Last modified on 17 July 2008, at 21:21

Wings 3D/User Manual/The Tools Menu

62 DRAFT 1.6

� WINGS3D USER MANUAL Section 5.1 The Menus 5.1.5 The Tools Menu Figure 42: The Tools Menu. Tools Menu – General

The tools menu contains some functions that will interact with other Wings commands.

TOOLS | ALIGN

All

X Y Z Radial X (YZ) Radial Y (XZ) Radial Z (XY)


Aligns all selected objects based on the bounding box of the selection for each element. This can be useful to line things up once they have gotten off center. For example by using a series of Aligns, you could get wheels on a model that have become misaligned back into proper positions relative to each other. It does not align vertices, edges or faces to an axis on the same model.

TOOLS | CENTER

All

X Y Z Radial X (YZ) Radial Y (XZ) Radial Z (XY)


Centers objects in the workspace based on the bounding box of all selected items. If you work on a large model that has sort of "grown" off in one direction, you can quickly center it in the workspace again. Also, if you have multiple objects in a complex model, and you've lost track of one of them, you can select it (via the Objects Menu – to be discussed latter) and then Center to find it again.

TOOLS | SAVE BOUNDING BOX

Saves the bonding box of selected items, from one or more objects, for later use. Use Save Bounding Box without any selection to clear the bounding box. An outline of the current bounding box is displayed if so chosen in the users' preferences.

TOOLS | SCALE TO SAVED BB

All

X

Y

Z

Radial X (YZ)

Radial Y (XZ)

Radial Z (XY) Scales the selected object(s) to the bounding box that has been previously saved. This command will scale each selected object, along one, two, or three axes. The amount to scale could be different along each axis, meaning that this command can distort the proportions of the objects (i.e. a cube might no longer remain a cube). The scale factor for each axis is computed by comparing the saved bounding box with the bounding box for

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� Section 5.1 The Menus WINGS3D USER MANUAL the selection. To avoid distorting the objects, use Scale to Saved BB Proportionally.

TOOLS | SAVE TO SAVED BB PROPORTIONALLY

All

X

Y

Z

Radial X (YZ)

Radial Y (XZ)

Radial Z (XY) Similar to Scale to Saved Bounding Box, but the idea with this one is that it should preserve the proportions of the selected objects, i.e. all axes will be scaled the same amount. This command will keep the scaled objects inside the saved bounding box.

TOOLS | MOVE TO SAVED BB

All

X

Y

Z Will move the selected object(s) based on the center of their aggregate bounding box to the center of the saved bounding box.

TOOLS | SET DEFAULT AXIS

Sets the default axis for vertex commands.

TOOLS | VIRTUAL MIRROR

The Virtual Mirror tool puts you into a special modeling mode for creating perfectly symmetrical models. To use it select a face to mirror around and then select Virtual Mirror. The model will be mirrored from the selected face so that as you make changes on either side of the model they will be reflected on the other side of the model. This has the potential for cutting your modeling time in half and can be used to do some things that are otherwise sometimes difficult to achieve, such as rotating two surfaces in opposite directions. Note that if you want your model to stay centered in the workspace it is best to loop cut the model down the middle, delete half the model,

select the resulting face, and then start Virtual Mirror.

Create – Creates the virtual half of the model which mirrors the real half. Note that you can work with either the virtual or real half and actions will be reflected on the counterpart.

Break – Destroys the virtual mirror so that only the real half of the model remains.

Freeze – Makes the virtual half of the model into real geometry, thus creating a perfectly symmetrical full model.

TOOLS | TWEAK

Tweak is a special modeling mode that allows you to drag vertices freely for fine movements. It is a very useful and powerful tool that warrants getting used to. Most of the controls are clearly explained on the status bar at the bottom of the workspace, as outlined here:

(L) – Left mouse button; Drag vertices freely (R) – Right mouse button; Exit tweak mode (M) – Middle mouse button; Tumble (Shift-M) – Shift plus the middle mouse button; Track (Ctrl-Shift-M) – Control plus Shift plus the Middle mouse button; Dolly

(1) – Turns the magnets on or off. You can use Tweak with standard moves, or with magnetic moves. To turn on the magnets press the 1 (the number 1) key. Doing so will cause the status bar to change. While in magnet mode L will drag and R will exit Tweak mode. The + key will increase the fall-off zone while the – (minus) key will decrease the fall-off zone. The 2, 3, and 4 keys will change the type of magnet in use. Pressing the 1 key will turn the magnets off again.

These controls effectively turn Tweak into an interactive magnet with the area of influence for the magnet defined by the fall-off zone. Tweak was originally a plug-in designed by Howard Trickey and has since been incorporated into the Wings3D core.

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� WINGS3D USER MANUAL Section 5.1 The Menus Quick Tip: Additional Tools

Note that some very useful tools for Wings will appear in the Tools Menu if you have installed the available plug-ins. These include Draw Loop, Locked, Slide, and Tweak_s from Clacos. They are available at:

http://members.lycos.co.uk/clacos/

I highly recommend them. Apologies to any other tool makers if I'm missing any.

Quick Tip: Bounding Boxes

Don't overlook the usefulness of bounding boxes. You can use them to place an object at any given location, such as putting a hat on a hat rack. To do so select a vertex on the hook of the hat rack and do a Save Bounding Box. Then select a vertex on the inside of the hat and do a Move To Saved BB. The hat will snap right into place.


Image by Mentat7 (www.sargentgfx.com) Rendered in Cinema4D