Landscape Special Interest Group March 2018 am

In this session, we covered how using plant sizes from the Plant Definition can affect your work flow differently than using a custom plant size, constructed a pergola with framing members, made a mono-pitch roof for the pergola, and set up a Framing Member report for our pergola.

Topics Covered:

  • 00:30    We started the session by looking at setting plant sizes. Someone mentioned that they had set the size for one plant and then Vectorworks had kept that size when switching to a different plant. We determined that if you’re using a custom spread and height instead of the height and spread from the Plant Definition, then Vectorworks might remember those custom settings when you switch to the next plant. Take the time to set up your plant definitions correctly—with the correct spread, height, and spacing—so that you can just go with the Plant Definition, except for in rare instances when you need to use a custom size.
  • 04:07    Next, we looked at using Framing Member objects to build a pergola. Often, when you are building a complex 3D model as part of a project, it is helpful to set the model up on a different design layer, to construct it right in the middle of your page and to copy and paste it onto your site plan only after you’ve finished it. We laid out a rectangle to represent the perimeter of our structure and decided to use Column objects as the supports. Because we needed to lay out more than one, we used the Move by Points tool in Distribute Mode and the Mirror tool. Next, we went step by step through how to set up Framing Member objects as the bearers, floor joists, roof beams, and rafters and how to duplicate them to where they were needed in the pergola model. We wanted the pergola’s roof beams to extend out and to have a different look on the ends. The pergola in our photograph had roof beams with curvy ends—we couldn’t get that look using Framing Members, but we did change the beginning and ending bevels on them. At this point in our construction, we realized that using classes would be very helpful—they could prevent us from selecting and working on the wrong objects. Through classes, you can also easily control the objects’ line weights and other graphical qualities. Next, we made an extrusion for the top—this would allow us to have curvy ends by drawing the profile we wanted and clipping it from the end of the extruded object. Although the extrusion got us the right amount of curviness, we ended up simply using Framing Members with the beveled ends so that all of the objects would have the same graphic qualities in 3D and 2D. To finish, we added a beech texture to our pergola. Using classes helped during construction, because we could turn some objects off while we worked on other objects, and it would allow us to change the objects’ graphical qualities in viewports.
  • 33:40    The easiest way to set up the pergola with a mono-pitch covering is to draw a 2D shape and use the Create Roof Face command to turn it into a sloping roof. If you have Vectorworks Designer, you can use the Roof Framing command to create the roof beams—after which, you just delete the Roof Face and you’re left with the framing. However, if you don’t have Designer, there’s another option. You can create a hole in your roof to represent the gap between the beams and then just duplicate the gap along your roof. At the end, it will look like there’s only the roof framing even though it’s still a Roof Face. Because it’s still a Roof Face, you can easily double click to edit it. You can also cut the Roof Face at 45 degrees and mirror it to create mitered roof surfaces—very quick! Which is quicker, to use the Roof Face or the Framing Member? Another useful command for those with Vectorworks Architect or Designer is the Create Joists command.
  • 46:03    The reason why I used the Framing Member for the pergola project was because that makes it easy to create a report. We included the width, height, and length, as well as the beginning and ending bevels, of our Framing Member objects. We went over how to add a dummy column to your worksheet that you can then change into a function that calculates the quantity—it can be a bit tricky on Vectorworks worksheets. We used Summarize Objects to group things. It didn’t take long to determine how many pieces we had of each size. If we had used extrusions, they wouldn’t have shown up in our report. If you change the sizes of the timber in your project, just using the Recalculate command will update your worksheet!

Landscape March 2018 am
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