Tue 20 Apr, 2010
Tags: Graphics, LayOut, Shop Drawings, SketchUp, Tutorial
In this post we will complete the template we started in Creating A Custom Shop Drawing Template With LayOut 2 – Part 1 of 2. If you haven’t read that post please do so before reading any further. Hopefully you saved your .layout file from part 1, but if you didn’t you can download mine and pick up from there. When we left off our template looked as the picture at left. Everything we had drawn resides on layer Logo & Outline which is visible on all pages and locked to protect it from changes.
Now we are going to create a Date Box layer. This layer will contain the date the drawing set was completed and my website and blog addresses. It also will appear on every page. Add this layer by clicking on the + symbol in the Layers dialog box. Layer 3 appears and is selected. Notice it is unlocked and has one sheet of paper in the Pages icon. Click the Pages icon to change it to four sheets of paper (appears on all pages). Make sure the Visible eye icon is dark (not grayed out). Do not lock it at this time. We want to make changes to it which we can do now since it is selected (active). Rename this layer to Date Box by right clicking on the layer name and choose Rename. Leave this layer selected before going any further.
Remember we have a tall and narrow box that is 6 1/4” by 1/4” through which the grid is visible on the left side of the sheet. We want to place the contents of the Date Box in that tall and narrow box. First we have to create the contents by following these steps carefully:
- In the Text Style dialog box click on the Align Center and Anchor Center icons in the Format tab. For Family, Typeface and Size choose Verdana, Regular and 8 pt.
- Using the “Text” tool, and with the aid of the grid, click-drag-release a text box with the dimensions 6 1/4” by 1/4”, however, create the box such that the long dimension is in the horizontal direction. Before doing anything else with your mouse, notice the blinking cursor in the box.
- Type the line of text immediately following this numerical list of instructions into the text box. Do not cut and paste this line of text unless you first paste it into Notepad and re-copy it to remove formatting. You will have to re-choose Align Center and Anchor Center if you do this.
- Between .com and Blog insert 9 more spaces. Between /blog and Date insert 9 more spaces. This spreads things out using the entire box.
- Go to the Window/Shape Style menu to open the dialog box. With the text box still selected click on the Fill button in the upper left hand corner of the Shape Style dialog box. The text box should now have a white background (assuming you didn’t change the color in the Fill color box next to the Fill button). Close the Shape Style box.
- With the “Select” tool deselect and reselect the text box. Hover the cursor over the center of the test box just over the blue dot until you get a rotate cursor as shown in the picture below.
- Rotate right by click-dragging the cursor approximately 90 degrees. Notice the measurement box at the bottom reads Angle and approximately minus 90 degrees. Release the cursor and type –90 into the Measurements box. The text box now runs vertically in the long axis.
- Hover over a corner of the selected text box until a curser with four opposing arrows appears and click-drag-release the text box into position. With the “Select” tool deselect the text box.
- Lock the Date Box layer by clicking on the Lock icon next to the layer’s name.
Website: http://www.srww.com Blog: http://www.srww.com/blog Date: MM/DD/YYYY
Our template should now look like the picture at right. Notice that the Default layer is now selected and that you cannot change the Date Box text. The only layers that can be selected are unlocked layers. Since the Default layer is the only unlocked layer it is selected.
We are now going to customize the Cover Page. The cover page is the page that comes first in a shop drawing set. It informs the reader of the customer or client’s name, the project’s name, the customer or client’s address and provides a short project description. Of course this is all a matter of personal choice, but for the purpose of this tutorial, that is what we will use as the definition of the cover page.
Before creating the content of the cover page we need to create a Cover Page layer. Click the + sign in the Layers dialog box and change the name of the layer to Cover Page by right clicking Layer 4 and choosing Rename. Type Cover Page and enter or just bring your cursor to the drawing area. This time leave the Pages icon set to a single page since what we will include on the Cover Page layer will exist only on one page.
We need four text boxes to be placed in the lower right hand corner box that is now blank. They will be roughly the same size so we start in the upper left hand corner and with the “Text” tool click-drag- release a text box roughly one quarter the size of the open area. Type the following into the text box:
Using the Text Style dialog box select the first line of text and format it to: Family, Typeface and Size choose Verdana, Regular and 8 pt respectively. Select the second line of text and format it to: Family, Typeface and Size choose Verdana, Italic and 10 pt respectively. This will make the client’s name stand out a little. Your template should look like that at left.
