Jump to content

Extrude Text Along "Helix Spiral" Path issues

Recommended Posts

Dear VW friends, 


I have been trying and failing at creating extruded text along a Helix Spiral, the text always seems to skew out 

and leave the path. I tried playing around with the rotation around path but it's still turning out wonky... My goal is 

to have the text extrude flat along the path so that it can placed on the outside of a cilinder. I feel its because the path is

rotating around itself slightly but can't figure out how to avoid this problem any thoughts? 




I kept at it and I think I found a work around that gave me the result I needed....

The result is visually correct but it's hard to get it done in exact dimensions, so it took

me 4 tries to get it close to the size I needed... So maybe there is still a better way to approach this 

but I did it as follows:


1. In top view I created a line (path) at an angle (the angle that worked for me was 7.5 degrees)

2. I used the text along path tool to extrude the text along the line (scaling height and width to match the length of the path)

3. Using a 3d locus I marked the center of the "text along path" object

4. In front view I then used the Deform tool to bend to object into a helix spiral using the 3D locus as starting point ( deforming 270 degrees was about the right amount for me)


I will post images of my process below... I still think it should be possible using the 'text along path" tool directly with a helix spiral path but just couldn't figure it out...


Thank you for your help!


p.s. I posted this earlier in the general forum not realizing it should probably have been here in the modeling thread.


Screen Shot 2020-03-18 at 10.28.38 PM.png

Screen Shot 2020-03-18 at 10.28.55 PM.png

Screen Shot 2020-03-18 at 10.29.53 PM.png

Screen Shot 2020-03-18 at 10.31.16 PM.png

Share this post

Link to post

The instructions for text along a helix are not there yet. Why are the words backwards and not vertical? 1447797604_wrongreadingtextalongahelix.thumb.jpg.794ee7a81d1965c920062846218a19a0.jpg

Share this post

Link to post


I don't know why you're not using the Model>Create Helix Spiral Command? Much more controllable and can be any shape. I have the Rotation field in the OIP set to 50º for the Text along Path object. However as you can see from the screenshot even in an orthogonal Top view you'll never get all the letters vertical. This must be a limitation of the command with that particular shape of path. In which case you'd be better off breaking it down to smaller sections of individual Text along Path objects.






Screenshot 2020-05-15 at 3.59.03 pm.png

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post

these helixes and have twist.


ie the normal is not always parallel to ground plane. imagine a bit of extension cord or garden hose with a stripe on it. lay it out out straight with the stripe always on top. the normal at each point along the cord passes perpendicular from the center axis through the stripe. now coil it into a helix. the stripe will not be always “up”. it twists around. 


 Text Along Path extrudes along the normal to the path, producing a variable tilt.   i think for this use, the deform method is brilliant!

if text displays backwards of intended, deform in other direction, or mirror. 



  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


7150 Riverwood Drive, Columbia, Maryland 21046, USA   |   Contact Us:   410-290-5114


© 2018 Vectorworks, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Vectorworks, Inc. is part of the Nemetschek Group.

  • Create New...