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jeff prince

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Everything posted by jeff prince

  1. @Mark Aceto It really is super useful for converting pdfs to images, minor editing, and marking up. All you have to do to select things is to click and drag a rectangle. You can reshape the rectangle afterwards if you need to get precise. Removing selected items by hitting the delete key. Automatic alpha channel too.
  2. @Mark Aceto Seeing as you are on a Mac, you know you can convert PDFs to PNGs in Preview right? You could even knock those doors and windows out in Preview using the select tool and deleting them. edit: You could even just select a portion of the texture in preview and make a PNG out of that to use as a texture, simple.
  3. @Mark Aceto Probably faster and easier to convert the pdf to a png outside of Vectorworks and then import that image as a resource.
  4. @Anders Blomberg 1. I spent most of my career in the Autodesk world too. I am not aware of any method possible for live linking Revit files in Vectorworks. Can you live link files in AutoCAD or Revit from other softwares like Archicad or Bentley Systems? Seems like most of these software companies would prefer you stay in their ecosystem for such functionality. The work around of course is to use shuttle files as I described to hold these imported files from other softwares. I do the same thing with sketchup files. I suspect that if having live and continuous updates is mission critical for you, you should just use the same software as the rest of your team. If you are opening your own office, maybe it's wiser to give up on that aspect of your workflow and choose the software that fits best with your practice. As your practice grows, it's unlikely all your clients will be on the same software or version of software. When I ventured out on my own for a second time, I abandoned Autodesk and moved to Vectorworks because they provide tools and workflows suited for landscape architecture, something Autodesk has refused to do since they started offering industry specific toolsets. Prior to that, I did the same thing for a very large AEC firm. Most everyone was on Revit or AutoCAD there. The design architects and landscape architects decided to use more appropriate tools for our tasks. Similarly, all the large international consultants we worked with generally gave their designers the freedom to use whatever it took to get the job done. Most of the architects used Rhino or Sketchup rather than Revit during concept and design development. Eventually, that work made its way into Revit without issue. In the absence of strict standards and workflows, with many hands in the work and variable compliance with the standards, I find it safer to store my work in a separate silo so the weevils don't spoil the harvest 🙂 2. I didn't say it wasn't possible, I just haven't seen people do it properly on a regular basis. It sounds like you have done the necessary legwork in establishing standard operating procedures, so you should be fine. Prior to switching to Vectorworks and during my evaluation of it, I did have the opportunity to collaborate with a very knowledgeable BIM manager and several internationals that had figured a few things out. The general consensus was each building or infrastructure element would be created in a single Revit file without Georeferencing. Each of these Revit files was then imported into a master site model which was georeferenced. Each building was then orientated within the site file horizontally and vertically. This worked exceptionally well on large campus projects where FF elevations were having to change throughout the development process. After seeing this work within the Revit environment, I adopted the same in Vectorworks and have been very happy with it. Individual georeferenced buildings become problematic, especially if they are duplicated on a site 🙂
  5. @Anders Blomberg 1.The way I manage Revit files is to create a new vectorworks file that exists solely for the purpose of holding the Revit import. I then reference that into my landscape design file. When the architect issues a new revit model, I have to go into that special file I set up for referencing and reimport the Revit file. I'm interested in hearing how others address this. I would not want an automatic and continuous update from my architects though as I would miss the opportunity to visually check to see what has changed. I always hear "we just changed the building in this one area" to find that all kinds of other stuff was changed too 🙂 I only see that because I compare the models. 2. I have yet to receive a Revit project that was georeferenced correctly, interested to hear other's experiences. Typically, I'm the one dealing with survey, civil, and georeferencing with the architects just delivering pretty little boxes orientated with the front facade facing up most of the time.
  6. This is a great suggestion. I think it will take some serious thinking to make it work right for everyone and avoid making it too cumbersome, especially in regards to data for project, issuing, revision, etc. In terms of managing the overall sheet count between sets within a single Vectorworks file... The current method of "activating/deactivating the titleblock" is cumbersome because you have to enter the sheet and click on the titleblock to do it (unless I am unaware of a better way). In a set with many sheets, this is time consuming. Ideally, sheets would be members of a set and the sheets within that set would be counted towards the X of X sheets within that set only. That would be nice. Alternatively, if this could be managed by using different titleblocks for different sets somehow, that might be doable. I usually use a conceptual title block for that stage that looks different than my production drawings. I would actually settle for having a toggle in the navigator window that allowed me to activate the sheets I wanted to count, but that would be a bit clunky in practice and prone to error. Here's what I'm doing currently when I need everything in once Vectoworks file. It works, but not the best solution.
  7. I can certainly understand people having that feeling, especially if they came from a CAD or manual drafting background. One of these days drawing standards will enter the modern age and embrace typographic standards developed prior to the invention of the printing press 😉. It is a shame many CAD programs didn’t get on board with digital publishing standards early in their development. I think Vectorworks is clearly ahead in that regard, especially when bouncing between creative/publishing softwares.
  8. jeff prince

