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Linds

Help with Scaling please!!!!

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I am in desperate need of some help with scaling. I have searched the forum for answers but I don't really understand the technicality of it. This is something that I just can't seem to get my brain around. I guess I also don't understand the difference between what it looks like on screen and what actually prints out. Here is what I am currently trying to do:

I have a PDF that I want to get into my drawing. When I measure the lengths of things on the PDF it seems like the scale is something like 1"=36.5'. When I make my layer this scale, it makes it sooo tiny that I have to zoom in like crazy just to see it. Am I doing this correctly? I am afraid that when I go to print it out it will be so tiny you can't see it. Do I need to adjust the scale in a viewport? Will that affect the actual scale?

Also, because the scale so small, any symbols or say, truss I put into my drawing are like 3 times the size of the PDF. How do I get these to be the same scale as the drawing? Do I have to do "scale object" for every single thing I put in.

I would really appreciate anyone who could explain this to me like I am 3rd grader, because clearly the synapses are not firing for this particular subject.

Thank you!!

Lindsey

_____________________

Vectorworks 2011 for MAC

Edited by Linds

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You need to scale the pdf to the correct 1:1 size as opposed to the correct scale ie Modify>scale object etc!.

VW only uses drawing scale as visual help on screen everything is always drawn 1:1 if this is chosen at the beginning of the project. (It is advisable to do this)

for more info see: http://techboard.vectorworks.net/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=30047&Number=147200#Post147191

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Hi Vincent,

I had previously seen the post that you provided the link to earlier but still didn't understand. I realize this is probably very simple but it just doesn't make sense to me.

If I have the scale at 1:1, why then when I drop in a truss symbol is it way bigger than the PDF?

I really just need someone to sit down and show me this but I don't have that opportunity.

Thanks so much for you help.

Lindsey

_____________________

Vectorworks 2011 for MAC

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Hi Linds,

Do you have a known distance in your PDF file?

If yes, check which units you are using in Vectorworks (i.e. inches and feet) and what scale you are using.

Make sure that all layers are using the same scale.

Then measure the distance on the PDF in VW.

If it says 1" in VW and it says 36.5' (i.e. 438") on the PDF then you need to select the PDF and use Modify>Scale object and scale the PDF with a factor of 438 (or 43800%) to bring it to the real life size. If you then do another readout of that same distance, it should give you 36.5' in VW.

I hope this helps.

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Oh that worked! Thank you soooo much!!! I think I am understanding it a little bit better now. Really appreciate it!!

Lindsey

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Vectorworks 2011 for MAC

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Hi Lindsey,

Because you are importing a PDF, that last link will probably not help you.

The first thing you need to be clear on is that when you import a PDF, it comes in as the size of the PDF sheet relative to the current layer scale, so it will be a different size depending on what your layer scale is set to. In order to scale up the PDF to an accurate and useable size, do the following steps:

-select the PDF

-choose the Modify>Scale Objects menu command

-use the Symmetric by Distance option

-select the dimension icon and click on two points on the drawing that you know the distance between

-enter the known distance in the New Distance box.

-make sure the Entire Drawing checkbox is unchecked.

-click OK.

This should scale your PDF up so the objects in it are now in scale with your layer. You will get best results if you use Import PDF to bring in the original PDF (don't use Import Image File) because most PDFs will come in as vector files that you can snap to.

Here is a visual reference of the process. Note that in my case I am importing a PDF with a metric drawing on it, which accounts for the mixed units in the Scale Objects dialog.

If you continue to have problems, maybe consider posting your file.

Cheers,

Kevin

Edited by Kevin McAllister

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I agree with Art, but you can save a step in doing the math.

Import the PDF. Set you Units to anything other than Feet & Inches (Feet, Inches, Millimeters, Meters are all fine).

Find an object on the PDF that has a known dimension. Draw a VW Dimension to match.

Select both the PDF and the Dimension.

Choose ScaleObjects... from the Modify Menu.

In the top box (Symmetric X,Y,Z Factor) enter the Desired Length (from the PDF) Divided by (/) measured length (from the VW Dimension). This will give you the proper scale factor. Make sure you enter the values without units or VW can't do the math correctly. That is also why you have to use a Unit other than Feet & Inches.

Using your example above, you would type ((36.5 *12)/1) to get the scale factor of 438.

If you can just remember Desired divided by Measured you will be able to measure and scale any object to the correct size.

And if it is really small, you might want to redo the measurement after the first scale (when it is bigger and easier to measure) and repeat the process to get it even closer to scale.

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I will try all of your suggestions. Thank you all so very much!!

Lindsey

__________________________

Vectorworks 2011 for MAC

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I usually just put the PDF on its own layer with a scale 1:1 and set the other layers for the drawing at the scale needed to trace accurately.

The math involved in the scale objects route seems more accident prone. Am I missing something as to why it is preferable to scale the PDF?

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There really is no math required on your part. Find something that has a known dimension, draw a line between the points of the known dimension. Highlight the dimension in the OIP and Copy. Select the PDF, Modify menu>Scale Objects. Check Symmetric By Distance, paste the dimension you just copied in Current Distance, enter the known dimension in New Distance.

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Here's the theory behind the maths that's usually needed: (If you don't use this method chances are great you're using VW units and scales incorrectly):

In VW you always work in a specific unit i.e. mm, inches etc chosen at the creation of the file/project. This automatically means you are drafting at scale 1:1 in that unit! The design layer scale option present in VW is only a visual aid to help you see what your 'drawing' will look like at that specific scale (when printed or put in a layout). e.g. when drawing in a layer with the scale at say 1:100 you're still drawing 1:1 however you're 'looking' at it in scale 1:100.

If you now decide to import a specific pdf, say for arguments sake an A3 with scale 1:100 when printed, and import it in your design layer which has the scale set at 1:100, the pdf will come in at the correct size, no maths or resizing necessary. However if you don't know the scale and unit of the pdf you'll need to be certain of at least one measurement in the pdf to correctly resize it.

Using the Scale objects command: (that name is confusing in this case, it should be called the 'Resize objects command') however if you know a measurement in the pdf say it's 2m (2000mm) and it measures 1000mm in your design layer in VWs after import, select the pdf, choose the scale objects command, choose the Symmetric by distance option, in Current distance enter the actual distance (ie 1000mm), in the New distance enter the distance it 'should' be (ie 2000m), OK and now your pdf should be the right size. With this method VWs does the maths for you all you need to know is one measurement in the pdf.

Bobs your uncle.....

Edited by Vincent C

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