In this session we looked at using Vectorworks to create the constraints on our site plan. Initially we looked at how to do this without creating a site model then we looked at creating a site model and using this to create solar studies sections and our constraints on our site.
Vectorworks has the tools and commands to quickly create a concept model. But we want mode than just a few elevations, we need to know if the main site can be subdivided, how large the project can be, and how much it might cost to construct.
In this manual we will be looking at ways to create and visualise the concept. We will start by creating the site, then the site model, create the adjoining buildings, create the design, and set up solar studies.
Creating A Solar Study – The solar study is extremely useful, allowing you to see the effects of the adjoining buildings, adjoining vegetation, the changing time of day, and the changing season of the year. This information can be extremely useful in helping you to design your project.
Creating A Sun – Later on we going to create a solar study, but before we do that we need to place the sun in the drawing. We have a tool for placing a sun, called the heliodon. This tool allows you to place a sun, set the location, set the day of the year, set the time of the day, and export a movie of a solar study.
Solar studies seem to be getting more popular with building professionals and building authorities. I am hearing a lot of my clients are being asked to provide a solar study showing the effect of their building on the surrounding properties. Of course the other reason to use a solar study is to see the effect of those surrounding buildings on your project.
In this session we looked at solar studies, looking at a project that requires careful control over solar shading. In the first instance we might want to run the shading north-south. The initial thought is that running the shading north-south would leave the outdoor areas exposed to the noon sun, so it might be better to run the shading east-west because that would give better protection at lunchtime. It doesn’t take long to create a solar study, so it’s a good idea to use these at an early stage of the process to make sure that your building your projects to the highest quality you can.
In the session we look at two main topics; creating a solar study and creating a legend key that you could use with landscape or hardscape areas. Solar studies are becoming increasingly important. Local building authorities are starting to demand a solar study to prove your development is not adversely affecting the surrounding properties.
Creating a legend key out of hardscape or landscape areas makes it easy to create areas of hardscape or landscape by using the create similar object command.
Vectorworks can be used for quick 3D modeling. You can use Vectorworks for lighting. If you combine both of these, you can use Vectorworks to create a solar study.
Window Shading. Another use for a solar study is to determine roof overhangs for solar shading.
Solar Animation.You can use the same techniques that you used with the static viewports, but you can use them to create a dynamic solar animation.
Trees on Adjacent Sites.Trees on adjacent sites should also be modeled, and it is easier to use an image prop.
Solar Study Using a Site Model. The solar study will give more accurate results if you use the site model and ensure that all the objects are the correct elevation.
Creating Viewports. To present your work to other people, it will be better to create viewports and sheet layers showing the same view at different times of the day and at different times of the year.
Placing a Sun. If you are using an earlier version of Vectorworks, you will have to use the lighting option, Set Sun Position, from the Lighting Menu. This command requires you to input the latitude and longitude of your location. Since Vectorworks 2012, you have a new tool to place a sun called the Heliodon tool.
Solar Study From an Image File. You can create a very quick solar study by using an image file. it does not matter where you get the image file from, but if you do get the image file from Google Earth, then you can be sure that North is straight up the page. This has an advantage when you place your sun.
I have posted the online sessions for August 2012, so you can now start to register for these sessions.
Last time we looked at Creating A Solar Study, we do not have the Heliodon tool, and we used classes to control the lighting in each viewport. Now we have better ways to do this, so it’s time to update this notes for Vectorworks 2012 to show the most up to date way to complete this task.
BIM Special Interest Group:
drawing workflow part 3
Landmark Special Interest Group:
we need a topic, please suggest one…
Solar Study – Create Viewports. We can turn lights on and off, but it’s a bit long-winded. It would be better to create viewports, that we could use to print.
Creating a Solar Study – Lighting. In order to complete the solar study, you need lighting, and you need a light for each time and day that you want to check.
For the existing house massing model, I created special classes for the roof and walls. Then I created special classes for the proposed massing model. This gives me the ability to change the graphic style of the existing and proposed massing models. It also gives me the ability to turn off the adjoining massing models, and still see the models on the client’s site.