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michaelk

Theater Flat Tool

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Posted (edited)

HOLY CRAP - ABOUT TO DROP ALL MY WORK TO TRY THIS ūüôā

IMO - this should be grabbed up by VectorWorks and integrated into 2020.  Such a basic tool that can be expanded on and used everyday!

 

Thank you for even attempting it ūüôā
Ethan

 

@Brendan Gray

@Charlie Winter

Edited by Ethan R.
added @s

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Hi Ethan

 

Your signature says you're running 2016.  Here's a 2016 file.  I'm almost positive it will run on 2016, but I don't have a way of testing it at the moment.  Let me know if it runs.

 

Thanks

 

mk

FAST FLAT V0_9 v2016.vwx

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Oh - i'm on 2019 -> Haven't updated that since 2016 ! LOL!

 

Got t working in 2018. Its a great start.  As I said - I think VectorWorks should take it and turn it into somethign like the "Wall" tool. 

- inlcude Jacks (type, size, interval, etc ..);

 

but probably not worth their time?¬†¬† I dig it ūüôā

 

Ethan

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Ha. Never thought about jacks!  Good idea. 

 

There are a bunch of additional features (like jacks) that would be simple to do. I might do it just for the fun of it.  

 

After I get past the next few deadlines. 

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Cool! Thanks!!

 

In a future version, another thing that would be helpful is the ability to add additional verticals along with the horizontals.

 

For example a 10x10' Hollywood flat might look like this:

1405301775_ScreenShot2019-06-07at11_20_39AM.thumb.png.c3e6f3a3351844aa04fdc2ff3d983285.png

 

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Good idea.  That would be pretty easy.

 

Not that I'm going to draw it this way, but are those joints half lapped or are the horizontals just toe nailed?  i.e. are the internal framing members 8 pieces or 24 pieces?

 

 

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I've seen it done various ways, depending on how quick and cheap the shop is building it, but¬†4 solid verticals and 20 horizontal pieces would be common (either toenailed with nail/staple gun, or offsetting each one 3/4" up and down). And occasionally I see¬†framing members¬†installed¬†on face rather than on edge wherever there's a lauan seam in order to help with fastening. But I don't think the tool would need to do any of those things. ūüôā¬†Since construction methods surely vary from shop to shop and region to region, generic is good for a tool like this. (I'd also be curious to hear how other people see their flats built).

 

To avoid Z-fighting at the intersections it's likely you'd want to do it as individual horizontal pieces rather than solid long pieces, if possible. But I'm not sure of the complexity of scripting!

 

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Cool tool!

 

A few years ago I added Typical flat wall styles for the Wall tool.  they are still in there and though it does not break up the flat wall the way this tool does, gives you at least a good 2D representation.  

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13 hours ago, michaelk said:

This is mostly useless, but at least one person in the world asked for it and @C. Andrew Dunning¬†is apparently barely making his flights on time. ¬†ūüôā

 

That streak that just passed you was me...trying to make that flight...  ;-)

 

13 hours ago, michaelk said:

This is mostly useless, but at least one person in the world asked for it and @C. Andrew Dunning¬†is apparently barely making his flights on time. ¬†ūüôāAttached is a plug-in that builds theater flats. ¬†It's not super great. ¬†It only does...

 

It doesn't pass the @C. Andrew Dunning ROI test and probably never will, so it may never get better.  I mostly did it to learn how to turn scripts into tools.

Post back here if you find any bugs or have any suggestions.

 

1)  A big hat's off to you for jumping into the coding pool.  A lot of users have good ideas but never do what you have done.  Kudos for giving things a go.

 

2)  Whether it ever makes you any $ or not, you now have a tool that a) meets a need you had and b) that you can tweak as your needs evolve.  I've got many that will never see the commercial light of day...that are "raw" at-best...but that are an integral part of my workflow.

 

3)  Now that you've dipped your toes, be prepared to be frustrated when you find things in other developers' tools that you feel the impulse to "adjust" and can't...  ;-)

 

13 hours ago, michaelk said:

This is mostly useless, but at least one person in the world asked for it and @C. Andrew Dunning¬†is apparently barely making his flights on time. ¬†ūüôāLuckily I had a long enough flight to write the script and @Pat Stanford¬†was kind enough to walk me through turning it into a tool late at night after rehearsal. ¬†And then the rest of the scripting community set me straight on a bunch of other issues.

