CARMELHILL

Simple ceiling grid tool

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Does anyone have an easy way to make/use an easy simple 2d ceiling grid that is you can snap to (not a material or pattern which cannot snap) and easy to adjust....move the grid within the room to get better ceiling tile layout without doing crazy trimming.

 

Back in 2011 when I was using Vectorworks they had a great tool.

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Do you have an example that you could post or is this something that could be done with a simple cad line grid?

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It depends on exactly what you're doing but I would personally likely just use either polyline boxes, plain old lines, or points along with the Multiple Copy Tool and/or one of the 2 Align/Distribute tools.  Once created the items can just be group selected and moved around as necessary.  You might also explore using Build>Distributed Objects>Polyline Distribution Region.  Should be quite easy one way or another, a little more information about what you're trying to do might help though.

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I absolutely don't want to use just lines. The second you adjust the grid you then have to start trimming and extending. That woulnt easily work for rooms with alcoves. Yes for simple rectangle or square rooms. But nothing else.

 

VW had a great tool, I need to find a video or get out the old program and screencast it. You draw a polygon, fill it with a pattern, then adjust the size and offset of the pattern. It self corrects the line extents. You can also spedify the origin point of the grid within the polygon. And its all snappable.

 

Awesome and super easy. No silly work arounds.

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It sounds like the correct answer to what you are looking for is, No.

 

Same with a good adjustable tile grid for walls or floors. No sensible offset and distribution tool for polyline filled by grids.

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Click on "Room Polyline" adjust ht. change material to ceiling tile. adjust the pattern and texture of the material as needed per room.

 

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@William. Yes, but, that is a random pattern on a ceiling (see my random patterns by doing the same). I tried for 10 minutes to adjust this texture to get one of those rectangles to hit the corner and I just ended up mumbling like Lewis Black while waiting for the material editor to complete it's task. This is no way to achieve what the OP is asking for or what any of us have asked for that wanted a tile pattern to start at the top  of the freaking counter top.

 

Bottom line, this is something that CA is very weak at currently. Hoping that some smart person proves my incompetence shortly.

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Adjusting the texture/pattern is trail and error. It took me one minute per direction, but not perfect.

2D cad lines in plan for perfect alignment.

Ceiling tool please.

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I'm sorry, I misunderstood what you were trying to do. This sounds like a good one for the suggestion forum. In the meantime, for those of you interested in "silly workarounds" (i.e. using the tools we have to get the job done), its really not very difficult at all to do this using the multiple copy tool (with primary and alternate copies), a room polyline, one extra large polyline box, and just 2 boolean operations. If you can't figure it out, let me know and I'll try to make a quick video if I can find a few extra minutes.

 

You can also create a single solid shaped like your ceiling tile assembly built using the multiple copy tool and then a single thinner solid for the grid post-46-0-07745700-1463857829_thumb.png

 

Make it large enough so that it would cover most any room you might need it for and add it to your library.  When you need it, all you have to do is position it over any given room to where you want it and then use a room polyline converted to a solid and a single boolean operation (solid intersection) to trim the whole thing to the right shape.  If you want to use it for 3D views as well simply paint it the color or your ceiling tiles.  If you want the ceiling tiles and grid work to be a different color, explode the shape and paint the grid a separate color. 

 

Granted it would have to be redone if you change the size or shape of your room, but its pretty quick solution none-the-less. 

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Great question and worth placing as a request. I agree that this is a royal pain to work with IMO as well. What I do to help things out a bit is to lay out the grid arrangement that I want and then place an object that is the correct size of the grid in the plan at the location of one of the tiles. It has to be at the elevation of the tile to be of any use.

Still a tedious process, but it does at least give a bit of visual feedback. I have found that I can get things accomplished quite a bit faster this way. Still love to see a real fix for this though.

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Without control of the hatch pattern origin you could make your own pattern files but for each grid size it would be 144 files for 1 inch offsets.

Seems like Chief would have provided the origin control for users. At least in the professional version of there software.

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Click on "Room Polyline" adjust ht. change material to ceiling tile. adjust the pattern and texture of the material as needed per room.

Another problem with this idea is that the hatch lines are not snappable. You can insert a light fixture into the grid accurately. 

 

Once in a while we don't need to render the crap out of projects. Sometimes an "old school" 2d line tool with be best, like now.

