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3D Model View tool

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Thanks for responding

Do you do elevations using the first or second method I described?

The draw backs I found with the first are as follows.

1) Putting notes on the sheet layer seems to screw up the updating between the notes and the notes column

2) the text going nuts from time to time.

3) When drawing in annotations layer the elevation will ocasinally disapear until I exit a group or zoom out.

4) that file recently became corruppt and when I did a recovery through workgroup layers importation, I lost alll theinfo that was stored in the annotations layers of viewports. I also lost the viewports themselves.



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If one was unaware or unaffected by the various viewport annotation issues brought up in this forum, I still don't really see the advantage of using them. I think because I was happy with my old method of putting notes in their own classes I just stuck with it.

Since I haven't played with it much let me know if I'm just unaware, but every time you want to shift, adjust, flip anything in your design your annotations have to be adjusted separately?

I'm willing to be enlightened but right now still don't see the benefit of annotating within viewports.

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I thank you all for your input. I think I should rephrase the question mfor my clarity and maybe others. Does anyone use the MODEL VIEW tool on the tool palette to make model views in design layers?

If so, do you make viewports of those views to add to sheet layers?

Are there cons to that approach. I have not tried doing this and would like to know if it is a good idea? Thanks again for all your help and If I'm misunderstanding your answers.


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Guess we only partially answered it huh?. As far as setting up the drawing elements, I lean toward the modelview approach because of my preference of notating in a drawing layer.

You can set and maintain views in viewports, but that almost dictates that you note them up there, and, well, I've given my $0.02 about that.

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This question regards the use of live elevations. I a recently completed project I make viewports on sheetlayers that showed the elevations. I then added notes, elevation markers, building outline, groundplane lines, and some hatches for texture in the annotation layer of the viewport. Ifound several drawbacks to this method.

Is it better to make modelviews on designlayers and do all the mark up etc there. Should the annotation layer only be used for drawing labels?



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I've never used the Model View tool. . .so not much help there.

We do all our elevations and sections in Viewports by chosing Front/Side/Back of the appropriate design layers (including the 3D Composite layer which has the model layer linked into a whole). We use an enormous quantity of Classes (following a very strict protocol to keep things organized) which enables us to turn off/on what's needed to achieve the desired "look" in Viewports. We frequently use a combination of Crop and Classes to get enlarged segments (stairs come to mind) into a Viewport for extra detailing.

The file protocol I'm alluding to is exceptionally "clean" in execution, once one gets his head wrapped around it.

Sorry, can't be much help on the MV Tool. Keep pushing the edges out, you'll find a system that works well for you.

Good luck,

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I am pretty new with VW but I too find annotating Viewports (VPs) really clumsy. I was playing around with your idea of using the Model View Tool (in design layers) to generate the elevations and find it quite promising. I could even insert lighting into the layer and got shadows in. Even the hidden line rendering looks better than in VPs. But I'm just starting to experiment...

The only drawbacks I see with using the Model View Tool in design layers is cleaning up the drawings if you want line art since hidden line does not solve the joints between objects (which would be great) and the fact that you cannot render the elevs separately as you can in VPs.

BTW, anyone, how do you clean joints between objects? Do you manually retrace the final version of the elevation/section?

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The Model View Tool would be very good if it had the same functionality as Viewports.

Conceptually Viewports appear to be an extension of the Model View protocol so providing Viewport like functionality in the Model View Tool shouldn't be that difficult.

2D masking of unwanted lines using appropriately coloured lines or polygons is the best way of enhancing the appearance of the Model Views.

I prefer to do it this way because annotating is just so much easier in the Design Layers. In the Sheet Layers it can be a bit of a 'dog'.

[ 04-23-2005, 05:03 AM: Message edited by: mike m oz ]

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Thanks for the reply. You were right. I was really lost because I can undersatnd why classes go invisible without you telling them. I'm really freaking out with the Create Layer Link command which suddenly decides not to show the roof layer even when several operations back it did. Seems to me that the Views you use turn off layers also in the Layer Link, but why would that make sense ???

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yes i use the model tool for every project. i create a model layer, use the tool to make one model with all the layers i want, then save different views for different uses, excluding and including classes and layers that i want (a render view will have landscape and gingerbread layers on while a model for taking 3-d sections will only have a few on) i always use the model for sections, elevations, renders or whatever. for elevations i copy model to lines, put it on a model elevation layer and begin to draw polygons to cover shapes and use compose to make polys. i will go back to the model and choose 3-d objects and convert copy to polys so i can add it on top of the elevation drawings. (helpful for railings and stairs and stuff that creates a lot of lines when converting to line). the order of objects is important, i rarely trim or cut, just cover. i have found that adding more to the enormous amout of lines is faster than trying to take away-

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" i rarely trim or cut, just cover. i have found that adding more to the enormous amout of lines is faster than trying to take away-


This makes a lot of sense to me. But I wonder if there is a way to keep the elevations or sections as "live" as possible as Seena (and I) wish. It is obvious she has seen that rendered elevs show no object line-joints and can make for super-cool construction drawings even with some mild shadows.

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You can edit the layers and classes saved in a Saved View. It's possible you've saved a view without everything being turned on/off exactly how you wanted. The Saved/Edit View menu is down at the bottom of the main window. . .but you probably already know that.

