In this session we looked at detailing and classes. When you import a detail from a manufacturer (which is often important) you often end up with several classes that you do not want, and they often don’t suit your naming convention anyway. So we looked at how we can import these details how we could manage the layers and classes and how we could change the details to suit our graphic style.
In this session we looked at layers and classes, how set them up, when to use them, and how to control them.
In this session we started by looking at wall styles. The question was about using wall styles to draw an existing project. One of the problems with using wall styles is the challenge when you come to draw an existing plan and the wall widths are not consistent. This could involve you having several different wall styles to cover the different widths, which is made worse if you need to show some of the walls is being demolished (which effectively doubles the number of wall styles needed). Continue reading
In a similar way that you can with the active layer, you can quickly change the active class. Hold down the control key (Windows) or the command key (Macintosh) and use the left and right arrows to quickly change your active class. one way that you can use this to is to find objects on a particular class. Turn all the classes off except for the None class. Then use this technique to quickly scroll through all the classes looking for the information that you want.
Many of the plant objects that come standard with Vectorworks have a class structure already. You could call this the default class structure for plants. Generally the outline of the plant is on a specific class (Plants-Component-Outline) the color fill is on a specific class (Plants-Component-Color Fill) and the line work is on a specific class (Plants-Component-Interior Linework). Having parts of the plant on different classes allows you to choose which parts you want to be visible in the various viewports.
Design Layers and Classes
Design Layers are an organizing concept to help you to develop your designs. You can think of layers as being containers. The design layer contains your design. Some people say “layers are where information is, classes are what information is.”
Layer and class standards are part of developing your library. When you create symbols you will use specific classes. When you create other information on the drawings you will use layers and classes. It would be easier to have a set of layers and classes that you use in a place that makes them easy to get to.
One of the new features with Vectorworks 2015 is the ability to link a class to a Text Style. This gives you a similar control to controlling the graphic style of objects with a class. When you assign your text to a class it will automatically use the text style assigned. This is such an improvement when you have areas of text that have to be on different classes and at different sizes.
In the session we looked at three main topics; whether it’s better to use classes or layers to divide up your design for scheduling and presentations, getting plants to locate at the correct elevation on a site model and solar studies. When it comes to a complex landscape plan it’s important that your plan is graphically correct and allows your client and contractors to clearly see the plants that they need to. This might mean using classes with different visibilities to create the viewports you need, it might mean using layers to divide your project up and do areas for scheduling. Whether you use layers or classes will depend on your project and what you’re trying to achieve. Continue reading
One of the class options I’m not very keen on is Active Only. The reason I don’t like this very much is that always causes trouble with objects that are inside groups or symbols. It goes back to the basic concepts of Vectorworks that groups and symbols are container objects that have classes separate from the objects inside the container.
If you use a lot of classes, like I do, then it can be had to remember the names of the all the classes, so when you want to turn some of the classes off, you find it hard to locate the classes on the Navigation palette. I don’t bother to find them on the Navigation palette, I use the Visibility tool. Set the options on the Tool bar, then just click on the objects that you want to hide. The Visibility tool will turn off the class for you.
In this session the attendees wanted to look at section viewports, using the clip cube to make section viewports, how to move section markers, and how to use class overrides in viewports. For this session I used to three-story building that I have used previously.
Users in this session wanted to look at how to control the attributes of the objects the drawing. The short answer is that you have to use the Attributes palette. But there are several options on the Attributes palette, which you have to understand in order to use it effectively. If you learn how to take control of the attributes palette and the class settings, you can speed up your drawing enormously.
This session was well attended and the majority wanted to look at customising classes and setting up a class standard. In a recent webinar I created some classes by using custom classes from my standard. When some of my users saw this, they wanted to know how they could quickly access their own custom classes.
Design layers and classes are the two most important organising concepts that you need to understand in order to create drawings in Vectorworks. I still find some users are confused about when to use a layer and when to us a class to organise their drawings. I use three simple rules to decide when I need a new class, and three simple rules to decide when I need new design layers.
Symbols are generally thought of as relatively small repeating objects. So first of all you should use symbols whenever you need to repeat something, like sanitary fixtures, light fixtures, furniture, and so on.
Collapsible (Hierarchal )Classes – I am a fan of using lots of classes. Layers are where things are, so you tend to have layers for stories of the building or for structuring the file. Classes are what things are. This means that you have classes to differentiate different parts of the design depending on what the objects are.
Storing a Layer and Class Standard – When you create a Layer and Class Standard, it is important to store it in the correct location so that Vectorworks can use it.