About the picture collection
This is work in progress - the site is not ready yet.
It is not about extending the collection, this collection won't be ready ever -
I will continuously include new drawings, as far i find any -, but about the page structure,
possibilities, about the server code. A few vehicles show only an error message,
a few others are not shown correctly, or an animation is not functioning properly. A few functions
are missing intentionally (as the grouping of pictures, for downloading them together in a single zip file),
others are not ready yet, or are / will be solved otherwise (as the chain of the new or changed pictures).
This site is the successor of the old site at http://pc.pxtr.de
The old site was not updated since 2016 - and won't be updated never ever,
but it remains online as far as this new site will be ready.
If you find a problem, and you are interested in a picture, which is not correctly shown here,
it's worth to take a look at the old site.
This picture collection is generated from the "Stock List" of the Traffic Screensaver.
The main difference is, that the old site was generated offline, on my home computer, and uploaded
as a static set of files to the server. As the collection is huge, in the last time the amount to upload
exceeded 2 GB. To prepare the update - (for example to set up the picture groups for joint downloading, among other tasks),
to generate the site files and to upload them took about a week or more.
Therefore the old site was updated at most twice a year.
The new site is dynamic, the server program creates it on the fly from the stock list file (*.stb) and picture libraries (*.tvl)
of Traffic, so updating the site means only to upload a few modified files.
I am planning frequent updates - at least monthly, but possibly more often.
On these pages you find a huge collection of 2D vehicle pictures.
The majority of the pictures are drawn in the scale 1 pixel = 10 cm.
Such pictures can be used in several programs:
- Traffic Screensaver
- MM&MM Screensaver
- Train Side View 60
- Opaku's TrainKit
This programs use different graphical formats, especially, how they store transparency information
and phase pictures for animated parts.
Additionally, there are pictures here used by other programs in other scales:
- Nan Demo Hashiru (1px=25cm)
- JBSS Bahn (1px=47cm / 1px=23cm / 1px=12cm)
- Train Gif (1px=21.6cm)
- TrainSideView 30 (1px=20cm)
- Railway 32 narrow gauge scale (1px=6cm)
- NSME (1px=5.7cm)
- TrainSideView 120 (1px=5cm)
- LTC - Let's Train Connect (1px=3.33cm)
and there are also pictures from other communities/persons primarily creating vehicle drawings only for viewing them:
- Train Banner (1px=15-17cm)
- Mission Railroad specification (1px=14cm)
- Shipbucket FD scale (1m=22px)
- 1:87 (1m=33px)
- Engine Shop (1m=35-43px)
- Inch (1m=39.4px)
As the above list shows, the most of the pictures were drawn to let them move on the screen by a program.
That is the main goal of this collection - the collection is in first place for the Traffic screensaver.
Pictures originated from other sources are converted for use in Traffic.
The most spectacular change is made for the "Showcase" drawings - 4 views of a staying vehicle
(for example: Pixel cars), which are cut to 4 individual pictures, left and right side are for moving,
often becoming animated wheels, front and back pictures are for background scenes.
The pictures were made transparent, so that they can move before background pictures - photos, drawings or mixed constructions.
This hobbies - drawing small 2D vehicle pictures either for screensaver programs/other animation possibilities,
or only to enjoy the static views - lost their popularity in the last decade.
There are pictures from more, than thousand authors in the collection, and only a few dozen are active today.
Some homepages of the authors are still online without updates, but many of them disappeared.
The Wayback machine
preserved some parts of them, but especially in the early times
the Wayback Machine did not stored the pictures, only some HTML pages -
so this collection is the only place the drawings are available.
The original goal to publish this collection was to support the communities of the different programs, and
to assist the cooperation.
To make a really good picture the most difficult work is
finding documents, drawings, and photos about the original vehicle and then to draw it.
It does not matter if you draw it for Railway32,
MM&MM, BahnLand, Train Side View, TrainKit or Traffic.
The differences between the programs are large enough that it is not a
simple change from BMP format to GIF or vice versa; it is hard to
automate even with existing general-purpose programs. However, the work
of converting formats is not a job for a human; it is a task for a
machine. So, I collect pictures from all the communities and try to
convert them with my program to other formats, whenever possible. There
are, however, several limitations:
- BahnLand and Railway32, TrainKit need pictures that are transparent (for Traffic it's better too)
- Train Side View cannot handle animations
- the smoke of steam locomotives is generated in different ways in MM&MM/BahnLand/Traffic, TrainKit and Railway32
The advantage of having pictures with differing scales is not so
obvious (besides being able to run them in programs, which can handle them: Traffic and TrainKit)
as the different communities do not interact much. There are 3
different small scales (TrainGif, Train Side View 30 and TrainBanner)
that are not so far from each other.
One cannot use the pictures together in the same train, but it is possible to use them in different scenes sequentially
- the difference is small. The available set of vehicles in these
scales is very different: the TrainGif scale has the richest North
American collection but only a few European vehicles; TrainBanner has a
huge Japanese collection and an acceptable set of European vehicles,
but very few American drawings.
Each community can use the collection of the others as a source for
its work. Resizing the pictures in either direction does not result in
high quality drawings, but it can give ideas about what to draw, what
is missing, and if the existing picture is in a larger scale than the
target scale, one can use the existing drawings as a base for further work.
This site is in no way a replacement for the authors' sites,
because the individual style of the source page and the descriptions about the
vehicles are missing here.
You often find photos and the history of the vehicles on the authors' sites -
and you will find the newest pictures on the authors' sites first.
There were many sites from railway clubs or fans, who draw or
show only the vehicles they are interested in or which they own--and they know the most about them.
The author's site is only one click away from you while browsing
this collection. Just click on the
icon. Note: sometimes the author's homepage doesn't
contain any pictures for the screensavers. It may deal with other
railway-related themes. Many authors show their screensaver pictures
only in collections or on other homepages than their own.