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Alan Cooper

Move points

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I love the way FormZ works, or should I say in theory I love the way I expect it to work?

My eyesight isn't what it was and I have to make a box to hold a client's collection of old fashioned audio cassettes. 

I designed the box and before making it checked the measurements, good job I did because what I had quickly measured as 15mm thickness cassettes are actually 17mm so the box needs to be a little larger.

So I thought good job I designed this in FormZ, just a matter of moving points all in one go, while in wireframe plan view. The adjustment will be complete in under a minute.

But no. Apparently this is too hard for FormZ 8. [unless it is a limitation with my computer].

To do this successfully I had to go through a long-winded process of grouping the box, cutting it through the middle with the section tool, moving half the box away from the other half by the required amount, resize each object [which involves turning visibility off the lid layer to access the lower parts, and boolean join the cut parts back together. Quite a number of minutes work, not to mention the wasted ones during attempts with moving by points, segments, cutting with a line, etc.

I do hope the next update will have a fix for the only partly effective move points and segments tool. This type of procedure is very important for my type of work and it would be nice if Autodessys would lay down work on all new features until problems with basic main-stay features like this are fixed.

I attach some screenshots and the original file in case you would like to have a go yourself with it.

150327CassetteBoxV8.14.fmz.zip

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Alan,

 

Just in case you found difficulty with snapping on pre-existing points in your objects, with the intention of next snapping these to the grid…..

 

Herein is the grand change in formZ 8 from version 6 and earlier….

 

We can no longer do it that way!

 

My work around is to first determine which grid snaps will become the targets. Add point objects to these grid intersections.

 

Now you can modify the old model to match the grid, except only the point  snaps should be active.

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If the objects were facetted then there would be no problem, I find that some smooth objects don't like their points being moved.

So I prefer to move the object (the end frame) and use extent tool. The extend tool is way better than before and more intuitive.

Moving points has become less important (for me) with the latest iterations of FormZ.

The thing with your model, is that you have rounded ends which prevent the use of the extend tool, so if you want to keep it smooth, at the moment anyway, you'll have to slice the frames, move them, extend, and union boolean as you said.

 

I suppose this isn't any help to you, but if you had sweeped the shape, then if you show controls, you can resize away.

Make a copy of the model (on another layer perhaps), then round your edges.

 

But the point remains (pun intended), movement of faces and points on smooth objects needs to be sorted  ;)

 

Des

 

 

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Hi Alan,

 

Yes, as Des notes, moving parts of Smooth objects can not always be calculated successfully, and when it fails that part will not be moved.  This is an issue we have reported to Spatial Technology, and hopefully they will be able to improve this in the near future.

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All this hassle would be unnecessary if ADS would implement construction history of some sort.

Form Z is a grate tool for creating complex models but, very poor at changing features in those complex models.

 

Dan

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Des, thanks for checking out the model. Smooth looks so much cleaner than faceted. I take your points.

 

Tech, thanks for doing all you can to try to get Spatial to sort this out. So presumably all Cad software who use it have this problem? I think in hindsight I should have saved harder and bought a solidworks license. But hindsight is a luxury I don't have and can't afford.

 

I could do this operation with Turbocad. It involves starting with a solid, converting to TC 3d surface type, do the operation of moving nodes by delta and then converting back to Acis solid type. For now the easiest work-around for me I suppose is to export the fz file as dwg, do the operation in turbocad pro, and bring it back in from dwg to fz. I will lose any object naming and probably materials, but layers should remain. I haven't actually time to check it right now but pretty certain it will work, whether or not smooth will be retained, I don't know, may be faceted. When I have time I will report the outcome.

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I tried the move points by delta in turbocad. It worked but not as quickly as hoped. I think everything which was selected to do the edit operation needed to be on the same object coordinate orientation to edit together so applying the operation of several selections rather than all at once worked. Lost materials, but layers were maintained. Dwg outcome attached. I think in future I will just export the parts that didn't point move properly in turbocad if there is no alternative, but usually it will be possible and quicker to achieve desired result by alternative method in FZ.

 

Strongly want Spatial to get this sorted though to save much time.

150327CassetteBoxV8.14tcwtestFZ.dwg.zip

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Yes, thats irritating; for example if you have smooth round columns and want to change heights in one go: frame select points or faces also does not do it... (anymore)

 

For the box example the way I would approach this is to substract a larger Block, move the resulting part(s), then use the extend tool to shoot the faces together and then union the two parts again (smooth). Thats a quite similar workaround but a bit easier than slicing, as you can directly click-extend the faces, and no grouping involved. Still its an effort and only works on certain geometry...

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Hi Alan,

 

Yes, as Des notes, moving parts of Smooth objects can not always be calculated successfully, and when it fails that part will not be moved.  This is an issue we have reported to Spatial Technology, and hopefully they will be able to improve this in the near future.

 

Tech, I see FormZ 8 uses Acis R24. Since Acis is now on R25 and supports multi threading, thus greatly speeding up modelling operations, not just rendering operations, will we have to wait to FormZ 9 to enjoy the benefit, it would be nice to have it much sooner, especially as we are enduring a serious flaw at present? http://www.spatial.com/products/3d-acis-modeling

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Tech, I see FormZ 8 uses Acis R24. Since Acis is now on R25 and supports multi threading, thus greatly speeding up modelling operations, not just rendering operations, will we have to wait to FormZ 9 to enjoy the benefit, it would be nice to have it much sooner, especially as we are enduring a serious flaw at present? http://www.spatial.com/products/3d-acis-modeling

 

So does this update have anything to do with this issue?  I hope so but don't see anywhere where they say it does...

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Rob, I don't know, but if it is a glitch, it could be an opportunity to get it sorted out. I am suspecting that this is not a universal problem, but an individual one between Acis and FormZ, as I have not seen any other references to this problem with smooth objects anywhere else. 4 times speed increase to modelling operations, as well as 7 threads of processors available to carry out 'complex' operations, could be a big advantage, and be some compensation to us for the time wasted thus far through what should have worked not been working.

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Hi Alan,

 

Yes, we regularly update the ACIS modeling engine as they release updates of their own, and the next update for formZ will include ACIS R25.

 

With your DWG example, your software converted the objects to Facetted to move the points.  If you convert them to facetted in formZ, you can also move the points there too.

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Which other programs allow you to move points of smooth objects?

Rob, I don't know, not sufficiently familiar with other programs, just assumed so as other programs also use Spatial's products.

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Tech, thanks. It is great that FormZ can move at least some smooth points. Seems it can move those made with cylinder tool but not those reshaped from a circle for example. Great that R25 will be used in FormZ soon, sounds powerfully improved. Hoping this also may be an opportunity to get all types of smooth objects to adjust by points and faces.

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Alan,

 

Moving parts of Smooth objects is not trivial, but hopefully this can be improved.  If you want the same functionality as your other program, just Convert to Facetted first.

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Hey, Tech, this won't work for my box, but I have just discovered that smooth cylinders which originated from reshaped circles and fail to point move, will point move after an unmesh. The unmesh does not turn the smooth cylinder to faceted. This is a good result and maybe a clue about the difference between the smooth cylinder produced from circle and that produced with cylinder tool.

 

I appreciate, however, that my box example is a much more complex ask, and must admit it's much better that it just fails to move some of the points or segments rather than crash FormZ  :)

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