Line Weights


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After all these years using CA..I'm still puzzled about line weights. I can't darken the doors and windows in plan view..hence they don't show in layout. I tried Layer Display Options and doesn't make any difference. 

 

I'm using X-6

 

thanks RC

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The problem is probably just that you don't have "Line Weights" turned on.  There's an icon on the toolbar (on my screen that toolbar is on the right side.  You can also access it in the "View" drop down menu.  When Line Weights are "ON" the Door and Jamb and the arc will be displayed in the color and weight specified for "Doors" in your Layer Set.

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I think your main problem is that you have changed the default Vertical Stacking Level from zero to 1.

The Default Stacking Level should be zero.

Any windows that aren't on the default Stacking Level will display in light grey. 

 

Go Default Settings...Window...Options Panel...Vertical Stacking, change it to zero. 

 

Use this setting temporarily to place windows on a stacking level other than zero and remember to change it back to zero when finished.

 

In the Default Set why are all your Weights 4, color black, same linestyle?

You should be using your layers to display weights, colors and linestyles.

Have a look at the Plan View Set for a guide.

 

The other thing I noticed was all the Layout Sets - unless you really need them and use them, I would turn that option off when sending to layout. 

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On a side note, a line weight of 1 is probably going to be to thin for almost anything.  In fact, I am a little surprised to see Joey's line weights so thin in his layers.  Those look more like the line weights that Chief used to use back in the "old days".  If you are using 1/100mm for your line weight scale I would have expected much thicker lines. 

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The out of box settings for line weight are in 1/100ths of a mm. Controlled from the Sheet Setup Dialog.

 

A standard common mechanical pencil will have a lead of 0.7 mm which translates to a line weight of 70. In typical CAD standards 18 is considered to be a fine line using those settings.

 

A line weight of 1 will be very narrow, but isn't the finest line available. A line weight of 0 will draw as 1 pixel on the device you are using. On a printer that prints at 1200 DPI this will almost disappear. A line weight of 1 will be 1/100th of a mm so would be a lot wider when you print.

 

I would suggest doing a print test. Draw a series of lines and assign them various widths, 0, 1, 18, etc. Print them on a printer with the same DPI that you plan to print your final drawings on and then keep it as a reference until you intuitively know what line weights you want.

 

Line weights can be hard to understand, but with a little bit of work they aren't as mysterious as they first appear to be.

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Unfortunately I think even 0 isn't thin enough when printing and I usually end up resorting to using grayscales for my hatch patterns. This in turn introduces all sorts of issues, such as the view looking very different in elevations compared to how it looks in layout, and having to control the hatch pattern line weight with the material editor. Not logical to me.

 

Have a look at the difference between these two screen grabs from a pdf at 100%, on with the hatch pattern set at 0 and the other with it set as a grayscale. Dramatic difference in clarity.

 

Hatch 0 line weight

Hatch grayscale

 

I wish there was a way to control the line weight within object in Chief so that I can have it thicker on certain sides, for example my cap ridges doesn't look all that great and I usually remove them in the final prints, which I find counter productive. 

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One other thing that comes into play when printing can be when going out to a PDF. At that point if you choose a low DPI setting for the PDF otherwise thin lines can become a lot heavier. In that case if you use a weight of 0 it will go to the PDF as 1, but if your PDF is set to 300 DPI and your printer prints at 600 DPI then you would end up with a weight of 2 pixels at the printer.  If you are print via a PDF this might account for 0 not being as thin as you would like.

 

There is no right or wrong with line weights. If you find a system that works for you that you understand that is good.

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My example was done at 1200 dpi and I was looking at the pdf at 100%, so I don't know what else to do to get a reasonable representation.

 

I think what I'm trying to say that it is a bit difficult to control the relative line weights in Chief. For example roof planes are controlled by the 'fill style' for plan views but the material editor for elevations. There is a disconnect between the plan and cad part, and what is generated from 3D. There is also no fill style in the dbx for walls in elevations, only way to change the hatch that I'm aware of is via the material editor.

 

Joey, I think your elevations look very good but it is not the way I like mine. I typically want a similar line weight on most of the elevation including windows (especially parts of a window), a slightly thinner weight on hatch patterns and then a thicker on all outlines that represent depth. This is unfortunately often a bit difficult to do in Chief, like with the cap ridge which outlines the whole piece, unless you convert the whole thing to a line drawing for layout. Unfortunately I find that route unacceptable.

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Have a look at the difference between these two screen grabs from a pdf at 100%, on with the hatch pattern set at 0 and the other with it set as a grayscale. Dramatic difference in clarity.

 

Nicinus,

I like how you use grayscale for clarity... very nice. How do you set the stone siding and roof shingles to grayscale?

Thanks,

Bob

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  • 1 year later...

The problem is probably just that you don't have "Line Weights" turned on.  There's an icon on the toolbar (on my screen that toolbar is on the right side.  You can also access it in the "View" drop down menu.  When Line Weights are "ON" the Door and Jamb and the arc will be displayed in the color and weight specified for "Doors" in your Layer Set.

Good God. This. Thank you!

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My line weights are set up so that 0 is the thinnest line and 10 is the thickest I use while in plan view. I never understood the line weights in Chief so I made my own that think the way I think. 0 is small and 10 is big.

I agree with this.  Chief line weights out-of-the-box are way too thick all over.  I go between 2-15 and seems to work well.

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I agree with this.  Chief line weights out-of-the-box are way too thick all over.  I go between 2-15 and seems to work well.

 

 

This is an interesting topic.

 

For my 1/4" floor plans my line weights go from 10-35

For my 1"=10' site plans,  my line weights go from 35-120 or more

 

So why the disparity?  I think I know,  but it would be too convoluted to explain.  This sounds like a good workshop topic....  at least for me...  I set up my stuff 10 years ago and haven't changed,  I doubt if I could do it again.

 

Point is,  I think the greater the range of numbers,  the more flexibility.  I liken it to Farenheight vs Celsius.....  farenheighttterrrr seems to be more exacting since there are more  degrees from freezing to boiling in farenheighttttt3r3r vs Celsius.....  I wish I knew how to spell farenheightering.

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