December 26, 2007, 12:57:39 PM
Hi everyone and Merry Christmas to you all!

I figured our current external 3d model of the Lunar Module, especially the Ascent Stage seriously lacks in accuracy and detail and therefore decided to build a complete new Ascent Stage model from scratch. I will do this independently of Rodions work as I plan to do a new descent stage as well at a later point. Unlike Rodion, I am targeting for a nicely detailed but low polygon, frame-rate friendly external model of the Lunar Module right from the beginning, with authentic dimensions as close as possible to the real thing. You know, we have to keep up with AMSO's model quality. Actually, I try to do it better.  :)

The new ascent stage model of course will include a virtual cockpit. At first the VC will be eye-candy only, the funcionality may be integrated at a later point by one of you clever coders. I plan to release the Ascent Stage first, then resume modeling a new Descent Stage model.

There is a lot of new stuff in the modeling compartment for me to learn and I can't predict my time available to work on this project in the future but I plan to finish the ascent stage within the next six months. I get my drive to resume work on it each time I fly the LM in NASSP when I realize how bad our Ascent stage looks. We seriously need new shiny models!

By the way, it's great to see so much progress here, you are all doing a great job here!



A small glimpse showing the current wireframe of the Ascent Stage mid-section, revealing the aft cabin compartment:

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v316/Rhinehornet/MidSection_Render.jpg)


Best wishes to you all! (http://forums.eagle.ru/images/smilies/xmas.gif)

Rafael


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - complete new model - in Progress
Post by: NoName on December 26, 2007, 01:56:20 PM
That's really great news :)

The LM model always annoys me a little bit. It's really great that you decided to work on it :ThumbsUp432: Do you plan to use our 2D instrument panels for the virtual cabin?


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - complete new model - in Progress
Post by: FordPrefect on December 26, 2007, 08:22:58 PM
Of course I will use your fantastic panel bitmaps wherever possible in the VC. Would be a shame not to do so...  :wink:

Little update, I was able to add the Rear Section:

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v316/Rhinehornet/RearSectionAdded.jpg)


Next is adding/modelling the RCS quads, the front section and a lot more smaller details.


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - complete new model - in Progress
Post by: NoName on December 26, 2007, 08:35:14 PM
Of course I will use your fantastic panel bitmaps wherever possible in the VC. Would be a shame not to do so...  :wink:
 

:)

I'm going to improve them a little bit. I found a few high res bitmaps some weeks ago. So, we'll see the real LEM switches and rotaries on our panels soon... ;)

Little update, I was able to add the Rear Section:

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v316/Rhinehornet/RearSectionAdded.jpg)


Next is adding/modelling the RCS quads, the front section and a lot more smaller details.

Keep going :ThumbsUp432: I wish I could do such 3D artwork. My brain just allows 2D :D

By the way, do you think about including all the different LEM versions in Project Apollo?


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - all new model - W.I.P.
Post by: fmmueller on December 26, 2007, 08:42:34 PM
Wow, fantastic work FordPrefect! I'm really looking forward to the finished LEM, keep up the good work. :ThumbsUp432:


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - complete new model - in Progress
Post by: FordPrefect on December 26, 2007, 09:04:18 PM
By the way, do you think about including all the different LEM versions in Project Apollo?

Eventually yes, both the H- and J-Series versions including the LEM's of Apollo 9 and 10, however this will take some time. Due to my serious Apollo 17 illness, I plan to model LM12 "Challenger" first. Deriving all other (previous) LEM versions from that one shouldn't be too difficult. If time in the future permits, I will try to model a new LRV as well, I'll see.

Looking forward to your new LM panel bitmaps, Moonwalker!  :ThumbsUp432:

Thanks for the encouragement!


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - all new model - W.I.P.
Post by: NoName on December 26, 2007, 09:23:49 PM
Oh, seems there is another person with a serious Apollo 17 illness :D

In my point of view this mission was the highlight of the Apollo Program, and ironically the end too, sadly. Taurus Littrow and Hadley Apennine were the most exciting places I think. So, can't wait for Challenger (and Falcon too)...


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - all new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Tschachim on December 27, 2007, 12:05:18 PM
Hi FordPerfect,

yeah, that's really great, we desperately need a new LM, please keep it up!  :ThumbsUp432: :)

Cheers
Tschachim


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - all new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Coussini on December 27, 2007, 12:41:22 PM
Great news.

