The new designer is coming along very nicely. A lot of fundamental infrastructure is now in place. I'm just starting to get to work on the fun stuff.
This thing is evolving to be much more like Blender than expected. Blender is very advanced and has many features that the SoH designer will never need. I put a lot of effort into ease of use and simplicity in the SoH designer.
Look at it this way, the current/old designer is easy to use and you get ugly spacecraft. The new designer will also produce ugly spacecraft with far less effort. However, for those who want it, beautiful spacecraft await.
SoH needs nice 3D models, with data just the way I want it. I apologize to those people who don't want this level of complexity. This is the future of all model making in SoH so I had to go there. Eventually all items, vehicles, buildings and spacecraft will be designed in SoH.
My current interface to get models from Blender to SoH is poor. The export/import via a .3DS file is imperfect, barely adequate at best. I expect to stop using Blender once this designer is finished.
The 3DS import code will be integrated into the new designer to bring in basic geometry. That leverages a treasure trove of 3D model data, available for free or at little cost on the Internet. It also means players who prefer Blender or 3D Studio Max can create geometry using their preferred program. However, I would not jump into doing that until you find out what is wanted/needed by SoH; it could save you a lot of work.
Here are a few screen shots, as promised. I wish there was more to show but it took a ton of work on things you don't see to get to this point. No work has been done on texturing; what you see is just enough to make the objects visible.