 

Tomorrow morning I'll screencast the ceiling tool from by 2012 version of Vectorworks and upload it here and to the suggestions area. It would be really nice if they gave use small package of commercial tools.

 

Check back tomorrow afternoon.

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The method I use is snappable, it shows in 2D and 3D but it takes 5-6 mintues a room.

A new tool from CA. would be best.

I have vectorworks but like Ca better.

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This should definitely be put in the Suggestion Forum. It's a PITA to develop ceiling grid layouts for commercial projects, especially when the room is divided up into different ceiling areas. Autodesk has a very good ceiling grid tool for their products - Chief should have the same (especially as it's being advertised for light commercial work).

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Here's the video of VW that I think would be an easy tool from Chief. It's fully adjustable and snappable, allowing placement of fixtures.

 

Comments?

 

<iframe width="640" height="360" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/tkoUSPTTaBk"frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

 

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Here's the video of VW that I think would be an easy tool from Chief. It's fully adjustable and snappable, allowing placement of fixtures.

 

Comments?

 

<iframe width="640" height="360" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/tkoUSPTTaBk"frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

 

 

Would definitely be a good tool to have...even for residential.  It could be used for tile layout and all sorts of things. 

 

In the meantime, what are you doing now to create your ceiling grid layout? 

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Here's a Library of 24" Ceiling Tiles (tegular edge) that I use.  I have them set in the Library to place 12" below the room ceiling - can be changed in the object dbx.  Once I have one placed where I want it I just use the multi-copy tool to populate the room.  The tiles can be adjusted in size as needed.

 

Note, since these are symbols, they will show up in the materials list as well.

Suspended Ceiling Tiles.calibz

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Would definitely be a good tool to have...even for residential.  It could be used for tile layout and all sorts of things. 

 

In the meantime, what are you doing now to create your ceiling grid layout? 

Aghh. Right now I drawa room poly, Add some lines, center them in the room, extend to polyline, add some cross tees on another layer, extend them to poly. Someone mentioned using a gridded material fill but that only works if it's a continuous grid for the entire floor. But this si for a doctors office with partitions 6" above the ceiling. Each ceiling gird needs to be centered in it's own room. Aggravation at it's most extreme.

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With ceiling and floor tile, you have to determine whether you want a whole tile in the center or a half tile. That will determine the width of the tiles at the edges. 

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Aghh. Right now I drawa room poly, Add some lines, center them in the room, extend to polyline, add some cross tees on another layer, extend them to poly. Someone mentioned using a gridded material fill but that only works if it's a continuous grid for the entire floor. But this si for a doctors office with partitions 6" above the ceiling. Each ceiling gird needs to be centered in it's own room. Aggravation at it's most extreme.

Using that technique, approx. how long does it take you to lay out ceiling grid for your average room? Reason I ask is that I think I might have a much quicker method that would work for you now that I have a better idea of what you are trying to accomplish.

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Hey Edward,

 

Here's a quick video.  Sorry, intended to make it a few days ago...just didn't find time till now.  From the way you describe it, it just sounds like the method you're using might be more of a hassle than it has to be.  Hopefully this helps; if not you, than maybe someone else...

 

 

Note: You could quite easily add the thickness of the main beams/runners and cross tees by simply creating an extra line before your multiple copy.  And you could add further accuracy by using polyline boxes instead of lines to differentiate between the main beams/runners and cross tees (would just take a couple minor extra steps).

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Was trying to make a quick follow up showing a similarly quick and simple method for full 3D using p-solids but our power went out. Maybe tomorrow. The p-solid method can be equally as fast...its just a little more difficult to manipulate for proper layout within the room.

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Michael Thanks for the Great Video and the time it took to make it.

This is a little off topic but, I was wondering if there was a tool that would save even more time when you are "Multiple Copying" if you set your Multiple Copy Primary Offset to 24" and your Secondary Offset to 48" when doing multiple rooms with the same grid.

The reason I ask is that I have tried this many times in lots of different situations and can not get it to work and it would be great if it would. The instructions are so simple and I can't figure it out.

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If I get around to making the 3D version video I'll show you, but the way you use that tool is to RIGHT click, drag (primary offset), let go, drag in second direction (secondary offset) and left click to finish. You can trick the program into using only the secondary offset but it's a little quirky and not very consistent so I don't do it.

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