11 Printing Designs. When you have completed this chapter, you will be able to:

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1 11 Printing Designs Creating printed documents is the end we have worked towards from the beginning of this course. We have already been introduced to it very briefly with Printing - A First Look on page We may also hear the word Plotting with respect to CAD documents, but this is an old term and is going out of use, being replaced by Printing. The term Plotting originates from a device called a Plotter that was used until fairly recently to produce large format paper output. It had pens which were mechanically moved over the paper, drawing lines as they plotted a course from one point to the next, as a navigator might while plotting a course for a ship or aircraft. These days the output device is called a Printer, be it large or small format. 2D drafting may be regarded as creating on the computer screen a collection of images that will be copied to paper on completion. The paper copies will not necessarily be created at the same site as the original drawing creation; the computer generated information may be transmitted to a distant location via the web for printout. When a design is to be transmitted electronically, however, there will probably be printouts generated locally for checking. The preparation of our DGNs and the models within them for printout and, to an extent, the structuring of the practical design process as a whole will be introduced in this chapter. We start our preparation for document production from the moment we open the first new design file for a project. When you have completed this chapter, you will be able to: Choose between methods of combining models into the final drawing Use the system printer to produce small format printouts Create various configurations for the printed output and save these for later use Make text substitutions and re-symbolize geometry as it is being printed using Pen Tables. BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-1

2 11 Printing Designs Quick Printouts Quick Printouts Drawings for publication will normally be carefully composed, often with multiple views, a border and completed title block. We have already produced an example that goes most of the way to this with the sheet model of Furnished Cottage.dgn, which we may already have printed out. We will use this model again shortly, but we will look at some other possibilities first. There may be occasions when we need to print a model for checking purposes without a proper border and title block etc. We will use our Mounting Plate.dgn as an example of this, printing out the Design model directly, without creating a Sheet View. Print Out the Mounting Plate 1. Open Mounting Plate.dgn ; ensure that both the linework and the dimensioning levels are turned On; Fit the view. 2. Select the Print tool from the Standard tool box. The Print dialog box opens, with the name of the default printer in the title bar, along with the name of the MicroStation print configuration file ( Printer.plt is the default for the Windows printer). A small preview of the printout is displayed. 3. Choose Settings>Units from the dialog box menu, ensure that the Units are set to MM. Figure Setting Printer Units 4. Choose the Paper to suit the available printer (A4 is assumed) and click the Landscape orientation radio button. The print is Maximized by default, which means it is scaled to the maximum size to fit in the printable area of the paper. A Scale may be entered into the Print Size/Scale panel to reduce this size, then it may be increased back to the maximum size with the Maximize icon. The aspect ratio (height to width) of the view will suit this orientation more than Portrait. 5. Click the Print Attributes icon in the Print dialog box; ensure the settings in this dialog box are as illustrated in Figure 11.1 (including the Print Border On). 6. Enter the text Check print only - NOT FOR ISSUE in the Border Comment field. Click OK to save the settings Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

3 Printing Designs Quick Printouts The Data Fields box is normally left unchecked, this prevents the printing of the data field place markers (underscores, see page 9-28), but allows any entered data to print. The border referred to in the Print Border box is NOT the drawing border that we attach ourselves (see page 8-8), but an automatically generated one. In the default setup, the DGN file name, the date, the time and this comment will print below the bottom border line on the left side. The Text Nodes box is normally left unchecked, this prevents the printing of the text node symbols (see page 9-22). It does not affect multi-line text or any other text that was placed on Text Nodes. Figure 11.1 Typical Settings for Check Printing 7. Click the Print icon on the dialog box to send the data to the printer. BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-3