If you like a link for the NASA Apollo Lunar Module News Reference
http://www.cs.indiana.edu/sudoc/image_30000061709352/30000061709352/pdf/techdata.htm#lunar


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - all new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Christophe on December 27, 2007, 02:37:19 PM
Great work, Fordperfect!
Thanks for all your efforts.


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - all new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on February 29, 2008, 08:24:32 AM
Sorry for the late reply, thanks Coussini for pointing out the NASA Apollo Lunar Module News Reference, lots of interesting info there. Am I right to understand that the LEM ascent engine was installed being tilted out of the x-Axis by 1.5 into the +Z axis, so it is actually slightly pointing forward (+Z)?

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v316/Rhinehornet/AscentEnginetilt.jpg)

I know this is a more rhetorical question, I always thought it was tilted backwards...


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - all new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on March 08, 2008, 07:18:53 PM
Not really a big result after 4.5 hours of modeling, though I'm getting used to it.  :what343:  Started working on the forward section:


(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v316/Rhinehornet/LM_frontsection_1stSteps.jpg)


Cheers,


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Zachstar on March 25, 2008, 06:23:47 AM
Looks very nice!

Please keep up the great work!


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on March 25, 2008, 01:24:22 PM
Looks very nice!

Please keep up the great work!

Thanks! You bet, Zach. I am currently waiting to receive some detailed info I need to continue. My plan is to create a very accurate yet framerate friendly LEM model. I think I've put the bar concerning mesh quality pretty high for me and I like it that way. This will require more time for development, but I know the result will be worth it. As I said earlier, we have incredibly highly realistic simulated systems in NASSP, developed by our talented coders and Apollo nuts, so this Project needs and deserves meshes with the same level of accuracy, as close to the real thing as possible.


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Christophe on March 26, 2008, 11:40:50 AM
Yes great work!  :ThumbsUp432:



Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Zachstar on April 26, 2008, 05:33:33 PM
It has been about a month.. Any progress?


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on June 26, 2008, 10:20:31 AM
Howdy folks,

Short heads-up. The ascent stage model is coming along nicely. Modelled the forward section, IMU housing on top of it has been added and the panel on the lower panel on the aft equipment bay. Next will be a lot smaller details like the RCS quads, vent hoods, antennas and many more. Sorry for the slow progress, it's because I try to build it as accurate as possible, and I am confident you won't be dissapointed.

The only thing I am concerned about is the transfer from 3ds to .msh format. I did some test already and I have some really nasty shading errors along some weird material changes or mesh component position changes on the resulting mesh in orbiter, that I partly cannot explain myself. I will try to get more experience using meshmaker 2.0, however, any suggestion on other conversion tools are welcome. Swatch, maybe you can assist me in solving some of the issues?

Thanks for listening. Greetings to you all!


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Swatch on June 26, 2008, 11:34:12 AM
3ds to msh files is a conversion that I've never liked.  I'll see what I can come up with.  What program are you using?


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on June 26, 2008, 12:02:25 PM
I use Max. I discovered I can locate some of the errors prior the file transfer in Max by exporting it as a mesh and reload that mesh. It looks like I have to change the triangulation of some of the polygons in order to have them correctly shaded in the later mesh file.
I should be back online from my home during next week, then I will post some screenies of the tough ones. Looking forward to your ideas then!

Also, I'll try to get in touch with alaintd too, he must have a wealth of knowledge on that matter, considering his incredible work done for his ARESA world add-on.


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Swatch on June 26, 2008, 01:29:38 PM
You're using the max2msh script right?


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on June 26, 2008, 03:33:05 PM
You're using the max2msh script right?


Well, if that is the one from mindblast, yes I used to use this in the past. However not in the recent export trials, since I was getting an error message every time. Though I know it has to do with the assigned materials within Max, so I will look into this in the coming days.


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Swatch on June 26, 2008, 03:36:02 PM
You can't have multi-materials....beware of this because GMax and 3DSMax will do this to you at the drop of a hat.  That may be the problem.


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: ryan on June 27, 2008, 05:51:00 AM
http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/pao/History/diagrams/ad016.gif
http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/pao/History/diagrams/ad017.gif

These links might help with the eventual LM VC interior.


