How do you manage to use fixtures creatively?

Hello everyone,

As an avid lurker/reader, I’m always impressed, in the various community challenges, by what people manage to do with fixtures…
It took me a loooooooong time of trial and error to discover some “bumper bars” could be used to do some chrome trimming, but I’m still amazed at what people can do, especially with lights and grilles (not to mention the more creative ones).

I’d love to invest myself in the community challenges but, though I’m comfortable imagining cars as a whole, the generic blandness of my designs prevents me from daring to enter …

Is there some sort of guide to do, not amazing, but at least decent cosmetic work ?
Some tips and tricks could be useful…

I’m still nowhere near some of the regulars here, but a few weeks ago I was at your point, so I’d just share how I moved on from that.

Base yourself on real cars. You don’t need to make a replica, but notice small fixtures and try to recreate them. There’s probably no ready made fixture for the one you base yourself on, so then you start experimenting on how to alternatively make it. And while doing that, you should use everything. I even used fuel caps as door handles and wiper fluid sprayer caps.

In most cases you will not manage to exactly recreate the fixture you use as inspiration, but that is how I discovered combinations and techniques that I could use when creating models by myself.

Personally, for me cars after 1990 are more difficult that those before with the available fixtures.

Also make sure to use the Steam workshop mods. They are some essentials there.


Thanks for the tips… That’s precisely the point I’m at, but I’m either missing completely something, or dreaming of something that can’t be done.

For instance, I might want to make some square lights slightly trapezoidal, or to make them stand out and not being glued to the panels (see for instance JFM The Unicorn Company to explain what I’d like to do without understanding how to do), or even to do something as basic as including the badge in the front grille (…
Even managing to have the mirrors set up so that they seem usable is something of a challenge (they snap to the bodywork and I haven’t found how I can do something else than having them at a 90° angle from the bodywork)…

Of course, it might not help that it’s not the part of the game that excites me the most :wink:

Those lights are a specific fixture, not a “trick.” Try out all the fixtures to get an idea of how they work. As for mirrors, different mirrors snap in different ways, just play around with their placement until they face the way you want them.


creds to @Mr.Computah


Grills/vents can be combined similarly to headlights also. You can use trim pieces to built up designs in them. You don’t necessarily need to use fixtures as intended either. I’ve seen people use fuel caps for parking sensors, spare tire covers, widebody kit rivets, exposed suspension towers, and popup headlights for example. Just use stuff for its shape and keep in mind you can scale everything pretty much however you want.

Here’s a grill example:

just 4 grills, 3 are the same scaled differently

with chromebar and lights

I wouldn’t be afraid to post stuff for challenges or whatnot. You’ll learn a lot building to a specific goal and seeing the different approaches other people take.


another part of the trick to it is to have lots of free time and nothing better to do tbh


That’s incredibly accurate to the automotive world in real life, too.

Man, the game’s simulation is on point.


This, I think, is the most important piece of advice. Don’t think like “I need a headlight but none of the headlights are the shape I need”, think like “this vent stretched out a bit and combined with this rear light is the right shape, so I’ll just change the rear light’s materials to clear glass”.

Also get all mods so you have a big library of shapes to play with.


I guess some explanations on layers and the functions of “align to/cardinal/align to horizon” would be useful, since it doesn’t behaves quite like I’d like it to…

Layers seems to do basically nothing for me, for instance, so I haven’t understood yet how I can tell the fixture designer which fixture I want in front, and which one goes behind…

I’d need to see the game to be exact, but the first one of the align options basically places the fixture along the surface, while the second option places the fixture on the surface but that a right angle as if that surface was straight.

The layers are in essence simpel, but might not work with every fixture. 1/4 is the lowest layer 4/4 the highest. Higher layers cover lower ones…

Thanks for the reply. I guess I’m unlucky in wanting to mix fixtures that do not mix :slight_smile: :slight_smile: :slight_smile: