Jump to content

New Cable Suite - Preview


JuanP

Recommended Posts

1. The only way the new cable tools can provide the necessary organizational information to create build lists of looms is for the user to make sure that no cable run object has more than one part.  If there is such a cable run exists it must be broken into different objects using the split tool.  If you are going to try and hav a workflow that can handle all the variety of cable run paths,  then the above statement is absolute; there is no other way to do this.  "A",  not all the parts of a cable run will be members of the same loom, and "B" different parts of different cable runs will be in the same loom.

2. If you are going to control where all the parts of a given cable run land, you must do it with the split tool.  This is an absolute rule.  

 

It is possible to draw the entire cable run as a single object, but you want to create loom build lists and/or more accurately control where the cable breaks land.  The cable run must be split using the split tool into single part cable runs that are identified as a single cable run by the Cable ID.  This still makes it difficult to create the stickers described above.  It might be possible with a script.  The "absoluteness" of these 2 rules is reinforced by the fact that only the whole cable run has a Loom ID.  Each part needs a Loom ID, but cable parts are only virtual objects, data entries in a cable run object.  The data structure of a cable run could be changed to accommodate loom IDs for each part, but that hasn't happened yet, and would not matter without better control of part end placement.

 

I used and highlighted the word "absolute" because I wanted to be sure everyone takes notice.  If you do not believe it, cable the rig below so that each separate truss stick (several connected truss objects), can be flown in without having to fly any thing else.

 

Image.thumb.png.039b2078ae6514eac98f29ae4768561b.png

 

Image.thumb.png.6868eb2b054873ed6f70bdfbf984a4d1.png

 

 

Link to comment
  • 3 months later...
  • 5 weeks later...
  • klinzey changed the title to New Cable Suite - Previewhttps://forum.vectorworks.net/index.php?/topic/74035-new-cable-suite-preview-features/ Features
  • klinzey changed the title to New Cable Suite - Preview
  • klinzey unpinned this topic
  • 1 month later...

I am following this thread with interest; I'm looking forward to Jesse's skill videos and am interested in how to overcome the issues that Sam Jones is discussing - The ability to set the end point for a feeder loom (as identified by Sam) is essential.

 

I have a few other thoughts, but want to have a play to see how many questions have been answered...

 

The only question I have right now is how can I turn on/off whole sets of cables? I want to enable / disable what cable is used based on a vendor's stock items without selecting every individual cable.

 

I also have some questions I have about the power planning features - another resource I would like to get to know. 

I think they tie in quite closely to the cable management tools but I don't want to hijack the thread.

Is there is a resource I have missed, or a different thread to discuss this?
 

 

 

 

Link to comment
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee
On 10/30/2021 at 10:02 AM, tspilman said:

The only question I have right now is how can I turn on/off whole sets of cables? I want to enable / disable what cable is used based on a vendor's stock items without selecting every individual cable

You would create a cable set for each of the vendors that you want with and then in the cable preferences select the set you want to be active for the overall document. You can also use the cable area tool to assign different cable sets to different parts or layers of your file, so for example you can have a separate cable set being used on the audio layer.
You create cable sets by editing a cable parts set parameter.

  • The best way to do this is to open the application cable library file for the type of cable you want to create for the new set (located in your application folder>libraries>defaults>cable tools)
  • open the resource manager select the part symbol that is closest to to the one you want for the new set, (to reduce the amount of editing needed and allow you to have multiple cable sets with the same parts)
  • duplicate the part and give it a unique symbol name, its a good idea to include the company name in the symbol name to make finding the new part easier later on.
  • repeat this for each part you want for the new set,
    • It can be useful to group all the new parts into a resource folder for that set so you can easily share them.
  • one you have the new symbols open the Cable Parts Manager (located in the Spotlight>Cables and power planning sub menu)
  • use the search box to filter the parts library by the new symbols, use the company name for example
  • once you have located the new parts
  • either use the direct list editing in the main pane of the dialogue to update/edit the parts attached data record or double click on the part to access a dedicated editing dialogue for any parameter that is not directly accessible using direct list editing. 
  • To create the new set just replace the current set name with your new set name, just be careful to make sure the new name is exactly the same for each part in the set, I managed to create a duplicate set by having an extra space at the end the set name in one cable part!
  • Save the edited cable parts library file into your user or work-group folder, this will avoid the library file getting reset to default whenever a new service pack update is released.
  • If the new cable set contains cables of more than one type (both jumper and multi cables for example) you will need to repeat the above process in each the appropriate library file for each type of cable.
  • Once you have created all the new parts and saved the library files open a new empty file
  • open the the manage cable parts dialogue
  • hit the update button to tell the cable tools suite that the new parts have been created and that there is a new cable set available.

