RodCole

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Everything posted by RodCole

  1. Love your work. Can you tell us a bit more about your work processes and the type of projects you do?
  2. I really like working with the Construction Line feature, but I have found that when I change the Line Style to say what looks like a traditional Phantom Line, then the Callout Bubble also assumes that Line Style and ends up looking broken up. There are times when I really do want to use these rather irregular, but useful, Line Styles. Just curious what others think about this and if anyone has requested a fix for this yet before I send in a request.
  3. I have both an MSI laptop with a 3060 card and an MSI laptop with the 3070. Both are very fast, but the 3070 by design has about 10 percent better performance and better cooling. If you intend to do a lot of graphics work I would get a desktop for high end heavy duty work, but for basic work either the 3060 or the 3070 will not disappoint.
  4. I recently put in a feature request to have Construction Lines display in a Wall Detail. Just another feature that can help framers and others visualize how the wall framing lines up to other walls in the floor plan and section views. You could do this in a section view, but there are times when the Wall Detail is a little less complicated to set up and use.
  5. Lately I have been experimenting with lowering the backdrop intensity with generally good results. Depending on the render I sometimes bring it down to 10 or less and punch up the scene with additional lighting.
  6. bdillard1 Do you mind following up on this render to show others what you have found that works best for this particular render? The reason I ask is that it is this type of situation that can be most helpful to others who are also trying to learn Chief's rendering tools.
  7. Nice work Eric This will probably help quite a few other folks who are trying to learn Chief's rendering tools.
  8. Just a bit of follow-up no what Eric said about the backdrop intensity. What I find is that at times it can be helpful to drop the backdrop intensity even below 200 in some circumstances. No specific recommendation, just lower it a bit and do a test until the image cleans up.
  9. I have done multiple floor levels using Chief with metal framing and it worked out well for the most part, with a few exceptions. CAD Block Management in Chief was buggy, which made reusing text items very difficult. ACAD or a similar more fully developed program in this area would be very helpful. Chief's Solid Modeling tools have improved somewhat over time, but a program such as Revit would be much better suited to the concrete portions of the project for many reasons. ACAD or Revit have much better file compatibility when exchanging files with design professionals.
  10. Don't overlook Excel, especially the pivot table capabilities. I read something a year or so ago that Microsoft was making Excel Pivot tables the flagship of personal computing. From what I understood, they were backing off on future development of Accel because of this shift in focus. So, looking forward, Excel may be worth your time to check out.
  11. I have a few quick questions for you. What version of Chief are you using? Where are you located? What is the time frame you are trying to meet for your project? These are just a few of the things that folks will need to know. Feel free to contact me by message if you would like. Click the Member Icon upper left and choose message. Best wishes Rod
  12. Both of my new machines are from MSI and the 3070 is a bit faster than the 3060, but it also has a better cooling system due to the high-end gaming use it was intended for. I have not found any features in Chief that work any differently in either setup. I purchased from Costco Online, and there were models available online that were not available in the warehouse stores.
  13. I have this card in a laptop version. I also have a 3070 laptop as well. The 3060 machine works very well for me, I just wanted a second computer as my primary with the 3070 as a workhorse and I use the 3060 for a backup and for training purposes. Either one will produce an RTX image in a matter of seconds, but the 3070 machine is faster. They are both fast enough that I doubt I would pay a premium for a 3080 or 3090, but that's just me. I still have my older hp and it still runs great, but it will not run the latest features on X13, so I bought the new machines to avoid that frustration. If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask.
  14. This is a very interesting topic for me. Glad you brought this up. Span charts are one thing, but they don't tell you anything about what is really important, and that is deflection. You can find the span you want in the chart, but if you either do the calculations by hand, or using a computer application you will find that what may work from the chart is not something you would feel comfortable with in a particular situation. Say, the chart looks good, but the deflection is 0.75 inches or 3/4". This type of scenario is not that uncommon, so I use deflection as a pertinent factor in choosing a construction member. Another thing that I have been finding that is very frustrating is the lack of knowledge from plans examiners. One of my best friends is a retired plans examiner and we used to disagree all the time regarding code applications. Obviously, he won, but the important thing was that I respected his knowledge and experience. Not so much these days where it comes to plan review issues where the boomers are retiring, and less experienced folks are in charge. I have found that a very narrow approach to code applications is iften being taken. As in, if a particular method of construction does not have a picture of it in the book, or some direct reference in the text then engineering is required. Some jurisdictions require a structural engineer, not just a licensed engineer, for such circumstances. Point is, perfectly good solutions may not be cost effective if you factor in the cost of an engineer and the time delay for your project since these types of situations are coming up far too often these days and engineers are often booked out a ways. The advice I give myself these days is that if I do not find a direct reference in the code book to a particular construction method, then take a step back and find a method that does.
  15. Got it. Thank you very much for pointing this out Ben. No problem on the customizing hotkeys. I am just very glad you helped to clarify this for me.
  16. I used the spacebar technique for several years and after a very short time it becomes automatic. Pressing keys needlessly every time you need to use a command, not so much.