4 11 Printing Designs Pen Tables Pen Tables Pen Tables are used for changing text and symbology as a model is being printed, without changing the DGN itself. They are useful for making limited numbers of specific alterations to a document, but the most efficient place to make changes is within the model itself. A Pen Table can: Replace existing Text Strings in a model with new text in the printout Change the symbology of selected elements as they are printed, overriding the original element or level symbology of the model Override the Update Sequence to set the order that design file and attached reference file elements are printed out (the last line placed is on top, thus order may affect appearance). A Pen Table compares a set of Evaluation Criteria with each element in the design being printed. Each time a match is found, a particular set of Output Actions are implemented as the element is converted into data for the printer. Each set of Evaluation Criteria has a corresponding set of Output Actions, making up a Section (see Figure 11.2 on page 11-5). The parameters of a set of Evaluation Criteria for a Section may include (among others): Element Type File name (including attached reference files) Element attributes. As elements are found to match an Evaluation Criterion, an associated Output Action is initiated. For example, a word placed as text in the model may read today. This word may be in a pen table as an Evaluation Criterion, which is paired with the Output Action of Print today s date. The result on the printout is the date the printout was created appears wherever the original model had the word today. Pen Tables are saved as files with the default filename extension.tbl. We will save ours in our own Project directory structure in our Data directory. Create a New Pen Table File 1. Open Mounting Plate.dgn ; turn Off the Dimensioning level; Fit the view. 2. Select the Print tool from the Standard tool box. Check that the settings are as per Figure Choose Pen Table>New from the dialog box menu (the Create Pen Table File dialog box opens). 4. Navigate to our own Projects\Student(nn)\data directory, name the new file Experiment, click OK and the Modify Pen Table dialog box opens. We will create a Section to change the mounting hole circles (ellipses) to a Line Style of 3 (dashed). There is already a spare section named NEW; we will rename that and use it. 5. Highlight NEW in the Sections panel, choose Edit > Rename Section; change the Name to Holes, click OK Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

5 Printing Designs Pen Tables Figure 11.2 The Modify Pen Table Dialog Box BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-5

6 11 Printing Designs Pen Tables 6. In the Element Criteria Tab, select Type: Ellipse. Where we need to include more than one selection (or de-select one) in this dialog box, <Ctrl>+<Click>. 7. Select All from the Weight, Level and Color dialog boxes, as opened by the buttons in the Element Criteria tab. 8. Click the Style button, select Internal Line Code 0 (only); select Primary as the Class. The style Internal Line Code 0 is abbreviated to Line Style 0 (solid lines) in other menus. The Element Criteria for the Section is now defined, the next job will be setting the section s Output Actions. This box is Checked by default. This means that each component element of any cells will individually be compared to the Element Criteria of each section. If it is unchecked, the cells are treated as single elements. Figure 11.3 The Holes Section Element Criteria 11-6 Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

7 Printing Designs Pen Tables 9. Click the Output Actions tab, click the Style check box On, enter either 1, 2 or 3 (broken lines) as the line style; choose File>Save to save the changes. If we were modifying an existing Pen Table file as a basis for a new one, we would use Save As and key in a new name. Close the dialog box; the pen table is now attached to the DGN. 10. Check the preview, note the line style of the mounting hole linework. The original solid circles now appear with a broken line style. 11. Choose Pen Table > Detach from the Print dialog box menu, Update the preview window and the circles will be as drawn again. The pen table may be attached again with Pen Table > Attach. When we have multiple Sections, they may each be allocated a Priority. The higher the priority number we allocate, the later the element is printed, thus it may appear to overprint lower priority elements. Without Experiment.tbl attached With Experiment.tbl attached Figure 11.4 Output Actions for the Holes Section BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-7