Luckily I had a long enough flight to write the script and @Pat Stanford was kind enough to walk me through turning it into a tool late at night after rehearsal.  And then the rest of the scripting community set me straight on a bunch of other issues.

Post back here if you find any bugs or have any suggestions.

Post back here if you find any bugs or have any suggestions.

 

For anyone reading this who is tempted to jump into creating Tools or Commands, you'll find the Scripting community to be incredibly gracious and generous with help...tips...hints...etc.  The list of people who have helped me over the years is longer than I could ever remember.

 

13 hours ago, michaelk said:

This is mostly useless, but at least one person in the world asked for it and @C. Andrew Dunning¬†is apparently barely making his flights on time. ¬†ūüôāPost back here if you find any bugs or have any suggestions.

Post back here if you find any bugs or have any suggestions.

 

If you're running VW in Developer Mode (VW Preferences dialog...), you'll get an "Integer" error on line 16.  The code is looking for a value that should be an Integer but it is being given a Real #.  The tools still works; you just get the error message.

 

 

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6 minutes ago, C. Andrew Dunning said:

For anyone reading this who is tempted to jump into creating Tools or Commands, you'll find the Scripting community to be incredibly gracious and generous with help...tips...hints...etc.  The list of people who have helped me over the years is longer than I could ever remember.

 

Absolutely true.  Unbelievably patient people :-).

 

12 minutes ago, C. Andrew Dunning said:

2)¬† Whether it ever makes you any $ or not, you now have a tool that a) meets a need you had and b) that you can tweak as your needs evolve.¬† I've got many that will never see the commercial light of day...that are "raw" at-best...but that are an integral part of my workflow.ÔĽŅ

 

Me, too.  I bet I have couple dozen scripts that are a little hacky (probably more than a little.)  that I use all the time and make me much more productive.  Probably saves me hours each week.  There are a couple that I think could be better if I turned them into tools.  This one seemed like the coding was simple enough that it was time to take the plunge.

 

Thanks for my first bug report!!!

 

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1 hour ago, Rob Books said:

Cool tool!

 

A few years ago I added Typical flat wall styles for the Wall tool.  they are still in there and though it does not break up the flat wall the way this tool does, gives you at least a good 2D representation.  

 

Hi Rob.  I never noticed those!  Cool.

 

I've tried using custom wall styles and the framing command in the past to get close.

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This is getting stupid.  I have other things I should be doing!

 

I have a version with brace jacks ready to go.  I'll probably add vertical ribs.  It would be fun to add corner blocks and keystones.

 

But I've been looking for an example of something I've only heard about.  I wonder if anyone can help me find it.  I remember someone telling me about a graphic standard from ye old hand drafting days for flats in ground plans.  I recall he wanted the VW wall tool to do it.  It involved drawing the flat with a certain line weight for the downstage and sides of the flat and a poché but the upstage side had no line.  @PatStanford, was this at one of your user group meetings?  Maybe this is just a convention for Hollywood flats that Pat's user group members would know about and not for traditional Broadway flats?

 

Am I making this up?  Or was he pulling my leg?

 

I have an old Warfel book, but he mostly says "don't draw scenery". :-).  (heavily paraphrasing).

 

If this rings a bell, let me know.  And then I have to get back to real work.

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Yes, there was some discussion of using the wall tool to draw flats. I have asked the person I think was involved in the discussion but have not heard back.

 

If I remember correctly, it was a heavy line on one side, no line on the back side and a solid fill.

 

And as you have stated¬†with there are other things you should be doing, there is a good reason we actually call it the Vectorworks Abusers Group. Though sometimes I think it is called that due to all the abuse I take when I mess up. ūüėČ

 

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I can't believe you remember that meeting.  I think that was before wall styles, so it wasn't easy to do!

 

I'm done with it for now!  Back to work.  New version is posted here.

 

Thanks again for all your help.

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