Edit UVWs Dialog
 
 
 
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Select an object. Modify panel Modifier List Object-Space Modifiers Unwrap UVW Edit button (on Parameters rollout)

The heart of the Edit UVWs dialog is a window that displays a lattice made up of UVW faces and UVW vertices. Each UVW face, which has three or more vertices, corresponds to a face in the mesh.

The view window displays the UVWs in the 2D-image space of the map, superimposed over a grid. Thicker grid lines show the boundaries of a texture map as it would appear in image space; the lower-left corner of the rectangle has the coordinates (0,0) and the upper-right has the coordinates (1,1). Within this window, you manipulate the UVW coordinates relative to the map (or mesh) by selecting the lattice vertices, edges, or faces (collectively known as sub-objects), and transforming them.

The state of the Edit UVWs dialog, including buttons and selected options, is stored and recalled the next time you open the Edit dialog.

NoteYou can edit patch object texture coordinates as well as mesh coordinates in the Edit UVWs dialog. When editing a patch object, you can also edit the vertex handles. In addition, you can edit the manual interior handles. However, you must enable the manual interior handles before applying the Unwrap UVW modifier. To do so, at the Patch sub-object level, select one or more patches, right-click a selected patch, and then, from the quad menu tools 1 quadrant, choose Manual Interior. The manual interior handles appear in the editor window as isolated vertices.
NoteCertain modeling operations can leave unused (isolated) map vertices that show up in the editor window, but cannot be used for mapping. If the model is an Editable Poly or Edit Poly object, you can use the Remove Unused Map Verts button at the Vertex sub-object level to automatically delete these vertices.
TipThe editor can display the number of selected sub-objects. This option is available as an Unwrap UVW shortcut as Show Subobject Counter.

Interface

Besides the window, the editor interface consists of a menu bar, a toolbar, a lower toolbar, and, docked below the main dialog, the Options panel.

Menu bar

The menu bar provides access to a wide range of Edit UVWs functions. See Edit UVWs Dialog Menu Bar.

Toolbar

Contains all the controls for manipulating the texture sub-objects in the view window, navigating within the window, and setting other options. When transforming with Rotate and Scale, pressing Ctrl+Alt will allow you to transform the selection from the point of the mouse click, instead of the selection center. The initial click specifies the center of the transform.

Move

Lets you select and move sub-objects. Flyout options are Move, Move Horizontal, and Move Vertical. Press Shift to constrain the movement to a single axis.

Rotate

Lets you select and rotate sub-objects.

Scale

Lets you select and scale sub-objects. Flyout options are Scale, Scale Horizontal, and Scale Vertical.

Pressing Shift as you scale constrains the transform to a single axis.

Freeform Mode

Lets you select and move, rotate, or scale vertices, depending on where you drag. After you make a selection, the Freeform gizmo appears as a rectangular bounding box around the selected vertices. As you move the cursor over the gizmo's various elements and inside the gizmo, the cursor's appearance, and the result of starting to drag in this location, change:

  • MovePosition the cursor anywhere inside the gizmo and then drag to move the selection. To constrain movement to the vertical or horizontal axis, depending on how you begin dragging, press and hold Shift before dragging.
  • RotatePosition the cursor over a gizmo edge center point, and then drag to rotate the selection about the pivot. As you drag, the amount of rotation is shown in the center of the gizmo.

    Ctrl+drag to rotate in five-degree increments; Alt+drag to rotate in one-degree increments. Freeform rotation respects the angle snap status.

  • ScalePosition the cursor over a gizmo corner and then drag to scale the selection. By default, scaling is non-uniform; if you press and hold Ctrl before dragging, scaling is uniform on the horizontal and vertical axes. Press and hold Shift before dragging to constrain scaling to the vertical or horizontal axis, depending on how you begin dragging.

    By default, scaling takes place about the gizmo center. If you've moved the pivot (see following item), you can scale about the transform center instead by pressing and holding Alt before dragging.

  • Move pivotPosition the cursor over the pivot, a wireframe cross that appears by default at the center of the gizmo. When this cursor appears, drag to move the pivot. Rotation always occurs about the pivot; scaling takes place about the pivot if you press and hold Alt before dragging.
    TipBy default, the pivot always resets to the center of the gizmo when you make a new selection. If you prefer to retain the offset from selection to selection, you can toggle this feature with the Reset Pivot On Selection command. This command is not available in the editor interface by default; you must use the Customize User Interface dialog to add it.

If you Ctrl+select one or more vertices outside the gizmo, the gizmo expands to encompass the entire selection.