You should now be able to select the new cable set in the cable preferences.

 

On 10/30/2021 at 10:02 AM, tspilman said:

I also have some questions I have about the power planning features - another resource I would like to get to know. 

I think they tie in quite closely to the cable management tools but I don't want to hijack the thread.

Is there is a resource I have missed, or a different thread to discuss this?

As Sam says don't worry about hijacking the thread, but it may be easier for other users with the same questions to start a new thread about the power planning feature. Either way I'll do my best to answer any questions.
 

Link to comment

That's great - thank you. 

I'll go through the above when I don't have a 2 year old trying to sit on my keyboard!

(these questions may be a little back and forth - sorry about that (pease refer to 2yo referenced above)

 

A major point I am struggling to get my head around is distros;

 

Let's say I have 3x  trusses with 20x fixtures; so 4x socas, (each with a spare outlet)

This would result in 3x 4way soca looms running back to my distro. (a total of 12 socas)

 

The only moving light distros I can find in the software are 125a cee in, 8 harting out (52 way)

My distro of choice would be:

 

250a 3ph powerlock in

2x 250a 3ph powerlock through

outputs:

12x socapex (72x 20a 1ph trips)

(signal phase per soca: 1,1,1,1,2,2,2,2,3,3,3,3)

6x 16a 1ph cee (phase 1)

1x 32a 1ph (phase 2)

1x 32a 3ph

 

How do I create this in vectorworks?
(I can duplicate/edit the distros in the resource manager and change the notes, but the 'power information' in the object info palette (obviously) is not updated).

 

I want to feed this distro from a 400a 3ph powerlock generator. How do I add this?
(the only generator I can find is 125a 3ph cee)

 

Also, how does the power planning palette work?

I hooked the generator and light distro mentioned above, then linked it through a 1m 16a breakout to some moving lights (Mac vipers as they were the previously selected unit)

 

As you will see from the attached screenshots the moving lights showed up as 2x units on the device graph (not selectable individually)

Moving up the graph, the fan out also showed no load on L2 and the distro (and above) showed no load at all.

 

As for the component graph, I have no idea what is going on. This is as far as it would zoom out and it's already a mess. 

In context, this setup is 1x generator, 1x distro, 3x moving lights. The last job I did utilised 8x power drops, feeding 17 distros, and over 1000 lights (not to mention rigging / video)

 

As you may also note from the screenshots, I accidentally added 2x generators. I deleted the first but it was still in the graphs. 

'Right click / reload this page' seemed logical, but now everything has disappeared from the power planning windows. 

 

When I drill down into the object info, nothing becomes any clearer. 

The dropdown 'Power information > 125a house' for the generator has the following options:

-Input

-Power in

-Power in

-Input-A

-Power in

 

Input options for the distro are:

-Output 1

-Output 2

-Output 3

-Output 4

-Output 5

-Output 6

-125a house

 

I cannot see any logic in these options and madness continues for the selection of any input / output through the system. 

 

Can anyone explain:

-what is going on?

-how do I add custom

 A) generators

 B) moving light distros

(or change the inputs / outputs on existing distros)

 

I have included the file I am referring to  (as I mentioned, it is very minimal)

is anyone who understands this able to make it work? maybe if it is working it will make more sense to me. 

 

If this is ridiculously simple question, I apologise but it is not to me. 

