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Generating usable floorplans for roof spaces

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I'm trying to make the switch from basically drawing in 2d, to making more use of VW's 3d capabilities. So I'm using a small project as a test run for this.

Here's what the 3d model looks like so far (with roof on and off).

23006003224_e7da25777f_z.jpg

23608094716_977efaa0b0_z.jpg

So the questin is, how to make a usable floorplan for that uppermost storey, which is largely within the roofspace.

The floorplan (in top/plan view) looks like this:

23338491750_6b0ece76ae_b.jpg

But that's no good, because it doesn't cut the horizontal section through the walls intelligently - for example the gable walls look on the floorplan as if they are full height for their entire length. And it doesn't show a cut line through the roof at all.

So, I realised that you can generate a "horizontal section" which produces this:

23266251939_975011eeca_b.jpg

And (ignoring the messy bits of the model) that's more like what I want to see, and closer to what I'd conventionally draw for this kind of space, because it needs to have some indication of what the roof is doing, and where you run out of headroom and so on.

But this doesn't render the doors and windows with their proper 2D symbols, and there are mitred joints in the walls, and it's not really editable.

Is there a better solution to this, or are we confined to drawing floorplans as if the cutting plane is just above floor level (rather than at something between waist and eye height as per normal drawing conventions)?

(I should mention that I'm only using VW2011 at present)

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Although we model all our projects in 3D I still do quite a bit of 2D drafting over top of the 3D elements for upper floors cutting through attic spaces. So my design layers have both 2D & 3D elements. I also typically make a separate class for walls above. This class is off in plan view but on for elevations and 3D views.

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Try this, Create an elevation viewport and then select the viewport and draw a sectional viewport over the middle of the windows of the viewport. From outside the viewport so you cross over the entire viewport and face it down.

The result will be a plan cut at the middle of the building which includes all the sloping walls looking down on them.

HTH

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I always leave it like it is, but I draw the roof in two pieces, one is the planes you see on your floor plan, and on another layer are the planes you don't see there, then it's all you want.

Nowadays, I also use the autohybrid when I draw the whole roof manually, then you can do the same.

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Thanks for these replies. They seem to suggest an approach similar to what I was deciding to try out.

So for each building level I need 3 types of elements

a) 3d/2d hybrid objects (display in 3D views and floorplan views)

b) 3d only objects (only display in 3D views)

c) 2d only objects (only display on floorplan views)

Any thoughts on whether it works better to separate these by layer or class?

eg. at the moment I have 3 wall classes (external walls, internal walls, party walls) because it's useful to be able to switch off, say, external walls whilst working on the 3d model. But if I also want to have these on or off according to floorplan/3d view, I have to subdivide each of those classes into my (a)(b)© categories above. So I end up with 9 wall classes instead of 3.

Alternatively I keep my 3 wall classes but have 3 floorplan layers, one layer each for type (a)(b) and © objects.

I guess separating by class probably makes editing things in floorplan view less fiddly?

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Try this, Create an elevation viewport and then select the viewport and draw a sectional viewport over the middle of the windows of the viewport. From outside the viewport so you cross over the entire viewport and face it down.

The result will be a plan cut at the middle of the building which includes all the sloping walls looking down on them.

HTH

Yes, have already done this, thanks. See the last image in my initial post. The problem is that this doesn't show doors symbols etc properly.

However, I think I might try using a design layer viewport (that I can switch on and off) with this sectional view, that I can trace off in 2d to get my cut lines in the right place.

Edited by col37400

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Opps missed that, But this is the way I have done it in the past.

In this case it was some 2d and 3d.

Edited by Alan Woodwell

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Here's a solution - it's clunky but given the current capabilities perhaps one of the better ones:

Stacked & Clipped Viewports (with a hint of nutmeg)

(1) Create a Section Viewport at the correct cutting plane

(2) Create a standard Top/Plan Viewport above it without the roof

Align them

Using (1) as a guide edit the crop of (2).

The clip tool can be very handy for this.

add nutmeg to taste

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Yes, something like that could work. Would still have to add in manually the bits of roofplane that you look down upon though. So perhaps include the roof in the top/plan viewport.

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If you don't like the Section Viewport look of the roof you could add a third VP including the roof and underlay that.

You would then clip the Exterior surface of the roof from the Section VP.

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It is possible to give the section viewport a depth range, i.e. in your case further down than just the elevation at which you set the section.

E.g. if you put the section elevation just above the roof base, looking down and then specify a depth until the floor level you should see all elements within that range. (at least it works that way for horizontal sections, so it should work similarly for top view sections)

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Hi Col37400,

Have followed this over from another thread. I think you mentioned you are running an older version (v2011?) of Vectorworks. If so, I would recommend upgrading. The 3D features added since then, as well as interface improvements are significant. Objects like Roof Framer, Auto-hybrid, Subdivision objects, components to slab and roof. Also as someone who used to advocate upgrading every second release for average users—and whilst I have not run the numbers recently—a VSS subscription worked out cheaper than upgrading every two to three versions.

On to drawing set up, it comes down to how many layers you are happy working on. I use saved views for each plan level, as well as saved views for RCP's, and 3D views (esp if I am creating a walk through). Also using Command-Up/Down Arrows, you can switch between layers quickly.

Layers

For this loft level, I would split it into at least two. One for the roof, and one for the walls, floors, etc. As I like splitting parts of each level up with layers, I would add another for RCP/ceiling fixtures as well.

Classes

You may choose to place objects on visualisation/3D presentation classes that can turned off in plan. If an object is not for 3D presentation, but for BIM modelling, you can either turn off it's class(es), or place it on a layer that will now be shown on that view (e.g. a ceiling layer—as stated above).

