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Making new Classes


Eamonn

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On 11/22/2021 at 3:16 AM, Peter W Flint said:

This sounds to me like a bug or part of the learning curve. Classes and layers should be saved any time the drawing is saved. 
 

Aside from saving from the File menu or keyboard shortcut, have you set up Autosave in VW preferences (Cmnd/Ctrl + ,)? You may have the class in a backup drawing somewhere in your machine. 
 

PWF

Maybe what I mean is... can I make new classes that are there within the Vectorworks classes menu list always... if you know what I mean?

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If you create a file with all your classes in then save it in the 'Standards' User folder you will be able to access it when you open the 'New Class' dialog: select 'Import classes' + your file will be there in the drop-down + you'll be able to import any of your standard classes into your current file.

 

The same applies to design layers + sheet layers

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In practice what I often end up doing instead of using template files properly is...

 

- Go to previous file that has the class(es) I want to 'import' to the file I'm working on

- draw a line(s) in the relevant class(es)

- copy & paste into the other file

- immediately delete the actual objects themselves (the objects go but the classes stay)

- save file

 

 

important semi related things to get your head around as a beginner:

1. an imported object brings its class but not its layer with it

2. duplicating a class doesn't duplicate any geometry assigned to it, but duplicating a layer duplicates all the geometry on it.

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@Eamonn if you’re still a relatively new user I recommend the above two workflows. I’m currently in the middle of creating my own template files and find the process excruciatingly tedious. 
 

Play with a few different ways of organizing in different drawings then import per @Tom W.’s suggestion, but focus on drawing tools and techniques. You can really get into the weeds with organization and data management. 
 

PWF

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2 hours ago, Tom W. said:

You can do the same thing by going to Organisation palette>Classes tab>New... button>New Class dialog box then select 'Import Classes' + click on 'Choose..' button to find the file in question + select the classes you want to import. Then you don't need the file to actually be open + do any copy/pasting/deleting.

 

This is a good point and I will start using this method a bit i think.

 

I was going to say there are some scenarios where I might still do the copy & paste method... for example where I want to import a wall style and all the classes of its components. Because a C&P of a wall object from the old file would bring all of that over. But actually .... I guess importing the wall style "properly" via resource browser would also bring in the necessary classes (I think?).

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1 hour ago, line-weight said:

I guess importing the wall style "properly" via resource browser would also bring in the necessary classes (I think?).

Yes absolutely, importing resources into a file is a great way of bringing readymade classes into the project. Often I'll do it in a new blank file alongside the project file though e.g. when I am creating new resources which are variations of existing ones. So I'll import the resource into a new file, duplicate it to create the new resource, then import the this into the project file. This way any extraneous classes/resources stay in the blank file + don't clutter the project file.

 

But then I have other classes - like 'section style' classes - which aren't connected to objects as such + these are useful kept in the standards file. Although they'd equally be good saved in the template files. It's just I have several template files so it's a bit of a faff updating all of them whereas the standards file is just one file so easier to add stuff to it regularly.

 

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17 minutes ago, Tom W. said:

Often I'll do it in a new blank file alongside the project file though e.g. when I am creating new resources which are variations of existing ones.

I just got a tip this weekend for using a “dump” file, which may be the same method working in the opposite direction. It’s used for resources that are created in a project file on the fly while racing toward the deadline. Then you put those hastily made resources in the “dump” drawing to be cleaned up and exported into a standards folder or similar resource drawing. 
 

So combining the two could look like:

 

Resource Manager/standards->blank file-> project file->dump file->Resource Manager/standards,

 

tweaking each object style as necessary to maintain consistency. 

 

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4 hours ago, Tom W. said:

Having a dedicated Standards file just makes the process easier + quicker because the file is automatically there in the drop-down + will contain every class under the sun.

This is what I do  and it's a great way to keep your class standards tidy.

 

4 hours ago, Tom W. said:

It'd be nice if there was an easier way to save classes to a standards file without having to open that file + import the classes into it. Like the way you can just drag resources into favourites files. Perhaps there is already...?

You could create a symbol with geometry in the new classes and export the symbol to the standards file. With a create symbol shortcut key it've very quick to turn a line into a symbol>locate symbol in RM>Export.

 

2 hours ago, line-weight said:

But actually .... I guess importing the wall style "properly" via resource browser would also bring in the necessary classes (I think?).

Yes it would bring the classes in but, and I need to check, maybe not any hatches, textures etc associated with that class unless the wall used class attributes.

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4 hours ago, Boh said:

You could create a symbol with geometry in the new classes and export the symbol to the standards file. With a create symbol shortcut key it've very quick to turn a line into a symbol>locate symbol in RM>Export.

 

Hm ... you could also make some sort of monster symbol that contained a whole load of classes and use this as the vehicle for bringing them into new files.

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From my point of view, what @Boh has very helpfully pointed out is that as I create new resources - a new Wall style that incorporates one or more new classes for example - all I need to do is export that resource to my standards file + whichever classes contained in that resource which aren't already in the standards file will be added to it. I had just got very used to dragging resources around the Resource Manager to save them + because my standards file wasn't in the RM anywhere it hadn't occurred to me that right-click>Export... was an option to send resources to it. I had been opening the standards file then importing the relevant classes into it which is a far more long winded process. But I do wonder why my standards file isn't listed under User Folders>Defaults in the RM? That way I could just drag resources into it the same way I do day in day out with my Favorites files...

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2 hours ago, Tom W. said:

But I do wonder why my standards file isn't listed under User Folders>Defaults in the RM? That way I could just drag resources into it the same way I do day in day out with my Favorites files...

 

It works for me - whatever files I put in the relevant place in the library, appear under favourites in the RM.

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What I meant was I have all my Favorites files in the RM obviously, plus these User files:

 

1417423912_Screenshot2021-11-24at10_02_41.png.2b1ffac01543c16860d5679ea24ba61f.png

 

But included here isn't the Standards folder which is where I need to export the classes to:

2058286085_Screenshot2021-11-24at10_04_24.thumb.png.bb00be9b2409714eef3972e7af7964ad.png

 

So @Boh's right-click>Export... method is useful as it gets stuff into that standards folder a lot more easily than the way I had been doing it.

 

Then I can access these classes here:

180087505_Screenshot2021-11-24at10_06_38.thumb.png.2e993ac88ae50d75314dff53fa6f4d60.png

 

Is there a way to show the standards folder in the RM so I can simply drag resources into it like I do with my favourites?

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8 hours ago, Tom W. said:

Is there a way to show the standards folder in the RM so I can simply drag resources into it like I do with my favourites?

I can't find a way which makes me wonder what the "Standards" folder is for specifically? The other folders contain default content that various tools can draw on. What tool uses the Standards folder?

Edited by Boh
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I think it's just for classes + design layers (plus my standards file has sheet layers in it) so not resources as such which I guess is why it doesn't feature in the RM...

But I've just tried exporting a symbol to my standards file + it works really well! The associated classes are immediately available for selection from the 'New Class' dialog afterwards.

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On 11/26/2021 at 1:46 AM, Eamonn said:

Thanks guys, 

 

I'm in over my head but will slowly go through all that was mentioned here over the coming months.

You’ve found the double-edge of the VW forum, lots of folks are real enthusiastic about their workflows and processes, and don’t mind sharing. It can feel overwhelming but still the best resource in the CAD market in my opinion. 
 

Good luck!

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