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Downloading Skins

You can download skins for your boat - these will allow you to sail with new colour schemes and sails. You will also see the downloaded skins when playing against the computer boats in custom fleet races. You can find skins on many of the websites listed on the Links page on this site.

Northspace skins to download


Click on the name of the skin you want.
Save the file to Documents\[Your Game version]\Skins\Boats\Acc
Dont unzip the file - just save it as it is
Select skin in Virtual Skipper

Downloading Skins - General Advice

Once you have downloaded the skin, you need to put it into the correct folder before you can use it. The skins are in a zip file and you should not unzip the skin file - place the zipped file in the folder. Each boat type has its own folder...

Originals : Acc, Melges, Offshore & Multi
VSK 5 keeps its skins for the boat models that come with the game in the following folder for the Acc boat: Program Files\[Your Game Version]\GameData\Skins\Boats\Acc.   It has folders for the other boats at the same location, called Melges, Multi & OffShore.

Although you can place downloaded Acc skin zip files in the same folder as the Nadeo originals, it is better to create a place for them in the game folder in your Documents section.   So navigate to Documents\[Your Game Version]\Skins\Boats and make a new folder called Acc to put the Acc skins in. Make similar new folders called Melges, Multi & OffShore for the others.

3rd Party Models
The skins for 3rd party models, added after you have installed the game are kept in a folder in My Documents.  For example, the Orma skins are placed in Program Files\[Your Game Version]\GameData\Skins\Boats\Orma.    Other models will be in similar folders of their own.

Once you have your skins installed, you can select them in the Settings/Boats/{boatname} menu in the game.


Uploading - how to make sure your skin is seen

Once you've got your new skin, sometimes other players report that they can't see it in the game.   This can be very discouraging after all your hard work!     Possible reasons include:

1  Bug in Game.   There is a bug in VSK5 which intermittently stops you seeing the other boats' skins.   The solution is to press the ESC key twice (you will cycle through the game menu by doing this).   The skins will then appear.

2  Not enough time.   It can take a long time for your skin to appear online in a race.   This depends on the size of the file and the connection speeds of all concerned.   It also may depend on whether your bandwidth is being used to download other players' skins.   There also may be an issue if all the players inthe race are having to download your skin.   Dont assume the worst unless a few long races (30 minutes) go by with no-one seeing the skin.  It may yet appear.   If time is the only problem, then this can be improved by using a Locator File.

3  Game Configuration.  Go to the Launch Window and selectconfiguration/advanced/connection.  Check that in the Peer to Peer section there is a tick in the box to activate the upload.
Click the thumbnails to see the settings in my config, which seem to work ok.

Network ConfigP2P Config




Locator Files – uploading your skin to other Players

What is it?

It is a way to help other players see your boat skin more quickly. 
It is a text file that is of the form 'MyAcc.zip.loc' and is stored in the same folder that contains the boat skin (for example Documents/VSK5/Skins/Boats/Acc). The file is named the same as your skin name, with the '.loc' extension after it. (So for this example, a skin called 'MyAcc.zip' will have a locator files called 'MyAcc.zip.loc'). It's important that capitals in the name are repeated exactly in the locator.    

Locator Files are text files used to point to a place on the web where you store your boat skin.   This is in addition to storing the skin on your PC.   When you race online without using a locator,  the other players will automatically download your skin from your PC, which uses your bandwidth and can take a long time, depending on your connection.   If you put a copy of your skin on the web and create a locator file on your PC to point to it, the other players will download it from there instead of from your PC.  

How is it done?
1)   Put your skin zip file on the web.
You need to find a place on the web where you can put the skin and upload it to there.   Not all websites allow download of files, so check with your own provider, especially if it is a free site.   The site needs to allow direct linking.    
Some clubs can help with storing skins.   For example VSK-AUS has a download section with many skins available for you to download, if you register with the site (you don't have to be a full member of the club).   You can also upload your own skin to this section.   The club allows links from locator files to the files they have in this download section and there is a guide to how to create the locator file for this site there too.

2)   Create & Save the Locator File.
Once you have the skin on the web – for example 'MyAcc.zip', you make the locator file, using a text editor (like Notepad). Open a new file and type accurately the full internet address of the place on the web where your skin is stored,  (eg    http://www.yourwebspacename.com/skins/MyAcc.zip).    Now save the file to the same folder on your computer that holds the skin zip file - when doing this, click [Save as...] and in the dialogue box, change the [Save as type] to 'AllFiles'.   Now put your skin name with .zip.loc after it - eg 'MyAcc.zip.loc' and save it in the same folder as your skin.   (eg C:\Users\[Your Name]\Documents\VSK5\Skins\Boats\Acc).

    Saved Locator File

3)   Make sure it works
It's worth copying/pasting the webspace address of your skin into your browser and clicking yhe 'go' arrow to make sure that you are offered the skin file to download.   This makes sure that you have typed the address correctly and that your webspace provider allows access to it.

Be careful that you don't save the locator as a Text file.  Check it has not got the .txt file after the filename.   Windows has a default setting where it hides the extension of .txt files (among others).   If you can’t see the .txt extension in other txt files,you will need to alter the Windows settings to allow you to see it.  Go to Start > Control Panel > Folder Options.  Go to the [view] tab and scroll down so that you can remove the tick from ‘Hide extensions from known file types’.   Then click [OK] and you should be able to see and alter the .txt extension if you need to.

Replacing Original Nadeo Acc Skins

This mod means that you will see different skins, which will replace the original Nadeo set.

It only works for the skipper who has the mod installed. He will see the modified skins.
If you are using a Nadeo skin, or you are using the free game (VskOnline), then installing this mod on your PC will not affect how your skins are seen by everyone else.

Click here to see details ...