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on July 01, 2008, 03:39:29 PM
A quick glance of the model as it looked two weeks ago...

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v316/Rhinehornet/Render_LMascent_19.jpg)


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Coussini on July 02, 2008, 09:55:55 AM
That's very nice.... good job  :yes77:


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Swatch on July 02, 2008, 10:35:46 AM
Looking Good Ford!


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on March 18, 2009, 05:06:55 PM
Just a quick update:

Today is a great day for me, since I finally could resolve the frustrating polygon -> mesh conversion issues which ruined the look of my models once they were in Orbiter. The problem is gone! I am not yet sure, what exactly solved it, but it most probably had to do with multiple materials and doubled faces in Max, which haven't been obvious. This is fantastic, since now the model looks in Orbiter just the way it looks in Max. I can't tell you how happy I am now. I felt really bad, since my progress and contribution here was going so awfully slowly, but I was terribly frustrated of the mentioned issues. NOW, THAT IS HISTORY! Hail my new machine, errr I mean the mighty probe  :D

Finally, the ascent stage mesh looks in Orbiter like I want it to:

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v316/Rhinehornet/LMascentstage20a_inLunarOrbit.jpg)

Updates coming soon!



Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Graham2001 on March 18, 2009, 06:50:51 PM
Wonderful job!


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: jc121081 on March 18, 2009, 08:19:27 PM
Indeed! Looks great, Ford!


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Coussini on March 19, 2009, 06:53:53 AM
Continue like that.... it's a very nice job


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: NoName on May 10, 2009, 02:48:22 PM
Please keep the work up!

Any news on it?


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on May 10, 2009, 04:34:16 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeT7hZW5KSU

No updates available yet. Got dragged away from the project by MSFS.  :sorry345:


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: NoName on May 10, 2009, 05:03:20 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeT7hZW5KSU

No updates available yet. Got dragged away from the project by MSFS.  :sorry345:

The model looks awesome. With the proper textures on it (maybe I could help on that) it's going to look like the real LM. Soon, my final version of the 2D instrument panels will be available. So that may give you another push... :)

MSFS is my second hobby as well (but FS9 only). I can understand how hard it is to resist MSFS ;)


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Zachstar on July 18, 2009, 12:46:50 PM
Nice work! Please keep us updated!  :ThumbsUp432:


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on September 22, 2009, 05:10:48 AM
Coming back to this project... forward RCS quad support structure added...

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v316/Rhinehornet/LMas_20Sept2009.jpg)


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: NoName on September 24, 2009, 07:35:17 AM
The ascent stage looks awesome! Please keep going :Excited432:

We'll need such a phantastic mesh "soon" I think ;)


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on September 25, 2009, 03:52:17 PM
Thanks Moonwalker for your encouragement! Yes, I've collected so much excellent references about the LEM that I can't wait myself to put textures on this baby. Though I need to finish the (exterior) model first, then comes unwrapping and texturing.
If you happen to have time to dig in your archives, I am still looking for good close-up photos of the LEM windows from both outside and inside of a flown LEM, especially of interest is the window framing. All the images I have so far still leave me with some sort of guesswork, and I really want to make a model true to reality. Thanks for any help on this!


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Gunner_CAF on March 04, 2010, 11:57:06 PM
Will This Help from LM9, they are linked from:


http://www.legislative.nasa.gov/alsj/apollo.glossary.html#LPD

Go to LPD (Landing Point Designator) and there are two links to the interior and exterior window.  

Gunner


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: FordPrefect on March 05, 2010, 11:21:50 AM
Hey Gunner_CAF,

wheeee, very good find there! Highly appreciated, that will help me alot!  :ThumbsUp432:
Thanks again!


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: Gunner_CAF on March 06, 2010, 10:23:57 AM
Your doing the hard work, thank you!

Gunner


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: gimp1992 on July 03, 2010, 09:16:39 AM
Looking good Thank you for all the hard work you are doing


Title: Re: LM Ascent Stage - new model - W.I.P.
Post by: gimp1992 on July 24, 2010, 07:20:06 AM
I have some pics from Virtual LM CD of the outside of the windows in the Lunar Test Article-1 and some interiors of the LMP interior window also 2 show the window shades.  I can send them zipped in a PM if you like.