Author Topic: Medeek Electrical Plugin  (Read 3256 times)

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Offline Medeek

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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #50 on: April 11, 2019, 07:54:25 PM »
First look at the electrical symbols legend generated by the plugin:



The secondary toolbar has the icon for generating the legend:



The legend is parametric so every time you click the legend icon/tool it regenerates the legend based on what electrical devices are present in the model.  You can also move (x, y or z) or rotate the legend and it will retain these new coordinates when it is regenerated. 

Initially the legend is drawn at the origin but can be positioned at any location (and retained) by the user using SketchUp's native move or rotate tools.

The overall size of the legend and its text and symbol size is driven by the parameter in the global settings, as is the font of the text which will match the font used by the electrical symbols in the model.

It also appears that you can use SketchUp's native scale tool to scale the legend and it will also retain this setting when regenerated.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #51 on: April 12, 2019, 01:23:37 PM »


Outlets, Switches, Low Voltage and Load Centers.

I still need to add in lights, safety devices, Heaters and Vents.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #52 on: April 12, 2019, 10:58:58 PM »
Version 1.0.5 - 04.12.2019
- Added the "Draw Legend" function to the secondary toolbar.
- Enabled the ability to automatically create an electrical symbols legend for all electrical devices within the model.



After working my way down through the list of possible symbols I'm surprised to see that there are so many and the legend can get quite large. 
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #53 on: April 13, 2019, 08:47:30 AM »
I think the real power in this plugin is not the ability to insert 3D components into your model, technically you don't even need a plugin to do this, just a bunch of pre-configured components (.skp files).  The real strength is the automation of the 2D symbols and the parametrics of the plugin (allowing you to swap out devices types, colors, height and rotation).  Now with the addition of a parametric symbols legend it automates yet another tedious task.

I'm fairly happy with the way the legend has come out but for future work I may include a parameter in the global settings which allows the user to enable sub-titles (divides the legend into logical sections:  outlets, switches, lights, etc...) as well as specify the number of columns that legend should be divided into, this becomes more of an issue when there are a lot of electrical symbols to display.

I think some people would argue that I go too deep with my plugins (too many settings, parameters, options etc...)  I would agree that if possible simple is often better.  The goal is to make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler.

On the flip side the addition of more options and parameters increases the amount of data or information that model contains and hence makes it more useful (BIM).  Options also allow the user to further customize their workflow with the plugin and tailor it specifically to their needs.  Many of the options I have added have been directly requested by users of the plugins
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #54 on: April 13, 2019, 09:31:59 AM »
For those that are interested I will explain how the new "Draw Legend" tool works under the hood.

First the plugin finds all of the groups in the model (active_entities, if no group or component is open for editing then this will be the same as entities at the root of the model).

It then checks inside each of these groups and identifies the electrical groups that belong to the plugin (based on the group instance name).  Once it has collected up all of the electrical groups in the model it then divides them into their appropriate categories:  Outlets, Switches, Light etc...

It then examines each sub-category and dives into the attributes library for each electrical device (group).  The attributes library tells it what 2D symbol is associated with that particular device.  It then creates a  new list of symbols to draw for the legend for each category at the same time discarding or preventing duplicates.

The symbols shown in the legend are drawn, for the most part, using the same methods as the symbols drawn for the actual devices however some of them have been altered slightly in order to customize them specifically for the legend.

As you can see there is quite a bit going on under the hood.  When a model gets large with hundreds of walls and possibly hundreds of electrical components generating the legend may take up to 30 seconds.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #55 on: April 15, 2019, 12:34:02 PM »
Version 1.0.6 - 04.15.2019
- Added additional NEMA 240V receptacles into the Outlet module: NEMA 6-30R, NEMA 6-50R.

These additional receptacles (and symbols) were per customer request.



Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #56 on: April 15, 2019, 04:35:17 PM »
Tutorial 3:  Electrical Symbols Legend

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #57 on: April 18, 2019, 01:14:33 PM »
Since adding the symbols legend I've had a number of requests for a tool to draw a schedule (similar to how I am drawing the legend).

Now that I've got a fairly solid routine for pulling the electrical data (I will use much of this same code for the estimating tool) it isn't too big of a leap to draw a schedule.

My question is what information do you need or want in this schedule, how do you want it laid out?  Every device listed with its parameters or do I group like devices?

Please give feedback in this regard.  Also feel free to send me any sample electrical schedules that I can utilize as references.

If I know what I want to output I can probably knock this out in 2-3 hours, most of the underlying code is already in place.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #58 on: April 28, 2019, 05:35:34 PM »
Version 1.0.7 - 04.28.2019
- Fixed the show_modal bug for macOS in the Materials tab of the global settings.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #59 on: September 07, 2019, 12:51:27 PM »
A couple of things worth noting after working with a customer via Skype this morning:

1.) If your custom walls have reversed faces this will affect the plugin. The solution is to jump into the group, right click on the face in question and reverse the face.

2.) The plugin calculates the bottom of the wall by looking at the origin of the group that is the container for the wall geometry. If the origin of this group is below or above the bottom of the wall then the vertical distance for positioning various electrical fixtures (ie. switches, outlets, data etc…) will not be correct. I may change this up to consider the lowest point of the face rather than the origin of the group, I will need to give this some additional thought.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #60 on: September 28, 2019, 05:04:40 PM »
Version 1.0.8 - 09.28.2019
- Fixed a critical performance bug that affects all the modules within the extension.


