How To Show a Track Plan To Others

OK, you have just completed your first track plan in SCARM and now you want to show it to the others. There are many ways to do this – see them below.

If you want to share your track plan in Internet, you will need to export it in some picture format like BMP or JPG.

Bitmap files (BMP) are uncompressed raster images and can be quite big in size. They are useful when you intend to re-edit them in some image editor and to put some additional details inside.
JPEG files (JPG) are compressed pictures, which are suitable to direct sharing in Internet, because the quality is good and their size in bytes is much smaller.

To do this in the 2D editor, select “File” > “Export…” command and Export dialog box will appear. Select preferred picture file type from the drop-down box and press “Save” button. Now you will have the image file of the whole 2D plan. You can upload it on some picture hosing service in Internet and to give a link to it in your favorite railway modelling forum, so others will be able to see it and comment it.

If you want, you can also make a snapshots in the 3D viewer and show them together with the 2D plan. This will give a better presentation of your idea and will help to others in understanding your concept.

To do this in the 3D viewer, adjust the camera position with the mouse to a desired view, select “File” > “Snapshot…” command and Snapshot dialog box will appear. Select preferred picture file type from the drop-down box and press “Save” button. You can make several snapshots from different camera positions and with different zoom in order to make more detailed and rich presentation of your layout.

There is a known issue with 3D snapshots, which can occur with some graphic cards – the snapshot file will be empty.
If this is happening on your PC, do the following: select “View” > “Full Screen” from the 3D Viewer’s menu and then press “Print Screen” (PrScr) button on the keyboard – the scene will be copied in the clipboard. Press Esc to return into normal screen mode. Open some graphic editor (like build-in MS Paint), paste the clipboard and save it to file.

If you wish to show your work to somebody offline, just print the layout, using “File” > “Print…” command. Even now, the paper is still in general use as a primary documents and pictures media holder for many people.

Of course, you can just share your .scarm project file and give a link to SCARM website for those, who wants to download the program and see your layout directly in it. However, most internet sites supports only well known file formats, so it will be a good idea to pack your .scarm file in a ZIP archive. Also, remember that not everybody uses Windows and SCARM is not able to run on other platforms, like Apple Mac. Therefore, if you decide to share your original .scarm file, it will be good to export and show your plan also with plain images, because they can be viewed on every modern platform, computer, phone and even in some obsolete devices.

See also
Exporting layout in PDF format
How to print designed layout

2 thoughts on “How To Show a Track Plan To Others

  1. Would it be possible to include the gif or PNG format for export of track plans? I think these options are far more suitable for drawings than jpg which is better for photographs.

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