3D Shape Creation


The edit toolbar.

Select the Polygonal Shape Creation, and hover over existing polygons. A orange sphere handle is shown centered on the hovered polygon. Dragging the handle (click and hold the button while moving) creates 3D shapes. When you release the mouse button, the 3D shape is finished. While dragging, snapping is performed to nearby vertices.


Depending on the shape, multiple arrows can appear. This allows you to create shapes along different directions. Simply hover the mouse over the desired direction arrow for immediate feedback. There are 4 different types of directions: 1. global y axis (up) 2. face normal 3. face normal projected on the ground plane 4. special directions adjacent faces. All directions have a unique color and mouse icons, as shown here:


From left to right: global y axis (up), face normal, face normal projected on the ground plane, special directions adjacent faces

In the 4th case, all edges are extended along their adjacent face while dragging. When the 4th case has the same direction as another arrow, the arrow is displayed with a slight offset. Here is an example of the difference between up and special edge direction dragging:


When the shape on the left is dragged along the green arrow, the middle shape is created. However, along the blue arrow, the right shape is created, extending the adjacent faces.

Force Edge Creation: To force the creation of new edges when starting a 3D drag operation, press the CTRL key.

Draw on handle: If you want to create a line on a position obscured by a handle, hover the mouse for three seconds over the handle. This causes the handle to disappear, allowing you to draw on this position.

3D Shape Editing

All the previously introduced polygonal operations can also be performed on 3D shapes: Snapping, splitting and automatic closing. Splitted parts can be moved to further refine the 3D model. Here is an example consisting of a split, 3D move, another split and move is shown:


3D Edge Move

Select the Polygonal Shape Creation, and hover over existing edges. This shows a orange handle, allowing edge movements. As with the face dragging, after a click and drag, multiple directions can be shown. These include: 1. global y axis (up) 2. along adjacent faces 3. along average face normal. Here is an example:


From left to right: Edge move along global y axis, adjacent faces and average face normal.

While moving edges, connected faces are intelligently updated to maintain planarity. Furthermore, the moved edge is intersected with neighboring polygons. Both features are very useful for creating roofs, as shown here:


Moving one edge automatically updates all orthogonal faces along the connected edges.


Moving the edge along the green axis automatically insets the edge along the existing roof.


Rectangular Shape Creation

Select the Rectangular Shape Creation tool. Click to define the first corner. Move the mouse to preview the resulting rectangle. A second click then creates the rectangle. This tool behaves very similar to the polygon tool. It supports automatic splitting, snapping, combine vs. add mode and 3D editing. A convenient feature is the automatic alignment to edges: When either the start or the end point snaps to a edge, the rectangle is aligned to match this edge. The following figure shows an example:


From left to right: Create a rectangle using two clicks. Hovering the mouse shows a sphere handle. Dragging this handle creates a 3D shape. When you snap to an edge, the rectangle is aligned. A further drag operation refines the shape.

Text entry: Click on the numerical input, enter three values and press ENTER. This creates the first point at those coordinates. You can now move the mouse, the text field shows the dimensions of the rectangle. While moving the mouse, you can directly start typing. When you enter two values and hit ENTER, a rectangle with this dimensions is created. If you enter three values and press ENTER, the second point of the rectangle is created at those coordinates.

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