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In Rhino 4.0 Essential Training, author Dave Schultze shows how the 3D NURBS-based modeling tools in Rhino 4.0 are used to engineer products from toy robots to full-sized aircraft. This course concentrates on using Rhino 4.0 for industrial design and rapid prototyping, with a review of common 3D terminology using specific examples. Along with a comprehensive exploration of the Rhino interface, the course includes an introduction to building 3D objects with Rhino's three primary entities: the curve, the surface, and the solid. Exercise files are included with the course.
Next up, we'll take a look at the use of Copy and Paste. These two functions will work as you might have expected on any type of entity, which includes points, lines, surfaces and solids, including any number or combination of the above. One aspect to be aware of, the pasted geometry will be located in the exact same position or right on top of the originals. This can appear initially as if nothing happened, so we'll review the best practice to avoid any confusion. Copy and Paste is a huge timesaver, but it's actually more than that. It can be a design strategy for exploration.
I'll give an example here. We're going to select this robot arm. I'm going to copy with the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+C, paste with Ctrl+V. As I mentioned, it's right on top, looks like nothing happened but go ahead and use the nudge technique with the arrows on the keyboard. We go ahead and adjust the count, so I have three spaces over. So, there is the exact copy. I'm going to do it one more time, Copy, Paste, and then just count one, two, and three.
The only reason I'm counting is so I've equal spacing, and I can get them back to the original position. So, with these extra copies, I can do some design explorations. I can try fillets on this one, maybe some chamfers on that edge, or I can make more copies and try other experiments. I'll make some extra copies to show a common problem. So go ahead Copy, Paste. Since we're outside of the command, anytime you hit the right-mouse button, the Spacebar or the Enter key, it's just going to repeat that.
So, I could accidentally hit the Spacebar a few times. Looks like nothing is happening, but when I go back to select this object, I've got like nine or ten different versions right on top of each other. This happens all the time. So, a great way to get rid of these is this kind of hidden command. I'm going to go to the Edit menu > Select Objects. There at the very, very bottom is Duplicate Objects. Now, Duplicate Objects is defined by the exact same geometry in the exact same spot.
Go ahead and select it. It doesn't apply to the earlier copy since they're in a different position. Also, it will include all of the duplicates except for one, which it assumes you want to keep. So, it's already selected, according to the command line, eight duplicates. I'm going to go ahead and hit Delete. Again, looks like nothing happened, but I'm going to try to select it. Since there are no options, that means there is only one object in that position. We got rid of the extras. I'm going to zoom back out here. I'm going to talk about copying and pasting now between Rhino files.
So, this would be in a situation where you're running Rhino from a separate instance. So, I'm going to switch over. Here is a file where I've been doing some arm design studies. So, I've got some fillets on this first one, chamfers on the second, punched a hole in the third. So, this is the winner. I'm going to copy this guy from the current file back to the first file.
So, let's just hit Ctrl+C. Now let's switch back to the original. I can go in here and before I paste, we're probably want to get these out of the way, or I can just delete them, and then hit Ctrl+V. Before I do that, I want you to take a look at the layers. When something is pasted in from another file, it'll come in on the exact same layer as created. So, if that layer doesn't exist in the destination file, it will be created just for this object. I will hit Ctrl+V to paste.
There is the arm from the other file on the layer it was created. So, Copy and Paste is more than just making extra copies to save time. It's a great way to take design detours to explore other options and see how they look for immediate feedback in 3D. Just remember to always keep one extra, unmodified copy before making major changes, in case you want to go back and try other options. One final note: if the geometry was built with curves, which is usually the case, then always keep a copy of those original curves.
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