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Shell tool take to much time on lofts.

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

As you might have noticed that the shell tool creates the resultant shapes by offsetting original surfaces and opening up the selected surfaces.

For complicated lofted surfaces, creation of the offset surfaces may take a long time. The only way to bring about better performance is to come up with lofted surface shapes that you want with less number of control points. This in turn is related to the curves that you are lofting with. For instance you might want to replace some of the NURBS curves with a large number of vertices with approximating curves that has less number of control points.

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  • 2 weeks later...

How are you generating the curves for the lofted surface?

I've noticed that the way the original curves (that the the loft is generated from) are created can make quite a difference in the number of vertexes, and thus calculation times.

Draw a NURBS curve with 7 or 8 control points that sweeps back and forth. Check the number of vertexes. Then use the Offset by Distance tool to create another curve from the first a short distance away, and check the number of vertexes. It will increase dramatically.

I needed to create a shell object by first drawing the inside contours so I could clear components, then offsetting to get the outside contour so I could shell to the inside- shelling to the outside left gaps. On lofting I ended up with over 23,000 vertexes.

I went back and redrew the outside contours with the minimum number of vertexes to maintain the shape, using the offset curves as a guide. I lofted a shape with only a few hundred vertexes.


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First thanks for your answers. The problem really appears when the loft it's made from three nurbs curves, not two. I do not use offset tool. Another thing it's that in version 10.1.2 the shell tool was faster, with the same numbers of nurbs curves generating the loft.

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