 

I usually have a day or 2 to get paperwork ready between receiving a design file and having a team in to prep. 

If these features work it would be fantastic; saving me a load of time, headaches and brain power. The trouble is, I've got some down time so I've spent a few days now trying to work this out and I don't feel I've made much progress at all - I do not have the time to play around trying to understand it when the clock is ticking. 

 

I would also consider connectCAD (especially as I suspect it is the answer to some of the custom part questions I have asked above) but I am really struggling with the idea of spending even more money when I cannot work out how to use (and these is so little explanation for) the product I already pay for.

 

Any support will be very gratefully received. 

 

T

Screenshot 2021-11-01 at 11.42.19.png

Screenshot 2021-11-01 at 11.42.33.png

what is going on.vwx

Link to comment
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee
1 hour ago, tspilman said:

The only moving light distros I can find in the software are 125a cee in, 8 harting out (52 way)

My distro of choice would be:

 

250a 3ph powerlock in

2x 250a 3ph powerlock through

outputs:

12x socapex (72x 20a 1ph trips)

(signal phase per soca: 1,1,1,1,2,2,2,2,3,3,3,3)

6x 16a 1ph cee (phase 1)

1x 32a 1ph (phase 2)

1x 32a 3ph

 

How do I create this in vectorworks?

To create a distributor you have to add electrical components to a symbol and map how they are connected together.
This is a complex, effectively you are creating a direct model of how the distributor would be wired internally (minus any RCD or earth fault protection breakers)

  • create a symbol for the distributor, could be anything
  • right click on it in the file resources and choose either edit 3D component or edit 2D component depending on the type of symbol
  • next activate the electrical component tool by right clicking on the distributor tool in the lighting tool set
  • in the tool mode bar select the type of component you want to insert, start with the input first as the order of insertion controls the order that the component will appear in the distributor's properties later
    • make sure the component is fully inside the geometry of the symbol
    • in the component properties configure its properties,
      • you can leave the component name as is but you will probably want to change the scale and connector type.
      • make sure the component is correctly classed otherwise you won't be able to control its visibility in a design layer
      • ignore the connection drop downs at this point
  • next reactivate the electrical component tool and insert the outputs (making sure to do so in the order you want them to display in the properties later)
    • for each output give it a name and number in the name field, I tend to label them by output type followed by the number, for example Harting out-1
    • repeat the steps from above for the other parameters
  • Reactivate the tool again and insert over current protection components (fuses/breakers)
    • insert one for each circuit the distributor object has
    • make sure each has a easily identifiable unique name, I tend to name them based on circuit number and phase, so for example 001(L1), 002(L1), etc,....
    • define what class of breaker you are using (type B, C or M)
  • Once all your components are in place its time to connect them together, you do this using the connection dropdowns in the component properties.
    • step one group select all the outputs of the same type open the P.E (physical earth) pin drop-down and select the inputs PE connection.
    • repeat for each neutral pin
    • Next group select all over current protection components that connect to the same input phase and connect their input pin to the appropriate pin of the input component (L1, ...), repeat for each group (L2 & L3)
    • lastly you need to individually connect the live pins of each output component to the correct over current protection component output (this is why  I use the circuit name in the component name),
      The connection drop-downs do support a search function so type in the first couple of digits of the circuit number to jump to the correct connection.

Couple of important notes to remember,

  • you can duplicate components but the automatic numbering is not very good when you do this
  • if you duplicate a component after connecting it it can cause it to become de-synced with the other components it is connected to
  • if you need to change connector type after connecting it to the other components it is better to delete the component than to just change the connector type due to potential connection de-syncing
  • you can use the 'send to back' and 'send to front' context commands to change the order that input and outputs display in the distributor properties.

 

1 hour ago, tspilman said:

I want to feed this distro from a 400a 3ph powerlock generator. How do I add this?

You can convert any symbol into a supply object by using the electrical component tool at add a supply component to it, the main thing to remember is that the voltage and current are documented per phase. The output connector of the supply object is set in its component properties as well.

