Trainz Paint Shed
Customization Guide

Trainz Paint Shed Customization Guide


Maps and Masks
Configuration Files
Creating a New Paint Schemes
Creating a New Model
Simple Mask Examples
Custom Logos


Welcome to the Trainz™ Paint Shed Customization Guide. The purpose of this document is to assist the production and installation of custom Trainz™ Paint Shed assets. We are assuming that third party developers have a sound knowledge of model and texture creation and manipulation and therefore only give references to model requirements, rather than a modeling tutorial.


The skins folder within paint shed install contains all the model, texture and configuration files for using paint shed to install a new custom painted train or rolling stock item.

Typical directory structure:
Directory Structure with Display Map BMPs

modeled_train folder:
The modeled_train (e.g. flatcar) folder contains detail maps (8-bit .BMP format), seen above and below in a Paint Shed work area, that Paint Shed colours using the masks from a scheme subfolder. The detail maps are used for the Paint Shed interface and as templates for in game texture files that Paint Shed creates.
scheme subfolder/s:
The scheme folder/s contains colouring masks (8-bit .BMP format) that are used in to colour the texture and interface detail maps. These must be the same size as they corresponding detail maps.
train subfolder:
The train folder contains all the model and texture files that are necessary for installation into Trainz

Maps and Masks

All maps and masks are 8-bit BMP format files.


Typical main.BMP

and main_mask.BMP

(512x512 pixel size)

Typical consist.BMP and consist_mask.BMP

(128x64 pixel size)

Typical preview.BMP

and preview_mask.BMP

(512x512 pixel size)


Typical top.BMP and top_mask.BMP
Typical front.BMP and front_mask.BMP
Typical left.BMP and left_mask.BMP
Typical rear.BMP and rear_mask.BMP
Typical right.BMP and right_mask.BMP

Configuration Files

There are configuration files (front.TXT, left.TXT, rear.TXT, right.TXT and top.TXT)that specify the location of text and logos on the main.BMP with respect to each of the view images (front.BMP, left.BMP, rear.BMP, right.BMP and top.BMP)


  • The 'x' and 'y' values define the offset, in pixels, that the logos and text are moved on the main texture with respect to their positions on the view image that they placed.

  • The 'x' value defines the horizontal offset.

  • The 'y' value defines the vertical offset.

  • Right.TXT must have an additional line 'flipped.' The vertical offset is with respect to a main image that has been 'flipped' vertically.

Creating a New Paint Schemes

This section gives brief guidelines for creation of a new paint scheme for an existing model.
Each paint scheme is created in a subfolder within the model’s skin folder. The folder must contain 8-bit bitmap files that are used as masks for colouring in the detail maps. Detail maps (front.BMP, left.BMP, rear.BMP, right.BMP and top.BMP) should be used as templates for creating the mask files.
Typical directory structure for a new paint scheme:
Directory Structure Mask


  • The mask for the each area of the model needs to be exactly the same RGB colour in every mask bitmap. For example the purple colour on the top of the box is shown needs to be exactly the same colour in the top_mask.BMP, preview_mask.BMP and the main_mask.BMP.

  • These files should all be 8-bit .BMP files and of the same resolution as the corresponding file in the model’s skin folder, e.g. front.BMP and front_mask.BMP should both be the same resolution.

  • All areas that should not be coloured should be black.

Creating a New Model

Typical directory structure for new model:


Name modeled_train (e.g. flatcar) - must be the same name as the skin folder
company painted_company
origin painted_origin

modeled_train (e.g. flatcar)_art folder:

The *_art_512.TXT file needs to reference the preview.BMP file as primary texture, and the *_art_icon.TXT file needs to reference the consist.BMP file as primary texture.

modeled_train (e.g. flatcar)_body folder:

Models should be mapped with using a 512x512 pixel texture called main.BMP for all parts of the model that are to be paintable.

Typical Layout for main.BMP

  • The model should be mapped so the side texture and top texture areas are aligned to the centre of the main.BMP texture file.

  • The model must be mapped with equal horizontal and vertical texture scaling, otherwise the text and logos placed with Paint Shed will be stretched when used in the game.

  • The view detail maps, left.BMP, right.BMP, should have the model aligned to the centre. For example the centre of the main.BMP texture on the model corresponds with the centre of the left.BMP.

  • Other parts of the model, such as couplers that will not be repainted, can be textured with another texture map if necessary.

Simple Mask Examples

This mask set would only allow the box to be coloured with a single colour:
This mask set would allow the four sides and the top of the box to be painted different colours:

Custom Logos

Custom logos should be saved as *.BMP files into the Paint Shed logos subdirectory. Transparent area of the logo must RBG value of 255, 0, 255.


Content Creation Guide Table of Content