8 11 Printing Designs Preparing For Printout Multiple Section Pen Tables We are able to add more Sections (Element Criteria - Output Action definitions) using the same basic techniques that we used to create the first. When we created the first section, we Renamed the existing (New) section. All subsequent sections must be inserted before or after a highlighted existing section; these options are in the Edit menu. The sections are processed in order, therefore we need to consider the order we place them in. When the first section processed finds an element that matches its element criteria, it makes the alterations specified in its output actions. These will be the only alterations made to this element, if a later section in the processing order has an overlapping set of element evaluation criteria, it will not change the element a second time. Therefore, the Order that the sections are placed in is critical. Preparing For Printout A complete design may be spread over many models, which may have been created in many separate DGNs. References are a central part of most of our techniques for creating the printed documentation of our designs. Even in the situation where all of the actual design geometry is in a single model in a single DGN, it would be most inefficient to draw the title block and border afresh for every document. Some Options for Document Production There are many options available to us, from simply printing out the entire model, to sophisticated techniques using combinations of reference attachments. There are three basic techniques, Single Model, Attaching a Drawing Sheet as a Reference and Drawing Sheet Model, with References. The Single Model With this technique, we do not create a Sheet model, we print directly from the Design model, as we did with the Mounting Plate on page A design model may be complete in itself, with the title block and border drawn as part of the project. This could be inefficient, as we may be creating some of the same geometry over and over again. We may reduce this repetition by having Seed Files with the drawing s common components, such as the title block, already in place. Using this technique, we start with the drawing sheet in the design, then create the geometry within it. As an example, we could use A4 Border.dgn (the border file we used on page 8-9) as a Seed File. This design was produced at paper size, which means that only small objects could fit within the boundary. If we had a design (say) 100 times larger, the sheet seed file would also need to be 100 times larger. The drawing would then be printed out at 1:100 scale, which is allowed for in the printing process. Any text or dimensioning styles used would need to place the text and dimension elements 100 times larger than their intended printed size. This technique looks simple initially, but all of the Scale considerations tend to make it more complicated in the end Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

9 Printing Designs Some Options for Document Production Figure 11.5 The Single Model Option Attaching a Drawing Sheet as a Reference We may attach a drawing border model as a reference to the design model. We may have a number of borders created to scale to be suitable to fit around models of various sizes, or they may be created at paper size. With the latter system, the Reference Scale would be chosen to make the border fit the design, by setting a reference scale that complements the intended printout scale for the document. Any title block that is included in the border model cannot contain details that may need to be changed, as they will be in a reference attachment. If the attached drawing sheet file is modified at a later date, the changes will appear in the document. This may be either an advantage or a disadvantage, depending on the situation. The border model will need to be referenced at a scale to fit around the design model. Figure 11.6 Printing the Design Model With Referenced Border BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-9

10 11 Printing Designs Preparing For Printout Drawing Sheet Model, with References This is the technique we have already used in chapter 8. Dimensioning and text elements can be placed in any of the models, but they are usually placed in the Sheet model. The Sheet model is usually created at paper size, but this does not have to be the case. A border model is referenced to the drawing sheet. This border may have the non-changing title information included in it, but title blocks are more often placed as Cells. When a title block is placed as a Cell, it will usually include a set of Enter Data Fields (page 9-28) for all the variable information. Since the cell is placed in the active model, we are able to fill in Enter Data Fields (with drawing title, reference numbers etc.), which is impossible if they were in a Reference. This is the most flexible technique, especially where a number of models are involved and where detail drawings with a variety of scales are to be included. The Design Models shown in Figure 11.7 may be in the same DGN as the Sheet Model, or in individual DGNs, it makes little difference to the process. In this example, the drawing border model would almost certainly be in a separate DGN, whereas the valve models would probably be in the same DGN as the sheet model. Design Model Reference Reference Reference Design Model Design Model This text could be imported to the sheet model from an external application. Text and dimensioning will generally be placed in the Sheet model. Sheet Model The Title Block may be a Cell which includes Enter Data Fields. Figure 11.7 Combining Models For Printout Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