 

1 hour ago, tspilman said:

 

As for the component graph, I have no idea what is going on. This is as far as it would zoom out and it's already a mess. 

The power planning palette is a work in progress and not yet fully functional. At this point I would recommend waiting for the developers to finish fixing the bugs before trying to use it.


We are planning to add more distributor and power supply content to the libraries moving forwards and I am in the process of creating detailed skill videos going through how to create distributors, power supplies and cable parts.
 

Link to comment

That is great - I will check it out. Thank you. 

First problem I'm having is with this:

14 minutes ago, jcogdell said:

next activate the electrical component tool by right clicking on the distributor tool in the lighting tool set

 

I'm on a mac; R click doesn't appear to have a different function to L click - both open the distributor tool - no mention of the electrical component tool you speak of. 

Am I doing something wrong?

Link to comment
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

As far as I know the behavior should be the same as long as you have a 2 or 3 button mouse but I'm not a mac user so I'm not 100% sure.

However another way to access the electrical component tool is to change its default location it in your workspace using the workspace editor. (located in Tools>Workspaces>Edit workspace)

Link to comment
4 hours ago, jcogdell said:

As far as I know the behavior should be the same as long as you have a 2 or 3 button mouse but I'm not a mac user so I'm not 100% sure.

However another way to access the electrical component tool is to change its default location it in your workspace using the workspace editor. (located in Tools>Workspaces>Edit workspace)

Thank you. 

I got this to work with a long left click which opened up the sub-menu

Link to comment

This seems to be making sense; thank you. 

Some questions / sticking points I'm having; I'd be interested in your thoughts:

  • In the electrical component toolset, are all symbols for the 5x components fixed regardless of what type of connector it is or can these be customised (eg. socapex outputs rather than cee) - this is really not important to me - just wondering. 
  • Can I get cable parts to show up on the drawing? (eg. with default cable sets a run is made out of a 1m and a 5' soca. Can vectorworks show me the joins?
  • Can I get break outs to show up in a cable parts list?
  • On a breakout, looking at the dropdown list for each breakout, these are all labelled 'power in'. can this be set to show the fixture numbers of units in the drawing (can it display units that are not yet plugged up?
  • Once a unit is connected, the circuit number updated according to the cable tool. however, if the circuit number is updated it does not affect the cable system. If the cable system is updated, a warning box appears about unlatching all cables. If I confirm I want to continue, it appears to link the unit back into the breakout, and then back again on the new channel number. This seems wrong. 

 

I'm going to continue playing (and read over the knowledge above) and will come back with some more questions (and hopefully answer some of these ones for myself)

Thank you all

Link to comment
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee
11 hours ago, tspilman said:

In the electrical component toolset, are all symbols for the 5x components fixed regardless of what type of connector it is or can these be customised (eg. socapex outputs rather than cee)

At this point the symbols are fixed no matter what type of connector is used,

 

11 hours ago, tspilman said:

Can I get cable parts to show up on the drawing? (eg. with default cable sets a run is made out of a 1m and a 5' soca. Can vectorworks show me the joins?

Kind of, you can't display the 2D thumbnail from the part symbol, but the end points of the part will display on the cable object either as a loci or sphere. This is configured in the cable style in the general section.
You can also attach a data tag to the start of each individual part inside a cable object using the the data tags section of the style settings. For this to work the tag has to use the criteria 'Used Parts Ordered'. There are several tags in the default library set up for this.

 

11 hours ago, tspilman said:

Can I get break outs to show up in a cable parts list?

Not directly into a cable parts list (created using the new create cable report command) but you can in a cable worksheet created by the regular report command, by appending the distributor worksheet into the cable worksheet

 

 

11 hours ago, tspilman said:

On a breakout, looking at the dropdown list for each breakout, these are all labelled 'power in'. can this be set to show the fixture numbers of units in the drawing (can it display units that are not yet plugged up?

This is a bug and should be fixed in SP2, each possible connection in the drop-downs is meant to have the associated object ID as well as the connection name displayed.

