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So you want to paint a race car. Great... but where does one start?

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Alan Harkleroad

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This is my first tutorial for general purpose and first in 4 years. I will get Matt to make a general area for these types of tutorials.

There is so much content out there for this game it can be overwhelming. In order to paint a car you will need a few things.

1. Paint program. Which ever program you choose will have its pro's and cons. Programs you need to purchase will have more options and tools to play with. I started with free software and purchased Corel and Adobe Products once I decided this was a hobby I really wanted to spend time on. Below are some of the programs folks use.

- Paint.net, Gimp (Free)
- Adobe Photoshop/Elements (Can open vectors can not save in vector)
- Adobe Illustrator (Full Vector Support)
- Paint Shop Pro (Version 9 or older by JASC, 10 and up bought out by Corel) (Full Vector Support)
- Corel Draw (Full Vector Support)

2. Templates, Car Viewer Files, and some good tunes. Every mod available has a set of Car Viewer files and Templates.

Mod's are available from the sites listed below. Just a sample of the big one. There are so many to choose from it will be hard to lock yourself down to one. These are the ones I know of:
- Bullring Cup 2015/2013/358 Dirt Mod/Dirt Late Model
http://bigdonlinemotorsports.com/
- SRD Xfinity and Nationwide 2013 and 2015 mods. Available here and at www.NXS15.com
- DMR Cup 10/11/12, NNS13 http://www.desmodsracing.com/
- NCWTS 09/13/14/15 and Cup 2000 Team Om3ga http://www.teamom3ga.com/forum/index.php?action=downloads
- Smiffsden Indycar/WarWagon Paint Kit Add-on http://www.smiffsden.com/

3. Once you have your files need to paint. Open your program, crack open the template for the car or truck you are going to work on, Car Viewer file and have at it.
There is no wrong way to do this. It's all trial and error. Everyone has different styles and approaches on how to tackle a car.

Video Overview of this with some extra basics included.
 
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aaa

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Thanks Alan! Do you know where to find 2048 versions of the BR15 template? It's the only thing holding me back from painting on the new mod.
 

Alan Harkleroad

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For the BR15 models the BER 2014 Chevy and Ford fit already with no adjustments. New Camry and Charger temps will have to be made. Bullring didnt release 2048 templates with the mod.
 

radney

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Hello. Sorry if this is a dumb question. Once you download the carviewer file, what folder should it be extracted to? Also the same with templates and how are other templates uploaded to the carviewer file?
 

aaa

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Hello. Sorry if this is a dumb question. Once you download the carviewer file, what folder should it be extracted to? Also the same with templates and how are other templates uploaded to the carviewer file?
If I'm understanding your question correctly, it doesn't matter where you save/extract the car viewer files.

As for actually changing the template that is displayed on the car, you'll notice that in each of the manufacturer folders of the car viewer files (ford/chevy/toyota/dodge) there is a file named "card.bmp". That is the display file. So you extract/save the template in your paint program as "card.bmp" to the corresponding folder (i.e. chevy if you're painting a chevy), replacing the card.bmp that is already there.

I hope I explained that somewhat clearly.
 

radney

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I think I understand. Just have to figure out what is the best paint program to use
 

RacerXero84

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Now THAT is what I'm talking about! No more excuses! Let's see them paints people!

Thanks for taking time to compile all these tutorials Alan, helluva resource :)

And you can bet I'm subscribed on Youtube now. I suggest others do the same as well!
 

Alan Harkleroad

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Thanks. I try to sing less in my videos now, because really who sings that song again lol. Just how my rhythm is when I am painting. But I like doing this stuff. Some of it is a good 30 minute video others can be knocked out in 5 to 10. But I am open to making what ever we need to help people out. I am a visual learner so I like videos and text based instructions.
 

radney

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I'm pretty much of a visual guy myself, so watching a video should benefit me nicely. Thanks for taking time out to do so.
 

radney

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This is definetly a huge step in the right direction. I just viewed the video. I'm going to take a swing at this after my son's baseball practice.
 

Highbank

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This thread ought to be "stickied" as the first thread at every site in the sim racing community, thanks Alan, it should be a compulsory course for every new member and even some of us old dogs could learn a few new "basic" tricks, who knows?
 

horseman89

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Alan! I guess, maybe you can help me a litte. I'm planing to do some frictional mod/ carset but so far the main problem for me is setting up contigs decal and series logo on car. Is there some kind of template for that? Or maybe some mip in mod can handle this thing like template for all cars in series - then I don't have to put them on the cars manually for each car? Maybe you have some PWF Busch series contigs template that I can use and only thing then I have to put somehow my frictional series logo on cars sides....
 
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Alan Harkleroad

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There is not a mip for that outside of a window banner in some of the mods. So you have to do them separately. What mod did you want to do this on?
 

horseman89

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I have some frictional mod and carset so I want to build some kind of Nascar Toyota Series semi fric. for myself. :) I'm no too good painter to do the real mod or carset or to publish it here or anywhere. So far I did logo _mfg files with NTS logo(looks not bad!), front windshield with red Toyota letters and Toyota sign at above of windshield(maybe could do better). So now I need to put proper "Nascar Toyota Series" logo and maybe mexican flag next to both sides of car doors. That's actually is what I want for now. I am posting some of my samples here.
 

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Rassy

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Thanks for the tutorial. This was very helpful. I made two cars I'm pretty happy with -- one for me and one for my friend. Trouble is, and I may have just missed this somewhere, I can't figure out how to paint the pit crews. Right now when we pit, we have the exactly same blank, blue and red pit crews. Is there a separate template for this? BTW I'm using the BR15 Cup Series mod.

Thanks for any help!

EDIT: Sort of helped myself here, but I thought I'd share. There are a few links in this thread that point to pit crew templates. I started with the War Wagon 2.5 Update and went from there.

http://www.simracingdesign.com/threads/pit-crew-template.31452/
 
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