PDA

View Full Version : LWcad questions



Tony3d
02-24-2013, 06:06 PM
I will probably be buying LWCAD later this week after I install 11.5. Waiting to finish a job. Just had a few more questions. When you first install LWCAD where does it install all these plugins? Does it make a new tab? Is there some kinda of getting started video tutorial expalining it's work flow. I viewed a lot of the the tutorials on the site, it seems like theres a lot to take in. some of the features look fantastic! Any getting started advice would be great! I would really liek to see them implement a screw, and nut generator similar to quickbolt. I could really use that. Being on a Mac quickbolt doesn't run I believe. I'm spending $300.00 for just a handfull of plugins I think I'd use. Have no use at all form the architectual stuff.

tburbage
02-25-2013, 12:46 AM
There is a video explaining installation. Look toward the bottom of this page for some useful links:

http://wtools3d.com/product-activation.php

LW plugins don't need to be installed in any particular location. I put my 3rd party things under <homedir>/.NewTek/plugins/. I think Viktor suggests creating a directory W-Tools somewhere, but it is only a suggestion. He does provide pre-made menu hierarchies which you import after you get the plugins installed.

He has posted many tutorial videos on Youtube - see the links at:

http://wtools3d.com/online-help.php

I consider LWCad a must-have for hard surface modeling, and some of the so-called "ArchViz" tools are equally useful in other contexts. Its toolset represents a major extension of Modeler capability. It has an object library concept that lets you store curves and meshes essentially as pre-sets, so if you create that nut/bolt shape once, you can add it to the library and use it over and over from there.

Waves of light
02-25-2013, 02:48 AM
There are a lot of features to get use to... some I don't even use. Viktor has also recently compacted some of the functions, and you have to use the 'n' key to change between drawing in 2D (splines) and 3D.

As for the install, it's very easy:

Things to get ready first:

Download and unzip LWCAD 4.2
Copy and paste your serial number and activation key into notepad (I just do this to make it easy for product activation - but you can just copy and paste from the licence area of product activation area http://www.wtools3d.com/product-activation.php)


Installing LWCAD:


From the resulting zip file above, look in the plugins folder (either Mac, Win and Win32 Win64) for lwcad_cur.p lwcad_dim.p and lwcad64.p (or lwcad32.p if running it on a 32 bit windows install)
Copy these to you plugin directory
Open modeler
Go to the Utilities Tab and Add Plugins
Point to the three new LWCAD plugins
Wait for it to say that it has installed all the plugins
Then, go to Edit | Edit Menu Layout
In the Menus window, look for Main Menu
Right click and select 'Import Branch'
Point the resulting window at the LWCAD 4.2 zip file and look in the 'menu branches' folder
Select the first one
Repeat the above two steps until you have imported all three branches
Click Done on the Configure Menus window
Now, if you want to, you can move the newly created tabs from the front of your tab selection to the ends by just clicking and dragging. I have them at the end (furthest right)
Select any of the new tabs and click the LWCAD Options button
Click 'activate LWCAD'
Copy and paste in your serial and activation keys and click activate. Also within the LWCAD options menu, you can set it to point at your LWCAD assets (which are in the zip file) - these are things like premade doors, windows, roof shingles, etc.
And finally I assign my most commonly used LWCAD tools to my LMB+CTRL+SHIFT menu tab


Hope that helps. Any problems, just post on here PM me.

Ricky.

meshpig
02-25-2013, 03:41 AM
I will probably be buying LWCAD later this week after I install 11.5. Waiting to finish a job. Just had a few more questions. When you first install LWCAD where does it install all these plugins? Does it make a new tab? Is there some kinda of getting started video tutorial expalining it's work flow. I viewed a lot of the the tutorials on the site, it seems like theres a lot to take in. some of the features look fantastic! Any getting started advice would be great! I would really liek to see them implement a screw, and nut generator similar to quickbolt. I could really use that. Being on a Mac quickbolt doesn't run I believe. I'm spending $300.00 for just a handfull of plugins I think I'd use. Have no use at all form the architectual stuff.

You basically just load the 3 plugins then load the 3 menu branches via "edit menu layout" by right clicking over the dir you want them added to, then set your presets path and license activation. Very simple. It doesn't matter much whether you do archiviz or not as it just doubles the toolset whatever yer up to; can't imagine LWM without it.

meshpig
02-25-2013, 03:50 AM
ah, sorry waves of light didn't see your detailed description but it's automatic after any upgrade for me :)

Tony3d
02-25-2013, 05:19 AM
Thanks guys. I'm excited about these plugins. The mass rounding tool looks to be much better than rounder, and the UV Mapping tools look easier to use. What do you guys think about those specific tools?

Waves of light
02-25-2013, 05:22 AM
You already know my thoughts about UV mapping and Mass Round from your other thread. But as others have stated, LWCAD is an addition you won't regret.

meshpig
02-25-2013, 05:33 AM
Thanks guys. I'm excited about these plugins. The mass rounding tool looks to be much better than rounder, and the UV Mapping tools look easier to use. What do you guys think about those specific tools?

Yeah but LW Rounder is for splitting points, it's still a useful one.

Tony3d
02-25-2013, 05:38 AM
You already know my thoughts about UV mapping and Mass Round from your other thread. But as others have stated, LWCAD is an addition you won't regret.
Thanks for the video on rounder! I somehow missed that reply. Can that quad mapper be used to map just about any kind of object?

Tony3d
02-25-2013, 05:42 AM
Yeah but LW Rounder is for splitting points, it's still a useful one.

For some reason I have a lot of trouble with rounder on my Mac. Many times I'll try to round an edge, and it simply will do nothing, and say I have selected points that are outside the selection area, or something like that. Worse, it will just crash.

Waves of light
02-25-2013, 06:44 AM
I've found with Rounder you have to do the following (and even this isn't fool proof):

1. Make sure you have clean geometry. No stray points, no two point polys.
2. Only have 1 layer visible - not background, or two + layers selected.

Ricky.

With Chamfer and Mass Round, Rounder has become redundant.

jrandom
02-25-2013, 10:48 AM
I'll second the notion that LWCad is an essential add-on for modeler, even when modeling non-house objects. :)

dnch
02-25-2013, 11:39 AM
i never got used to it:/ i got it from some bundle couple years back and i dont even have it installed anymore

jrandom
02-25-2013, 11:51 AM
i never got used to it:/ i got it from some bundle couple years back and i dont even have it installed anymore

I found it confusing until I just sat down and watched all the training videos linked to by the documentation. Once you wrap your head around the interface philosophy, it makes a ton of sense. For me, things started to click when I realized that object like Wndows, Doors, Wall, whatever, just result in polygons. There's nothing special about the output, they're just bog-standard polys. That plus LWCad's superior boolean/cutting tools make it a must-have in my book. (Also, Engrave. Oh good lord, Engrave. It's like rail extrude without the rails. Whee!)

dnch
02-25-2013, 11:54 AM
is there some video showing engrave tool? cant find it anywhere

Waves of light
02-25-2013, 12:38 PM
Detail video is available here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlMIEuWcob0

BokadCastle
02-25-2013, 12:49 PM
is there some video showing engrave tool? cant find it anywhere

it's the Detail section in 4.2 manual - Engraver and Profiler
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlMIEuWcob0

Waves of light
02-25-2013, 12:51 PM
it's the Detail section in 4.2 manual - Engraver and Profiler
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlMIEuWcob0

Lol.. must be the time difference mate! Beat you to it.

BokadCastle
02-25-2013, 12:53 PM
Lol.. must be the time difference mate! Beat you to it.

Yair, that happens a lot :thumbsup:

jrandom
02-25-2013, 02:07 PM
Also, LWCAD's snapping panel is now something I can't live without. It makes creating background layer guides super useful -- I can now easily move and snap geometry extremely simply.

Seriously, if you can afford it, there's no reason not to buy LWCAD. I kinda wish Newtek would just hire the guy and make those tools part of the standard program.

JonW
02-25-2013, 03:45 PM
The productivity gains will pay for it in a day.

Snap panel.
Drawing lines & trim over background images to build shapes.
Complex profiling of of individual surfaces & loops etc.
Area & volume measuring & notation tools.

Are a few I find very useful.

Tony3d
02-25-2013, 03:56 PM
What is trim over background layer? Sorry, miss read it.

jrandom
02-25-2013, 05:40 PM
What is trim over background layer? Sorry, miss read it.

You can draw curves (splines) that immedately boolean 2D or 3D shapes in the layer. It's fantastic for caving out complex shapes in a hurry. If you want a good view of what it can currently do, go download the latest manual and watch all the video links it contains. (That's what got me to buy it -- I saw a lot of people here recommending it, kinda balked at the price, watched a few of the manual videos, and immediately purchased it.)

Snosrap
02-25-2013, 09:20 PM
Thanks guys. I'm excited about these plugins. The mass rounding tool looks to be much better than rounder, and the UV Mapping tools look easier to use. What do you guys think about those specific tools? Mass Round is the best. Rounder is a "has been".

meshpig
02-26-2013, 02:08 AM
For some reason I have a lot of trouble with rounder on my Mac. Many times I'll try to round an edge, and it simply will do nothing, and say I have selected points that are outside the selection area, or something like that. Worse, it will just crash.

I use it primarily to split points into polygons which need to be within a boundary edge, but otherwise it works fine on mac here but as wol says...

hrgiger
02-26-2013, 06:04 PM
I kinda wish Newtek would just hire the guy and make those tools part of the standard program.

Unfortunately, that will not happen.

jrandom
02-26-2013, 06:39 PM
Unfortunately, that will not happen.

I will now make a sad face. :(

Oh hey, you're that guy who makes the nifty LWCAD preset pack! Any way I could get an alert when you've updated it for 4.x and are taking orders again?

hrgiger
02-26-2013, 06:54 PM
I will now make a sad face. :(

Oh hey, you're that guy who makes the nifty LWCAD preset pack! Any way I could get an alert when you've updated it for 4.x and are taking orders again?

Viktor will be putting out a newsletter not too long from now and there will probably be something in there about that so make sure you're subscribed to his mailing list which you can do on the WTools webpage if you haven't already. Will be a fairly big update this time. Big enough that I will probably have to release it in a few iterations.

Steve

jrandom
02-26-2013, 07:37 PM
Yep, I'm a registered LWCAD user, so I'll receive any newsletters he sends out.