 

11 hours ago, tspilman said:

Once a unit is connected, the circuit number updated according to the cable tool. however, if the circuit number is updated it does not affect the cable system. If the cable system is updated, a warning box appears about unlatching all cables. If I confirm I want to continue, it appears to link the unit back into the breakout, and then back again on the new channel number. This seems wrong. 

This is currently one of the areas that is a work in progress, the problem is that there is no direct link between the circuit name and circuit number fields of the lighting device and an attached cable.
The cable tool will push data into these fields when the cable is drawn (depending on the mode used) but not the other way round. This means that if you edit these fields on the lighting device the data will not get pushed to the cable and the breakout or distributor at the other end of the cable. The direct link is with the connection drop-down in the power information section of the lighting device. The dev team is working on a solution but several other related issues have to be dealt with first.

 


 

Link to comment
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

Just realised I forgot to mention that I'll be giving a Cable tools seminar later today at the Design Summit, it will be focused on the basic workflows and features of the cable tools.

 

Link to comment

Thank you for the answers above; I watched most of the seminar earlier; hopefully I'll be able to watch over it again over the next few days..

Some more questions;

  • Is there fibre in the cable library(and can I specify the ends - I'd be using quad core multicast with Neutric optocalCON connectors)?
  • Are Neutric Ethercon connectors (rather than plain RJ45) included?
  • Can I specify a loom as a cable so that the cables can be run as one line instead of having to run all of the component parts
    • the FOH snake is often (something like) 2x fibres, power, some 3 pins for comms
    • motor feeders are 2x socapex - one for power and one for control (run backwards)
    • motor looms are 1x 16a 3ph 240v CEEform and 1x 16 a 1ph 110v (run backwards)
  • Alternatively is it possible to run a user defined cable that I can later identify as snake / motor feeder / motor breakout
Link to comment
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee
19 hours ago, tspilman said:

Is there fibre in the cable library(and can I specify the ends - I'd be using quad core multicast with Neutric optocalCON connectors)?

There are several fiber connector types in the cable connector list but I don't think there are any cable pats for them in the default library yet.

 

19 hours ago, tspilman said:

Are Neutric Ethercon connectors (rather than plain RJ45) included?

Not at the moment, you can however add them,
you will need to use some form of xml editor to do so, personally I use Visual Studio Code since its both very good and free.

The 'CableConnector.xml' file is located in Vectorworks 2022>Libraries>Defaults>Cable Tools.

make sure you create a back up of it first incase you make a mistake when adding the new connector type, and also make sure to save a copy of your customised xml out side of the application file structure afterwords, since it will get reset to default whenever a Service Pack content update is made.

 

Here is an example of a connector entry in the XML.

 

<Entry SocketPatchCount="5" UniversalName="Cam Lock 2/0 awg" LocalizedName="Camlock 2/0">

        <Socket UniversalName="L1" LocalizedName="L1" />

        <Socket UniversalName="L2" LocalizedName="L2" />

        <Socket UniversalName="L3" LocalizedName="L3" />

        <Socket UniversalName="N" LocalizedName="N" />

        <Socket UniversalName="PE" LocalizedName="PE" />

        <ConnectableWith UniversalName="Cam Lock 4/0 awg" />

      </Entry>

 

The top line is the description of the connector type,

  • SocketPatchCount defines the number of pins the connector has
  • UniversalName is the internal name for the connector type that the cable tools uses in the background, if this is changed you will need to update all existing cable parts and objects that use this connector type.
    When I set up the connector list I tried to base the universal names on the manufacturers official name for the connector. There are some exceptions though, typically where there are several different manufacturers using slightly different names (like for CEE connectors) or where there are multiple different pin layouts used with the same connector (like with Socapex and Harting connectors)
  • LocalizedName is the name that will appear in all cable connector drop-downs to the user, this can be changed without needing to update the cable parts that use the connector

The lines starting with '<Socket' describe the pins in the connector, starting at pin 1. The universal name and localized names work the same way as above. When you are building a distributor this defines the connection drop-downs that will appear for each connector type in the electrical component properties. A this point the pin layouts are only really needed for power cables as they are needed for phase loading calculation, so if you are creating a data connector just document the number of pins and don't bother to label each pin.

