Can someone teach me / give me a guide to UV map properly in 3DS?

Every time I go to make a UV map for anything other than a box i end up with something like this:

http://img697.imageshack.us/img697/5612/ffffffffffffffff.png

As you’ll notice, i don’t have a fucking clue where anything is, and 3DS throws faces of the model in completely random spots. It’s frustrating, and the main reason why I don’t model. If someone could tell me how to UV map properly or give me a guide, that would be awesome.

UV mapping is not a simple thing to do OR explain. Plus, your supposed to arrange the randomly thrown faces manualy.

You can’t automatically UV anything. It’s extremely frustrating and time consuming, more of which depending on what you’re doing.

Make an unwrap UV modifier on the model or whatever you’re doing and click “Edit” on the side bar. I never used any tutorials and basically figured out everything in a day or so of fiddling with all the options. I suggest going to Mapping >> Normal Mapping >> then fiddling with these. Box is alright. Just fuck with all the options and see what’s best, then use the face selection tool (it’s at the bottom of the Edit UVWs box, has a part that says “Selection Modes”. Looks part of a checkerboard)

Actually using Planar Mapping is better than Normal Mapping (I used to use Normal Mapping myself).

Scroll down the panel to the right (the UV modifier panel) and press Quick Planar Map. You can change the mode from “Averaged Normals” to X, Y, or Z mapping if Averaged Normals isn’t doing what you want.

I can’t find it.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/900111/quickplanarmap.jpg

Oh, I guess 3DS Max 8 doesn’t have it. Must be the newer versions.

It was in 7, it is in 8 and it is definitely in later versions.

Are you using the Unwrap UVW modifier?

Pelt mapping is quite nice for organic objects and if you’re trying to UV map something like a shirt sleave cylindrical mapping is perfect for that.

chilli skinner tool was a pretty sweet tool for max 4. Think their site got shut down tho. Was basically click a few buttons, arrange your polys, and then use texporter. Basically the first thing it would do is break the model into a bunch of pieces depending on what arch setting you put it on, then you would re attach any objects that you wanted to stay together. Then you would clone the mesh. Then it would flatten out all the poly’s for you and auto arrange and rotate. Then you could move them around and stuff using the top view as basically a view of the texture. Then it would uv map it once you got everything in the right spot. Then you would get it to morph the flat pieces onto the cloned mesh. Then you were basically done. Usually just took half an hour to an hour.

Yessum.