11 Printing Designs Some Options for Document Production Drawing Scale We are used to creating our designs at full size, with drawing scales applied at the time we print the design out. This does not mean that we can forget about them completely during the design process, however. It is common for one set of geometry to be printed out at a variety of scales, so we will consider that for a start. As an example, the wall construction of a building may be drawn in plan view with details of wall thickness, lining, cladding and insulation. If a part of the design is printed out as a detail drawing with a scale of 1:10, all of the lines will appear well separated and have meaning. It would seem efficient to print out the same design at a scale of 1:500, as part of a site plan. Without prior planning, the finely detailed linework of the wall would now be compressed into approximately 0.25mm, thus it would print out as a series of lines on top of other lines. The planning needs to start right back in the early stages of the design process, or even before the design is started. Using the same design at 1 : 10 and 1 : 500 is fine, but only if we use a suitable Level Structure. If we have different degrees of detail at different levels, we can simply select the detail we need for the scale of the document being produced. We will re-visit our Furnished Cottage.dgn to revise how we set it up to print at two scales, 1:100 and 1:500, with different amounts of detail each time. Revise Level Settings for Printing With Multiple Scales 1. Open Furnished Cottage.dgn and its Layout Sheet model, with all of the drawing border visible; Delete the unsnapped 29mm dimension on the site plan placed on page The settings should be as they were for the illustration on page Continue this exercise if the Layout Sheet has all the references illustrated, otherwise it may be necessary to revise from References to Sheet Models on page 8-8. Figure 11.8 Part of Layout Sheet BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-11

12 11 Printing Designs Preparing For Printout 2. Open the Level Display dialog box, click the down arrow to open the Target combo box. Note the indenting - Cottage-m.dgn, Floor Plan is shown indented under Site, Cottage-m.dgn, Site Plan as it is a Nested Attachment. 3. Choose Cottage-m.dgn, Floor Plan as the Target, then turn On all levels. The small scale floor outline in the site plan has become a mass of overlaying linework. 4. Turn back Off all but the Floor Finish level by picking the level names; close the dialog box and Update the view. Save the settings (File > Save Settings). Now we have returned to the outline only of the floor plan in the site plan area. If printed at a scale of 1:500, the wall etc. will appear as a single broad line. In this case we are only interested in an outline for indicating the position of the cottage on the site. We can easily separate this feature from the rest, due to the original setting up of an adequate Level Structure. Figure 11.9 Selecting Reference Levels Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

13 Printing Designs Print Configuration Print Configuration Back on page 8-18, we had a first look at printing, now it is time to look more closely at some of the many options we have to configure our printouts. We have already started by examining how level displays applied to target models affect the printout. We must consider not only the Master model (named Layout Sheet), but all of the References as well when choosing the Targets from our Level Manager. The level settings having been made and saved, the next part of the configuration is the definition of the Area to be printed. We defined this using a Fence when we configured our first printout on page 8-18 and we will continue to use this method. The alternative is to use the View area; it is generally more convenient to place a fence than it is to adjust the magnification and aspect ratio of a View window. There are Active Points placed outside the top-left and bottom-right corners of the border to help us with this task. We placed some text to explain these when we completed the Design Problem on page When we have completed defining the print area, we will make the necessary Print Attributes settings. These are similar to the View Attributes settings we are familiar with, except they relate to the printout instead of the screen. Set the Print Area and Attributes for Printout 1. With Furnished Cottage.dgn and its Layout Sheet model open, zoom out if necessary to view the outside of the drawing border and the text below it. 2. Select the Place Fence tool and follow our own instructions from below the border - Use the Active Points at the left-top and rightbottom to manually snap a fence when defining the print area. This border has conveniently placed Active Points to help locate the fence vertices in the optimum positions. Other border models may have different guides for placing the fence, or no guides at all. Figure Defining the Print Area BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-13

