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How to apply multiple UVW unwrap modifiers to a single editable poly
show user profile  Lotushead
Hello. I am a noob currently learning 3DS Max (I have v. 2010) and would really appreciate some help.

I have a model that is currently 1 single editable poly. I want to apply different materials/textures to certain sections of it. Each section needs to be UWV unwrapped and I need to Render UVW templates for each section.

So my question is, how do I go about applying multiple UVW unwrap modifiers to the editable poly?
Here is what I’ve done so far. Created a multi/sub-object material, loaded up 6 different sub materials. I then went in to the polygon sub-level of the editable poly and assigned the 6 different material ID’s to the relevant sections. This is all fine. So now I want to uvw unwrap each section and create textures. There are 2 ways I’ve tried doing this and neither worked as I was expecting.

1) Starting with just the editable poly (nothing selected at the sub level) in the modifier stack, I add a UVW unwrap modifier. I then select the ‘face’ sub-level from the UVW modifier and select the section I want to map. Here is where I hit a snag, when I click the edit window to unwrap the map it shows faces for the entire model, and not just the selected polys I want to map.

2) So back to the start I go, again with just an editable poly in the stack, this time I select ‘polygon’ at the sub-object or my editable poly, I then highlight the poly’s I want to map and then apply the UVW modifier. This works better. When I click Edit I can see just the section I want to unwrap. However in my main viewport window, the polys I selected earlier remain forever highlighted red. I can’t deselect them. I can go ahead and unwrap the map anyway but I can’t use the model for reference to line up my grid texture perfectly. I assume the polys are permanently selected lower down in the stack in my ‘editable poly’ Anyway, I plough on and attempt to UVW unwrap my second section. So I place a Mesh select modifier on top of my first UVW unwrap, go to the poly sub level and highlight my second section. Then I load a second UVW unwrap modifier on top of that. This time I map it and click ‘edit’ and I am seeing both my first selection that I previously mapped and the new section. Plus both the first section and the second section are both permanently highlighted red on my model as I assume they were both selected earlier in the stack.

So I stopped there. I have watched loads of tutorials on UVW unwrapping but have never seen anyone unwrap multiple sections on a single editable poly. It always seems to be one unwrap for the whole model or multiple separate objects within a scene.

This is frustrating me beyond belief now and I am sure there is something very obvious I am missing.

Would anyone be kind enough to describe the process I need to go through to unwrap 6 sections on a single editable poly? What order does my stack need to be in? Do I need to collapse it at any point? Are channel numbers relevant?

Thank you very much indeed.

read 2367 times
1/25/2012 2:07:12 AM (last edit: 1/25/2012 2:08:22 AM)
show user profile  ScotlandDave
Your second method is pretty much how you should be doing it. After you`ve applied your UVWUnwrap and done the edits to it, click it ( the modifier ) again to ensure it comes out of sub object mode ( working from memory here it`s been a while since i used max for this ). Then apply the poly/mesh select mod, and go to polygon subobject level - at this point deselect any selected polys. Then select the new polygon selection, add UVWUnwrap, rinse and repeat..

It can be handy to apply a UVWMap modifier before adding a UWVUnwrap to the selection just to get a basic box/planar mapping on it before unwrapping - although there`s probably a better method in Max these days for that.

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read 2360 times
1/25/2012 2:16:01 AM (last edit: 1/25/2012 2:17:12 AM)
show user profile  ccampbell
Only apply a single UVW to your object. To create multiple "tiles" all you do is skip the vet weld portion of the videos you are watching. For example. If your working on a head, unwrap the head as a single tile. When you unwrap the neck do not weld the neck vert's to the head verts. This leaves you multiple tiles for a single object. Note you will get a "seem" at the disconnected tiles. Or a discontinuouse texture.

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read 2355 times
1/25/2012 2:20:06 AM (last edit: 1/25/2012 2:20:06 AM)
show user profile  Garp
At the bottom of the edit dialog there's a drop-down list that says All IDs (the default). Use it to display only the polys with the ID you want.
No need for several unwrap mods.

edit: and having all the object vertices welded is just fine. You can break the texture faces apart without affecting the model.

read 2350 times
1/25/2012 2:24:46 AM (last edit: 1/25/2012 2:28:28 AM)
show user profile  Zman
I didnt read through everything here so sorry if it might be irrellevent.

how to apply several different Unwraps to you single model ?
Using different map channels and mix maps.
I explain it here -


it is a very complex method and there's a good chance you can achieve what u need by either using polygon ID and a multy sub object material, or by simply doing 1 unwrap and just doing the texture in photoshop ...

read 2333 times
1/25/2012 7:29:30 AM (last edit: 1/25/2012 8:34:35 AM)
show user profile  Lotushead
Thanks you all very much for the help. Scotland Dave's solution solved the problem with my current workflow. Such a simple solution! I've been teaching myself intensely over the past 2 weeks and with all the information I have absorbed it's so easy to suddenly overlook something simple. Practice will help embed these practices firmly in my brain I hope. Thanks Dave

Ccampbell & Garp - I've used the techniques you both described on a different model and it is more efficient, however in this instance I want to import my model to a virtual world and I need 6 separate and unique textures. Once imported I need to be able to select all 6 faces of the mesh and apply the 6 textures individually to each face. I will then create variations of those 6 textures. The object i'm creating is a tree, once imported it will be scripted so the end user can click it and load a variety of textures sets to change the appearance from summer to winter for example. I should have mentioned that in my OP but it was already quite long!

Zman, thanks for the link I've not experimented with map channels yet and this is definitely helpful!

Thanks everyone :o)

read 2317 times
1/25/2012 10:23:51 AM (last edit: 1/25/2012 10:28:39 AM)
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