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Data Tag scaling

Samuel Derenboim


 I love the feature where symbols can be scaled proportionally to itself in order to provide the correct size of lettering for paper scale. One of the things that I do on my drawings is create a 1:1 scaled symbol, and then scale them proportionally to the drawing size. That means, if it is a 1/4"=1'-0" drawing - i scale that symbol 48 times - to get the same appearance as i would at paper scale. 


One of the many benefits of this feature is that I can share this with engineers or other architects that use Autocad. Unfortunately, when symbols are inserted in annotation, the drawing itself has to be exploded and scaled back again in model space. This is why the scale feature id design space is so useful. 


Here is the question - I want to do the same with a data tag tool - precisely for the same reasons. Currently, I've desiged a 1:1 tag and use it in annotation space. If I were to use it in Design layer space - i would have to again - scale appropriately - after I have inserted them. Is it possible to have an option to create the tags at a certain scaled size - IE 10x, or 12x etc...?


Wonder how others do this. I know this is a new feature, but it has certainly opened a totally new world for us in terms of parametrics, so way to go VW, couldn't love this data tag tool more!

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Sure, I can give several. 

1st file - Annotations for details. 

Description - record format would be assigned to different components to annotate a detail. The size in a data tag is constant - and cannot be changed. Therefore, in order to accommodate different scale types for detailed drawings - scaled data tags would be appropriate to retain the text size in sheet layers. It would also help if the data tag had scale handles for text.


Note how viewport outline is the same symbol only scaled proportionately to the viewport sheetlayer scale in order to fit into the same grid box in the sheetlayer grid

Text Size Appears the Same in Sheet layer viewports because differently scaled text appears proportionately to the sheetlayer viewport scale. In this particular case sheetlayer viewports are:

1. 8"=1'-0" (1.5:12 ) inside 3"=1'-0" Design layer  - 10pt text at 1:1 = 3.8 pt. - Datatag Scale designed in 1:1 would be scaled 1.5x

2. 2"=1'-0" (6:12) inside 3"=1'-0" Design layer - 10 pt txt at 1:1 @ 2" = 1'-0" = 15 pt - Datatag Scale in 1:1  would be scaled 6x

3. 1"=1'-0" (12:12) inside 3"=1'-0" Design layer - 10 pt txt at 1:1 @ 1"=1'-0" = 30 pt - Datatag Scale in 1:1 would be scaled 12x

CONCEPT : Data tag used as annotation for detail callouts. In order for it to be used - the data tag callouts must be able to scale the same way as Symbols can


2nd File - Area Summations (Floor area, zoning, building code, etc...)

Description - 

Area takeoffs in this file are used for zoning take-offs, and are to be displayed dynamically on the polygon / rectangle with the appropriate record format.

However, when you have a 1:1 sized data tag - in the design layer viewport - it is disproportionate to the rest of the drawing - depending on the design layer scale. 

In this example - I've shown the different sheet layer viewports at different scales demonstrating difference between the same callouts in the annotation portion of a view port and the design layer viewport itself.


Concept Generally it is preferable to control the tag in the design layer viewport - because of any underlays that might be shown in different drawings - if they are needed. It is easier to move them out of the way in the design layer viewport than in the sheetlayer annotation viewport. 

Additionally - Consultants will not see these tags in the design layer viewport if a master design layer is only exported.


Hope this helps!


Sample 1 - Data tag scale.vwx

Sample 2 - Floor area take-offs.vwx

Edited by Samuel Derenboim
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Hi Kostadin,


Sorry I have tested it a bit more extensively. They behave like page based symbols on design layers but they don't behave like page based symbols in Sheet Layer Viewports - ie they change sizes with different scale viewports. Ideally they would stay the same size in different scaled Sheet Layer Viewports like Page Based Symbols do? That tends to be our real world use of them, ie we want a door label that is on a particular design layer to be the same  page size on a 1:00 as on a 1:50 drawing. 





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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

Hi Tim,


Thanks for your feedback and detailed explanation. We will consider this. For the moment my recommend is if you wan to tag a something in design layer and the tag to be same in different scales of viewports, to use annotation group of the viewport. You are able to tag a object from the visible design layers and the data tag can be placed in the annotation group of the viewport.



Kostadin Ivanov

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