14 11 Printing Designs Print Configuration 3. Select the Print tool from the Standard tool box. The Print dialog box opens, with the name of the default printer in the title bar, along with the name of the MicroStation print configuration file ( Printer.plt is the default for the Windows printer). It will display a preview of the printout, which updates as settings are changed. 4. In the General settings panel, the Print option will default to Fence since there is a fence in place. The Copies number is selfexplanatory and our choice for the printing of Vector data will depend on the printer in use. 5. The printer and paper size settings will again depend on our installation, but they will commonly be as shown in Figure The border we used is designed for Landscape printout. By default, the Print Size/Scale setting will represent the maximum size that the printout can be to fit on the selected paper size. In order to see this more accurately, we need to temporarily increase the Accuracy of the Coordinate Readout. 6. Choose Settings>Design File>Coordinate Readout, set the Accuracy to Click OK to close the dialog box. (no need to save these settings). 7. Set the scale to 1 (1.000mm in model working units) to 1mm on the printout. Print Attributes must also be considered when preparing to print. For example, if we need to print filled closed elements, Fill must be on. If we do not want Text Node markers to print out (we seldom do), then Text Nodes must be off. 8. Click the Print Attributes icon in the Print dialog box; ensure its settings are as illustrated in Figure (including Level Symbology Checked and Print Border Off), click OK. Figure Print Settings Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

15 Printing Designs Print Configuration With the possible exception of Level Symbology, these are the most common View Attribute settings for printing. We set up a Level Symbology on page 8-14 to make the floor outline more visible where it was to be displayed without the rest of the wall linework. We have a small preview panel in the Print dialog box, but we have a much larger one available. 9. Click the Preview icon to open the Preview window; resize it to occupy most of the screen. The aspect ratio of this window will change to suit the paper size and orientation. 10. Bring the Print dialog to the front (click it in the Window menu); click the Print Attributes icon. 11. Turn Level Symbology Off, click OK then bring the Preview panel to the front, click the Preview Update icon in the Preview window and note the effect on the floor outline within the site plan. 12. Bring the Print dialog to the front, click the Sync to View icon, then Update the preview. Clicking the Sync to View icon synchronizes the Print Attributes with the current View Attributes. We will now Save this print configuration for re-use later on. Figure Print Preview Window BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-15

16 11 Printing Designs Print Configuration 13. Choose Save from the Print dialog box Configuration menu, navigate to our Data directory, projects\student(nn)\data; use the default file name (Furnished Cottage.ini), click OK. Figure Saving the Print Configuration 14. (Optional) click the Print icon on the Print dialog box to send the data to the windows system printer. Turning Level Symbology On only affected the floor outline (and the dimension), the symbology of the rest did not change. We turned Off all of the overrides for the Layout Sheet and the direct attachments on page The exception is Dimensions, as this level did not exist until we imported the Dimension Style which used it. However, the floor outline is a Nested reference attachment, which had its level symbology defined for its primary attachment to the Site Plan in Cottage-m.dgn (page 8-15) Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

17 Printing Designs Saved Print Configurations Saved Print Configurations We do not need to go through the entire setup procedure every time we need to make a printout of a particular model. We can create a Print Configuration File and save it for later use, as we did in the last exercise. These specify DGN-specific information required to make equivalent printouts of particular models. A print configuration file consists of the following entities and settings: Specification of the printed area of the design Print attributes as set in the Print Attributes dialog box Master file levels displayed in the printed view Page size, margins and scale Pen table (if attached). It is unlikely that only one printout will be made of a drawing. There will probably be modifications needed after early prints are checked, then the multiple copies of final versions will only be printed as they are needed. A print configuration file takes only seconds to create, but it can save time and possible errors when we need to generate more prints. We saved the details of our last printing operation to a Print Configuration File in the last exercise, so the exact settings can be duplicated the next time we need to print another copy of this model. Even if changes need to be made, it will be more efficient to start with an existing print configuration, then make any changes. These changes may be saved to overwrite the original file, saved as a new file, or abandoned after the print is created. Using Print Configuration Files If we have a saved Print Configuration to define a printout, there is no need to place a fence, or even to have the area to be printed out within a view. We do not even have to have the sheet model open; as long as we have the correct DGN open, the Print Configuration will open the appropriate model. We Open print configuration files from the Configuration menu in the Print dialog box. We only need to open the file to define the print configuration. Experiment with Print Configuration Files 1. With Furnished Cottage.dgn open, open the Furnished Floor Plan model; place the fence about the entire floor plan. 2. Open the Print dialog box, click the Preview icon. 3. Change any settings (e.g. Levels in the model, Print Attributes in the dialog box) until the model is displayed in the Preview window as desired. 4. Choose Configuration>Save; save this configuration in our own data directory as Furniture for FC.ini. 5. Bring the Print dialog box to the front if necessary; choose Configuration>Open and select the Furnished Cottage.ini configuration. The model will change to the Sheet model and a full Layout Sheet drawing will display in the Preview window (re-open it if necessary). BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-17

