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P Retondo

Better gray backgrounds

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Gray background layers in Sheet layer viewports show the 3d content.  That's not what we want!  What we want is a grayed version of the background layer.

How it is now:

370009713_Graybkgdasis.thumb.jpg.cc29955f8baad7bbdaf5646187f79b06.jpg

 

How we'd like it to be:

738571769_Graybkdgasdesired.thumb.jpg.65e297732d64a72c1880536c45cbc3a3.jpg

 

See the difference?  Some folks would also like to turn off all fills in the background, which would be even better.

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Hi @P Retondo--

 

Have you ever tried Layer Colors out of curiosity? This is a very old video but still valid IMO

 

You can essentially assign colors to specific layers (i.e. any kind of gray you want) to both fill and pen. This avoids the problem of creating "see-through" or "xray" elements. I hope this is an option that helps! 😊

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Posted (edited)

@Tony Kostreski 

Thanks for the suggestion, Tony, but absolutely no joy.  2 comments:  1) when I enable layer colors in preferences, my design layer went all black & white (no, I do not have "Black & white only" checked).  That alone is unworkable, because I do want to display different line colors and fills for different objects.  With "use layer colors" checked, the color preferences are applied universally to every object, erasing all carefully-intended differentiation.

 

And 2) my viewport on the sheet layer was unchanged!  Trying to override layer color selections in the sheet layer viewport resulted in zero change.  This is the exact opposite of how things should work.  I should see all my selected colors in the design layer viewport, and be able to see things differently in the sheet layer viewport of the same objects.  The only way I can get layer colors to display in a sheet layer viewport is to create a design layer viewport to duplicate the original layer, override the layer colors in that, and on the sheet layer viewport check "layer overrides" when editing layer properties. 

 

In sum, this obviously won't work for the desired purpose, which is: to have a design layer that shows a building plan as we would like it displayed for a plan viewport, and to use the same layer or layers grayed out as background for MEP or structural drawings.

 

However, if we could enable colors for a Sheet Layer Viewport (only!!), and have it actually work for that viewport (per above, sheet layer viewport layer colorss do not override), we could get exactly where I want to be (image generated by the means described above in paragraph 2):

1264667304_Grayusinglayercolors.thumb.jpg.6f545521163a0770d050326a095c7fa2.jpg

 

Again, the problem is that in order to get this I have to check "Use layer colors" in document preferences, which overrides all of my fills universally.  Unless you have a way around this.  If not, it seems like the basic capabilities are there.  All we need is to be able to override layer colors in an INDIVIDUAL SHEET LAYER VIEWPORT, without having that affect every object in the file.

 

Edited by P Retondo

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@P Retondo My apologies as I should have listed some additional info... Do not use Layer Colors in Design Layer workspace. Instead, use Viewport Layer Properties to enable Design Layer Colors and override them to your liking. Please see the attached examplesDesign Layer Color Properties.png

When you select Viewport Layer you get the Viewport Layer Properties dialog box. You can turn them on or off by selecting the column next to the number (they look like stacked color layers).

 

You can edit any of these design layers to set a specific color. See this exampleDesign Layer Color Planting.png

In this example, the fill was set to a green with a darker green pen—you can use whichever color you'd like. NOTE: I recommend using Background for Fill and Foreground for Pen. These both exist in case you use Patterns in your drawing for 2d attributes.

Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 2.40.47 PM.pngScreen Shot 2020-08-18 at 2.41.13 PM.png

 

Happy to hop on a call if you want to walkthrough this further. Please let me know if you have any other questions.

Cheers!

Tony

 

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Posted (edited)

Tony, this would require revamping my entire workflow.  As I understand the concept, every object in a layer with layer colors enabled has to have the same colors.  Not the way I work, it would require many different layers to work for me, and walls are not particularly amenable to that if we use different fills for different wall types.  Walls have to be on the same layer to interact.  But your comments do show there is a capability built into VW that could be exploited to make the requested feature available.

 

BTW, what do you mean by a "viewport layer"?

 

PS: this seems more like an AutoCAD workflow, where you have a different layer for everything, which ends up with an endless list of layers.

Edited by P Retondo

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Does unchecking "Render Gray Layers Transparent" help Viewport>Advanced Properties?

image.thumb.png.b5b6df3ff11f84266a60dfa0c8b0e1f0.png

 

I've also thought about submitting a wishlist item to at least 1 alternative fill/line to a class, very often I find i'm using the same override in a couple of viewports, or I want the typical CD black/white/gray with a predefined color option that could be easily toggled using layer overrides, without having to go in and manually override each class.

 

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Posted (edited)

@ScottLebsack 

That does not help.  The problem is 3d objects showing in gray.  I tried some experiments, and I actually can't figure out what that render transparent option does.

 

To clarify what I am seeing, this is my design layer (layer colors not enabled):

116679724_Nolayercolors.thumb.jpg.6cb1ba6b0577f3ff9b7820af382a08be.jpg

 

This is what my design layer looks like JUST BY ENABLING LAYER COLORS in document preferences:

1236541102_Layercolors.thumb.jpg.b953fdf5683168d0b5894fcc0565c586.jpg

 

Note that every fill went white, and every line went black.  I can change those, but then EVERYTHING changes.  And, in my sheet layer, even after enabling layer colors everything still looks like the first example, even after updating, and no overrides work.  If I create a NEW Sheet Layer viewport, though, the layer colors show up and overrides will work.  So that's a minor bug (existing sheet viewports not updating).

Edited by P Retondo
Correction on gray layers transparent

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@P Retondo The render transparent option is for a viewport (I'm most familiar with sheet viewports?), but it will eliminate items like the 3D chairs showing through the table. (t leaves the fills in place)... I got the impression that is what you were after. Are you working in Sheet Viewports?

image.thumb.png.a4670b3fcbc85c3918b18c1d183a555f.pngimage.thumb.png.69389c781fdbc7d7ce3fc19daea8d189.png

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@ScottLebsack 

Scott, it doesn't do that for my viewports.  All 3d is visible gray with or without the "render transparent" option.  VW help suggests that this option is for OpenGL transparency, but to tell the truth I don't see any difference if a gray layer has that option checked or not in an OpenGL viewport.  That layer is transparent either way.  Has no effect for 2d viewports for me.  Maybe it makes a difference if you are using layer colors?

 

I don't have time to check out every possibility, but it seems to me that for the purposes of graying out a background layer for MEP drawings, a simple checkbox should be possible that doesn't add unneeded complications due to hybrid symbols, etc.

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I can't believe how much I agree with this.  We just want the layer greyed, not wireframe. 

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