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Using Door and window builder

Anonymous
Not applicable
I would like to embrace door and window builder, but every time I venture into the product I find the interface incredibly cryptic and find myself wasting hours and never quite getting what I want by the end. How do others use this product? Any good resources that I should check into? Is it worth the effort to master it? Can it made "easy" for the casual user to take advantage of? Thanks for any feedback that this group can offer.
6 REPLIES 6
TDabney
Enthusiast
Mike -
I use wdo/door builder - not on every project, but when I need to do something non-standard or w/more detail & don't want to build something custom. The interface, I would agree, is quite complicated in the beginning. I think there's a few ways around this though. Take the time to fiddle w/the parameters and set up a basic window w/your desired casing, trim, header & sill detail etc... then use this one window as the base for all the other windows in the project. It's quite simple - once you get the hang of it - to make modifications to size, # of panes, casement/awning etc... once you have that base window set up. I don't have it open in front of me at the moment, but I think there are some presets that offer some good starting points. I think it's something that you just need to fiddle with to learn what settings do what.

Another thing that I find is that those windows & doors tend to take a lot longer to render/refresh in the 2D & 3D window. Also, the parameter settings dialogue box is quite slow for me - maybe time to upgrade my hardware.

Sorry - I'm not sure I was much help. Despite it's difficulties and non-speedy interface, I do think it's a worthwhile product to have.

Tom
TND Architects P.L.L.C.
macOS 12.7
2021 16" MacBook Pro
Apple M1 Max
ArchiCAD 26/27
Stephen Dolbee
Booster
Mike,

I agree with Tom, although I use it on EVERY project. I have saved a few windows and doors as "favorites", then modify those as needed. Saves time. After working with Door/window builder for so long, I would have a hard time without it, at this point in time. It continues to be refined and improved with each release.

Steve
AC19(9001), 27" iMac i7, 12 gb ram, ATI Radeon HD 4850 512mb, OS 10.12.6
Anonymous
Not applicable
Stephen wrote:
I agree with Tom, although I use it on EVERY project. I have saved a few windows and doors as "favorites", then modify those as needed. Saves time. ...

Steve
Sounds like I work the same way as you do Stephen. I have only really used D&W Builder, the few times I have used the standard AC Library doors and windows I got frustrated by their limitations, and the lack of transfer of settings from one door to the next one you pick. I have got used to the layout of D&W custom settings, and it has improved with new releases (think I have R14 now?). Would still like to be able to make windows with more than 5 panels across sometimes (I know you can butt two together with end frames omitted) and Doors with sidelights that can be divided vertically as well as horizontally, but 99% of the time you can get exactly what you want, right down to exterior and interior trims, sill projections etc. Great program.
Gerald Hoffman
Booster
...[I got frustrated by their limitations, and the lack of transfer of settings from one door to the next one you pick]...

I thought I would wade in here to clarify this point. You can in AC 9.0 copy settings from one door to the next one (windows too, with some limitations) by using the get preferences & syringe in the door or window selection window.

That said I find Archicad windows and doors to be limited for residential design and have had D&W Builder since version 2 or so. It is as you say somewhat heavy with settings etc. but is getting better with each release and the menus & icons are getting easier to understand. CadImage is refining the add-on, the latest release being R-14b I believe. I also just got there Accessories Add-on and it is awesome for doing Board & Batten siding.

Cheers
Gerald
"The simplification of anything is always sensational" GKC
AC 25-4013 USA, CadImage Tools
2019 MacBook Pro 16" w/ AMD Radeon Pro 5600M GPU
OS X 11.6
2.4 Ghz 8 core i9, 64 GB RAM
27" LG 5K Monitor
Stephen Dolbee
Booster
Gerald wrote:
I also just got there Accessories Add-on and it is awesome for doing Board & Batten siding.
Gerald,

Do you also use it for roofs and/or footings? If so, how is it for that?

Steve
AC19(9001), 27" iMac i7, 12 gb ram, ATI Radeon HD 4850 512mb, OS 10.12.6
Gerald Hoffman
Booster
Steve,

I have tried it for one roof which was quite complicated and ran into some intersection problems so I went back to my normal method. I will try again on the next design. It seems quite good in other respects. I will say that when I started using the wall accessory I ran into a few problems and emailed CadImage. They responded almost immediately sending me patches if necessary. The D&W Builder as well as other window packages out there still cannot put a trim board under the exterior sill which we do all the time here. I have asked for this and I think they are going to add this function. One other thing is that it will not do curved walls.

I have not used it for footings yet but will give it a try when I have a little time. The one nice thing about the Wall Accessory tool is that it allows you to define trim around openings that are part of the skin and look much better than what you can do with the window trim, especially when you have windows close together.

Gerald
Gerald
"The simplification of anything is always sensational" GKC
AC 25-4013 USA, CadImage Tools
2019 MacBook Pro 16" w/ AMD Radeon Pro 5600M GPU
OS X 11.6
2.4 Ghz 8 core i9, 64 GB RAM
27" LG 5K Monitor

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