Any Trainz (T:ANE) people out there?

The main question is in the title really; but I am hoping that there are!!

I am interested in making my own assets for the Trainz Simulator (T:ANE) by NV3 and really do not want to be bothered with the very steep learning curve needed to master Blender, but get on great with Sketchup.

I have tried up loading a model made in Sketchup via RubyTMIX and although it seems to have done this and uploaded OK, it has not appeared in the NV3 Download Station (over two weeks now).

My questions therefore are

  1. Does RubyTMIX actually still work with Trainz, or has its use been blocked?
  2. If it doesn’t upload, then does anyone know of a way to get Sketchup models directly into your own Trainz route without having the go through the NV3 Download Station?

I know that the fraternity on the Trainz forum are very anti Sketchup because of the high poly count but if I could upload it directly into my own routes then only I would be bothered by this problem.

Any help would be appreciated, as always

Regards Richard

SketchUp, by definition, is a low poly surface modeler, albeit, new users tend to create overly complex geometry or download high poly components instead of modeling things themselves.

I regret that isn’t the view on the Trainz forum - below is a flavour of the replies I got when I asked how to use Sketchup in Trainz. The topic ran to five pages and all replies were similar to this one. Here is the link if you wish to view what others had to say about Sketchup

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Dec 2011

Arrow Please do not go Sketchup
Please do not waste your time learning Sketchup. If you are interested in learning how to create 3D objects, be sure to go for a more serious 3D tool from the start. Some of the other tools might look hard at the start, but you will enjoy the power of them later in the process.

Because the majority of the objects made in Sketchup have a ridiculously high triangle count, which is terrible for performance of the game. This is something the starting object modeller does not always realise until his/her game start to complain.
A better argument nowadays is that when you decide to upload your assets, it will be checked on this triangle count (usually called poly count) and it will be rejected if it is too high.

The good news is that there is a lot of expertise with many other, more serious, 3D tools available on the forum. There is even a dedicated support forum for content creation:

I personally use Blender. For object sizing you switch it to metric scale (or that other scale).

In case you would consider Blender instead of Sketchup, here are a bunch of helpful links I used to use:

It appears to me they’re unable to differentiate the capabilities of SketchUp from those of it’s novice users.


I guess that they may have a point though. I did a model of a local landmark building and uploaded it to the 3D Warehouse which states it has a poly count of 2650, but when I attempted to up load it via RubyTMIX the poly count had risen to over 8,000. I don’t pretend to understand why that should be but I understood that RubyTMIX would lessen the poly count when it sent the model to Trainz, not increase it. The figure was taken from the RubyTMIX log file.

Shame it doesn’t work as it should - unless of course I am doing something wrong, but there aren’t any setting you have to make with RubyTMIX, you just press the button and it does the rest.

Regards REichard

The best point they have, is that SketchUp was not designed for game asset texturing nor pivot points.
There have been quite a few feature requests lately asking to expand the texturing features to facilitate game asset models. But “bones” and “pivots” would also need to be represented somehow, either natively or with dynamic components.

Related Article
How to create low-poly 3D models — CREATIVE BLOQ 3D Tutorial

Thanks Geo, I appreciate the link!

Regards Richard

One of the special things SU can to is depict coplanar surfaces as a single face while other formats triangulate everything. As shown below, an 8-sided circle is composed of at least 6 triangle while a default-segmented, 24-sided circle has 22 triangles ‘under-the-hood’.

So a model’s triangular face count can be a lot higher than SU’s reported poly count. The SU criticism at the Trainz forum is a bit amusing as model complexity is completely under the modeler’s control - don’t to stuff like using the default segmentation of arc and circles. A few more tips and examples on limiting geometry.

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Excellent advice and demonstration - I appreciate your trouble in replying - I will follow the link and take it all in, many thanks

Regards Richard

A post was split to a new topic: RubyTMiX problems

I am an occasional user of Sketchup and Trainz. I am using Sketchup 2017 free version and Trainz 2010. I have modeled a station building in SU and have used Ruby TMiX to export to Trainz. The export appears to work: the model can be viewed in the Trainz mesh viewer and it is imported into the Trainz Contents Manager, but it doesn’t get listed in Surveyor. It does have a very high poly count. Would this be the limiting factor?

It depends on the polycount limits in Trainz. You should look in the Trainz documentation, if available.