2D/3D Hybrid

For Vectorworks 2011, the setup above would require some 2D work on the walls layer, but prevents the confusion of cutting through roof objects (doing this would introduce either geometry double ups, and/or further workarounds in order to not have weird cut lines to the roof plan).

If you had a more recent version of Vectorworks, you could draw the roof in pure 3D (unfortunately you cannot use hybrid objects like roof, or floor in an Auto Hybrid object, but you could convert them to 3D geometry) and use the Auto Hybrid command to create a hybrid object.

This object has different abilities for viewing; 2D and 3D, or just 2D; for the cut plane; above cut plane; and below cut plane. Also you can duplicate an object, and so as not to double up on 3D geometry, change it to 2D only mode, place it on another layer (like your walls layer).

Auto Hybrid Power Tip Often I will create a 3D symbol for objects like complex eaves, beams or trusses, and convert the symbol to an Auto Hybrid object, and duplicate the object to show in the many many variations and layers I want to show it on. This way, if I update the 3D symbol, it will update across all instances of the Auto Hybrid objects referencing that symbol. Rock'n'roll! ;)

NOTE: Please don't make the mistake of creating symbols of Auto Hybrid objects. Vectorworks doesn't like it, esp when exporting the geometry out of Vectorworks. Instead, as described above, make the symbol from the 3D geometry inside the auto Hybrid object. Capisce?

Final Note

Whilst the clever workarounds like creating section viewports from elevations are great thought exercises, sometimes the best way to get around the 2D/3D display limitations of Vectorworks is to simply draw in 2D. If you don't want some of the 2D to show in your 3D views, maybe you could place the 2D objects on the screen plane and turn off Display Screen Objects in Unified View settings.

Hope that helps. :)

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I work on lots of houses like this too. bcd's suggestion from Dec. 13 is the best method I've come across. I don't even clip the top/plan viewport. The roof just covers what it has to. It's still a pain when you get to dimensioning the walls and stuff.

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I use combination of 3D and 2D.

I model the building so that I can generate my elevations and roof plans.

For lofts (recently completed one) I usually find it easier to create a top plan view of the loft, a section at the cutting height, and using the section as a guide (convert copy to lines), draw 2D graphics over the top plan view to get the look I want.

In another thread, there is a discussion on eclipsing the industry. Maybe they can start with something like this first. Adjustable floor plan heights is what we need, but with the current mash-up it doesn't quite work and loft plans take too long to produce.

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In another thread, there is a discussion on eclipsing the industry. Maybe they can start with something like this first. Adjustable floor plan heights is what we need, but with the current mash-up it doesn't quite work and loft plans take too long to produce.

+1 adjustable top/plan viewport heights (that don't cut through openings that aren't at that height)

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So...I have now updated from VW2011 to VW2016 (the trial version, anyway).

I am pleased to see that it now appears to be possible to generate a horizontal section that shows doors correctly (ie with swing line etc). Well, almost.

I've attached an image from a very simple test file. Top LH corner is the conventional top/plan view.

Bottom LH corner is what I get generating a horizontal section from the clip cube. It kind of shows the door correctly. But with a thick line drawn across the threshold. Why?

Is there some way I can get rid of this line?

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Probably best option is to cut a section viewport across an Elevation Viewport to get the results attached.

You can move the section line that appears in your annotation layer and even reverse the view, limit the depth of the view and extent of the section line.

When you first create this you get red thick lines as its the default sop you need to change the class "Section Style" to something lighter.

HTH

Edited by Alan Woodwell

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Probably best option is to cut a section viewport across an Elevation Viewport to get the results attached.

You can move the section line that appears in your annotation layer and even reverse the view, limit the depth of the view and extent of the section line.

When you first create this you get red thick lines as its the default sop you need to change the class "Section Style" to something lighter.

HTH

That's basically what I've tried, as described further up the thread. But there are two problems which are visible on your attachments too.

Firstly you can see all the joins between wall segments. It seems you can get rid of this by using the "merged cross sections" option in the advanced section properties dialogue but then you can't show construction layers within the walls like you can in a normal plan view.

Secondly it doesn't show door swing lines. However, it seems that doing it the way I describe just above ^^^ (ie generating the section from a clip cube) gives me door swing lines. But it also gives me that line across the threshold that I don't want.

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Sorry, I do add a duplicate normal top/plan viewport over these viewports which show all the 2D lines.

Edited by Alan Woodwell

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So...I have now updated from VW2011 to VW2016 (the trial version, anyway).

I am pleased to see that it now appears to be possible to generate a horizontal section that shows doors correctly (ie with swing line etc). Well, almost.

I've attached an image from a very simple test file. Top LH corner is the conventional top/plan view.

Bottom LH corner is what I get generating a horizontal section from the clip cube. It kind of shows the door correctly. But with a thick line drawn across the threshold. Why?

Is there some way I can get rid of this line?

Does anyone know if I can get rid of that line across the threshold in the plan section view? If not, does that mean this is a bug and should be submitted as such?

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I think you will find that you have selected trim to the either external or internal for the doors and one of them continues on all sides of the door. Even under the floor. So it shows in the plan. Turn it off in the door settings of the OIP.

HTH

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I think you will find that you have selected trim to the either external or internal for the doors and one of them continues on all sides of the door. Even under the floor. So it shows in the plan. Turn it off in the door settings of the OIP.

HTH

I do have internal and external trims, but tried turning both of them off completely and the line is still there.

The line does not appear in the "wireframe" preview in the door settings dialogue. But it does in the horizontal section viewport.

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