C2 Scientist's tips

1. Use components wisely: usually it's a good idea to make a component for every texture you use. That means: don't put, for example, grass field and asphalt road in the same component. That's because CarEd can only handle one texture per component, and later in PT2 you would have to select all the road's triangles to apply that asphalt texture into it. But if you split the the surfaces in separate components, you just have to use PT2's "select all faces on the model" (model = component) to select the faces and do the advanced texture mapping. On the other hand, don't let the triangle count get above 100, or your triangle management will get too slow. (If you have to delete some triangle, for example) Sure, this will make a big list of components, but you could write small descriptions for them in notepad, if you want.
[EDIT: In GMax, you can combine same-texture-using components together, because triangle management is easier there]

2. CarEd wasn't designed for huge tracks, so maybe you should use a scale of 1:10. So you would create a miniature model, and at the end you would just multiply its size by 10. (Component edit's model transform: apply to all visible components) Otherwise CarEd might crash when loading the track again. Make multiple back-ups!
Swimming pool's cover
3. Sometimes it's not necessary to use huge amounts of triangles in certain places. Let's take a swimming pool's bottom, for example. If the bottom is very complex-shaped instead of just square, you don't have to define those triangles from point to point: A square surface which covers the bottom looks like the same, but still improves the frame rate a bit. Just be careful if you have to move the vertices later: some gaps could appear, because all of the triangles don't use the same points.

Sometimes there are triangles you will never see, like in some pillars that are between floor and ceiling. You just have to make triangle to the sides, because you will never see the top and bottom surface of the pillar because of the floor and ceiling. (Unless the pillar is tippable)

4. Make shared points: if some components would use same points for triangles, copy them from component which already uses them. (edit/copy selected points) If you move a shared point from one component, the same shared point in the other component will move as well.

5. Use translate locks: you'll get an accurate translating for points. Use TAB to switch the locks: Horizontal lock / Vertical lock / Free translation (normal).

6. Use shortcut keys. (Some of the PT2 shortcuts only work if you have Cesm's PT2 modifications)
Note: In PT2, some of the shortcuts don't work if the cursor is not over one of the camera windows. So keep the cursor over a camera window while pressing shortcut keys, and they'll work correctly. And check what mode is toggled. (Object/faces/vertices) If you want to select all faces by pressing SHIFT+J, make sure the "faces"-mode is toggled. (Toggle it by pressing F, or by clicking mode/toggle face mode)

Plaything 2:

= Save
= Deselect everything
= Object mode
= Face mode
= Vertex mode
= Zoom in
= Zoom out
= Import a new object (ACT-file)
= Make new material from a .TIF-file
= Translate object
= Amalgamate (join) selected models
= Select all faces on the model (fast and easy!)
= Show preferences (options)
= Rename actor name of the selected object
= Configure views (cameras)

= Define a triangle
= Invert a triangle
= Select previous triangle
= Select next triangle
= Cut selected points
= Copy selected points
= Paste selected points
= Undo
= Load trace image (left)
= Load trace image (front)
= Load trace image (top)

7. When you are mapping textures to curved roads, you'll notice that normal mapping methods aren't the best ones for the job. Fortunately Stainless had made a special "Road mapping"-tool which is very helpful. You can find this by right-clicking some of the viewports and choosing "Road mapping". Let's learn this one now. In the pictures I have a simple curved bridge. I need to get the road look like a real road by mapping a texture to it correctly. First I'll select six first triangles. (Tip: With wireframe-mode (W), it's easy to find the triangle edges) Then I choose a texture, right-click on the viewport, and choose "Road mapping". I make sure that the "variable width" is marked and then choose the number of lanes and press "Apply". Then I move on. The highlighted triangles will be deselected (D), and after that I'll select more triangles and apply the road mapping into them.

If something like in picture 4 happens, just select about 4 previous correctly-mapped triangles in addition to strangely-mapped triangles, and try applying "road mapping" again. Don't be surprised of the strange mapping effects, those happen every now and then. I don't if the following is true, but I think you avoid some of these problems by first selecting 4 correctly-mapped triangles, and then adding the unmapped triangles in that order how the road goes on (be careful that you don't skip any triangles!) , and finally applying the road mapping. Picking one from here and another from there seems to cause errors more often.

I tested mapping by using correct method and wrong method. Correct method is to select the triangles as the road goes forward, while in the wrong method I picked the triangles from random places. In both methods I first mapped correctly the six first triangles, and then the 30 other triangles. The results are in the big picture: