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MHBrown

Cannot draw a line while editing extrudes

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I have an extruded polyline that I'd like to chop down. In previous versions of VW I'd just double click on the extruded piece and I'd get the original shape that was extruded. This is no longer the case in VW2013. For some odd reason when I double-click an extrude I get what appears to be a NURBS surface. Although it is described as a "polygon," "polyline," or some other 2D object, it is not since I have to maneuver to see it (it often appears on edge at first.) This is not a big deal, except that I like to draw guide lines on the object so I know how far to cut it. For example, if I want to cut 2" off the bottom I'll draw a line, align it to the bottom of the shape, move the line 2" upward and select "clip object." In VW2013, however, when I try to draw a line I can't. It lets me do all the steps required to draw a line, but when I let go of the mouse the line vanishes. This is pretty unsettling. Making it into a NURBS shape is one step backwards and making it un-editable is two. The fact that the 3D editing tool does not work makes it even more maddening. Has anyone else seen this behavior or is it a bug with my system alone? Am I the only person who tries to draw lines inside an "edit extrusion" window? Thanks again for any help.

MHBrown

VW2013

OS10.8.3

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I think this is a result of the layer plane/screen plane fiasco. It isn't a NURBS surface, just a planar object. I am on VW 2011 and it does the same thing. It has made editing extrudes basically impossible for me. Maybe someone else understands it better. If you change to a top view you should be able to edit it though, and draw your lines. Where I always have trouble is when I try to copy/paste in place an object from outside the extrusion. It always flies off into space somewhere, never "in place". Which always happened anyway if you had moved/copied the extrusion after creation. But now it's even more confusing/unworkable. But I don't even pretend to understand how it all works or how I'm supposed to use it or how it even remotely is an improvement. I do believe the layer plane vs screen plane is a good idea, they just need to make it work. Particularly inside extrusions, etc. By not having it show as an "edge" view upon entering it would be a good start.

Edited by Monadnoc

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In VW's 2013 there is a planar mode for each Extrude (e.g. Plane = Extrude 1). You may still need to switch to a frontal view to get back to the original 2d shape. FWIW I also find this very frustrating. It should be happening behind the scenes with no use action (or knowledge) required.

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It was very simple in VW12, as I assume you all remember. I really wish VW would fix things that don't work and not break things that do work before adding "features" like the blue protractor that appears with the Rotate tool. Who needs that? How long did it take a programmer to create this obnoxious little do-nothing icon? I like VectorWorks a lot, but I'm very disappointed in its present state. I expected so much more in the six years since I had last upgraded. Anyway, thanks for letting me know that I'm not crazy!

MHBrown

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Also, your disappearing lines problem is most likely related to the screen plane issue. It is probably not "matching" the polygon of the extrude. Change whatever is set up in the screen plane/layer plane pulldown to it's opposite and the lines should be drawn as you expect.

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Thanks, Monadnoc, I've been using MiniCAD/VW for almost 18 years, so I should know what you are talking about, but I don't. I'll definitely look into it since being able to edit objects is so important. The fact that I have to add this previously unnecessary step is more than a little annoying. There was no need to complicate the editing of extrudes. There is no need to complicate the editing of anything, but that belongs in a letter to VW, not this board, of course. Thanks for the help!

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With the new screen plane/layer plane paradigm you have to pay very close attention to the Active Plane pulldown up in the tool bar. It is critical. It will either say "screen" or "layer". Or "working plane" if you are using Working Planes. Whichever it is set as will be how everything is drawn. If you select an object you can see and change its plane setting in the OIP to the opposite (it will say "3D" if it is drawn on a working plane). It constantly changes all by itself, so keep a close eye on it or before you know it you'll be drawing objects in a plane you never intended. At least it does in VW 2011. There is a handy vector script floating around that changes everything in the drawing to one plane or the other. I can't work without it. I think I got it off of Vector Depot. Some objects are automatically changed from screen plane to layer plane when you use 3d modeling tools. I think extrudes do that. This all may be different in VW 2013. If you are very careful about drawing in the appropriate (desired?) plane you will find there are a lot less surprises and drawing will be much more enjoyable. Things will still require more clicks and thought than drawing in VW12, but there at least will be fewer surprises.

Edited by Monadnoc

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I just checked and it looks like on some objects you have four choices in the OIP - screen, layer, 3D, and working plane. So ignore what I said about objects drawn on working plane saying "3D" in the OIP. It looks like some times they will say "working plane" too. I have no idea now what "3D" designates. And not all objects give you all four choices. Some only two or three of the choices. I have no idea why. As I said, I don't understand it at all. Doubt I ever will.

Edited by Monadnoc

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Yup. It gets more convoluted with every version. My rules are -

- always switch to top/plan view when editing within an extrude. The polygon shape should go from transparent to solid in appearance.

- always draw in screen plane mode when editing.

This usually works. Things that can add to problems include -

- if the extrude is nested in a solid addition, subtraction or section

- if the extrude is nested in a symbol, especially if the instance you are editing is rotated

- if the object has been mirrored.

If all else fails, I copy the polygon object out of the extrude, do the edits and then re-enter the extrude and paste the new object in, deleting the old one.

Good luck.

Kevin

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Thanks for the help. I'm sure these changes aim toward giving it a more 3D feel than in previous versions. I remember one of the very few things I liked about FormZ was that you could draw in a 3D view. VW tried to implement this with the 3D tool that allowed you to change the working plane by clicking on three points on a 3D polygon. Of course it never worked and VW users got used to spinning things around temporarily to draw in one of the orthographic views (at least I did.) That may have been cumbersome, but it worked. I've gotten used to working in 2D views and I'll probably keep working that way for the time being. At some point I'll try to figure it out, but right now I have a deadline.

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