Mirror

Mirrors selected vertices and flips UVs. Flyout options are Mirror Vertical, Mirror Horizontal, Flip Horizontal, and Flip Vertical.

Flip first detaches the selection along its boundary edges and then applies a Mirror Horizontal or Vertical depending on the mode.

Show Map

Toggles the display of the map in the editor window.

UV/VW/UW

By default, the UV portion of the UVW coordinates is displayed in the view window. However, you can switch the display to edit the UWs or the VWs.

[texture list drop-down]

Contains all the maps of the material assigned to the object.

The names of the maps assigned in the Material Editor and in the Edit UVWs dialog (via Pick Texture) appear in the list.

Below the map names are several commands:

  • Pick TextureLets you use the Material/Map Browser to add and display textures that are not in the object's material.
  • Remove TextureEliminates the currently displayed texture from the editor.
  • Reset Texture ListReturns the texture list to the current state of the applied material, removing any added textures and restoring any removed textures that were part of the original material, if they still exist in the material. This command also adds any new maps in the material, so it essentially updates the UVW editor to the current state of the material.

Choose a map you want to use in the view window. For example, you might use a bump or texture map as a reference to move UVW vertices.

A checker texture named CheckerPattern (Checker), useful for checking for distorted areas of the texture mapping, is built in to the Edit UVWs dialog. By default, this texture appears as the background texture when you first open the editor after applying Unwrap UVW to an object. To cause the pattern to appear on the object in viewports set to display textures, choose it from the drop-down list, even if it's already active in the editor.

Edit UVWs window

The Edit UVWs window allows you to edit UVW sub-objects to adjust the mapping on a model. For example, a texture map might contain the side, top, and front views of a car. By first planar mapping the top, side, and front faces of the model at the Face sub-object level, you can adjust the texture coordinates for each selection to fit the different parts of texture map to the corresponding areas on the car.

To edit the UVW vertices, first choose a transform tool and sub-object mode, make a selection, and then click and drag in the window to transform the selection.

Quad menu

Right-click in the window to display the quad menu, which provides access to all the transform tools, as well as a number of editor commands.

Commands to freeze and hide selected sub-objects and unfreeze/unhide all sub-objects are found only in the quad menu.

Lower Toolbar

Absolute/Offset Mode

When this is off, 3ds Max Design treats values you enter into the U, V, and W fields (see following) as absolutes. When this is on, 3ds Max Design applies transform values you enter as relative to current values; that is, as offsets. Default=off.

U, V, and W

These fields display the UVW coordinates for the current selection. Use the keyboard or the spinners to edit them.

These fields are active at all sub-object levels, but they always apply to vertices. With a single vertex selected, they display the current coordinates. With multiple vertices (or one or more edges or faces) selected, they display any coordinates the vertices belonging to the selection have in common; otherwise, they're blank.

Lock Selection

Locks selection. You can move selected sub-objects without touching them.

Filter Selected Faces

Displays UVW vertices of the object's selected faces in the viewport, and hides the rest. When Filter Selected Faces is on, changing the viewport face selection automatically updates the display of visible faces in the editor.

All ID's (drop-down)

Filters the object's material IDs. Displays texture faces that match the ID drop-down.

Pan

Click Pan, and then drag in the window to change the visible portion.

TipWith a three-button mouse, you can also pan the window by dragging with the middle mouse button held down.
Zoom

Click Zoom, and then click+drag to zoom the window.

TipWith a wheel mouse, you can also zoom by turning the wheel.
Zoom Region

Click Zoom Region, and then region-select part of the window to zoom in.

Zoom Extents

Zooms in or out to fit the texture coordinates in the window. The flyout buttons, from top to bottom, let you zoom to all texture coordinates, to the current selection, and to all clusters/elements containing any selected sub-objects.

Grid Snap

When on, moving sub-objects tends to snap the vertex closest to the mouse cursor, which is highlighted by a square outline, to the nearest grid line or intersection.

This is the default tool on this flyout; Pixel Snap is also available.

You can set the snap strength in the Unwrap Options dialog.

Pixel Snap

Snaps to the nearest pixel corner when you have a bitmap in the background. Available from the Grid Snap flyout.

Combine this with Center Pixel Snap to snap to the center of pixels rather than the corner.

NoteWith multiple vertices selected, all vertices snap to the nearest pixel, relatively; this can slightly alter the spatial relationships among them.

Options panel

By default, the Options panel, docked to the bottom of the Edit UVWs dialog, provides controls for using soft selection, specifying selection modes, and rotating the selection. The Options button lets you toggle the display of additional settings for bitmaps, viewports, and the editor.

