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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.
In this video, we'll explore the Properties dialog, and learn how it can be used to provide quick feedback to any object selected, and then make quick changes if so desired. So, it's not open by default, but it's so darn handy. We're going to dock this into the interface, so it remains available at all times. So, we can find the Properties dialog by going to the Edit menu > Object Properties. It's also quite a bit faster if you just use a little, what I called the Rainbow icon, pop that open and here's our Properties dialog. Now with nothing selected, to just give you some feedback of the camera or scene we're looking through, let me go ahead and pick one object here.
So, right off the bat, this will tell you if it's been named. Its type is a polysurface - it tells you the current layer - and where it's getting this color information from, as well as a few other things down this list. Let me go ahead and dock this for future use, make sure it's stacked over there, and we have enough room to read everything. Fortunately, you only have to do this once. It should remain with your computer installation of Rhino. One thing some people like to change is the surface visibility of these curves.
I'm going to zoom in and take a look. These are called the Surface Isoparms, got them visible. You can turn them off. But sometimes there is not enough information for Viewport feedback, so I can just crank that up, another couple of steps, and you can do with any geometry in the scene. Now just as a reminder, this is a NURB surface, so it is infinitely smooth. So, we're not adding any detail to the object itself.
We're just showing more feedback curves on the surface. So, it should remain the same. Now, this solid here is on the solid layer, and therefore, it's getting its color from that layer, which is probably the best way to go. I'm going to go up to this Properties dialog, and change its color from receiving it from the layer it's on to having its own color, almost an override. So, that's how you would handle that, although I don't recommend doing this, because a lot of times you can get very confusing if every object has its own color, and there is no relationship to the layer.
So, it's a great way to get confused very quickly. But there is a quick fix here. We can select this object again, and we can use the Match button. Once it pops up, it gives us all the possible properties to match. We'll just leave them all selected. Hit OK, and then a next object that we select will be the one that governs. So, we've now switched to all of the exact same object properties to the second object selected. Let me go ahead and pick this curve. This description contains all the technical information, most of which you don't want to know, but can be extremely handy for troubleshooting.
I'm going to go ahead and close that. So, when you're in the middle of a complicated project, it can be very easy to forget which objects and which layers are being used. So, by keeping the Properties dialog visible, you have a quick way to see where things are and then make quick changes.
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