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Newbie questions, positions and orientation


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thank you for your speedy reply.

I moved the truss and then converted it to a position, which was my mistake, it seems. It makes sense to me that the instruments, once assigned to a position, would stay with it if it moves. What is the reason for this behavior, do you know?

After a bit of fooling around, I seem to have gotten the duplicate symbols to stick with their intended orientation. Thank you.

This leads to my next issue. I have created a whole new symbol for an LED fixture from scratch. 2D and 3D components. It inserts as expected. I converted it to an instrument. All continues to be well.

I cannot seem to find a way to edit its characteristics. I want to enter a type, wattage, and weight for this -i.e., constants that do not change.

Anything that I edit in the info palette either doesn't stick, or only sticks to an instance of the instrument. The moment that I place another instance of the instrument, its fields clear. Dragging a copy of the instrument to a new position keeps the info intact, but the new instrument remains affiliated with the old position.

Editing the symbol for the instrument only allows me to alter the look of the symbol, not the data.

I am betting that this is something simple. Right now, this is about all that is currently standing between me and drawing the first pass of this plot. Suggestions?



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Using SL 12.0 on Mac 10.3.9. 2x2G5 4.5Gb RAM

I have used VW off and on for some years. Normally, I am doing scenery, and mostly model in formZ, draft in VW. A friend has asked me to do a light plot for an industrial show, so I am actually having to use SL for its intended purpose. So please forgive what may seem to be newbie questions. Yes, I have been R'ing TFM. Just haven't made as much progress as I need to make.

First, I insert a truss, give it a Z height, and convert it to a Lighting Position. Well and good. Then I insert Instruments onto that position, in Top/Plan View. They show up on the summary, so the position knows about them. If I switch to a front view, all my instruments are sitting on the floor, not hanging from the truss, 25' above them.

Why not? Is this expected behavior?

Second, if I move the truss, the instruments do not come along for the ride if I haven't selected them along with the position. Is this as expected?

Second, there are lots of MLs in this plot. Some hanging, some in the air. Some of my ML instruments, pulled from the SL libraries, orient themselves as hanging (VL3000) from the truss. Others (VL2500) are inverted, as though they were placed on the floor. I need both types of placement, but I need them to be sensitive to their location. Or, I would settle for 'hung' versions vs. 'floor mounted'

How do I achieve this?

Last, I'll say that 12.0 has been very stable so far (far stabler than most incarnations of formZ), and overall seems to be a high quality product.

Any help is appreciated here, as I am playing beat the deadline, of course!



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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

The instruments do not automatically stay atatched to their positions, you have to move them manually. They will default to the height of the lighting position they are placed on.

When you make your lighting position, create the geometry at Z=0. When you convert the geometry to a lighting position object, set the Z height of the lighting position object.

As for the underhung and overhung lights, you will need to make a duplicate symbol. Take your existing symbol, duplicate it, edit the 3D part of the symbol, then in a side view rotate it 180 and re-align the insertion point.

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Andrew -

Trying this from memory, but...

Make sure the "Light Info Record" is in the drawing with your new symbol.

In the resource browser, right click on your new symbol and select attach, then check light info record.

Now, right click the symbol again and select edit 2D. in the object info pallette, click the data tab. you can now fill in info for each field.

Note this doesn't update existing symbols already in the plot though - you have to insert new ones to get the info to auto fill.

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Thanks very much. Your instructions also led me to the correct section of the manual which expanded a bit on what you described. Though your description was basically accurate.

Interestingly, after doing this, I find that I no longer get a dotted outline preview of the symbol, when I add it to a position. Though it does seem to add successfully, and with its data fields for weight and wattage properly filled in.

I can work around this easily enough by rotating the symbol after the fact. Can't have everything, I suppose.

Thank you again for your help.

best regards


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