  17. Years ago I used a customized program in AutoCAD that allowed for up to 3 characters and required a delimiter to execute the program. That meant you had to enter however many keystrokes you wanted followed by either hitting the enter key or the spacebar. The spacebar is easy to use since it only requires you to hit it with your thumb, cinch-a-reno, But Chief insists on not requiring that extra keystroke. I can see that in a way, but IMHO it actually makes using the hot keys harder. Sometimes I want to use a short sequence and sometimes I want a longer sequence, but only when it makes sense to me to type the extra keys, not every time. I for one wish Chief would reconsider their approach to using the hot keys and allow for a spacebar or enter keystroke to execute the command.
  18. Couple of things. One of the reasons for using Chief over other rendering engines, that I have not seen mentioned, is the ability to work directly with materials on the fly without having to go through the export process. This is a real time saver and when working with customers it makes a big difference since people tend to lose focus rather quickly. My customers really like working with the RTX engine, One of my customers calls it the point cloud because of the pixelation effect. On another meeting with a customer, I was working on an exterior scene and could not notice any pixelation until I moved inside the model. simple model, but still very cool. It ain't Otane Render, but still very nice and it will only get better as time goes on. There are times when it is worth exporting a model to an outside rendering engine. One of those being the Clay Render feature in Octane Render where I found, by accident, that I could have most of the material assignments clay and only change a few materials for accent effect. I am also very interested in Blenders 3.0 development as well. As far a puters are concerned, I recently purchased two new gaming laptops. One with the 3060 card and the other with a 3070. The specs on the latest laptops are more comparable to desktops than I thought they would be. I do intend to build a new desktop sometime later this year, but it is not a requirement for work, I just want it because I want it. From my research the 3080 card outperforms the laptop version of the 3070 by 8 percent for nearly a grand more money. The days of high-priced renderings are being left behind by offerings such as Chief's RTX. I have learned not to argue with Chief when it comes to marketing. One of the most frequent comments I get these days is how excited my customers are to working with the RTX renderings.
  19. I would be interested in this as well.
  20. I live in the greater Portland area and may be interested in working with your team on a freelance basis if that interests you. I do have a question for you though. In the list you provided, experience with vertical loads is mentioned, but not lateral loads. Is this something that you are currently having an engineer provide for you? I believe that I more than check off the boxes in your list and I also have considerable experience working in the commercial construction arena as well working as a CAD Detailer on large and small commercial projects. In this capacity my duties were to create a 3D model of the projects and produce working drawings for the construction crews. This would include both wood structural 3D models and details as well as metal framing. Part of my work involved reviewing Architectural plans and engineering details and specifications in order to produce RFIs "Requests for information" to ensure both a smooth design as well as construction process. From this I have gained experience in working cooperatively with both Architects and Engineers, both in person and remotely, and I believe this experience, and my background in engineering, could be of benefit to you in the residential world as well. I also have many years of experience working with residential projects including a great deal of high-end work including design, architectural renderings, and construction. I have been using Chief Architect since Version 2 starting in the early 1990s and still use it today along with other traditional CAD software. My schedule is fairly busy currently, but I do feel that, moving forward, it might be beneficial for us both that we touch bases to see how we might be able to work together. If you are interested, please send me a message with your preferred contact information.
  21. Another approach is to use a PDF conversion program and send them both the PDF from a Chief Layout page as well as a DWG file of that page that you created from a program such as PDF to CAD, about $99.00. There are probably other less expensive options, but this one has been around for a while and it works. I have found that having your own PDF converter is very handy if and when you want to work with a DWG file in either AutoCAD or another CAD program that uses that file format and alI you have is a photocopy or a PDF file available. Scan it to PDF, Convert it to DWG and then you will probably need to scale it as well so having some sort of dimensions is very helpful. BTW, if someone is telling you they have to have the file in exactly the format they work with and set up the exact way they work with it, then that tells you something about their computer skills in general. From my experience, this is usually from self-proclaimed experts who are generally a bit antiquated in other skill sets as well. As in, why don't they have the ability to convert a PDF to CAD themselves.
  22. Try the backgrounds that have snow in them if you want more natural colors. It may not make much sense, but that is what I have found. What would be nice is to have a background photo that has snow in the lower portion of the pic and a neutral blue sky above that with a few clouds thrown in. Then when you place plants from CA's Library the scene it would look correct and the color would not be off. The other thing I have thought of is to edit your site pic to lighten it up a bit and then add the library items. Chief backgrounds seem to be working in a manner similar to HDRI light sources in other rendering engines. Hope that is helpful. Show us more stuff when you are flying. Good luck.
  23. Just curious, have you tried to import the file first into another program such as AutoCAD or TurboCAD? Chief is not always the best way to deal with large amounts of data in non-native file formats. Chief does a great job of displaying 3D symbol modeling files and very fast at displaying it as well as soon as the model has been imported. But other more CAD related programs often import data such as point cloud info and large DWG files a bit better than Chief does, at least from my experience. Can you fill us in a bit more as to what you are trying to accomplish using the total station data. The obvious guess would be terrain surfaces, but that may not be it. The reason I ask is that there are actually quite a few ways to represent terrain surfaces including but not limited to 3D Solids. Inquiring minds want to know