In this article, we’re going to learn about SelfCAD’s Rotate tool. I'm going to explain all of the ins and outs of this feature, as well as present its applications. Rotate is one of the transformation tools available in SelfCAD. As its name suggests, it allows you to set the rotation of selected objects or selected regions of the object within the grid (workspace).
Select the object
The first step of using any tool is selecting the object on which you want to use it. You can do it by either left-clicking on the object in the grid or by selecting it in the Object Management section in the right side panel.
Activate the tool
Once the object is selected, you can access the tool itself. To activate the Rotate tool, you need to choose it from the main toolbar or press the letter ‘R’ on your keyboard. This way, you’ll open a Tool Setting panel with all of the available, customizable options for this feature on the left side of your screen.
Now you can start rotating the object. The first way to do it is by dragging the gizmos. Each gizmo you see rotates the model around a different axis. But don’t make the mistake of thinking that the object will rotate directly around the gizmo. When you start dragging the gizmo you will open up the protractor. Your object will rotate around the protractor’s center, not around the gizmo itself. Use the protractor to pick the exact angle you want.
The second way that you can rotate the object is by typing the angle to which you want to rotate your object into the provided textboxes. You can also select the checkboxes near them to copy the rotation between axes.
Select a region
SelfCAD gives you the possibility to rotate the position of the object globally, but you can also change the positions of specific regions belonging to the object. To do so, you need to enter the specific Selection Mode on the Interactive Rectangle in the right side panel by clicking on one of the three selection modes (vertex, face or edge) first. Then, select the part of the object you want to move.
Rotate a region
Rotating regions work on the same premise as rotating entire objects did - you can do it either by dragging gizmos around their axes or by typing in the angle by which you want to rotate the object into the textboxes.
Origin and Gizmo’s position
Within the Advanced Settings of the Rotate tool, there is an option called Origin. Origin sets the position of the Gizmo. In practice, you can use it to set a point around which the object will rotate itself. You can use one of the preset positions available to you in the dropdown lists or set the Origin manually by using the Manual Gizmo Position feature.
Local Transformation is a feature in the Advanced Settings pertaining to region selection. Use this feature to rotate and change the position of the gizmo. This enables you to move selected regions in different directions, independently from the rest of the object. Remember, select a region by entering the specific Selection Mode on the Interactive Rectangle in the right side panel by clicking on one of the three selection modes (vertex, face or edge) first. Then select the part of the object you want to move.
Another feature available for rotation with the region selection is the Individual Transformation. To access this option you need to select at least two regions. As its name suggests, using this option will enable you to rotate selected parts independently from each other.
That’s about it for the Rotate feature. After reading this article, you should know the basics of the Rotate tool and how to use it, know about its different applications and how to implement and customize its advanced settings. Of course, the graphics shown here were just examples, and using this tool on other shapes will give you slightly different effects, but its underlying principles will always stay the same.
That's all I have for you today. I wish you success in your future projects. See you, and stay tuned for more content to come!