SNestor

Notes - how to?

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Basic question...I think.

 

I'm trying to create general plan notes that show up on every plan set.  So...is there a "best method"?  

 

My current process is to create notes in a Cad Detail window (in template plan file)...then send them to my layout template.  However, I was looking at the CA "Breckenridge" plan...and most of the notes on that set of plans were placed or typed directly into the layout file.  

 

I have saved some note "blocks" to my library...but when I place them directly into a layout...they are very large (6" tall text).  I gather this is because they were created in a Cad window at 1/4" or 1/8" scale...and layout is full scale.  

 

So...I'm just not sure if I'm going about this in the right way.  

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Just unblock the notes and change the text height to "real world" scale, like 1/8" high, and resave to library. Then you can place directly on Layout.

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My preference is to have the notes in text macros.  If I change the macro the text will change anyplace that macro is used.  I then insert those macros in Rich Text Boxes.  Some RTB's in CAD Detail Windows in my Plan which I can send to Layout and place wherever I need them.  Other RTB's I put directly on specific pages of my Layout Template.

 

In either case, I have full control of the formatting.  I don't have to mess with blocking and it keeps my library much cleaner.  The macros have to be in a Plan or in the Template, depending on how they are going to be used.  I use a Plan with CAD Detail Windows for those I don't want to keep in the Template.  That Plan is at a static location so there's no need to relink that when I copy the Layout file.  This makes the macros dynamic to all Layouts that have any of the CAD Detail Windows sent to Layout.

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Personally, I don't like the idea of putting notes in a CAD detail in a Plan because you can't preview them directly, the same way you can in a Library. Also, if you have city-specific notes, it's a lot easier to have them in the Library, organized in a folder by city.

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1 hour ago, SNestor said:

I'm trying to create general plan notes that show up on every plan set.

Doesn't the Save-As-Method (SAM) address this perfectly?

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Just now, joey_martin said:

My preference is to keep them on my layout template.

 

Do you type them directly into the template?  

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I like the macro method for keeping your notes up to date, Change the macro and it changes every reference of that macro. I keep them in the ruby macro section.

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I use Joey's method and it seems to work pretty well for me.  I reuse the template from project to project so I always have the most current revision.  

 

My notes are mostly what comes standard with CA plus a few changes.  

 

Does anyone have a more complete set of notes for Residential they can share?

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In the long run, where you put the notes depends on if they are specific to a Plan, Elevation, Section or Detail - in which case they really should be in the Plan.  If they are General Notes then they most likely belong in the Layout. 

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Thanks all for the replies...very helpful.  

 

I am trying to create "boiler plate" notes that I want to appear in all my drawings...so, I guess I should be typing them into a text box in "layout".  The text macro idea is great...but I'm not quite up to speed on "macros" just yet.  This is just step #1...someday I might take the leap to text macros.  

 

1 hour ago, GeneDavis said:

Doesn't the Save-As-Method (SAM) address this perfectly?

 

The "Save-As-Method" does work...but I have to have the info in the plan or layout file first.  That is what I'm trying to do.  Once I have what I want stored in layout or plan...I can create a template...or just use the SAM.    

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Even the inventor (Scott) of the SAM method uses macro's in his plans, try to learn it as soon as you can ,as it is one of the biggest time savers of all time.

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Steve,  this was a great question,  I think we are talking about 3 methods:

 

SAM

NOTES IN LAYOUT

LIBRARY METHOD

 

With the SAM and the NOTES  in layout,  the notes are there from plan to plan.  With the LIBRARY METHOD you must bring the notes in everytime......  so I don't like the LIBRARY METHOD.

 

That leaves the SAM and the NOTES IN LAYOUT METHOD.  I use the SAM and it works,  Perry uses the NOTES IN LAYOUT and I assume it works........  I wish there was someone who has used both methods and was able to explain the pluses and minuses of each system.

 

I might give the NOES IN LAYOUT METHOD a go.....  just so I can see if there is an advantage.   

 

One thing to keep in mind is it must be easy to quickly update the notes....  as I think about it,  I think both methods would work.....  advantage to the notes in layout would be there was less info in plan  (smaller file),  ...... oooppssss,  I think I might of figured out an advantage of the SAM........  suppose you wanted the WALL LEGEND on several sheets,  with the SAM you are using the same CAD DETAIL for each view in layout,  therefore if you change one,  you would change all of them.  If you use the NOTES IN LAYOUT,  I think each note would be unique,  so if you used  A PARTICULAR NOTE on several pages,  I believe they would all be unique  (not good),  with the SAM,  if you put the same note on several sheets,  the are all the same (not unique),  therefore if you change one,  you have changed it on all sheets........

 

WOW,  I think I figured out why the SAM is better than the NOTES IN LAYOUT METHOD........    the ball is in Perry's  court,.

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Here are the text notes I'm currently using. I keep these on Page 1 of the template and then distribute the notes out over the drawing pages as I go.   Any additions would be welcome (in any format).

 

Text_Notes.layout

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If you use notes on a single plan page (instead of a template page) and the send the desired note section to a layout page, you can still have one source file for any edits.  

 

I don't have a problem coordinating the changes on the layout page as it does not happen very often.

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2 minutes ago, Griffin said:

If you use notes on a single plan page (instead of a template page) and the send the desired note section to a layout page, you can still have one source file for any edits.  

