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  1. I am looking for a CT licensed structural engineer to review my Chief Architect plans for a new construction residential duplex that will be located in Bethlehem, CT (see rough draft). If you are interested please send me a personal message with your rates.
  2. I am a new CA Premier X12 user and would like someone to review my plan & layout files for a new construction residential duplex that will be located in Bethlehem, CT (see rough draft). I am looking for feedback regarding my use of Chief Architect as well as any architectural, structural/engineering and/or building feedback such as: changes to make the CA plan more efficient, reusable, maintainable, etc. changes needed to meet code requirements changes that can save money or be more cost effective to build changes that might be more aesthetically pleasing to a buyer changes that will make the plans clearer/easier to read/understand for the builder, lumber yard and/or building inspector feedback on material choices (zip system or Tyvek, roof trusses or not, floor trusses or I joists, batts or foam insulation, vinyl/wood/hardie siding, etc.) any wisdom that might help me avoid long delays, bad contractor experiences, problems with the town/state/health dept., etc. I don't expect you to be an expert in all 4 areas (CA, architecture, engineering & building), so if you are only able to help with one of those areas I would still be happy to consider you for just the piece that you have experience with. If you are interested please send me a personal message with information on how you would be able to help and what your rates are.
  3. If you are referring to using the "Delete Surface" tool, I am not...I mentioned that it is much easier to select all of the walls in plan view and simply change their material to "Opening (no material)". If you are saying that changing the material to "Opening (no material)" is bad, please explain. Yes, rim joist and top & bottom plates...none of which need to be cut if you are just changing the material on the wall as long as the same type of framing continues (see example plan in previous post). They are not simply shown in the detail view...the smaller pieces are listed in the Schedules & Material List (see earlier post in this thread). That is not what I have found, but maybe you know of a fast way to adjust multiple pieces of framing for multiple walls quickly? I can remove the material from the unfinished walls in plan view very quickly (for all walls at the same time), and for any surfaces that need to be changed to greenboard, Type X, etc. I can do that pretty quickly in doll house view (set the default and simply click once on all of the walls you need to change). If I were to manually change all of the framing for the joists and plates involved I would have to open up a lot of separate views and adjust each piece individually, which in my opinion would take a lot longer.
  4. I mentioned "Angled Wall" because that is what it is listed under in the dialog box and the docs (see below), but regardless it is not the corners that are the issue, it is the framing in the middle of the wall (and under it) that is split up when you use different wall types. I see that it changed a little, but I am not sure it changed in the way that you think (i.e. the "California Corner")? There were two U's on the bottom of your 1st screenshot, and two L's at the top...in the 2nd screenshot the U's moved to the left side and the L's moved to the right side, so it is the same framing just in a different orientation (see below). In any case, it is the middle of the wall that is getting screwed up (see red circles in screenshot below). I have added another example plan at the bottom if you want to check it out. Thanks for your help and suggestions, it is appreciated. I think I have solved the issues by setting the unfinished walls' material to "Opening (no material)" and using the Material Region tool to change any other walls (i.e. greenboard, Type X, etc.) to a different set of layers. Example of Wall Tool Bugs.plan
  5. Thanks Dermot! I missed that in the guide. Too bad, it looked quite useful (especially in a duplex/triplex when you are often jumping between the same room in each of the units).
  6. Thanks Renerabbitt! For some reason the delete surface tool did work for me in another plan, so I had a look at what it did and noticed that it simply changed the material to "Opening (no material)". I am able to use that approach a lot easier from the plan view by selecting multiple walls and simply change/remove the material to get it to "stick". I am not sure if this adjusts the schedules & material list however, but hopefully? It is the multiple wall type definitions that created all of the problems mentioned above...I thought that was the answer and I created a lot of definitions for different situations, but I didn't realize that it screws up all of the framing when you do that. For example, it cuts the top & bottom plates into small pieces even if the framing layer of that wall is identical, and it does the same to floor joists under the wall, which doesn't make any sense at all. I have been eliminating all of those different wall types now in order to get the framing to come close to what it should be, and I am using the trick mentioned above as well as the Wall Material Region tool to change the finish layers in each room. It is tedious, but seems to be the best option I can find. Good idea about removing the wall dimensions from the plan, but my concern is that it is also likely miscalculating the surface dimensions for everything (such as the material lists, energy calculations, total living space, etc.). Fortunately most of the changes are small (i.e. 5/8" Type X vs 1/2" drywall) but sometimes they are bigger (i.e. when you add 1-2" rigid insulation to a wall - also not common for interior walls, but it can happen in a garage). So, this is the least of my concerns, but it still appears to be a bug and I would hope that Chief Architect will fix it one day. PS - I have made many modifications to the toolbars including adding the Define Wall Types button...that helps out a lot! Here is that suggestion: Add Wall Finish to Room Specification Dialog I also made this naming suggestion Rename Different "Material" Names and this layer grouping suggestion Add Named Finish Layer Groups/Types
  7. Does anyone know if the Aerial View feature shown in this video was moved, removed or renamed? I can't find it under the View menu.