    3D Trees

    @LauraCB If you don't have Designer or Landmark, a suitable solution is using 2D/3D Hybrid Symbols and class overrides as seen in the attached example. Hybrid Symbol Example - Pine Tree.vwx
  9. Pat's right, it's a game of trial and error to get VWX to match AutoCAD. Some light reading on the subject...
  10. @techdef it was possible back when this was originally posted... By using UTM coordinates. The OP could have translated their data to UTM and plotted spot elevation by x,y,z Gathering data by non survey grade GPS has more error in it than worrying about map projection, until you get to very large distances.
  11. That’s where collaborative development helps. I don’t care for design by committee on my creative projects, but when it comes to developing workflow and standards, it’s usually the best way to get buy in. Added bonus, you can divide and conquer the task by getting people to do part of the work. People tend to follow systems they had a hand in influencing. Also, many minds are usually better than one on these kinds of things. I was making a system for managing our plant data years ago in another software. Most of the draftsmen didn’t really know plants. When I explained the problems we were having and solicited input on solving it, several on the team came up with ideas I hadn’t thought of on my own. When the system was prototyped and presented for budgetary consideration, it was well received because the whole team contributed and was given credit. Further, CAD management the set compliance with it as part of employee expectations, training, and bonuses. This got the people who resist change to adopt it. More carrot than stick in that example, which is also typically more helpful.
  12. @mjm I have felt your pain in the past. As a preventative, I typically import files from CAD or Sketchup into a new file and clean them up prior to placing them in my file or referencing them. This gives me a chance to see if a potential problem may occur before it becomes damaging. It’s not uncommon for me to find rogue geometry during this process and getting rid of it seems to help immensely. Similarly, when in Vectorworks, I have had to develop the habit of building things like site models, fences, and stairs in clean files and then bring them in once they are behaving. when I’m in a hurry and deviate from this is when trouble happens. We shouldn’t have to work like this, but it seems to be the reality 😞
  13. @Michal Zarzecki When quality matters, I don’t trust Vectorworks current implementation of Geoimages. It’s far more reliable to acquire good images and manually place them IMHO, especially when the Geoimages feature requires an internet connection and refreshing to work properly. I wish this wasn’t the case, so much potential.
  14. @Boh I’m with @halfcoupler, simpler is better. All that data is definitely easier to manage and update in a database rather than a proprietary CAD/BIM interface. These types of initiatives oftentimes fail when an enthusiastic techie person in the office runs with it in lone wolf mode, makes all the decisions and assets w/o input, and perhaps makes things too complicated. Then they are left to wonder why nobody uses their stuff and things descend back into chaos. Software companies, IT departments, and CAD/BIM managers all suffer the same fate. Just collaborate with your team to develop the solution, try to follow industry standards, and test your ideas with those who will use it daily before going too far down the rabbit hole. I do B2B consulting and have unsnarled many train wrecks in this area, typically when the person who developed the system leaves a company or during economic downturns when owners start to wonder where all that unbillable time went 🙂.
  15. @Safak Sari I had a little time to kill, so you inspired me to investigate the seating tool in Spotlight. I can't recall playing with it before, I'm a landscape architect afterall 🙂 Wow, powerful stuff when combined with that Extrude Along a Path... Near instant theater!
  16. @Safak Sari Draw a cross section of the theater floor. Draw an arc representing first row seating. Use Extrude Along a Path to form the theater using the cross section as the profile and the arc as your path. Quick and easy.
