After a long hesitation, I teamed up with a 3D/texture artist, Andrei Nastasa. He re-did all the external textures and made it look exceptionally realistic! Just have a look at these renders! :)
Oh, and don’t forget to check out his portfolio: https://www.artstation.com/andrein
After I got the updated textures, I jumped in to animate all the moving parts. I did the previous animations in Blender 2.49 since then, much has changed. Currently, I’m using Blender 2.81 with the latest beta of the XPlane2Blender script. It is so much simpler! :) That’s why I could finish all the animations just in a few days - and I was working only in the evenings! I just love it! :)
I am kinda proud of the gear animations. Since the wheel-cover is been pulled by the rotation of the retracting gear, there are loads of hinges and rods - each one of them connected together - all to just make the plane more aerodynamic.
To be honest, I hate ghost planes. It just breaks the immersion. I fly a lot in VR and having an empty cockpit - just sitting there without a virtual body - makes me ask the question every minute: am I really in that plane?
In DCS, there’s an option to have the pilot’s body - even in cockpit view. That’s why I’ve added a highly detailed pilot object, to have that option if you’re flying in VR. Yes, sometimes it blocks the view of the instruments, but that’s how it is in the real-life as well. The only difference is, in real-life your brain ignores your limbs - because you just automatically move those out of the way. In VR, you can’t really do that (yet) :) On the other hand, when you’re flying the Turbolet, 90% of the time you’re just checking engine instruments and admire the ortho scenery you generated for 2 weeks :)
Depending on the plane’s operator, the Turbolet often had a wingtip tank, each having 200L extra fuel to burn on longer routes. So if you prefer longer cargo routes, you can now just leave the plane while you take the dog out for an afternoon walk ;)
The Turbolet is quite a short plane. Therefore, it’s very sensitive to how you load the plane and where you put the payload. So, please, be careful not to tip her! :)
Of course, the main livery will be the FARNAIR HA-LAR - just like it was for the real-plane. You will still be able to choose between “clean” and “dirty” and of course, more liveries to come. Stay tuned.