*** CRITICAL PERFORMANCE UPDATE ***

If you are noticing a slowdown of the plugin performance after multiple edits to an electrical fixture, this fix will resolve that issue.  This issue affects all previous versions of the plugin.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #61 on: November 24, 2019, 07:37:35 PM »
Version 1.0.9 - 11.24.2019
- Added the "Draw Floor Outlets" and the "Draw Misc. Fixture" function to the secondary toolbar.
- Enabled the ability to draw misc. fixtures with Medeek wall assemblies or any wall geometry. Enabled misc. devices include: Thermostats, doorbell buttons, doorbell chimes, and doorbell transformers.





View model here:

https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/model/e1dd218c-7b6a-4883-b9df-7121f814170a/Misc-Electrical-Fixtures

Additional fixture components (ie. other manufacturer's doorbell models etc...) can easily be utilized by placing them into the appropriate sub-folder of the plugin's library/misc sub-folder.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #62 on: December 01, 2019, 01:04:01 PM »
Version 1.1.0 - 12.01.2019
- Fixed a minor bug in the General tab of the global settings.
- Enabled the ability to draw floor and ceiling outlets.



The included outlets: Raco 5500, Leviton 25249 (Nickel and Brass) Series, Standard Duplex Outlet.

The plugin automatically detects whether the outlet is a floor or ceiling outlet and assigns the appropriate symbol.  This may require some further refinement for outlets mounted to slightly inclined floor or ceiling surfaces, I will be testing this particular situation further.

User defined outlets can be utilized by dropping the component files into the appropriate library sub-folders:  library/fc_rcpt/gang1 or library/fc_rcpt/gang2

The default label for floor/ceiling outlets is 'RCPT', however this can be set independently from wall mount outlets in the global settings.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #63 on: December 03, 2019, 07:28:40 PM »
Has anyone ever seen or used a symbol for a duplex switch?

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #64 on: December 04, 2019, 12:38:36 AM »
Version 1.1.1 - 12.04.2019
- Added additional 240V duplex and simplex outlets to the built-in library: NEMA 6-15R and NEMA 6-20R.
- Added some simplex outlets to the floor outlet built-in library.



I'm wondering with the undesignated 240V outlets if I should provide the NEMA number (ie. 6-20R) next to the 2D symbol.  I would assume that this would be very useful information, a 240V receptacle can take many forms and various amperages.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #65 on: December 05, 2019, 02:53:40 AM »
Version 1.1.1b - 12.04.2019

- Added more 20A (NEMA 5-20R) outlets to the outlet module:  GFCI, WP GFCI, USB etc...

Creating a few new electrical components gives me a much needed break from the code and is actually quite relaxing.  I'm at the most difficult part of the complex roof module, so I'm taking a couple days to clear my head so that I can take a fresh crack at it and allow myself to think outside the box if required.  I find that sometimes it helps to take a break sometimes, which effectively takes the blinders off, and then alternative (better) solutions almost magically appear.

If there are any specific outlet or fixture types you would like added please email me.

I apologize that I have not provided a solution for other electrical standards yet.  Eventually I will do this but I'm not ready to bite it off just yet.

Even if you do not purchase the plugin, I think it would be worthwhile to download the trial version just for all of the pre-built electrical components now available in the library sub-folder.  Of course, I would prefer that you purchase the plugin but if you don't need the parametrics and some of the other automated features then even the trial version and the library files might be quite useful.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
Designer, Programmer and Engineer

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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #66 on: December 24, 2019, 02:43:59 AM »
Version 1.1.2 - 12.24.2019
- Added the "Draw Low Voltage Panel" function to the secondary toolbar.
- Enabled the ability to draw low voltage panels with Medeek wall assemblies or any wall geometry. Included Structured Media Panels: Leviton 47605 (14", 21", 28", 42").





View model here:

https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/model/8756fbe4-1c0a-4643-999e-3c69a856bf3f/Low-Voltage-Panels

For now only the flush cover models are included however if I find the time I will model up the hinged cover variants and include those as part of the standard library.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #67 on: December 24, 2019, 10:59:51 PM »
Version 1.1.2b - 12.25.2019
- Added an offset parameter (advanced options) for switches which allows the symbol and label to be offset from the wall.

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #68 on: January 01, 2020, 01:35:49 AM »
Version 1.1.3 - 01.01.2020
- Added additional (120V, 20A) outlets to the built-in outlet library.

This update includes various (20A) USB and GFCI outlets.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
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Re: Medeek Electrical Plugin
« Reply #69 on: January 23, 2020, 05:00:21 PM »
For many of the electrical fixtures the designer can use their own electrical components as well as the ones included with the plugin.  Here are a few hints/tips on how to do this:

1.) You need remove the spaces from file names with spaces in them.  Either delete the spaces or replace them with underscores like I have done with my filenames.

2.) With your electrical light fixtures be sure that fixture base is located at the origin of the model within your component file.  This actually applies to any electrical fixture.  The location of the component with respect to the origin determines where it will land within the model once it is inserted by the plugin.

3.) When you insert the (ceiling mount) light fixture below make sure you select "ceiling" and not "wall" for the mounting position from the parameter list.

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.
Designer, Programmer and Engineer

 

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