  17. @Jeff Bonny if you have the spot elevation or contours for the project, I could build you a site model of it in a few minutes with the site model tool in designer and you could import it.
  18. @bc if you close and reopen you file, the symbols and such redraw fine, without having to enter the symbols.
  19. @michaelk thanks for the explanation!
  20. @michaelk how do you save and run scripts like this?
  21. @bc That looks a lot like the old AutoCAD trick of using Pline thickness to get thick lineweights. When I moved from AutoCAD to Vectorworks, there was a log of that in my legacy files and symbols. I suspect if you look in one of those symbols, you will find that the vectorworks lineweight for the particular object is set to something big. To resolve... Use the magic wand (with the appropriate settings) to select the symbols convert them to groups (cmd K) ungroup them (cmd U) and then set their lineweight to byclass in the attribute panel. That would be the manual method of fixing it and akin to your desire to import blocks as just plain geometry. I have to do this each time I import most of the work from outside architects and civil engineers. Alternatively, you could ask them to set their pline thickness to 0 or those objects if they are keen to making your life a little easier 🙂 There is really no good reason in AutoCAD to use the pline trick since the adoption of line weights like 20 years ago. edit: Having autocad blocks imported as symbols might be a good thing for you if those symbols are repeated many times through the project. All you have to do is go into a symbol, fix the graphics, and all the instances will update accordingly. That might help with your doors and windows if you want to keep them as symbols instead of raw geometry. If each symbol is unique and not repeated in the file, I would opt for my method described earlier.
  22. Wouldn't it be great if the capitalization tool was able to do sentence case in addition to its current capabilities? I frequently receive notes that are in all caps and would like to easily change them to sentence case instead of what I currently do... Select all the notes I want to change. Change capitalization to lower case. Enter each note to edit the first letter to be capital. Rinse, later, and repeat like a zillion times 😞
  23. @StatonCohen you almost got there, you just need to select the component in the "Slab Components" window and hit the edit button to get to the screen I showed. I would recommend reviewing some tutorials on constructing hardscapes and getting very familiar with this process if you intend on doing a lot of it. A really good one on Vectorworks University "Hardscape Components" is less than 3 minutes and will tell show you most of what you need to know.
  24. @StatonCohen Your hardscape's component is not set up properly. You have told it specifically to render with nothing. If you make the component's fill and texture "by class" you can then control the look of the object by changing the class behavior as you desire by simply placing that hardscape on a class. Alternatively, you could do it explicitly in the component, but I find that to be less useful than "by class". I don't know which version of VWX you are using, but I attached a v2019 file for your to look at where I modified one of your hardscapes. I changed that hardscape's slab style to be "byclass" and placed the component on a class called "00-Paving Surface". You can then change that classes graphic behavior to suite your needs. Here's what YOUR setting for the hardscape slab in the file you posted looked like. If you click the "make all attributes by class" in this case, the hardscape will find it's settings from whatever class you place the hardscape on. If it's a simple hardscape with just one component, you can get away with placing the hardscape on a desired class and be done. However, when you dive into more complex slabs that have multiple components, assigning each component to a specific class starts to make more sense for graphic control, which is what I did in the example I posted. Here's the hardscape I changed. 150-LondonSquare v2019.vwx


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