 

The line <ConnectableWith UniversalName="Cam Lock 4/0 awg" /> defines whether the connector is physically compatible with another related connector type. You should be cautious when using this as in several case the connector may well be compatible but use a very different phase layout.

 

Make sure to not forget the last </Entry> at the end of the connector definition otherwise it will not work correctly.

 

A useful trick when editing connector entries to see if the entry is valid is to try collapsing the entry or the complete list, if it won't collapse using the widget it is not correctly formatted.

 

19 hours ago, tspilman said:
  • Can I specify a loom as a cable so that the cables can be run as one line instead of having to run all of the component parts
    • the FOH snake is often (something like) 2x fibres, power, some 3 pins for comms
    • motor feeders are 2x socapex - one for power and one for control (run backwards)
    • motor looms are 1x 16a 3ph 240v CEEform and 1x 16 a 1ph 110v (run backwards)
  • Alternatively is it possible to run a user defined cable that I can later identify as snake / motor feeder / motor breakout

In theory you could but it would very much depend on each scenario, and what you want to be able to connect to the cable at each end.

  • for the example of a Front of house snake I would create a custom connector with the appropriate number of pins, then a new cable part or parts for the snake itself, a set of distributors for the break in and break out of the snake and a cable style for the snake. The break in and break out would have the correct fiber and 3 pin connectors on them. This way you will be able to easily connect everything correctly to both other cables and as well as devices.
     
  • for the motor feeders,
    • if you only need to go between the motor controller and dedicated breakouts, and the cables are kept permanently loomed together then again just create a custom connector like above. The main difference is because the loom is carrying both power and data you will probably want to make sure that the pins are correctly laid out and labeled in case you want to use the cable in power load calculations later.
    • If the cables are not kept permanently loomed then I would suggest creating new socapex style for the data cables, which would use different classing and class attributes, so that you can easily communicate with your crew that it has to be run in the other direction. Depending on how they need to be connected (ie to the same controller and breakout at each end or not) would dictate what the most efficient workflow for drawing the cable would be (once the automatic cable insertion is fully up and running it will probably be easier to use it to draw the cables)
      • If both connect between the same devices then draw the power first, duplicate it in place and change the duplicates style to that of the data version.
      • if they connect to separate devices at each end I would recommend drawing them individually, so you get the correct lengths 
         
  • In my own experience most companies that use this sort of motor cable set up (paired 16a red and 16a yellow looms) the cables are kept permanently loomed together so I would just create a custom connector and set of cable parts (and style)  like in the first example, along with a breakout that uses it and make sure to assign the correct connector to my hoists using the connector drop-down in the hoist properties.
Link to comment

Thank you for the help here - things are starting to come together now...

I'm really not sure whether these are ridiculously simple questions and I've got myself confused or not; so if the are... sorry.

  • I've made some new cable sets (EtherCON / opticalCON) and I want to add them to a drawing; as far as I can tell, I need to create a new style in order to insert them. How do I create a new cable style for a new type of cable?
  • I am having a problem with the spotlight numbering tool (specifically when numbering electrical components within a symbol) - the tool is not paying attention to the settings; it just numbers the items consecutively from where it left off. Is this a known error? (I'll send a video if you like..)
  • I use managed switches with vLans; is it possible to add this level of configuration to a distributor item, or are we not getting into the realms of connectCAD?
  • I have a powered dmx buffer with a data through. How do I create this with the electrical component tool?
    • I imagined I needed to add an input electrical component and connect that to both an output and consumer electrical component, but I am not able to route to / from the consumer component...
Link to comment
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

Don't worry, if you need to ask these question then I expect others will as well and until the skill videos are ready this will provide anyone else interested in the new cable tools a good resource to get them started.

 

35 minutes ago, tspilman said:

I've made some new cable sets (EtherCON / opticalCON) and I want to add them to a drawing; as far as I can tell, I need to create a new style in order to insert them. How do I create a new cable style for a new type of cable?

