Grumman TBF Cockpit frame unwrapping

I may have bitten off more than I can chew with this one.
This is the TBF that I’m working on for Warbirds.
I’m trying to make the most of a 2048X2048 space but no matter what I try the frames for this plane are too complicated to unwrap and work with.I can unwrap most things in Blender.
Probably not the most efficient way but I get results that work in the end.
But these frames are too confusing when I try to work with them.
I’d like to get them to all be in about the same spot and the same scale in relation to the size of the rivets.

Does anyone have a simple way of unwrapping objects like these?
Or is it just a very tedious time consuming project?
Any help would be appreciated. (530 KB)


Is this ok?

Here’s the file with the UV Map in case you need it. If this is what you want tell me in the post and I’ll explain it how I did it, and feel free to ask me anything else regarding blender.


Thanks for the reply.
No, that’s not exactly what I want.
I should have include the texture map, sorry.

What I’m trying to do is make the best use of my space.
Any part of the frame that’s straight and flat can be mapped to the right hand side of the map.
If you look at the map I have for the turret, you might get a better idea of what I’m trying to do.

If that’s not possible, then why is the best way to unwrap the turret?


To be hones the best way would be to unwrap this on your own way and texture it yourself, that’s just my opinion. There’s lot of material online on how to uv unwrapp in blender and the rest is common sense. This might sound strange but if you could send me the whole aircraft I would be more than happy to unwrap it for you to the best of my knowledge. I might even recorded the process and of-course send you the file with the uv maps properly unwrapped.

To start, most part (not the rounded, gunners post?) of this is symmetrical so you need to deal just with one half.
If you decide that patterns of wear’n tear, bullet holes, oil leaks are symmetrical. If not, you have to have UVs for both sides and unwrapped parts should not be overlapped as it is suggested by your texture right now.
To the workflow of unwrapping one half as it is right now:

  1. Delete existing UVs. In 3d view select faces which are seen vertical in Ognjen’s UV editor - ones going across the canopy. Press U Unwrap. In UV editor window, select islands move, rotate 90 and position over texture - approximately - on top of each other.
  2. Set 2d cursor as a pivot and position it on the top left UV vertex. Select all islands in UV editor and scale so that islands have proper width. You can see and control position of the rivets if 3d view is in Texture shading mode while you scale.
    For even more precision use W - Align X or Y in UV editor on selected vertical or horizontal vertices.
  3. Repeat selecting not unwrapped faces in 3d view and unwrap, position as in above.

For the spherical part you can also use above described positioning and scaling of UV islands. Difference is you’d need to use U - Follow ActiveQuad unwrap (active quad - one face needs to be selected and straightened in UV editor before you select and unwrap this and other faces).
I’d recommend separating spherical canopy in own object before you start unwrapping. You can join back both after.

Hope helps some.

Sorry for the lat reply guys, it’s ben a very hectic month.
Ognjen, thanks for the offer, but I have trust issues and I no longer technically own this model.

It’s not a truly symmetrical piece (I wish it was) I’ll give your method a try.
I just rebuilt the entire pice as I thought the first version is a bit “clunky” looking in-game.
Thanks again guys.

I agree with the sentiment that you should just “auto-unwrap” the cockpit assembly, then … spray-paint the damned thing with a texture (“texture painting”), just like the builders of the original aircraft surely did.

The source of the “paint” can come from any reference source you wish …

It is also, frankly, “quite debatable” IMHO just how much time you should be spending on this particular aspect of it. In the reference shot, the metal of the bubble-canopy is virtually invisible. I couldn’t see detail on the thing even if it was there. Why not simply attach a gray material to it, and be done? “It’s uniform, gray, spray-paint,” on a detail of the aircraft that’s never going to command the user’s attention anyway. The only thing of realism is “how it catches the sunlight,” and a simple material/texture combination can easily handle that.

If you have an “ECU” (extreme close-up") shot, somewhere along the line, that features the canopy, then I would spray-paint a more-detailed texture on just whatever part of the thing is going to be visible in-frame … using “texture paint” techniques as aforementioned. In any case, it won’t matter exactly what the UV-unwrapping looks like. (And that would be a different model, anyway … probably consisting of only the relevant portion of the aircraft.)