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Section Detailing


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SonnyL, Here's the way I do it. First I model the building as accurately as possible. Then I use the Create Section Viewport command, placing the section on a Sheet Layer. Then I enter the annotation space and add whatever needs to be added. If you use properly set up Wall Styles and Slabs some (but not all) of the hatching and dressing up will already be done for you. But I have actually grown to prefer the process of drawing the section, using the VP for a "base" if you will. It is where I can prove (or not) whether things really work as expected. There are many helpful tools in the Detail Tool Set which make the actual annotating go faster. I will attach an example of a Section VP before and after Annotation.

Others will no doubt express their desire for the software to do all of this annotation for us, and I think in a perfect world it probably would, and maybe someday it will. But for now, in my opinion, if you want it to look "just so" then you gotta do the work it takes to get there. FWIW, when I'm "in a zone" I can get a section like this detailed out in about an hour. Of course the notes take longer...

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Just in case your missing them, the linear material and repetitive unit tools are essential for filling in sections with appropriate hatch and detail that doesn't come in with the model...such as roof sheathing, shingles, etc.

For full building sections I usually just fill the cuts of the section viewports entirely without showing material down to the 1/2" gyp or 1/2" sheathing. Larger details show this information.

This brings me to a major wish list item. We need a new viewport type called Detail Viewport or a special kind of multi-zoned crop feature so we can take a single large scale wall section and introduce multiple cuts to shrink the height or width of the section down to fit on a single printable page. Currently, to maintain viewports as an underlay for these sections you have to start with a viewport cropped to just the wall you are detailing and then copy that entire viewport to create two smaller cropped viewports you can bring together on either side of a cut line. Sometimes you might have 3 or 4 of these individually cropped viewports just to make a single vertical wall section with a couple of horizontal cuts. The question then is...where do you annotate? I've created an additional overlay viewport for all 2d overdrafting and annotations. Sometimes I've kept the base viewports while other times they get turned off and I just keep the overlay viewport if the details have been completely re-drafted. Cumbersome and confusing especially when you put 3 or 4 walls sections on a single sheet. Mind you this is all sheet layers - SLVP. I think I tried this with DLVP's and then drafting over them but I think I hit a snag but I'm not remembering what it was off hand. Worth taking another look at that process. Still wouldn't replace the need for a new multi-zone crop tool. Maybe used with both DLVP and SLVPs.

I believe Revit has a tool that does this exact task. I haven't used it but I'm told you just define the horizontal and vertical zones of the detail and customize what gets shown and what doesn't. It then takes out all the negative space for display. We need this.


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A great idea.

AS you say sometimes we need to show multiple details of a single wall from different areas or parts of the wall.

Guess they expect it to be a separate detail.

Would help as you would not have to reference the details to a single or wall type it would be inclusive on a wall to wall basis.


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Thanks Marshall, I am mostly self-taught but have had the pleasure over the years of working with (and for) a few architects who are very particular about their graphics. I was also an active builder for close to 20 years, so I am also very particular about how the methodology is expressed (i.e.: can you really build it like that?).

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Continuing the font discussion. When I select "font" in VW, I get the entire list of Windows fonts to choose from. An entire page of them. These appear to also include all the non-English fonts that I've turned off in Windows; yet they continue to show up with lots of others that I will never use. Is there some way to limit this page in VW to include a smaller subset to make it faster to zero in on what I need?


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