Brep Slicer Display Options Quick Help


Display Dialog
The Display Options dialog with default options.

These options are the primary way to change the visual appearance of the Brep Slicer object. These options are covered below:

  1. Colorize Cut Faces Toggle
  2. Colorize Cut Faces Color
  3. Assign Material ID Toggle
  4. Set Material ID
  5. Show Cut Edges
  6. Render Cut Edges
  7. Cut Edge Color
  8. Cut Edge Thickness
  9. Show Slice Object
  10. Render Slice Object
  11. Slice Object Color
  12. Slice Object Opacity

Many of these options work by manipulating some extra materials that the Brep Slicer automatically creates, and mapping faces to these materials. For more information on directly manipulating these materials, click here.

Cut Face Display

Cut Faces Using Default Cut Material
Intersection faces being mapped to the internal cut face material, which was changed from the default red color to a bright green.

These options control which material the 'intersection faces' get mapped to. All of these options accomplish this by changing the material IDs of the intersection faces. There are three ways this can occur. If the Colorize Cut Faces Toggle and the Assign Material ID Toggle are both inactive, then the intersection faces are simply assigned a default material ID (currently 1) which usually has the effect of mapping them to whatever the material of the first base operand was. These two toggles can't both be active at the same time, which leads us to the two remaining modes:

Cut Faces Using Base Material
Intersection faces being mapped to the base material.

If the Colorize Cut Faces toggle is active, then the material IDs of the intersection faces are set to an internal ID. This ID maps the faces to one of the materials the Brep Slicer automatically creates. By default, this material gives the faces a glowing red appearance. The color of this material can be quickly changed using the Colorize Cut Faces color swatch. Alternatively, the color can be edited directly in the material.

Cut Faces Using Custom Material
Intersection faces being mapped to a user-created checker-board material via the Assign Material ID option.

If the Assign Material ID option is used instead, then the intersection face material IDs are set to the user-desired index. This index can be specified using the Set Material ID spinner. To add materials that can be mapped to the intersection faces in this way, open a blank material in the material editor, use the Pick Material From Object (Eyedropper icon) button to grab the Brep Slicer node material (which will be a multi-material). Then, add a sub-material, edit it as desired, and use the Set Material ID spinner to select that material ID.

Cut Edge Display

Cut Edges with Thick Yellow Highlight
Intersection edges with the thickness increased, and the color changed to a bright yellow from the default blue.

Where the slicing shape intersects the base shapes, intersection edges are created. These 'cut edges' can be displayed via the following options:

The Show Cut Edges option controls whether or not highlighting of intersection edges is visible in the view port. The Render Cut Edges toggles the same highlighting in renders.

The color and thickness of the intersection edge display highlight can be changed using the Cut Edge color swatch and the Cut Edge Thickness spinner, respectively.

Cut Edges Too Thick
An example of what the viewport may look like if the Cut Edge Thickness is too high.

The cut edge display internally generates a 'tube-like' mesh representation of the intersection edges. This tube's radius is controlled by the Edge Thickness spinner. If this radius is set too high, self-intersections will occur in areas of high curvature. Also, no attempt is made to make the mesh flow smoothly through vertices. It is recommended to keep the radius low relative to the overall scale of the model. For example, the default thickness is generated by using a small percentage of the combined base shape bounding box. If the radius gets too big, the resulting display can be very messy and confusing. If disabling the Show Cut Edges option cleans up the display, then the thickness probably needs to be reduced.

Slice Object Display

Slicing Object Display Changes
A "split only" slicing object with increased opacity and a green color (changed from the default gray-blue).

The slicing object display options largely parallel those of the intersection edges. Visibility in the standard viewports and in the renderer can be toggled via the Show Slice Object and the Render Slice Object toggles, respectively. The color can be modified with the Slice Object color swatch, or through direct modification of the internal slicer material.

The Slice Object Opacity slider can be used to modify the level of transparency of the slicing shape. Please note that if a plane slicing shape is not visible in the view port on a freshly created Brep Slicer, it is more likely due to backface culling (try rotating the camera around the slicer) than this option, as this defaults to half-visibility.

Document last updated: April 2010 (nPower version 7.0). Tested with Firefox 3.6.3, Internet Explorer 7.0.6002.