We can use the same process to create three more text boxes or use the copy/paste method. If you use the copy/paste method be aware that you may paste the text box exactly on top of the one you copied. That is not a problem; just use the “Select” tool and the opposing four arrow move cursor to move the pasted text box into position. Either type into the text box, or change the text if you used the copy/paste method, such that it looks like that at right. Notice the Prepared For: and Project: text boxes make use of larger italic 10 pt text. The remaining two boxes use regular 8 pt text.
Notice that the small red arrow is trying to tell us that one or more of the text boxes runs off the page. The Client Address: is the culprit in this case. I used the copy/paste method to place the text boxes so they are all the same size. Each can be customized based on its needs. Since the Prepared For: text box is never likely to use more than one line I can shorten its height and give that height to the Client Address: text box. The same is true for Project: and Project Description: In addition, Project description may need more width. We make these changes using the “Select” tool and the appropriate cursor to change the size of each box. Try to keep vertical and horizontal alignment of the starting point of each box. To keep the white area of the text boxes from covering part of the Logo & Outline lines you may need to turn off Grid Snap under the Arrange menu. This will allow analog placement of text box edges giving you more control. Turn it back on afterword. Having made these changes the Cover Page information should look like that at left.
Lock the Cover Page layer. In the Pages dialog box Page 1 is selected (it is the only page available at this point). Right click on it and choose Rename. Change the name to Cover Page. We now have a cover page template, but we also need and every page template for all the drawings that will go into the drawing set. In the Pages dialog box click the + sign to add a page. It will be named Page 2 by default. We are going to change this name to Inside Page the same way we renamed Page 1 to Cover Page. With that done and Inside Page selected, in the Layers dialog box make the Cover Page invisible by clicking on the eye icon to gray it out (it is not visible anyway because we created it on the Cover Page and made it appear only on that page with the single paper icon selection, but this is a good habit anyway).
In the Layers dialog box add a layer and call it Inside Page. Make it appear on all pages with the four page icon. Inside Page should now be selected in both the Pages dialog box and the Layers dialog box. Add one text box to the upper left hand corner of the open text area in the lower right. Insert the text:
Format the first line with Veranda Regular 8 pt text and the second line with Verdana Italic 10 pt text. Like before make this text box a little shorter and less tall to make room for other information. Again you may have to turn off Grid Snap under the Arrange menu. Turn it back on when you are done. Lock the Inside Page layer. Now the Default layer is selected as is the Inside Page in the Pages dialog box. What we just did held the assumption that the same person, Drafter’s Name, would draw the entire SketchUp model and create the shop drawings. With that assumption we fixed that information in the Inside Page layer and locked it.
To finish our template all we need it drawing title, drawing description and page number text boxes that will change on a page-by-page basis. This information we will put on the Default layer and we will leave it unlocked.
Create and place these text boxes using the same techniques as before and the following text:
Front View – Overall Dimensions
Note that the Drawing Title: is pretty specific. That is simply because my custom is to have a front view with overall dimensions as the first page after the cover page (page 2) in all my shop drawing sets. Description: is a place holder; it could be Scale:, or Note: or anything else the drafter desires. Since the Default layer remains unlocked it is changeable at any time. As mentioned, the first page inside the cover page is always P2 in my convention. It too can be changed at any time.
There is one last little detail before we can save this file as a template. We added and Inside Page layer and made it appear on all pages, but actually we want it to appear on all pages but the Cover Page. In the Pages dialog box select the Cover Page and make Inside Page layer invisible by graying out the eye icon. Before saving this file let’s be sure everything looks correct. In the picture at the upper right is the completed Cover Page template. Checkout the dialog boxes on the right for content to be sure your setting are the same. Do the same for the completed Inside Page template shown in the upper left picture.
If you are satisfied go to the File/Save As Template menu to open the Save As Template dialog box. In the Template Name box give the template a useful name, e.g. SRWW Letter Landscape. This tells me it is a Swamp Road Wood Works template for 8 1/2” x 11 paper in landscape orientation. If you wish this to be the default template when you open a new file select Default Templates under Template Folder (although there is one more step to make it the default template). To make this the default template, go to File/New From Template to open the Getting Started dialog box. Select your template from the list and check the Always use Selected Template check box. Click Open. A new untitled file is opened and ready to go.
If you had trouble along the way you can download my template file and peruse it to see what I did. This post completes Creating A Custom Shop Drawing Template With LayOut 2. However, stay tuned for Creating Shop Drawings With LayOut 2, which will explain how to use this template with a SketchUp model to create a shop drawing set.