There is 2 methods for creating a cable style,

  • you can create one from an unstyled cable object
    • draw a cable object,
    • in the cable object properties either
      • hit the settings button to open the cable settings dialogue and the nhit the convert to unstyled button at the top of the dialogue
      • or open the style dropdown inthe cable properties directly and select the convert to unstyled option
    • next reopen the style dropdown and select 'new plugin style from unstyled plugin'
    • you'll get asked where to save the new style
    • and then the Style dialogue will open so you can set up the style
      • make sure to give the style a unique name
      • there are 4 groups of settings, each individual setting has a toggle beside it, these control whether the setting is style based or instance based. Anything that you want to be able to easily edit in an individual cable object should be set to by instance. Anything that defines the type of cable should be set to by style, and these parameters will only be editable by editing the style or converting the cable object to unstyled.
      • pay special attention to the start and end connector fields, as they define what sort of cable part the cable tool will look for to populate the cable object when you use it, and should always be set to by style
      • also make sure to set the correct cable type as this tells the cable tool which cable library it should be looking in for the cable part, again this should always be set to by style
    • Once you are happy with the settings hit ok and your new style will be ready to use
  • the second option is to import an exiting style into your file reosurces and edit directly by right clicking on it and using the edit command from the context menu to open the cable style dialogue.

Whichever method you choose always make sure to save the style into a user or workgroup folder so it is available for future projects.

 

56 minutes ago, tspilman said:

I am having a problem with the spotlight numbering tool (specifically when numbering electrical components within a symbol) - the tool is not paying attention to the settings; it just numbers the items consecutively from where it left off. Is this a known error? (I'll send a video if you like..)

Yes this is a limitation of Spotlight numbering, it doesn't work on parametric objects (the electrical components in this case) that are inside another parametric object. It has potentially a number of unpredictable behaviors when used this way and can even cause Spotlight to crash to desktop.

 

1 hour ago, tspilman said:

I use managed switches with vLans; is it possible to add this level of configuration to a distributor item, or are we not getting into the realms of connectCAD?

You can create data distributor object like a switch the only issues are that the Spotlight cable tools have no concept of an I/O port only inputs or outputs and there is no associated signal management, just material planning. I would suggest to attach a custom data record to the symbols once created to document the network specific info like IP address ranges and so if required. This can then be referenced in a data tag label or worksheet.

 

1 hour ago, tspilman said:

I have a powered dmx buffer with a data through. How do I create this with the electrical component tool?

  • I imagined I needed to add an input electrical component and connect that to both an output and consumer electrical component, but I am not able to route to / from the consumer component...

 

You don't need a consumer for this, the consumer component is purely for power connection not data. The best way to do this is insert the DMX input and output components and link them together before inserting the consumer object for the boosters power supply. There are 2  issues the first is the consumer object will auto link to any output inserted after to create a power through and the second is you can't link a consumer to a input component.
One limitation of devices with multiple inputs is that the cable tool currently will only see the first input when connecting to the device so you will have to use the power information dropdowns to connect the second input (consumer)

  • Like 1
Link to comment

Hello, 
When creating soca breakouts how do I set the length of the breakout - eg. 1m / 3m / staggered?

It also appears the option 'draw output lengths' is not working. Am I missing something?

 

The data tag option for cable styles seems to be misbehaving. 

When tags are set to 'start of each part' they convert to the screen layer - so not working in 3d.

Also, can you explain how to set the 'spare' tag in the data tag tool, and what the settings do? 

In one of the pre-made data tags, the spare field shows 'adapter end' (which, it appears would show any adapters on the end of the cable) 

I also cannot get the 'spare' field to work.

It seems these fields use a set of terminology I am not familiar with; is an explanation available anywhere?

(I would like this field to show the difference between the drawn length and the cable length specified), but I cannot find this setting. Is it possible?

 

*it is quite confusing how many different ways there are to edit items... the distributor needs to be edited from the resource menu, for a cable style you need to edit the style from the object info palette, for a data tag you need to edit the tag then edit the layout before you can define a tag field, for a fixture label legend (which is very similar) you need to use a separate window to define the fields before editing the layout and then defining them to the fixture.