  8. FYI, I tried using the Wall Material Region tool as well as the Delete Surface tool...neither are perfect, but they help. Wall Material Region - This tool is good for changing the material layers of an existing wall/floor (why not ceiling?), but it is a bit buggy (see points below). I see in this video that you can save the layers for reuse as a symbol, but it is too difficult to draw all of the polylines exactly how you want them if you are trying to cover the entire wall/floor surface (easier to click on the object and have the whole thing selected). So, this is a bit time consuming as you have to set the layers each time, but you can set your defaults for the type of layers you are working on to save you from having to set it manually on every wall. Bug #1: It doesn't always select all of the wall when you click on it, so if you have doors/windows/angles it may leave pieces of the wall as unchanged. Bug #2: It changes the display in the plan view by added to the existing layer instead of replacing it (the old layer should was cut away by this tool). Bug #3: It doesn't update the dimensions of the room based on the thickness of the new layers. Delete Surface - This tool works faster than the Wall Material Region tool if you simply want to remove the finish layers (for example, in an unfinished space such as an attic, above a porch roof, etc.) but it is a bit buggy too (see points below). In addition to the bugs it acts a little different than the Wall Material Region tool (which selects the visible wall surface)...this tool selects the entire wall, including the sections of it that are located in other rooms along the same wall. That difference is a bit annoying since you then have to use the Wall Material Region tool to put back the deleted surface in the other room, so beware that they don't act the same. Bug #1: The 3D display doesn't seem to update consistently, so it looks like the layers are still there after you have moved them already. You can confirm that this is the case by clicking on the Rebuild 3D button which will often update the display and fix the issue I just mentioned, but it can be very confusing due to the next bug. Bug #2: The delete tool doesn't always "stick"...you can delete the material layers and they will appear deleted, but then when you close and reopen the 3D camera they will be back. I was able to successfully use this tool in another plan, but if you look at the super simple example plan that I attached to the bottom of this post you will see that it never actually saved when I deleted the surfaces from the side walls. Try it yourself to see if you can delete them in a dollhouse view (it will look like it works) and then close and reopen that same view and the surfaces will be back. Bug #3: The doesn't update the plan view to reflect the removed layers. I confirmed this on another plan where the tool actually seemed to remove the walls. Bug #4: It doesn't update the room dimensions to reflect the removed thickness of the layers. I confirmed this on another plan where the tool actually seemed to remove the walls. PS - It looks like this was previously called Floor/Wall Layered Material Polyline (you can see it in this video). Yesterday I suggested that we rename it to Floor/Wall Finish Layer Regions to be more like the Floor/Ceiling Finish Definition dialog boxes found on the Room Specification's Structure tab (see below). I think I like "Finish Layers" better than "Materials" since it reflects the fact that (a) there are multiple layers and (b) that they are not simply 0" thick materials, but actual layers that should affect the schedules, materials list and room dimensions (if the bugs I mentioned above are fixed). Example of Wall Tool Bugs.plan
  9. Interesting solution Michael, thank you! It is funny how the word "Material" is used to mean different things in the app. I used the word "Finish" because that is what I see in the Room Specification dialog (Structure tab) where you can define the different layers of "Materials" that make up the floor and ceiling finish structure (very similar to the Wall Type Definition layers). I think of a material as a color/pattern and a (structural/finish) layer as something that has a thickness and other properties (including a material). If you look at the Materials tab of a Room Specification dialog there is no concept of layers or thickness, but based on your suggestion I found that Floor & Wall Material Regions act more like the finish layers and they do have both layers and thickness. And then there is the Materials List which is yet another meaning of that same word, but it is neither a color or a layer...it is all of the individual components that make up the house. Chief Architect might want to clean up their wording here to make it clearer (for example, they could rename "Floor/Wall Material Regions" to "Floor/Wall Finish Layer Regions" and "Materials List" to "Supplies List"). They could also consider adding Wall Finish Layers to the existing Floor & Ceiling Finish Layers of the Room Specification dialog to make it easier to use, and provide a way to define groups of layers for reuse. That said, I had a quick look at each of your