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Lec

Power distro symbols

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OK so I'm on to VW 2020 and still there are no symbols for making power distros - is it too much to ask that VW comes up with an adaptable symbol which you can specify the inputs and outputs so production electricians can create power schematics for shows. Unless I'm missing something in which case please let me know...:)

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Also why in the world are there "Power Devices Metric" but no "Power Devices Imperial" for symbols. That seems super odd to me and I am don't understand why I have to draw these my self when power is a super integral part of entertainment planning!

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are you talking about the Event Power symbols?  those were developed here in the US.  

as far as schematics, take a look at ConnectCAD, it should do the job for you on those.

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Good call Rob, thanks...I'll take a look at ConnectCAD.

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I think Vectorworks as a whole needs to embrace both Metric and Imperial if it's to stay a market leader or people will just stick with AutoCAD which I never had a problem with years ago when I used it.

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Event Power symbols are OK for mains in as a master supply but when you need to break it down to smaller units and have multiple power distros dotted around your venue then Vectorworks has nothing to offer. Maybe one day....

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I will add it to our list of requests.  we try to do both units, since we are a world-wide company with users all over the globe.

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and the nice thing about connectCAD, you can make your own representations for the IN/OUT boxes, sized as you need them.  

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That would be great thanks.

Maybe one day we can get trusses converted to hanging positions to be able to be rotated too....:)

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1 hour ago, Rob Books said:

I will add it to our list of requests.  we try to do both units, since we are a world-wide company with users all over the globe.

I think "Power Devices Imperial" is already made, it just isn't included with spotlight which seems very odd.

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15 hours ago, Pochflyboy said:

I think "Power Devices Imperial" is already made, it just isn't included with spotlight which seems very odd.

Unfortunately, it does not exist.  I just checked our files.

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On 9/12/2019 at 8:04 AM, Rob Books said:

Unfortunately, it does not exist.  I just checked our files.

Well I know in the MEP tools there is receptacle tools and circuit planning tools that include the imperial symbols. These would be immensely helpful for AVL and to have in spotlight. Seems not fair to not have those in spotlight when they are SO important for the entertainment industry.

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I am curious as to what these distros would look like. Is this for laying out schematics?  Are you looking for a parametric tool that creates these on the fly or just looking for 2D symbols that you can populate as needed?  

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Hi there, ideally you would have a symbol similar to that of a lighting fixture - only its shape would be a simple rectangle in 2d and cuboid in 3d. The idea would be to double click on it as you would a lighting fixture and then you input information such as power input (Powerlok, 63A 3phase Ceeform, 125A Ceeform etc) and the types of power outputs (16A single, 32A 3phase etc etc). It would simply represent schematically what sort of distros you are using on your event so crew can see on a plan what mains distros go where. If possible it would also calculate phase loading if you had the ability to tell it what multicore (socapex) were plugged into where. It just seems a pity that you can stipulate almost every known possibility for a generic light such as beam angle, shutters gobos, circuit way, address, unit number etc, but there is nothing as useful for mains distros which are just as important a part of any rig for a production electrician. Too often I see Vectorworks pandering towards the needs of US theatre designers with little or no support for the rest of us who work in the corporate sector all over the world. We need better service for the vast amount of money we spend on VSS.

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30 minutes ago, Lec said:

Hi there, ideally you would have a symbol similar to that of a lighting fixture - only its shape would be a simple rectangle in 2d and cuboid in 3d. The idea would be to double click on it as you would a lighting fixture and then you input information such as power input (Powerlok, 63A 3phase Ceeform, 125A Ceeform etc) and the types of power outputs (16A single, 32A 3phase etc etc). It would simply represent schematically what sort of distros you are using on your event so crew can see on a plan what mains distros go where. If possible it would also calculate phase loading if you had the ability to tell it what multicore (socapex) were plugged into where. It just seems a pity that you can stipulate almost every known possibility for a generic light such as beam angle, shutters gobos, circuit way, address, unit number etc, but there is nothing as useful for mains distros which are just as important a part of any rig for a production electrician. Too often I see Vectorworks pandering towards the needs of US theatre designers with little or no support for the rest of us who work in the corporate sector all over the world. We need better service for the vast amount of money we spend on VSS.

 

A friend of mine is working on a Mac application that does exactly what you described above. Except for the fact that it is an external app. 

 

So far I have used excel to make my dimmer and PSU sheets and spend ages on macro’s for automation of the process. This did result in a fast workflow. 

 

Ofcourse it would be magnificent if it where built into VWX. But if it does what you need fats and effective then that’s great too isn’t it? 

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Lightwright can do the work you're looking for minus the graphical part, and it integrates with Vectorworks. It's a staple of my workflow as a production electrician and designer in theatre, concert touring, and corporate work. I use it to assign dimmers, circuits, and addresses, and it does all my load calculations. That's really scratching the surface of what it can do.

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Andy calls, and here I am.

First, yes, Lightwright does a fantastic job of power management.

Second, ConnectCAD is a gorgeous suite of tools, but we have yet to see what it will cost, and how that will amortize over hours you save.

As for VW, there are questions and issues.

Do you want to put Power Distros (PDs) on the drawing?

     What should they look like?  Should that change between different PDs?  Based on what?

     Is directionality of the graphic important?

     Do you have the drawing real estate to handle placing PD graphics?

          You can always hide them on a layer and have special views.  Gonna do that?

The big one.  I assume that you would want the PD object to carry information.  What information should each PD hold?

What do you want to do with that info?  Do you want to collect more than the number of each kind of PD?  What kind of reports, if any, would you want from VW.

Understand that PDs in VW would not interact with LW the way lights do unless John McKernon and VW put there heads together, do some work and make it so.  I think coordination of LW and VW with both PDs and cable will probably not be a part of any update for LW 6, but I'm not in that club.  As for LW 7, I know John has a list, but he also has 2 dogs, a farm, and other things to do with his time.

Are PDs different from dimmer racks?  How?  (besides not dimming)  Should dimmer racks be considered PDs and just lump them all together?

PDs have a direct effect on cable layouts and requirements, so having some kind of PD display and record keeping will be a part of cable planning and management.  I am planning on adding PDs to my set of cable tools, but I need to answer the above questions.  Also, ConnectCAD may or may not interface with VW cable tools or my cable tools.  I will need to see something of ConnectCAD in more detail before putting in the effort to develop PDs.  Also, there are several other projects to work on in my cable tools, like creating accurate box contents reports, so the time table for PDs will be in some flux.

All of this does not help you get the job done right now, but the specificity with which you answer those questions will give you 2 paths to the future.

     One, the development of your own symbols with records to hold info.

     Two, providing me with info to create intelligent objects to get the job done.

BTW, No, I do not spend all my time sitting in front of my computer making VW plug-ins, I have a 13 hour call tomorrow, and the wife is painting the condo.  The other 3rd party heavy hitters, Andy and Josh, have similar or greater obligations.  But then you were hoping the VW mothership would get it done.  Maybe, but records, worksheets, and vectorscript are the greatest boons to entertainment CAD since the pencil.  

 

Sam

 

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