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For people familiar with CAD type programs, drawing walls is analogous to drawing lines or polylines.

The difference is that in ArCADia, along with several lines, additional information is inserted, including materials and their parameters (the height of the introduced wall is also defined).


The most important part of the drawing is the Project Manager, which manages all project elements (their displaying, blocking, printing): area, buildings, levels and other objects that create our documentation. The Project Manager divides the drawing into its "layers" called in the program: groups, which are the individual elements of the levels or outer terrain. The ArCADia or ArCADia PLUS layers should not be used because the ArCADia system creates them automatically, and these layers should not be modified, also the display method, line thickness etc. should not be changed because it can spoil the project. From now on, let’s use the Project Manager only (with some minor exceptions).




After running the ArCADia program the Project Manager window is empty. It will be automatically filled while drawing the view. We should start our project by introducing the level View handle to the drawing area, especially if we already have some underlay with lines. If we do not enter the view handle ourselves, it will be entered at point 0,0 of the coordinate system. If we start working on an empty document, it will not bother you at all. However if we already have an underlay, it often happens that it is not placed near the beginning of the coordinate system, but it is very far from it.

The automatically inserted view handle will increase the drawing area. What does this mean? If we want to see the whole drawing (because we have moved somewhere too far or we would like to see the entire level), then using the Zoom range option , i.e. show everything, will cause the project to be at a considerable distance. It can happen and unfortunately it is very often that after choosing this option the project "disappears", or rather it seems to disappear because we only see the background of the program on the screen. In fact, the project does not disappear, it is only shown as two dots, small points in the opposite edges of the screen. Due to the large distance between the drawing and with the automatically inserted view handle, the design has been minimized to show a whole project. This is why it's best to insert the view handle of the project yourself, regardless of whether we start with a new project or we are working with an underlay, which we will outline. In the Project Manager window, click the icon  and choose the Insert View option than place the View Handle in the workspace.


After inserting the view handle, the icon of creating a new building is displayed in the Project Manager, to which you must give a name and adjust the parameters of the level. You can also select the first element of the created drawing, e.g. Insert wall, and then both the building and the level will be created independently (view handle as well).

You can change the building or level parameters at any time by clicking on them in the Manager window and entering their properties (under the right button or from the selected icon). If we start immediately with the insertion of an element, e.g. distribution board of an electrical installation (having the underlay in front of us), then both, the building and the level will be created automatically, just like the view handle, which may cause the case described earlier.




The Project Manager window does not have to be turned on all the time, but because we switch between levels in it, create them there, turn on and turn off visibility and blocking of particular elements, it is good to have it within easy reach. The Project Manager is activated by the first icon of the left vertical toolbar or from the Manage or System ribbon (depending on the template selected by the user). If we want to keep the window on top all the time, but it takes too much space, then its size can be changed just like for any Windows system window (after moving closer to the window edge, the cursor changes, then holding the left mouse button pressed changes the window size). By right clicking on the upper bar of the Project Manager, we will get additional options: auto-hiding of the window or translucency. If you choose the hide option, remember that the whole window will be displayed only when you click on it, not after moving the mouse over it.



When entering a drawing view, e.g. a wall, a Wall group is created. In the properties of the introduced element, even before drawing it, when we define layers, we can assign a wall to a subgroup or divide the introduced outline into parts, e.g. external and internal walls or layered walls, single-layer walls, etc. This division can be completely arbitrary. The created groups can be further divided, e.g. internal walls into load-bearing and partition walls, so that with just one click in the Manager window we can select the whole group and modify the thickness, material or other needed value. You can create such a group at any time during drawing in the properties window of any element or in the Project Manager.




When drawing, each subsequently introduced element is added to the Manager tree, including any created subgroups which are also displayed and managed in that window. You can turn off their visibility by turning on and off light bulbs next to the name, you can block their modifications by clicking on the padlock icon, determine whether the group can be printed, or change the colour of the whole group. The colour icon hides an additional option, namely it is determining the thickness of the hatched elements of the group. In general, element markers are defined in the properties window of the inserted object, before or after insertion. Hatching elements in the properties window can only specify a type and colour. The thickness of the hatching line is defined in the Project Manager window after clicking on the colour icon.




Consecutive levels can be added by using icons or the context menu displayed after right-clicking on the level. You need to define whether the level will be created above or below the indicated one. When creating a new level, you can copy selected elements or select only the space to draw a new view. The new level is automatically the active one (the level in bold letters which has the bold yellow icon in front of the name is active). To switch between levels, either double-click on the name of the floor, or click once on the icon in front of it.

If we want to see level views side by side, we do not move or draw them next to each other, we only insert a new view holder next to the existing one and by using light bulbs we define what is visible on the entered view.

Please Notice: New view creation slows down the program because from now on, all introduced elements will be redrawn on each view, i.e. the introduction of one wall will be drawn in the first view and then in the subsequent one, which will increase the time. Therefore, in the properties of new views (right click on the tab with the name of the view) it is advisable to select Manual, and not Automatic refresh. The same applies to cross-sections, which will also prolong the working time in more complex projects.




Additional necessary elements of the drawing are entered for each documentation, created e.g. with lines, text, etc. These elements are automatically added to the User objects group in a given level, on which we are currently working. This group can also be divided into subgroups, e.g. Description, Table, Auxiliary. These subgroups, however, work a little differently to the rest of the ArCADia groups.




In order for the description to reach its subgroup, you must make the subgroup active by double-clicking on it before inserting it. If we insert the description in another subgroup, unfortunately we will not be able to move it anymore. Therefore, when adding 2D elements, be sure to select the appropriate group. If additional elements are introduced in a regular layer, they will not belong to the building, i.e. they will not be switched off with it. They will be visible independently of the building drawn with the ArCADia system objects.


The Project Manager – a Document Management Window

05 February 2020
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