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Point Cloud - 3d/2d work flow - Exporting to DWG


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I am having issues getting dwg backgrounds out of Vectorworks after drawing over sections of a point cloud. I am working in VW2020 due to issues with rendering in future versions.

As you can see from the attached screenshots, I've been able to section the point cloud, create working planes, and draw over the section in the active working plane to trace the outlines of the objects. In the model, some objects are 2d, and others are 3d.  

 

When I export the viewports from the sheet layers, only the 3d objects show up.

 

What should I do to get 2d vector-based output so I can share this work with others and continue developing the drawing details? Maybe this is fundamentally a question about the relationship between 2d and 3d objects in Vectorworks. I would be fine, flattening the vector stuff so I can draw. But it would be better to continue to work in 3d so I can develop a model of the facility.

 

Any thoughts as to best practices?

Screen Shot 2022-03-02 at 9.28.59 AM.png

Screen Shot 2022-03-02 at 9.43.43 AM.png

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Posted (edited)

I would love to bring the whole project into VW 2022.  But I think point clouds don't render in shaded section viewports.

 

In 2022 are 2d objects layer plane?  

 

Edited by cberg
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2022 is the first step to deprecating Screen Plane.  It has to be turned on specifically in a file by file basis. If you import a file that already has Screen Plane objects it will automatically be turned on.

 

There is now a button called Align Working Plane to Current View in the Tool Bar. This let's you draw on a working plane that is parallel to the screen. But since these are 3D objects when you change the view those objects move rather than being fixed to the screen like Screen Plane objects.

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Thanks!

 

For now, my workflow will be to trace the point cloud in an annotation viewport and copy the linework back to a 2d drawing layer. VW 2022 does appear to have made some progress with "drawing" in 3D. In the latest version, one can indeed draw on a working plane and project the information back to the active layer plane (which accomplishes flattening the vector information), but the point cloud sections don't render.  

 

VW2022 also crashes whenever one combines shaded render backgrounds and hidden line foregrounds. I reckon somebody also knows about this bug. 

 

I hope SP3 fixes some of these issues.  

 

 

*1911733994_ScreenShot2022-03-02at5_52_17PM.thumb.png.8c642dc06bb40d511ebb15542b344bff.png

 

 

 

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  • 1 month later...
On 3/2/2022 at 9:43 AM, cberg said:

I would love to bring the whole project into VW 2022.  But I think point clouds don't render in shaded section viewports.

 

In 2022 are 2d objects layer plane?  

 

I'm having the same issue with VW 2022 - I can't get point clouds in LAS format to render.  They show up briefly when using the flyover tool.  The "OpenGL" rendering option that I had in 2019 did the trick, so what is the replacement rendering option in VW 2022?

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The "Canvas" app on my LIDAR equipped iPhone allows for the quick capture of as-built conditions, then you pay Canvas to do the legwork on converting all those points into more usable vector objects.  They offer several output options: Sketchup, Revit, Chief Architect, 2020 and "2D Floor Plan and charge $0.15 per square foot.  The Revit option comes with .rvt, .dwg and .ifc files.  I found the .ifc to be the easiest to work with.

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Meshlab "the open source system for processing and editing 3D triangular meshes. It provides a set of tools for editing, cleaning, healing, inspecting, rendering, texturing and converting meshes. It offers features for processing raw data produced by 3D digitization tools/devices and for preparing models for 3D printing".

 

Does anyone have any experience with Meshlab?

 

https://www.meshlab.net/#features

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19 hours ago, cberg said:

I downloaded and learned it after somebody on the VW site recommended it.  I was able to successfully convert a complex point cloud scan into a mesh.  The software takes a long time to process.  I followed these instructions. 

 

https://blogs.gre.ac.uk/designsupport/3d-realisation/laser-scanning/meshlab-point-cloud-to-mesh/

...and was it worth the effort? 🤔

 

Which file format do you find is the best to use?

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  • 1 month later...
Posted (edited)

Sorry for the delayed response on this.

 

Point clouds can be challenging to work with, and on that project, the generated mesh was very dense and difficult to read. The mesh provided a very general idea of geometry but wasn't especially useful beyond that.  The specifics of the site and the scan likely contributed to the challenges. The project was a massive industrial facility with many pipes, tanks, and decaying/irregular shapes/forms. The point cloud scan did not include color information. The scan included multiple buildings, with complex section properties.

 

I recently had experience working with Matterport OBJ files, and have had much more success. The integration of Matterpak files in VW is fantastic.  The obj files import quickly into VW. The color scans help tremendously since the OBJ files include renderworks textures.  The files import to scale.

 

Matterport2 cameras, however, have different limitations. They don't scan high spaces well, and they work best in interior settings. 

 

Edited by cberg
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Try Scaniverse if you want nice colored point clouds and textured obj meshes in Vectorworks.  It works very well.  Autodesk Recap is an affordable pro solution that can do wonders for cleaning things up.  Agisoft’s offerings are very powerful for these workflows, but you have to use it a lot to justify the expense.

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