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willofmaine

Textures with Grains

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I wish textures with grains, particularly wood textures, would be automatically oriented with their grains parallel to the axes of framing members and parallel to the paths of EAPs. I just created some beams, and the grain on their sides is fine, but on the tops and bottoms it runs perpendicular to the beams. Then I created sloped rafters, and the grain on their sides runs parallel to the floor. VWIS032

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This is a long-standing flaw in RW. I have often wondered whether the programmers have ever actually seen a real piece of wood. It wouldn't solve everything, but it would be a big step in the right direction (pun intended) if the grain-lines always ran the "long" way... But it's been years, nay decades, so I'm not holding my breath.

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Long standing indeed.

I've found that, with extrudes, it matters which face is extruded.

If I extrude a 2x4 twelve feet, the grain will be parallel to the 4" and 12 ft axis.

So I have learned to decide on and then extrude which face I want correct grain on. So in this case I would extrude a 4" x 12ft

rectangle 2" deep. The resulting end grain (at this size member) might even pass for vertical grain in the right instances but I don't foresee absolutely correct end grain for 250 years.

Have you seen the nice face grain on the end cuts of the Detail Cut Wood tool? They were thinking about it in the wrong way. Simple concentric arcs radiant from any one corner would have been simpler and read much beer. They HAVE, on the other hand, correctly presented the grain on the icon in the tool set. Sheesh!

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This is effectively UV mapping (which is greatly desired), since the end of a board would be a different texture, or area of a texture, compared to the sides. Currently to get that effect you would have to map separate textures to separate surfaces, normally by extracting multiple faces from the framing members, which would be tedious at best.

They might be able to create a quicker solution for things like framing members, where you can set a separate texture for the ends and sides independently rather than the massive task of implementing a UV mapping system, I'll submit a few wishes and see.

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Jim, While you're at it please take another look at all of the common PIO's: Doors, Windows, Cabinets, for example, all of which, when set to a Wood Texture, exhibit some incorrect grain direction(s) and are therefore highly embarrassing. When/If I show these to anyone they ask whether I'm using $99 3d Software off the web ;-)

Thanks!

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Oh yeah, that one never gets off my radar. I am not sure which way it would come about, but for PIOs I suspect something similar to wall component textures with more directional control and separate mapping.

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Slightly off-topic, but I have always been a huge advocate for "anatomical accuracy" in CAD objects (and models). If a Panel Door (e.g.) were "built" from correctly construed "wood" pieces, this problem would solve itself. And I can prove it pretty readily by creating the panel door using (only) 5 extrudes. This seems like a no-brainer to me. But there seems to be a disconnect to the real world in many of VW's Objects (like, ahem, stairs...)... Often these objects are way more complicated than necessary. Nearly all wooden building materials are simple six-sided extrudes. Very primitive, but highly useable...

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That would be true Material integration, which would be fantastic. Having materials links texturing, scaling, volumetric data, structural analysis, energy analysis and a number of other things directly together. It is an excellent concept and something I really would love to see in Vectorworks. I am very aware that it would be a monumental undertaking however.

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For sure. Pretty much a "ground up" process would be needed. Which is another long-standing gripe of mine: you can't (or at least shouldn't) just keep adding new code snippets to old strings. At some point everything gets overly complicated and perhaps broken.

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Agreed. Thats the part of our development process I am trying to learn more about currently.

Ideally there would be time allotted to sit down, analyze everything a tool does for a user (within supported and unsupported workflows alike) and then rebuild them with more modern, extensible and efficient methods making sure to include all previous functionality.

However, I am ignorant of many of the specifics in why decisions have been made the way they have throughout the years, I had my head buried deep in tech support initially. Recently have been able to peek into the inner workings of other departments and see how to better relay information and get important changes implemented. I hope to expand upon this in the future. Change IS happening, but Vectorworks as a software package a big boat and it takes a while to change direction.

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If the door and window objects are ungrouped one is basically left with a bunch of extrudes. Couldn't it be easily coded to extrude the components differently in the meantime...prior to implementation of some more extensive material integration in the long term?

We have been living with this "embarrassment" for a long time.

So I am only curious when I ask, is it very difficult coding this or is it just the disconnect as Peter mentioned?

Edited by bc

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It is apparently far more complex that it appears to alter the door/window PIOs in that manner, from what I am told.

If the door and window objects are ungrouped one is basically left with a bunch of extrudes. Couldn't it be easily coded to extrude the components differently in the meantime...prior to implementation of some more extensive material integration in the long term?

Which is another long-standing gripe of mine: you can't (or at least shouldn't) just keep adding new code snippets to old strings. At some point everything gets overly complicated and perhaps broken.

These two are what we have to balance between when we pick new features. What would be best fixed quickly and what needs significantly more resources thrown at it to rebuild from the ground up. Both approaches have pros and cons.

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Have you tried setting the Map Type to Auto-Align Plane then checking the "Follow Longest Edge" checkbox? For simple framing members that should do what you're wanting. It doesn't work 100% of the time but I've had pretty good luck with it.

The Render tab of the OIP seems to be largely blank for framing members, devoid of the typical options for mapping textures. "Follow Longest Edge" didn't seem to do anything useful...

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End grains someday would be great, but understandably complicated. In the meantime, though, properly oriented grains for Framing Members, EAPs, and, yes, definitely, the rails and stiles of Doors, Windows and Cabinets, would be a huge leap forward!!!

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Have you tried setting the Map Type to Auto-Align Plane then checking the "Follow Longest Edge" checkbox? For simple framing members that should do what you're wanting. It doesn't work 100% of the time but I've had pretty good luck with it.

The Render tab of the OIP seems to be largely blank for framing members, devoid of the typical options for mapping textures. "Follow Longest Edge" didn't seem to do anything useful...

Ahh, I didn't realize you were using Framing Member PIOs (I forget that tool exists!)

I was instead thinking along the lines of the AEC < Framing < Wall Frame Command which gives you simple Extrudes, on which Follow Longest Edge works. But that's different than what you're after.

Oh well :)

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Yep - for a (brief) moment I was excited about the possibility of "Follow Longest Edge" (how could I have missed it, I wondered??). "Oh well" is right!

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Have you tried setting the Map Type to Auto-Align Plane then checking the "Follow Longest Edge" checkbox? For simple framing members that should do what you're wanting. It doesn't work 100% of the time but I've had pretty good luck with it.

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