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Creating Symbols with attached data

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I'd like to create a symbol and save it with a data record such that the data remains attached and is recalled each time the symbol is used. Can I do this?

So far I've managed to attach a data record to a symbol, but each time I place a symbol instance the data record is included but empty (I want it to retain the symbol data).

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Make sure that when you edit the symbol data you do not have anything selected. The Object Info Palette should have the title *Default* in the top bar. Enter the data you want into the appropriate fields, and then exit. Each time you place the symbol after that it should have that "Default" information already entered. It won't update symbols you have already placed.

The key is to make sure nothing is selected in the symbol edit window.

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I'm working with VW Spotlight (12.5.2). I guess what I'm really trying to do is create something like a lighting instrument with default data attached - essentially I want to create an inventory of symbols with cost and weight values attached - every instance I ever place in a drawing will have the same default weight value, and the same purchase cost.

Ideally, I hope to later reference these values via VectorScript to compile data for various purposes.

Is this possible?

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There are 6 User Fields, as well as a Weight field, available in the standard Spotlight record format (Light Info Record). Most of the Spotlight symbols already have the weight field filled in.

You may want to stick with the standard record, as much of Spotlight's functionality revolves around it. ( like the Inst Insertion Tool, and the Generate Paperwork commands).

I think what you may want to do is use one of the user fields for cost, (by editing the SL symbols as described earlier) and then create a couple of custom reports to get the weights and costs out of your drawing.


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Thanks everyone for your thoughts. I've almost got it... Great advice on sticking with the instrument data structure David, thank you.

I've converted a symbol to an instrument in Spotlight, but I still can't figure out how to change the default instrument data so that the changes get recalled every time an instrument is placed on the page. ie: Source Four 19 dg is always placed by default with 575W lamp... Say I'd like it to appear default as 750 Watt in every instance, is there a way to make that stick? (I'd prefer not to have to manually change 200 instrunments on a plot).

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We may want to move this over to the Spotlight Forum - but here's a quick answer.

You need to edit the symbol before using the Inst Insertion tool. Once you have used that tool, the instrument is not really a symbol anymore, but a Plug In object.

I would recommend creating a separate 750w symbol. Open your symbol repository drawing, find the inst in question in the resource browser, right click and select Duplicate. Then rename it to xxx_750w. Then edit that symbol, tweak the wattage value as described, exit the symbol and save the drawing file. Now you have an instrument Spotlight will load as a 750.

On a side note - Spotlight has a fairly decent Find and Replace function. Should you need to replace a value in 200 fixtures this menu command can come in handy.

Also, have a look at AutoplotVW.com - some top'o'the line plugin command there....

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I had the same "Problem"

1. Create your symbol.

2. Delete it from your drawing screen.

3. Select it from your resource browser, right click, edit symbol.

4. While in the edit symbol mode DON'T SELECT the symbol. Just click on the screen so nothing is selected.

5. NOW ATTACH your record and set your defaults.

When you import the symbol it will now show the record when you click on it after it has been imported into your drawing.

NOTE: If you change the record AFTER you've inserted a symbol it only changes the record on that single symbol NOT all of them.

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