Good luck,

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Pardon my lapses, please take note of my member number.

OK, for the Nth time I saved the view. As you say. BUT, now I have all layers squished at the same height relative to themselves. I know Model or Links can fix it but I won't have the layers readily editable unless double clicking.

Or do I have a defective drawing, program or brain.

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No need to apologize. We're all beginners sometime.

You're probably trying to set up a Saved View with several (all?) design layers turned on. This means that every layer's Z-height starts at the same point--thus your squished problem. You can (should!) only edit one layer at a time anyway, so you've got to switch to whichever layer needs work regardless how you've got your Saved View set up.

In our office we Layer Link all the design layers to a Composite 3D layer (Design Layer) for review. This will show the proper Z-height, if they've been set up correctly in the Layer setup dialog. The Saved View I mentioned above is of that single layer only. (We also generally establish Saved Views of every Design Layer so one can navigate quickly between them.) However, you're right, you can't edit the individual layers from that layer. It's there to check things out as you go along. . .and possibly to reference in Viewports later.

If you need to "see" another layer than the one you're working in, do a Layer Link to that layer and adjust it to the correct Z-height. Delete it when you're through so you don't have multiple versions of a layer showing through to other layers.

Any more helpful?

[ 04-25-2005, 06:18 PM: Message edited by: Travis ]

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Thanks again. "Saved Views of every Design Layer" sounds nice but it means you should have your setup pretty well thought out (which I don't, right now) in order not to have to go back and re-save the views.

I think it would be great if you could divide your window into several views or layers all showing at once. You could click on a smaller window or pallete name and that layer would come up. You work on it and select another layer or view. Having to scroll down the layer and class in the Data Display Bar is starting to make my index finger and hand numb...

Of course you could memorize the layer windows pull-down commands but you still would not have, say, plan and isometric side by side.

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You can float a Saved Sheets pallet (Windows>Script Pallets>Saved Sheets), if you've got room, so it's easy to get to for navigation. Saving a revised view to replace an existing one is simple: give it the same name and click OK when asked if you want to replace.

As you've learned, VW doesn't support multiple windows of the same file. But you can "turn on" the Composite 3D layer (perhaps behind?) while you're working on the plan layer. Changes will update as you go.

To keep you numbness at bay, remember you can map menu commands to the right mouse button from the Workspace Editor. One set for when you're pointing at "nothing" and another set for when you point at an object. Saves a lot of mousing around.

Keep plugging along. You'll find what works well for you.

Good luck,

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Ramon's confusion is a good example of why the Model Setup protocol needs to be improved and made more obvious.

Getting the layers at the right height so that the model assembles correctly in Linked Views and Viewports should be almost fool proof. At the moment it is not.

In my experience correct model assembly is one of the harder concepts to get through to newcomers and those just beginning to tackle modelling. this is not helped by the process which is not intuitive and does not automatically adjust to later changes.

There is a need to introduce some consistancy into the application and control of Viewports, Model Views and Layer Links. Perhaps the latter should go altogether with a synchronising of how Viewports and Model Views are created and controlled.

Also introduce the capability of the Model Setup to do the maths and respond to changes intelligently. For example if a floor to floor height is changed in the setup dialog the Z heights of layers above should automatically change, and the walls associated with the changed layer should also automatically change height.

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Totally agree with Mr. Oz. Model set-up sucks and the delta Z/Z is confusing and lacks a dynamic check sum. It's easy to make mistakes and get confused. Before you know it you can have elevations all over the place which is compounded by the layers Z's automatically changing each time you add a new one.

Prhaps, a simple PIO/GUI palette for setting up the various Model elevations would solve this issue.It could also notify if errors exist in heights.

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Interesting, isn't it, what seems "intuitive" to one person is counter to another.

Once I understood that a Layer's Z-ht represented it's "bottom", it seemed to make perfect sense. Since I don't rely on the delta-Z to control wall heights, I've always simply set it at least as high as the tallest object likely to go on that layer.

I'm not sure I fully understand either of your suggestions, but I'd offer a word of caution. We often have structural components that span several "floors". On a timber-frame barn, for example, the bents may be 35 or 40'-tall. They go on their own Design Layer with Z=0. So does the main floor and base walls. Then the loft floor gets its own layer at Z=12' and sometimes there is an "attic" space at Z=26'. Exterior walls, on the gable ends, run all the way to the ridge line, while interior walls are in Layers set to a Z-height on top of the Layer containing the floor system that supports them, which is on top of the Layer containing the structure that supports the floor system.

And you're going to program VW to recognize all this "automatically"? I realize relatively few are designing barns. . .let's just be sure to not impose very many limits in the interest of automation.

For my simple mind, a quick "elevation diagram" on the whiteboard or a scratch pad has served reasonably well to keep Layer heights organized. Perhaps an electronic version, indicating Layer names at their assigned Z locations would help meet the need?

(This thread has drifted just a little from the original question, hasn't it?!)

All the best,

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  • 2 weeks later...


Go to Edit View (in the Saved Views menu, bottom LH of window), select the "problem" View. A dialog comes up that will let you edit the Layers and/or Classes that are activated when you select the View. Turn on the missing Classes.

Should be good from there on.

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