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Todd Drucker

Help with understanding List on creating a Truncated Cone

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I began using Marionette yesterday and I have a lot to learn. I have moderate experience in Grasshopper and am trying to best translate my knowledge to vectorworks.
For my first exercise, I can trying to do 2 functions. First, is to create a truncated column. Second, is to divide that surface and map on an object onto that surface (similar to box morphing in grasshopper).


I was able to create the truncated column by doing these 3 following commands:

1. moving polygon in Z direction

2. scaling object

3. duplicating object 

4. repeat.


I would appreciate understanding List better because I think these operations can have more control and truly be parametric with a different set up. My set up is very manual and I would apprecaite feedback. 


For the second part, I would like to divide the surface and map an object onto the surface. I was able to "fake it" in a plan view, but couldn't figure out how to make the surface from my curves.


I would apprecaite any help. I will not quit.


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Hey @Todd Drucker - I am excited to see you have started with Marionette! The first thing to remember though, is although Marionette is the same type of tool as Grasshopper, it's based off of Vectorworks' functionality and just as Grasshopper is based off of Rhino's functionality. Marionette doesn't really have an equivalent to "Morph" - some people have created arrays along surfaces with it, but they usually have to do it mathematically. There is however a command in the model menu called "Create Surface Array" that pretty much does this. It take a 2D or 3D object and arrays it across a NURBS surface, So I think you might have better luck if you model the column using curves and a loft surface (you can create this with Marionette if you like or just model it manually), the modeled pattern, and then use the Surface Array command. Tip, if you convert the 3D object to a mesh, it will morph around the Surface Array.

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Thank you @sbarrett for the feedback.


First off, thank you for your videos on marionette. It was a helpful introduction. I think what Vectorworks really needs is a primer on transition from a rhino methodology to Vectorworks. 


I was able to create the column, but only by extruding tapped curves and combing to solid. This wouldn't work with Create Surface Array and it didn't work when I create a mesh. I attached the model again.


I have never been able to successfully loft curves or sweep in Vectorworks. It is very frustrating that these commands are intuitive in Rhino, but bring lots of difficulty with Vectorworks.


In Rhino, lofting creates a surface between a network of curves  to create a 3d object


In Rhino, sweep2d, would take a profile/section and sweep it across a rail, the vector. 


I'm positive there are ways to comprehend this in Vectorworks if someone can help out with the attached file.



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Thank you @GRZEGORZ. This is really helpful to understand how the Vectorworks tools function. In my script, I was able to offset the curves, but didn't include the deleting and conversion to have control over what is being lofted.


I am trying to modify the math so the series is exponentially growing, but the results are still a shape that grows uniformly. I looked for a general math forum, but couldn't find one.


The last step is manual where I have successfully rebuild the nurbs curve because the truncated cone will join with another shape for the ceiling plane. I updated the file below if you can help me out..  


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@Todd Drucker

To get more "exponential" shape you will need exponential function.

Here you have my very first attempt to build something like graph mapper. Inside a wrapper called "GraphMapper2.0" there is a curve that can be modified as desired. Wrapper generates set of values based on y values of that curve. Next we can use this values to create non-linear modifiers for scale vector.

Unfortunately, every time you copy this wrapper you need to add name to the curve inside the wrapper, the same as nodes name inside wrapper.

But it should work, you can play around it by changing ValueMax, and ValueMin or changing the shape of the curve.

Have fun.



COLUMN PRACTICE 3 TD-GK 07_04_2020.vwx

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Thanks for your help back in April.... 

For this project, I moved away from Marionette and used built in tools including lofting, surface array, extrude along a path, etc. to build the model. Was happy with the end result... Now onto BIM...



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