Part of the battle is to work out how things are meant to be edited before I can set them up!

 

Finally, 

Some cables require a joiner (ethercon / rj45 / opticalcon/  power con). Can I specify that a joiner is required and automatically add this to a list when using multiple parts within a cable run?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee
17 hours ago, tspilman said:

When creating soca breakouts how do I set the length of the breakout - eg. 1m / 3m / staggered?

It also appears the option 'draw output lengths' is not working. Am I missing something?

this is a bug and is being worked on.

 

17 hours ago, tspilman said:

The data tag option for cable styles seems to be misbehaving. 

When tags are set to 'start of each part' they convert to the screen layer - so not working in 3d.

This is a limitation of the data tags, they will default to the plane of the view mode used when they are created, so you need to choose what view you want them to be visible in and then draw the cable in that view mode.

 

17 hours ago, tspilman said:

Also, can you explain how to set the 'spare' tag in the data tag tool, and what the settings do? 

In one of the pre-made data tags, the spare field shows 'adapter end' (which, it appears would show any adapters on the end of the cable) 

I also cannot get the 'spare' field to work.

It seems these fields use a set of terminology I am not familiar with; is an explanation available anywhere?

(I would like this field to show the difference between the drawn length and the cable length specified), but I cannot find this setting. Is it possible?

I have just looked through the default tags and pretty much all the data tags that start with "Breakout tag - ****" are not correctly set up, the first named "Breakout" is correct but the others have a number of errors both related to the field names and the criteria being used in the tag field definitions. I have opened a bug report to have them fixed.

 

Normally the spare should refer to 2 possible data points,

  • the spare settings for each type of cable as set in the cable preferences, to display this in a tag define the tag field criteria using the following settings in the define tag field drop-downs.
    • Data Source drop-down ;- "Object Parameters"
    • Object Name drop-down ;- "Cable - #CableObject#"
    • Parameter Name drop-down ;- "Spare- #Spare#"
  • or to the extra cable in the cable object, this one you would need to script so that it displays the correct value (in this case it will display in meters)
    • Replace the tag field criteria with  #CableObject#.#LengthPartsTotal##m_2_1#-#CableObject#.#Length##m_2_1#

 

18 hours ago, tspilman said:

*it is quite confusing how many different ways there are to edit items... the distributor needs to be edited from the resource menu, for a cable style you need to edit the style from the object info palette, for a data tag you need to edit the tag then edit the layout before you can define a tag field, for a fixture label legend (which is very similar) you need to use a separate window to define the fields before editing the layout and then defining them to the fixture.

Part of the battle is to work out how things are meant to be edited before I can set them up!

Yes it is complicated, but apart from the fixture label legends the starting point and workflow should be relatively similar, import the style or symbol into your active file's resources, right click on it and choose the appropriate edit option.

 

Personally I never create cable styles from unstyled cables as it involves a lot of extra steps, its much quicker to duplicate, edit and rename an existing style in the resource manager.

 

There is a new option for creating data tags in 2022, select the object you want to create a data tag for and activate the Create Data Tag Style command from the tools menu

 

In regards to distributor objects I have a lot of ideas about how to improve the workflow fro creating them but because it would be a complete development task by itself it will likely take a while before any major changes are made.

 

18 hours ago, tspilman said:

Some cables require a joiner (ethercon / rj45 / opticalcon/  power con). Can I specify that a joiner is required and automatically add this to a list when using multiple parts within a cable run?

At the moment the only thing you can do is to create a cable part for the joiner and manually add it to the parts list for each cable object. I will make an enhancement request to add the ability to do this automatically.

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
On 11/12/2021 at 6:02 AM, jcogdell said:

data tags that start with "Breakout tag - ****" are not correctly set up

To clarify, These are from the legacy cable tools. For users who are adding the legacy cable tools back into their workspaces, these other breakout tags are very useful. 

Link to comment

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.

Guest
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.

×
×
  • Create New...