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Curve Clone

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The Curve Clone tool allows users to quickly clone geometry by clicking down control points for a curve. The cloned element is determined by the settings of the 'Source' option of the 'Clone Effector'. As the curve is created, the specified geometry will duplicate itself along the curve in real-time (depending on system performance). One may wish to begin with a pre-created curve, simply put the curve in visible but deselected mesh item prior to activating the tool (also known as a Background item). Once the second vertex of the curve has been created with the tool, the clone effector will create geometry along it using the various controls.

Curve Clone PanelPath Steps Generator--

Automatic: This toggle control will force a computed number of clones based on the Smoothing Angle value such that a clone is placed along the path to maintain a level of smoothness at or above the user set level (determined by the 'Smoothing Angle').

Steps: The 'Steps' option is active only when the 'Automatic' option is disabled. The defined 'Steps' value determines the number of particles generated along the curve path that feed into the Effector, essentially controlling the number of clones.

Smoothing Angle: Determines the angle along the curve where a clone will be created when the 'Automatic' option is enabled.

Align to Path: When enabled the generated particles will include rotation information so the newly created clone aligns to the path vector direction at the location where it is created.

Align to Normal: When enabled, the generated particles will include rotation information so the newly created clone aligns with any stored normal direction for a vertex, such as for a curve extracted from geometry.

Start at Source: Often a curve used for cloning will have its initial control knot imperfectly aligned with the geometry to be cloned. With Start at Source active the curve is used as a relative guide using the original geometry as the true starting location. Disabling this option may cause the newly created geometry to move away from the intended original location.

Curve Path--

Mode: By default the mode is set to Add. In the 'Add' mode clicking on a curve point and dragging will edit the curves position. Clicking anywhere in the 3D viewport other than the handles will create a new curve control point. To avoid creating new control points when dragging existing points around you can set this mode to 'Edit'. 'Delete' mode allows quick removal of control points by simply clicking on them.

Point X/Y/Z: The XYZ position of the currently selected knot. The user can interactively edit the position by clicking over the knot indicated by the cyan dot, it will turn yellow; the user can now drag its position around in the viewport, or manually enter a position by editing any of the data fields.

Bank Angle: For each path position, a bank angle can be defined that controls the rotation angle of elements cloned through that position.

Closed: This toggle option will cause the curve to become a closed loop, connecting the end point to the start.

Start Control: Enabling this toggle will cause the first knot in the curve to become a control point but not an actual segment of the curve. This provides a simple method for changing the curvature at the start of the curve.

End Control: Enabling this toggle will cause the last knot in the curve to become a control point but not an actual segment of the curve. This provides a simple method for changing the curvature at the end of the curve.

By Length: This option forces the newly created geometry to be evenly distributed across the entire length of the curve rather than spacing based on the control knots.

Create Polygon: This toggle option will generate a curve type polygon that remains after the tool has been dropped. This is useful if you want to re-use the curve you create with the current tool with additional curve based tools later in your project.

Flip Polygon: This toggle will invert the faces of the generated polygons.

Make UVs: When this toggle is active the tool will populate the current UV map with data for the generated polygons.

Clone Effector--

Replace Source: When this option is enabled, MODO will remove the source geometry and position it at the first Point in the path.

Invert Polygons: This option, when enabled will invert the normal direction of the cloned geometry.

Merge Vertices: This option, when enabled will merge coinciding vertices into a single vertex (based on a specified 'Distance' value).

Distance: Used in conjunction with the 'Merge Vertices' option, the Distance value determines the maximum distance between vertices where merging will occur. Vertices outside this value will remain unchanged. A value of zero will only remove collocated vertices.

Source: Determines the mesh that will be cloned along the Pen tool path-
Active Meshes- This option will use the currently selected geometry as a clone source.
Specific Mesh- This option allows the user to specify a specific Mesh item as the clone source using the 'Mesh Item' option below.
All BG- This option will combine all the currently visible background items cloning them as a single mesh.
Random BG- This option chooses a random background item from all the currently visible background items at each clone position.
Preset Shape- This option allows users to clone Profile shapes from the Preset Browser. Open the Preset Browser 'F6" and select a profile before activating the tool.

Mesh Item: This option works when the Source is set to 'Specific Mesh' and allows users to set the mesh to be cloned.


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