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Duplicate along path tool............

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need a whole bunch of work to be an effective tool. I just tried using it again last night and I remember why I always go back to Rhino for operations like these. I am trying to dupilcate a simple locus along an arc. I set the preferences for a fixed distance from the end of path and it does not when going in opposite directions, ie, my locus is at the left end of the path and I set the distance of 12", supposedly from the path end. Worked from the end but the parts were not spaced out correctly. Tried to work from right to left and now it maintains the fixed 12" from the start of the path not the end. Tried everything to make work, just not worth the effort for a marginal at best tool.

Anyone have any luck with this tool.??

How about keeping parts oriented when duplicating along a given path?? Other programs do, why not VW???

Still frustrated..........

tom in pa

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The very easiest method to dup anything along an arc or circlular path is to use Multiple Duplicate and set the number of dups and the angle then either program or click the coordinate of the arc center . Bingo ... perfectly spaced & placed duplicates of anything.

All that is required is a basic awareness of the math involved:

radius, radian, arc angle, circumference, etc..

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No, not as simple a tool as you say if what you are trying to achieve is different to how Vecorworks thinks you want to use it, or it's not capable of doing what you think it is capable of.

I had some wall panels 50 mm thick x 1000mm wide. I wanted to duplicate these along a path, a curve of 25 metres diameter. I wanted them to be flush with each other and I could them measure what "make up" panel I had to produce to finish the faceted wall within the given area I had to fill.

Each time the panels would not follow the path, wanting to spin around to each other etc, or overlap. I often don't even have a centre of raduis to work angles out to if its a freehand drawn line.

I tried to do this for ages, but instead went back to my old method of placing , adjusting and butting each panel together manually using the "path" as my guide.

I guess what Tom wants and certainly what I need is it to work in the same easy fashion as extrude along a path. From what I can understand tgm's need should be simple to achieve in just four operations.

1. draw the path

2. select the object to duplicate.

3. tell VW how many or at what distance along the path these should be and provided your start point for duplicate placement is the same start point of the path hit enter.

I wonder Tom if this is the problem. Your path was drawn say right to left but your duplicate placement you require is foreseen as starting from left going to right, but VW references the way the path was created and works from that direction. Maybe it needs another action in the dialog box, click to show "start point refernce on path"


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You are correct. It should be just that easy to do, simple as that.

As far as the start of the path I have no choice as I drew the radius using the Arc by 3 Points tool and in VW you have no choice. If you start the arc at one end the arc goes one way and if you start at the other end it goes opposite. So I am stuck only starting one way, another VW quirk that irks me.

I just want to place 'X' number of parts in a given distance. I have since resorted to doing it in another program with two clicks or so and importing the data into the VW drawing. This sounds crude but it is actually quicker than trying to fool with the VW tool.

Thanks for the input guys,

tom in pa

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TGM - the Duplicate Along Path tool works fine for me. I can get it to do what you want. The first click defines the start point. The second click indicates the direction and finishes the operation. If you tick the Tangent option it will rotates the object being duplicated so their relationship to the path is consistant.

Other options to locate points along an arc are:

- Arc to Segments which allows you to choose by No. of segments or distance.

- Multiple Divisions mode of the Snap to Distance constraint.

You can also locate objects on an arc by the Circular Duplicate Array method as described by Islandmon. If you need to work out the required segment angle duplicate the arc and just divide its sweep angle by the required No. on the OIP. This will allow you to read the segment angle off the OIP. When you have done this delete the duplicate arc.

[ 07-06-2005, 11:17 PM: Message edited by: mike m oz ]

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TGM - I have to eat humble pie.

I just read your post again and noticed that you want to duplicate anti-clockwise rather than clockwise around the arc. I then tried it again using a different duplicate distance and discovered that you are correct. It will only start from the one end and duplicate clockwise.

I even tried the following to see if this made a difference:

- Drawing the arc anti-clockwise rather than clockwise.

- Holding the Option key down like for tangent lines to reverse the direction.

No joy. I think this an oversight which NNA need to remedy.

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I agree with EJ, if you're doing anything that has a radius, the duplicate array is very useful.

However, I have had no problems with the duplicate along path tool. The start offset by distance will offset from the start of the path -good to keep in mind when originally drawing the path. If you want to start at any other point or go in another direction on your path have a locus placed appropriately to click to (set behind the path) and set the preference to Next Click. Drag in the direction along the path you are looking for. Accuracy has always been to the 0.001".

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Another thought

if you want to start a set distance from the end of the path and aren't happy setting a locus there to snap to, look at your path length in the OIP, subtract the distance you want to offset from the end and plug that number into the preference. You still drag to determine direction from start point.

Alan, I think your problem with the objects rotating at various angles may be to do with having an irregular freehand line for a path. Also, when rotating with the path, the orientation of the object as it is originally on the screen is used to determine a start angle relative to the path (when tangent to path is selected).

An alternate way to do a regular faceted wall would be to use the regular polygon tool and convert to walls.

[ 07-06-2005, 12:42 PM: Message edited by: Delmer ]

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Even if it is a bug, or a humbug, its still not a big deal. I would guess it has to do with the definition of an arc as moving clockwise from a point whereas polylines start where you start drawing.

Arc length =120, concave down.

I want to start 5 units from the right and move left (counterclockwise).

Enter 115, click, drag to the right, done.

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Delmer - that is the odd thing. Arcs are actually defined as being ani-clockwise (ie. +ve degrees) so you would think that it would act anti-clockwise rather than clockwise.

I have just checked and with polygons and polylines it starts from the the beginnining end so you can draw them appropriately for what you want.

With arcs however it always works clockwise no matter which way you have drawn the arc. I even tried converting the arcs into polygons to see if that would make any difference. No such luck!

Definately needs to be remedied.

[ 07-07-2005, 03:09 AM: Message edited by: mike m oz ]

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I just tried this, and I can duplicate an object from either end, in either direction, of an arc drawn either clockwise or anticlockwise.

I used a locus on the line at 1/2 the length of the object to mark the start point and in all instances the duplicate started from the end I was at and duplicated along the rest of the arc.

Just tried it again using Loci and it did what you described. :-/

It looks like it may be a bug specific to some objects(?)

Whoa!, now it's doing all sorts of wierd s#%t;

with all the same settings, now it's duplicating 3, or 10, or ...none.

I use this tool all the time, and I've never seen it do this before.

What system are you on Tom?


[ 07-07-2005, 03:35 AM: Message edited by: propstuff ]

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This isn't optimal, but it works. Duplicate your LOCI along the ARC in the CW direction with your fixed setting. Select all LOCI and the ARC. Then use the 2D Mirror tool. With the ARC selected, a snap point at the center of the ARC shows as does a snap point in the middle of the ARC. Mirror your LOCI across the line that connects these two snap points.


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