 

I don't have a problem coordinating the changes on the layout page as it does not happen very often.

 

If you use a single note page,  I get it.....  but....  for me......

 

I put the electrical legend on two pages,  first floor and second floor

I put the wall legend on all floor plans,  if I need to add a wall type,  it will change the legend at all locations

I put the framing notes on several pages,  the upper framing and the lower framing

 

you get the idea,  not a deal breaker,  but something to think about

 

and I suppose the a big deal would be the fact that all of my notes are tied to the PLAN FILE and not tied to the LAYOUT FILE.

 

Both methods will work,  we just need to realize the pluses and minuses of each system.

 

 

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Notes in the template layout: Why would I ever need the same note on every page? That is what a macro is for.

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Remember too many cad details will slow down the program.

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Just to clarify - a Text Macro can be very simple, not requiring any programming capability at all.  Take the following example:

 

Macro named Note-1 (not evaluated so just the text will be displayed as is)

  • This is a sample note to be used in any Plan View or on any Layout Page.  The macro containing this note can be modified and it will be updated wherever it's used.  It can be placed in a Label or Text Box or Rich Text Box in either a Plan, Layout or even a Text Box in a CAD Detail.

When you put %Note-1% in any of those locations the text will be displayed.  If you edit the text in the macro it will be updated wherever it has been used.

 

This is a really nice way to maintain notes that you might want to use repeatedly.

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I was really just talking about "boiler plate" notes.  Maybe in sunny Cali it's difficult to have these type of notes...but here in frigid Indy it's not a problem.  

More specific items/notes...something like a wall legend would work better if it was in a template plan - or using the SAM...the last good set of plans you put together.  

 

I appreciate you all chiming in...I think someday in the future I will be using parts of all methods discussed.

 

Chief Architect did a decent job with the "Breckenridge" example set.  I have used this example set to learn how to I might put my own plans together...its a good starting point.  I get the feeling "power users" probably don't get much from this CA example...but it has helped me think through how I might put my template together.  The "Breckenridge" example set is a "single" one-off design and as such they don't use text macros and it's difficult to discern whether or not the notes they have in the layout sheets are encapsulated in their layout template...or just typed in specifically for this particular plan...or, possibly pulled out of the library.  Maybe a little of each?  

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50 minutes ago, Joe_Carrick said:

Just to clarify - a Text Macro can be very simple, not requiring any programming capability at all.  Take the following example:

 

Macro named Note-1 (not evaluated so just the text will be displayed as is)

  • This is a sample note to be used in any Plan View or on any Layout Page.  The macro containing this note can be modified and it will be updated wherever it's used.  It can be placed in a Label or Text Box or Rich Text Box in either a Plan, Layout or even a Text Box in a CAD Detail.

When you put %Note-1% in any of those locations the text will be displayed.  If you edit the text in the macro it will be updated wherever it has been used.

 

This is a really nice way to maintain notes that you might want to use repeatedly.

 

OK...I created a simple text macro.  Question:  can you control "formatting" in a text macro?  Such as a numbered list?  What about text wrapping?

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Re: formatting with macros.  You can only format the entire macro so any real amount of formatting requires a lot of macros.  So...for all intents and purposes, NO, you cannot control formatting in a text macro. 

 

Re: The rest...

  • Store notes in the library
  • Store notes in a warehouse plan in CAD Detail(s)
  • Store notes in a warehouse plan in plan view(s)
  • Store notes in the actual plan file in CAD Detail(s)
  • Store note in the actual plan in plan view(s)
  • Store notes on layout pages (dragged off to the side when not in use)
  • Store notes in CAD Details in layout
  • Store notes in text macros
  • Store notes in referenced text file(s)

 

  • Display notes from a CAD Detail
  • Display notes from plan views
  • Place notes directly into layout

Am I missing anything? 

 

A couple other things I think are worth really considering when deciding on the best system:

  • Do you work solo or will you be collaborating with other Chiefers? This is a biggie IMO as it can really have a huge affect on the way you might want to set up any referenced files.  You may not even want to use referenced files at all if you don't want to set up a strict file management system. 
  • Is this a one time use plan file or will this plan file be used again in the future?  Again, the answer to this question may affect how you use referenced files or whether you want to use them at all.  If its a one time use plan, once the plans go out the door you don't have to worry about making sure everything is properly linked.  If you're going to use it again in a month...might be a different story. 
  • Do you change up your file management structure very often?  May have some bearing on the 2 answers and decisions from above. 

 

At the end of the day, I don't think there's any right answer.  There are benefits associated with all the above.  You just have to figure out what works best for you and your system. 

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49 minutes ago, SNestor said:

 

OK...I created a simple text macro.  Question:  can you control "formatting" in a text macro?  Such as a numbered list?  What about text wrapping?

Formatting can be done in a RTB - but you would essentially need to have a separate macro for each different set of formatting.  Text wrapping is automatic - controlled by the Text Box or RTB.

I would suggest just experimenting.

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A small addition to all the great comments is that notes can be stored in your Layout template but do not need to be used for every plan. Just pull them off to the side of the Layout page. They will be there when you need them and can be altered if needed. I have some County boiler plate that is in my Layout Template set off to the side of the printed page. Just drag them into position for a County job. It's a great way to store lots of various notes that may not be needed for every plan. Could be done with macros too I suppose.

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