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Everything posted by TomGriff

  1. A wedge shaped step like that at the top of a flight of stairs would be poor design practice and a trip hazard. I would add a triangular protrusion to the balcony where the stairs meet up to it. Then the stairs should mate up fine. Not sure if it works on other versions, but on Pro, if you right click on an upper floor wall that is close to one underneath, it will give you the option to align with wall below. Tom
  2. It does work quite well in Pro, although it is only a surface treatment. You can't see through the wall. Tom
  3. Go to the floor plan and click on the wall where you want the gap. Then using the handle that appears at the end of the wall, drag it back to where you want it to stop. You can also click on the dimension that shows up to precisely control the gap. Tom
  4. Got it! I used the soffit tool to add a 4" x 2" filler on top of the foundation walls, leaving a 4" x 2" recessed ledge around the top of the pit. Only problem I ran into was that when I added the fourth soffit, it completely filled in the pit. Not sure why, but the fix was to deselect the "Auto Adjust Height" box. The overall solution was to create a room open below using room dividers, Then drop down a level and create foundation walls, using the reference floor feature to align and offset them with the opening above. Then use the soffits to raise the tops of the foundation walls to within 2" of the floor to create the ledge. Thanks for the help, Tom
  5. That is pretty much what I have with the exception of the raised ridge around the edge of the pit. What I need to do is create a recessed lip around the edge for the steel floor grates to sit in, so they are flush with the floor. Most grates are around 1 1/2' thick, so if I had a lip that deep and a couple inches wide around the top. life would be good. Thanks, Tom
  6. I did use the room divider with the open below selection and it created the step shown in the pic. The slab feature will probably work to fill it in, but it doesn't look very user friendly at first glance. I'll have to spend some time to figure it out. Thanks, Tom
  7. I'm trying to create a pit in the slab floor of a garage. It needs to be about 36"W x 24'D x 12'L, with a 2" step around the top edge to support steel grating. So far I've created a room open below in the garage, and that seems to have formed the pit, but there is a step around the top that appears to be 4" wide x 4" deep and nothing I do seems to change it. Any ideas on how to get the 2" deep step I'm looking for? Thanks, Tom
  8. Yes, the room divider feature (in the Build Walls tab) is the way to do it. Tom
  9. I don't see the mention of floor loading anywhere in the program, and Home Designer seems happy to create spans any distance you like. Is there anywhere in the program where you can specify floor loading to determine the span of a floor joist or rafter, or is the engineering strictly up to the user? Tom
  10. It looks as though you have some or all of the walls of the upper floor set back from the walls of the lower floor, which creates a design issue with the roof on the lower floor. You need to reduce the pitch of the roof to keep its ridge below the windows on the upper floor and/or adjust the amount of setback to make it work. You may also want to consider changing the style of the roof. It looks as though the hip roof you are using gets quite complicated with your design. A gable or two may help. Tom
  11. You can also create a manual roof plane, open it, and set the baseline height to whatever you need. The height of the wall under the roof plane will adjust to suit the baseline setting. Tom
  12. I'm using Home Designer Pro and it has an edit box next to the floor structure for this. Apparently the Architect version doesn't offer that option. Tom
  13. Double click on the floor and under room specification/structure/floor, you can set the amount of wall showing below the door to whatever you like. Tom
  14. Try placing a room divider where you want the original vaulted ceiling to extend and check the "ceiling over this room" box in the new addition. Tom
  15. Yes Eric, I did the modeling in Sketchup and imported it into HD as shown in the image below. My question was how to deal with the mounting fittings on the ends (not shown yet). Sketchup must have a similar forum, I'll post it over there as well. Tom
  16. The roof overhangs and balcony's in the design I'm working on require some sort of brace, and since I'm a metalworking kind of guy, I though something fabricated from aluminum would be fun. I decided to use a section of ASA I beam with a fitting at each end to attach to the soffit, or underside of the balcony's and the wall. Since Sketchup is new to me, it was a little painful, but I was able to create the section of I beam with tabs and mounting holes on each end and import it into Home designer, but am not sure how to handle the fittings. It would be nice to make them part of a brace assembly, but they would need to flexible to adjust to the varying angles of the roof and balcony's, depending on where they were used. The lengths would need to vary as well. Would that be possible, or would the fittings and beam have to be separate parts to maintain that degree of flexibility? I'd rather not have to create dedicated assemblies with fixed angles and lengths, but will if I have to, now that I know how :). Thanks, Tom
  17. I'm a mechanical designer and nearly all of my designs start out as a simple hand sketch. Get yourself a pad of 1/4" grad. graph paper and a handful of pencils, and start sketching the floor layout, using your memory and photos as a guide. The longer you work at it, the more of it will come. Once you get a basic layout, along with some rough dimensions, THEN start looking into learning the software. Don't worry about the exterior until after you start working with the software. As long as you know the style of the house, and have a basic floor layout, the exterior will follow. Be sure to share the progress with the rest of the family as you go because they could be a lot of help filling in the blanks. Developing the basic design and learning the software are two completely separate tasks, but both must be mastered. Once you have a plan in mind, that should be the motivation you'll need to learn the CAD program. Above all. have fun! And let us know how it turns out. Tom
  18. Thanks Eric. The copy - Paste Hold Position worked like a charm. Tom
  19. Is there any way to save, or at least hide a walkthrough path in a floor plan? It can be a lot of work to get everything just right, so I've been leaving the path in the plan as it evolves. It would be nice to have the ability to save the path to generate future walkthroughs as things change. Thanks, Tom
  20. Well, that was interesting. I made a perspective framing overview to see what was going on underneath and found that some of the rafters were randomly taller than others, which seemed to be forcing the soffit down. I reconstructed the roof plane and the random tall rafters went away, but the soffit was still hanging in space, until I followed JoAnn's advice and checked the "Use soffit for ceiling" box in the deck structure menu, and that fixed it. If the box is unchecked, the soffit drops down along this roof, as well as in several locations on the roof above it. Thankfully the random tall rafter issue did not return. Thanks for all of the help. Tom
  21. I've manually created a roof using roof planes and have noticed a gap between the top surface of the soffit and the bottom edge of the fascia that extends the full length of the roof. I've also noticed several other random occurrences (short sections) of this on other roof planes. Does the fact that I've removed the gutters have anything to do with the gap, or is it a bug in the program? Or maybe just a bug in me? Thanks, Tom
  22. From the album: UP North House

    The first floor will have ten foot ceilings with several light boxes for indirect lighting. Figuring out how to represent that in HD has been challenging, but I think I have it worked out. Tom
  23. TomGriff

    UP North House

    My wife and I are getting ready to retire in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and we are starting to design the house. I'm a CAD guy, but in mechanical design not architecture, so it's taking a bit of effort to learn the program, but I'm gaining on it.
  24. Well it took a while, but I think I have it figured out. The soffit issue was fixed by deleting them and recreating them outside of the plan. Then I just dragged them in, positioned and resized them. It worked great. The lighting effect is just 3D spot lighting pointed up (90º) with a spread angle of 170º. There appears to be a limit on how many lights can be added before some of them don't work. I still need to play with the height a bit. Right now the bottom of the soffits are 104" off the floor and 10" high, under a 10 foot ceiling. A 6" gap is a little tight for painting and changing lamps. Thanks for the help, Tom