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Frank Brault

Vectorworks, Inc Employee
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Posts posted by Frank Brault

  1. This may not be what you are looking for, but you can either use the Vectorworks Origin menu set under Tools->Origin-> to drag the VWX internal origin to the red dot, or Show Snap Layers, select all, and then drag the Red dot by it's center point to the VWX internal origin...

  2. 1 hour ago, karstenwolfGL said:

    It would be helpful to be able to pull images or PDF pages out of a file in it's original format. 


    I reuse old files and being able to edit or convert image/PDF assets that have been dropped into old files would be helpful. 


    @karstenwolfG: Currently, transferring a pasted PDF file from Vectorworks is supported with the File->Export->Export PDF... command.


    • Like 1
  3. The Simple Stair object, defaults to just this type. It is available in the Building Shell toolset in my workspace, but the location in your configuration depends on the product you are running. If the stair does not insert as desired, use the object Info Palette to set the Style parameter to Masonry. You can configure a lot of details that you may need, such as hand rail(s) and specific number of treads and riser height, either by double-clicking the tool icon before inserting or in the Object Info palette once the stair object is inserted in the drawing.



    Screen Shot 2022-05-05 at 8.00.24 PM.png

    • Like 1
  4. Hi Mike,

    I just checked and something that I used to be able to do in the software is at least partially disabled; What I found is that that you can edit an existing dimension object units mark in the drawing space to change the units mark, such as to edit the inch text (") to a meter (M) and the dimension object redraws to the new length as determined by the units mark that you entered in the dimension object. This is not as useful as I recall, by a long shot.


    I remember that at one time, if you edited a units mark in a dimension object label, the result was, rather than changing the length of the dimension object, the dimension would remain the same length and would change it's text to the display the existing length in the new units mark; This no longer works as I described above; Sorry that I didn't check this before posting...

    • Like 1
  5. This probably doesn't fully address your needs, but although each VWX file can have only one designated drawing unit, you can edit the unit on individual dimensions to whatever you want. Frequently, there will be instances in a project where I want to assign a unit to a dimension different from the one assigned to the file. Obviously, this does not address scenarios where it is desired to assign the dimension a particular unit to one sheet, and a different unit to another sheet within the same file, but I have often adjusted the units of a few of the dimensions on one part of a file when the scale of the detail is wildly different from those of the rest of the file. Not what you are asking I know, but this little known feature has helped me to occasionally address this...

  6. Hi Bruce,

    You may be able to store your preferences, or multiple sets of preferences as VectorScript scripts that you can run from a menu command in order to load saved preferences after a crash. (obligatory recommendation to re-install Vectorworks if Vectorworks crashes frequently) To save a preference set, open Vectorworks to a blank file and manually set your prefs, for a particular type of project, or you could also just open an existing file that uses the desired prefSet. Then, export the file with the File->Export Script command, to a folder that you can get back to on your machine. 


    The file that you created has all of the geometry that was in the file in addition to the prefs settings. So, navigate to the Vectorscript text file that you just created, and open it with a text editor. You will see the script that begins with {Global Characteristics} with the specific prefSet that is saved with the file, as shown below:


    {Global Characteristics}

    SetUnits(0,2,0,0.0254,'m',' sq m');

    COPY ALL the statements down to...


    {End of Global Characteristics}


    Select and Copy this text, including the line that says {End of Global Characteristics} and paste it into a new blank text file document and save it to a convenient folder on your hard drive. 


    Then, when you want to load back your prefs, to the desired Vectorworks document file, just open the desired file, use the Tools->Plug-ins->Run Script command to navigate to the desired script file, and the prefs will be loaded. You can do this for any prefSet variations that you require. Not quite one button preferences, but more versatile because you can have multiple prefSets. 


    Let me know if you have any questions or if these instructions could be clearer...

    • Like 1
  7. Hi Ross,


    Vectorworks has a different system for handling shortcuts while using tools; The help is here:

    Tools->Workspaces->Edit Current Workspace

    Switch to the keys tab to view the default mode bar hotkeys, or select the tool tab to view the default tool hotkeys. 

    https://app-help.vectorworks.net/2021/eng/index.htm#t=VW2021_Guide%2FStart%2FModifying_tool_palettes_and_tool_sets.htm&rhsearch=default tool&rhsyns= &rhhlterm=default tool

    ...but the short answer is:

    While editing a polyline with the reshape tool (shortcut access: '-' hyphen sign), at any time you can access each button group directly by the keyboard. So while in the reshape tool, hit 'u' to switch among modes in the the first button group to access the 'Add Vertex Mode' (plus sign icon). Then drag on a handle in the document window to add a vertex without letting go of the mouse. You will find that all operations within the tools are accessible with hotkeys. Different from Bluebeam of course, but complete within the Vectorworks universe...