suggestions and found the following: Wall Material Regions - These appear to solve my problem, although it would be very time consuming to define them manually for each and every wall in the building, especially since you have to be in a 3D camera view to do it, and there are no predefined wall layer types to choose from. In this case I would basically have one wall type which has my most common wall finish layer (i.e. 1/2" drywall) and then I would need to go through each special room (kitchen, baths, garage, attic, multi-family separation wall, etc.) and manually pick the layers for each wall in those rooms. It doesn't sound like fun, but it might work! Wall Coverings - These are similar to the "Materials" tab and are not really layers with a thickness, insulation, etc., so I don't think that they would help because the room dimensions would be off and they are just covering up the 1/2" drywall defined in the wall layers. That said, these could be useful if you wanted to define the base wall material as primer paint, and then you could "cover" it with real paint, only if that produced two items in the Materials List. Room Wall Material Settings - I assume you mean the "Walls" component in the "Materials" tab of the "Room Specification" dialog? If so, this is again lacking the other layer properties that I need to define structural elements such as 5/8" Type X drywall and 1/2" Greenboard in 4' x 8' sheets. The Material Painter - Same issue, no layers/thickness. I am going to try using the Wall Material Regions to see if I can clean up my current drawing, but I can't imagine using that approach long term since it will be very tedious, time consuming, and unmanageable. Thanks for the idea!
  10. Thanks! I tried that option but it only applies to angled walls.
  11. I agree that "Storage" is not the ideal solution, I have already created a trouble ticket for this issue with support. Balloon framing all three walls fixes the void that I mentioned, but not the top/bottom plates or the floor joist...they are still split up into multiple smaller pieces (see below). I am not sure which option you are referring to...here is what I see:
  12. The plan file is attached to the bottom of the 1st post.
  13. Thanks Mick & Ryan! Changing it to "Storage" and removing the ceiling, ceiling finish and floor finish worked like a charm. I tried "Unfinished" as well, but it appears to have the same issue as "Attic". I will need to open a ticket with support. I don't think it is just lines...I can select each piece of framing and they show up in the framing schedule (see screenshots below). Thanks, balloon through ceiling worked, and I agree...that is how it would be framed. Yes, I rebuilt the framing. This appears to be a bug in that particular view since it shows up in the other view and on the schedule. I guess I will need to report that to support as well. Ryan, Mick was correct...it is an issue with the "Attic" room type (also the "Unfinished" room type). You can change the other room types to match the settings of the attic room type and they will not have the issue. I created the plan file from scratch to ensure that it wasn't something in my existing building, and no matter what you do it looks that way when the room type is set to attic or unfinished, and not when you use anything else.
  14. I have created a number of different wall types to show proper dimensions (i.e. when one side of the wall is 5/8" Type X and the other side is 1/2" drywall) as well as to calculate the correct material counts and to show the proper information in the schedules. Unfortunately doing that seems to have a down side...it changes the framing as if they were separate walls instead of the same wall with different materials on them. I have seen the following side effects (colors refer to screenshots below): (Green Arrow) In unfinished rooms such as an attic storage space which only has a subfloor but no drywall, the walls get pushed up into the rafters by what appears to be 3". (Red Arrows) The floor joists and top/bottom plates are cut in the middle when they should be continuous pieces of wood. In addition, you can see that the walls which are produced are not boxed at the end...the top & bottom plates stick out at the end. (Purple Arrow) Parts of the gable wall are not created. In this case you could argue that it is not needed, but if a builder makes a wall he is not going to leave a hole in it. (Blue Arrows) An extra stud is added to a room that has no drywall, and therefore doesn't need nailer studs. In addition, it looks like the other stud needed as a nailer for the finished room in the middle is missing from the plan view of the framing (see 2nd screenshot). Am I doing this all wrong (creating separate wall types), or is there a way to use them and fix (any of) the issues I mentioned? Thanks in advance for any help! PS - I am a little surprised that the wall finish is not part of the room settings (like the floor & ceiling already are)...that would allow you to have continuous walls and still have different materials in each room (i.e. greenboard in the bath, 5/8" type X in a garage, unfinished in an attic, etc. Example of Wall Issue.plan