- West of the Severn UK
I wasn't very serious -- I think I can do numbers as on a 7-segment display, without too much work.
How about a barcode?
How about a tally system? Straight lines again . (I do actually still use that occasionally!)
Hi Martin@Paul Boyd
How about a brick number which looks like this -- 170-136-102 ?
i.e. the RGB code for the brick colour. It could be added automatically along every splint. It would be unique to each brick and not need any user input. For reference it could appear on the menu:
View attachment 3488
Clicking it shows the colour dialog to change it, if needed (for the selected template).
Hi Martin@Paul Boyd
I was trying to find something which requires no input from the user. But it's tricky, because not all bricks may have splints (or clips).
I'm thinking now that if there are any label shapes in the brick (usually only one), the export will write the colour ref on it to create a number tab. Or any other ref the user has specified as the label text (if it's doable in 7-seg, e.g. FHP34 is doable, KRW18 isn't). Sized to match the splints. The user would place this label tab attached to the brick somewhere convenient. It would be lost in the ballast as the splints.
If there are no label shapes, the DXF export will add one, placed centrally within the brick. It might be lucky and miss all the clips and sockets, but not be very readable if there are timbers running over it! A warning will appear, so that the user can delete it, or cancel the export, go back to the trackpad and move it to a sensible place.
This illustrates a frequent problem in Templot, where something which looks simple isn't. Templot can easily create a number tab. But where to put it, so that it is attached to the brick but not conflicting with anything, requires a human eye or some serious programming.
@Paul BoydUltimately though, it is all manageable without having the bricks identified on the print - it comes under "nice to have"!
In case I forget to mention it ever again, when the control template is a "brick template", the gauge indicator on the info panel shows orange instead of the normal yellow:
View attachment 3500
This is just an easily visible reminder while extracting bricks from the track plan, there is no significance related to the track gauge.
The control template becomes a "brick template" when stored while in bricklaying mode, or if a stored brick template is copied back into the control. Or you can set it as a "brick template" manually as above (program menu), so that storing it will create a stored brick template regardless of whether in bricklaying mode or not.
The control template is never itself included in DXF/STL exports, it must be stored as a background template to be exported.
In a further design change, exporting a timbering brick will now include only templates marked as a brick template as above, instead of being based solely on the marker colour. This avoids conflict with the use of marker colours for other templates in the track plan which happen to be in the storage box at the time of export.
This means that timbering bricks created prior to version 234a will not be exported from 234a until the templates have been marked as brick templates as above.
234a released soon.
@Paul BoydHi Martin,
Sounds good! Will brick templates be obvious in the storage box, in much the same way that library templates are?
I haven't implemented any option to skew the label from horizontal on the trackpad grid. I have to draw the line (!) somewhere, or it never will be finished. Maybe one day.
In order to skew the label tabs at any angle I have had a rethink.
The label text is now drawn on a modified splint, and the background label shapes play no part in the 3-D exports.
I have made a very scruffy bit of video to explain the process:
To set the width of the splints and labels:
You can also now set the thickness of the text on the label.
I will explain it all properly one day.
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