Soft Selection group

The Soft Selection controls make a sub-object selection behave as if surrounded by a "magnetic field." Unselected sub-objects within the field are drawn along smoothly while you transform the sub-object selection, the effect diminishing with distance. You can adjust this distance, or “falloff,” whether it applies to object space, texture space, or edge space, and the formula by which it diminishes.

First, set a value that encompasses sub-objects to be moved or scaled, and then transform sub-objects with a falloff effect.

On

Activates or deactivates soft selection.

XY/UV

Specifies object or texture space for the falloff distance. XY selects object space, UV selects texture space.

Falloff

Sets the falloff distance. As values increase, unselected vertex colors change gradually from the selected vertex to reflect the area of influence.

Edge Distance

Turn on to limit the falloff region by the specified number of edges between the selection and the affected vertices. The affected region is measured in terms of "edge-distance" space rather than absolute distance.

Falloff Type

Transforming with soft selection affects non-selected vertices within the falloff area based on the falloff type.

The icons depict how their buttons affect falloff. The options are:

  • Smooth
  • Linear
  • Slow Out
  • Fast Out

Selection Modes group

[sub-object mode]

Specifies the type of sub-object that you can select by clicking or dragging in the window. Default=Vertex.

One of the three sub-object modes can be active at a time:

  • Vertex
  • Edge
  • Face
NoteSelected sub-objects are colored red by default. Also, in Edge and Face sub-object modes, any shared edges are blue by default. A shared edge is one both of whose endpoints are shared by a selected edge or face; thus, it is, in effect, also selected. You can change these colors using Customize User Interface Colors panel.

The three sub-object levels are synchronized between the modifier stack of the Unwrap UVW modifier and the Selection Modes group. When you choose a sub-object level in one, it's also activated in the other. Similarly, selecting sub-objects in a viewport selects them in the editor and vice-versa.

Select Element

When on, selecting a sub-object in a cluster causes the entire cluster to become selected. Works in all sub-object modes.

Expand Selection

Adds sub-objects to the selection.

Vertex and face expansion proceeds outwards in all available directions. Edge expansion proceeds along available UV paths. For example, to select a cluster outline, select one outer edge, and then click Expand Selection repeatedly.

Contract Selection

Shrinks the selection by deselecting the outermost sub-objects.

Paint Select Mode

Lets you “paint” a sub-object selection by dragging in the editor window. After activating this mode, move the cursor into the editor window, and then drag to select sub-objects. To exit Paint Select mode, right-click or choose a transform tool.

Paint mode selects only sub-objects that are fully inside the selection brush. The dotted circle attached to the mouse shows the size of the brush. Use the +/- buttons next to the paintbrush button to change its size.

+/-

Increases and decreases the size of the Paint Select mode “brush”: the circle attached to the mouse cursor.

Loop [+/-]

Selects a loop of texture vertices, edges, or polygons. Usage is as follows:

  • Vertices/PolygonsSelect two or more adjacent vertices or polygons in one or more rows or columns, and then click Loop. This selects all sub-objects in line with the selection(s).
  • EdgesSelect one or more edges, and then click Loop. This selects all edges in line with the selected edge(s).

To extend a loop or loops at both ends, when possible, click +. To deselect the sub-objects at both ends of a loop or loops, click -.

Ring [+/-]

Selects a ring of texture vertices, edges, or polygons. Usage is as follows:

  • Vertices/PolygonsSelect two or more adjacent vertices or polygons in one or more rows or columns, and then click Ring. This selects all sub-objects perpendicular to the line formed by the selection(s).
  • EdgesSelect one or more edges, and then click Ring. This selects all edges in the row(s) or column(s) perpendicular to the selected edge(s).

To extend a ring or rings at both ends, when possible, click +. To deselect the sub-objects at both ends of a ring or rings, click -.

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Rot(ate) +90

Rotates the selection 90 degrees about its center.

Rot(ate) -90

Rotates the selection -90 degrees about its center.

Rejoins a disconnected cluster of texture coordinates to its original neighbor by connecting selected vertices to their corresponding UV seam vertices. If a UV vertex has more than one corresponding UV vertex, it will be stitched to the closest one.

Stitch has three different modes, depending on which part of the button you click:

  • Stitch to Source [left arrow]Moves the corresponding vertices to the selected vertices.
  • Stitch to Average [Stitch button]Moves both sets of vertices to the average positions.
  • Stitch to Target [right arrow]Moves the selected vertices to the corresponding vertices.

1. Texture vertices before stitching

2. Stitch to Source

3. Stitch

4. Stitch to Target

Align Horizontal

Applies by default only to selected texture vertices and edges. At the Vertex level, this tool lines up the selected UV vertices horizontally in a straight line. At the Edge level, Align lines up the selected edges.

