Jump to content

Drawing a basic house outline?

Recommended Posts

With the idea of having a sketch and measurements of the perimeter of an actual house in hand, I would like to discuss some methods of drawing the house footprint.

The way I did it in TurboCAD was to draw construction lines, which were easy to place and orient in relation to each other, and then snap a poly line to the various intersections. For 2D it seemed to be a fairly quick operation.

This is not repeatable in Vectorworks with it's different drawing philosophy. I have tried drawing lines and turning them into guides but that has turned out to be labor intensive. I'm sure there are much more interesting methods of which I am not aware and I'm very interested to hear what Vectorworks users are doing to accomplish this.

Edited by Mark Taylor
Link to comment

Just the house footprint...I would use a combination of rectangles and polylines to get the footprint. Add surfaces on all of that to get the footprint as a cohesive unit.

or you could start with a known point, with the polygon tool, and use data entry into the heads up display to sort of "walk" your way around the building.

Link to comment

That method is more akin to "cookie cutter" drawing, where you are using the basic shape tools that VW has: circles, rectangles, arcs, etc. You lay them down in an overlapping fashion until you have the shape you want, then select all and add surfaces. This will give the sum area of all those parts you used to make the shape. So.....

Your house is a rectangle 90'x45'

Your plot of land is 200' by 100'

Make those two rectangles, locate one corner of the house to get the position. Clip surfaces, now you have the available land minus the house footprint.


Link to comment

there is an advantage if you use rectangles and add surface (on the context menu). you can easily get the areas of each building. Then you can use a worksheet to count up each building, and compare the area of the building to the area of the site (site coverage).

When you are satisfied with the building area and shape, use the Modify > Objects from Polyline... command to convert the area to a Massing model, then you can create a solar study of the project.

This is topic for my subscription webinar this month, and I have just started writing the manual for this, for my subscribers. http://www.archoncad.co.nz/subscription.html

Link to comment

There are so many ways to do this - it's hard to suggest just one.

If you like lines then just go ahead and draw them all being sure to connect or overlap the corners.

Once the perimeter is complete press 8 on your keyboard to select the polygon tool,

Toggle to the paint bucket mode by pressing U

Click within the perimeter of your house to create a polygon representing the exterior wall.

Delete your lines.

The polygon can be used for the creation of walls / the roof / an extrude to represent the house as a block or a Massing Model.


Draw in Top/Plan view

Using the Move or Offset tool or editing the position of a duplicate line in the OIP can be very handy.


press just press 9 and begin drawing your walls

pressing tab to enter the length etc.

Link to comment

Mark I've used several of the described techniques, but lately Here's what I've done:

-Insert a Locus point then Duplicate the Locus & Move the duplicated Locus the distance & direction & follow this for all measurements. (One must have the Offset Duplicate preference turned off)

- Next with my Wall Tool selected I simply Click to each Locus in turn & Viola my building outline is finished.

I use the same technique for interior partitions.

One can use the walls to make roofs & floors as well you can Convert a Copy to Lines or Convert a Copy to Polygons to calculate areas.

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...