Consideration of high aspect ratio objects

This is a general request, but I will also give specific examples. Often, in CAD programs, the demonstration object is something like a pump flange - a low-aspect ratio object that can be easily manipulated and still fit on the screen, and whose features are easily selected and modified because the scale its features is neatly proportional to the scale of the object.

But, in real life, and in modeling, we have to deal with high-aspect ratio objects. Consider a long 2x4, thin plywood, long narrow strips of thin sheet metal, pipes, long shafts, poles, beams, wires, etc. With these objects, simple tasks become difficult. For example, you want to look at one end of a long, thin object, and then the other. This involves a lot of friction when zooming, panning, selecting, moving, and extruding - the most common tasks. Another example would be aligning the end of a long piece of lumber with another object (common in carpentry). Another example would be selecting the edge surface of a small hole in a large, thin sheet.

Generally, I get the impression that not enough time has been spent with these real-world objects and problems by CAD designers. My request is to please consider the real-world problems of working with high-aspect objects. Here are some specific feature requests:

  1. The move tool should present the move handles for a selected object within the zoomed view. This should be the default. Currently, if you’re looking at one end end of a long thin object, and you want to move the object from that end, you have to perform a tedious set of zoom and pan moves to first go find the move handles (which are far out of view because they default to the center of the object), and then a second set to get the move handles positioned onto the end of the object, and zoom back in to your original view. This adds an enormous amount of unnecessary friction for a common task, slowing down and frustrating the user.

  2. When making 2D drawings, it can be very hard to fit these objects into the drawing frame with the limited scale options in Shapr3D. 1:10, for example, might make the object. view spill out of the frame, while 1:20 makes it too small within the frame. The solution is to allow the user to select any scale 1:11, 1:12, 1:13.5, etc.

There are many more examples. I will edit this request with more as they come up.

Thanks for your consideration.


+1 for suggestion number one!
This would help me a lot. Much of my work is on long “skinny” objects (sometimes hundreds of feet long) that I want to manipulate (Move/Rotate) from a zoomed in view close to an end, and have to regularly do the exact process as the OP mentioned to move my selected object…select object in current view, zoom way out (or use “zoom to selection”), grab the Gizmo center to move it near the end of the object, zoom back in to do the final placement of the Gizmo center as needed, before being able to initiate the move.
Having the Gizmo always visible for any selected object would be a great help.
One possible solution is for the gizmo placement be driven by the object selection process.
Example: If the “end” of a long object is what is double tapped to select it, then the Gizmo should be placed on that end face. If the double tap selection is made on the “side” of a long object, then the Gizmo should appear WITHIN THE CURRENT VIEW, on that side. Maybe centered within the visible side of the object, or just placed at the “end” edge.

Another possible solution would be to only move the ARROWS AND TILES into the current view so the object can be manipulated without changing the view. The Gizmo CENTER can stay at it’s default location.

So, in summary…either the COMPLETE Gizmo moves into the current view, possibly driven by where on the object is selected…or just the handles are made “always visible”, without changing the actual Gizmo center (and center of rotation).
Since I usually find and move the Gizmo just to get the arrows in view to do linear movement, not to actually change the center of rotation…The later solution would work most of the time for my needs….and sounds MUCH easier to implement.

This has been a pain point for me, even in much smaller ratios than a 2x4. I would like to see a faster way to zoom than scrolling (on PC).

I also wish the “move/rotate” controls would always be visible on-screen, even if they are “detached” from the object in question. Often I want to zoom in very far to see 2 edges as I’m moving them toward each other, but the transform controls go off-screen. There is another feature that could simplify this particular concern, and maybe help with SOME pain points of the OP: Being able to snap an edge or a surface to a surface.