18 11 Printing Designs Saved Print Configurations 6. Bring the Print dialog box to the front again if necessary; choose Configuration>Open and select the Furniture for FC.ini configuration. 7. The model will change back to the Design model and the floor plan area will display in the Preview window. These two configurations are from the one DGN, but from two different Models. The model information is also saved to the configuration, so we can create printouts without needing to open the model first. Figure Selecting Print Configurations Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

19 Printing Designs Bentley Drivers Bentley Drivers We have only used the Windows Printer in our exercises so far. MicroStation is able to support virtually all specialized CAD printers as well, through a selection of Printer Drivers. These Drivers are actually editable text files that may be customized to suit the printer and the required characteristics of the printouts. The supplied driver files are normally copied to another directory and the customization carried out on the copy, however customization is not part of this course. In the following exercise we will preview a A3 size (420mm X 297mm) border model, using a common large format printer driver. Without customization, this driver is configured for English (imperial) paper sizes, so we will pick B which is the closest to A3. Preview a Large Format Print 1. Open A3 Border.dgn from our directory; Fit the view if necessary. Place a Block type Fence using manual keypoint snaps to the vertices of diagonally opposite L shaped dotted corner markers. 2. Select the Print tool from the Standard tool box; choose Bentley Driver from the Printer and Paper Size panel option menu; click the magnifying glass icon and select hpdjet.plt from the...\workspace\system\plotdrv directory. 3. Choose B from the Paper options and ensure the Landscape button is ON. 4. In the Print Size/Scale panel, set the Scale to 1 to 1 MM (1:1), click the Preview icon. Before making this setting, the displayed value (due to the maximizing of the print size) was slightly less than 1, scaling up. Try looking for a suitable print driver for your large format printer (if you have one available) and make a test printout. Figure Typical Settings for a Bentley Driver BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition) Bentley Education Network 11-19

20 11 Printing Designs Design Problem - Create a Drawing Design Problem - Create a Drawing Figure shows a sample drawing consisting of a border, title block and two views of a gate type valve. We are to produce a similar drawing to the preview stage for ourselves, from the models supplied. The system we will use is the Drawing Sheet Model, with References on page The DGN to be used is Gate Valve-m.dgn (from our directory) and we are to create and use a new Sheet Model in this DGN (which already contains the Design Model) The Border is supplied as A3 Border.dgn and the title block is a Cell named A3TITLE in our copy of BENMD.cel The Title Block is to be filled in (using imaginary initials etc.), show the real scale, which is 1:2. The two views are to be captioned Side View (on left) and End View using 3.5mm H X 3.5mm W text. Suggested References: References to Sheet Models on page 8-8; Placing Cells on page 6-12; Manipulating Reference Attachments on page 8-5; Clipping and Masking on page 8-20; Importing Text Styles on page 9-12; Editing Text Styles on page 9-11; Enter Data Fields on page Figure Completed Gate Valve Drawing Bentley Education Network BEN MicroStation Drafting (Metric Edition)

7 Enclosed Areas. When you have completed this chapter, you will be able to:

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