    • Like 2
  8. Hi Amanda,


    I believe that placing your fill object below or underneath all the other objects to be seen against the fill object, would produce the intended effect with few exceptions.


    One consideration would be the layer structure of your document that would possibly make it difficult to place your fill object in the necessary position in the object list. This may make it necessary to create a custom layer for the purpose of managing object fills which may be as simple as placing it as the bottom-most layer. 


    I may not be understanding your request completely. So please, reply here if I am mis-understanding your request...



    Screen Shot 2021-04-15 at 4.00.59 PM.png

  9. From what you give, it may be one or more of several possibilities; As Pat says, we can help if you provide specific information on your process. Ideally, you can post your file here.  As a 1st guess, try using Final Quality rendering on your scene.

  10. This is a fairly straightforward task. The research photos do not show banisters, which would probably require the extrude along path commnad. So, the basic concept here, is to model the individual panels as polygons or polylines if there are curves or holes in the glass profiles, in elevation view. Then, extrude the shapes to the intended thickness of the glass and apply a standard glass texture to the polygons. Any hardware or fittings should be modeled separately so that you can suggest different materials.

    • Like 2
  11. Great suggestion, Ross!

    For now, you might explore the Vectorworks worksheet feature which supports criteria searches and can be saved, pulled up when needed and you can directly select and edit the object listed in each line as well as view and sort by any desired field values like power values. I know it's not what you are asking, but this would provide the same functionality albeit in a different format...

    • Like 2
  12. I may be mistaken about what you are doing or what Vectorworks is doing on export, but my understanding is that '3D only' is a resolution independent setting. 3D objects are exported as the exact size they are in real life as opposed to an image, which must be exported with a resolution. Is it possible that textures associated with various 3D objects are the issue?

  13. Hi trashcan,

    I don't have a solution here, but I wanted to offer that it may be useful, for those who have not yet tried 3rd party products that address this, to try creating a gobo with the desired projector image and use it in a Spotlight Lighting Device object. As you mention, Andy and Josh already provide methods that address preliminary planning issues, like working out projector location and beam obstruction issues, starting to visualize the play of images on surfaces since there is an actual (virtual) beam of light and maybe start to estimate lens possibilities.


    Lumen studies are not directly supported in our system currently, but could be engineered as a calculation value for comparison purposes. Our Photometric Grid object could possibly be upgraded with the necessary new capabilities. Adapting Spotlight Numbering to the particular needs of projectors seems actionable. If or when we implement any projector improvements though, there are naturally serious limitations to the visualization piece that we are going to run up against due to our environment; Perhaps the best approach is our plan to offer export of the model via MVR that the various dedicated visualizers could support.


    As you suggested, Vision might be a more appropriate vehicle for us to add this capability, although from where I sit, it seems like we have plenty of work to do before we might apply some more serious effort to this; Remember: I'm sitting in my house right now, of course, so no commitments...

    • Like 1
  14. Hi trashcan,

    You are correct in your analysis of the Polyline tool. However, there is one thing that you don't mention in your post; You may already know about hotkeys but a big piece of our tool system, as it stands today, is the tool bar and interactive hotkeys; You can click with the mouse on any mode in the tool bar as you construct the polyline to change what type of corner will be placed next. These hotkeys create an interactive experience as you construct a new figure with the tool. They give you full control of the modes during vertex insertion operations. So, while placing vertices with a polyline based tool, you have full control or each mode either by clicking with the mouse on a mode in the tool bar of by pressing a hot key on the keyboard. On the keyboard, the keys for this button group are, in order: "u, I, o, p, [ ,]". These are all next to each other and correspond to each button group in the tool bar of the active tool. (There are 6 keys because up to six button groups are possible depending on the tool; within each button group, multiple buttons are accessed by hitting the button group's assigned button more than once) These keys are where your non-mouse hand should be when using one of the polyline based tools.   


    Link to Polyline help file:

    http://app-help.vectorworks.net/2020/eng/index.htm#t=VW2020_Guide%2FShapes1%2FCreating_polylines.htm%23TOC_Polyline_toolbc-1&rhsearch="tool Bar" "polyline"&rhsyns= &rhtocid=_4_0_9_0





    Workspace Editor with Mode Groups.png

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