Flashing Cupola

I had this very same problem with my 2BIL EMUs.
I found the problem to be the position of the andquot;sphere of lightandquot; light in the .eng file. It was so far back along the length andnbsp;of the carriage that it was also lighting up the underframe and leading bogie. When i moved it up out of the way it illuminated the roof, similar to the pic you posted here. It may well be that the light on the engine is causing this. Have you tried hauling it with a different loco ? Sounds crazy but it may be worth a try.

Well, my caboose doesn’t have transparent windows on the outside. The only transparency is in the internal view, and it’s just straight transparency, not translucency. I haven’t really noticed any flashing at night from inside the cupola, but I tend not to run much on the night setting. Just to test and make sure the specularity is set right, and that’s about it. . .

Also, I notice that in your screenshots I can’t see through the windows. . .have you just not created the alpha channel yet?

Very interesting. I hadn’t noticed that during a andquot;flashandquot; the translucency dissappears. Here is a daylight/no headlight shot:

Thanks, It’s good to know that I am not alone on this, but as you say there is also a lot of equipment that seems not to exhibit the problem. Right now it looks like I will have to decide between the flashes and being able to see scenery objects through the cupola windows. Have you seen this effect with your caboose in the sim?

A lot of the default passenger cars flash at night when the headlights are on. andnbsp;I think it’s probably a bug, although there might just be some specific circumstance that causes it, since obviously not everything flashes like that.

I am having trouble with the sides of the cuopla of my cabooses flashing bright when viewed at certain angles.
The effect only occurs when the locomotive hauling the train to which the caboose is attached has its headlight on. The cupola is the only part of the caboose with translucency and the effect only occurs when translucency is set to greater than 1 in 3DC. Translucency is 2, Specularity is 1, and the crease threshold is set to maximum.

Woops. You said that you creased it didn’t you andnbsp;:-[

Yeah, there is a good chance it is a bug of some sort in MSTS, but it is hard to say.


I’ve tried re-creasing several times with both the default and maximum crease settings to no avail. I wonder if it isn’t a bug in Train Simulator?

It may just be that they have messed up shading normals. If this is the case, you should be able fix it by re-creasing (via the Crease operation).


I would like to discuss this flashing issue on the Train-Sim forum but I am not sure how to explain to a non-3DC user what MSTS materials I am actually using; and if another matrerial should be suggested, just how I would implement that in 3DC. Is there some sort of equivalency chart somewhere?


In the tech docs, they describe the 3DS-style naming conventions for materials (alphabright+, etc.). andnbsp;I don’t know of any equivalency chart off the top of my head, except to compare the descriptions of the 3DS material names in the techdocs with what you know the 3DC material properties do. andnbsp;I don’t think it’s a 3DC problem, though, so if you just describe it as flashing when using translucency, I would bet that a lot of people would know what you mean.

I also think it’s extremely interesting the way that the translucency goes away during a andquot;flash.andquot; andnbsp;Usually when playing the flashes are fairly quick (at least for me, anyway), and I never noticed that.

One thought: You could move that top andquot;doohickyandquot;/cab or whatever you call it to you andquot;mainandquot; group (and then crease it) and see if that helps.


Sorry, there is no equivalency chart. If you see it happening on stock MSTS models also then it is probably an MSTS issue.


Thanks Troub. It looks like I am wrong about the dissappearing translucency. It just looks that way in the night shot.

I have seen the flashing on some of the default MSTS locos at night……….it occurs at random and not in any particular locale. Also occurs on the radiator fan housing on the tops of my Lehigh Valley GP9 locos. I guess its inherent in the program……….certainly not a 3DC issue since these locos were produced elsewhere……I think! andnbsp;Note attached tower with the glowing roof.
Joe Cooney…….Ocala, FL

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