Initial vertex selection (left); after Align Horizontal (right)

At the Edge level, if you press Shift when clicking the button, Align loops through all selected edges and lines up all the edge loops of those edges horizontally. In that case it is enough to select one edge on each edge loop to line up. It will also line up UV seam edge loops.

Align Vertical

Applies by default only to selected texture vertices and edges. At the Vertex level, this tool lines up the selected UV vertices vertically in a straight line. At the Edge level, Align lines up the selected edges.

At the Edge level, if you press Shift when clicking the button, Align loops through all selected edges and lines up all the edge loops of those edges vertically. In that case it is enough to select one edge on each edge loop to line up. It will also line up UV seam edge loops.

Aligning edges:

1. Initial edge ring selection

2. After using Align Vertical with Shift pressed

3. Initial edge ring selection

4. After using Align Horizontal with Shift pressed

Space Horizontal

Applies by default only to selected texture vertices and edges. At the Vertex level, this tool adjusts the positions of selected UV vertices to make the horizontal distances between each pair the same. At the Edge level, Align evenly spaces selected edges horizontally.

At the Edge level, if you press Shift when clicking the button, Align loops through all selected edges and evenly spaces those edges horizontally. In that case it is enough to select one edge on each edge loop to space. It will also space UV seam edge loops.

Initial edge ring selection (left); after using Space Horizontal with Shift pressed to space each edge’s loop (right)

Space Vertical

Applies by default only to selected texture vertices and edges. At the Vertex level, this tool adjusts the positions of selected UV vertices to make the vertical distances between each pair the same. At the Edge level, Align evenly spaces selected edges vertically.

At the Edge level, if you press Shift when clicking the button, Align loops through all selected edges and evenly spaces those edges vertically. In that case it is enough to select one edge on each edge loop to space. It will also space UV seam edge loops.

UV_SelectionFromBase/SelectionToBase

These commands transfer sub-object selections from the base object (must be editable poly) to the texture coordinates and vice-versa. They are available only from the Customize User Interface dialog:

  • UV_SelectionFromBaseConverts a sub-object selection from the base editable poly object to the texture coordinates in the Unwrap UVW modifier. It is available only when the Editable Poly level in the modifier stack is active. The CUI action is available from the PolyTools category.
  • SelectionToBaseConverts a sub-object selection from the texture coordinates in the Unwrap UVW modifier to base editable poly object. It is available only when the Unwrap UVW level in the modifier stack is active. The CUI action is available from the UVW Unwrap category.

Bitmap Options group

Click the Options button to toggle this group.

Use Custom Bitmap Size

When on, scales the bitmap texture to the values specified by Width and Height values (see following). You can scale and reproportion the bitmap texture in relation to the texture coordinates with these settings. This scaling affects the bitmap only as viewed in the editor; not in the material.

TipFor faster feedback when working with large textures, reduce the bitmap size. And when working with disproportionate textures, setting the dimensions closer to each other in the editor can make it easier to work.
Width

Scales the bitmap along the horizontal axis.

Height

Scales the bitmap along the vertical axis.

Tile Bitmap

When turned on, you can repeat the bitmap in the editor, displaying tiling set in the material. You can use any part of the tiled image for setting texture coordinates. This is helpful when the sections of the texture image are packed tightly together and the mesh contains many different areas to map. Default=on.

Tiles

The number of times the texture image is repeated, counting outward in eight directions (the four corners and the four sides). Default=1.

With Tiles=1, the result is a 3 x 3 grid. With Tiles=2, the result is a 5 x 5 grid, and so on.

Brightness

Sets the brightness of the tiled bitmap. At 1.0, the brightness equals that of the original image; at 0.5 it's half the brightness; and at 0, it's black.

TipTurning off Affect Center Tile, available in the Unwrap Options dialog Display Preferences group, prevents the Brightness setting from affecting the center tile, so it's easier to find if you've turned down the brightness.

Viewport Options group

Click the Options button to toggle this group.

Constant Update

When on, the viewports update in real-time, reflecting any changes to the texture coordinates as you make them. When off, the viewports update only after you finish transforming texture coordinates (that is, when you release the mouse button).

Unwrap Editor Options group

Click the Options button to toggle this group.

Show Hidden Edges

Toggles the display of face edges. When turned off, only faces appear. When turned on, all mesh geometry appears.

Center Pixel Snap

When Pixel Snap is turned on, snaps to the center of pixels of the background images instead of pixel edges.

Weld Threshold

Sets the radius within which welding using Weld Selected takes effect. The setting is in UV-space distance. Default=0.01. Range=0 to 100.0.