Making a Dynamic gutter downspout

I would like to make the attached gutter downspout “dynamic” and be able to scale the overall height without changing the sizes of the parts as well as adjust the distance off the wall of the upper part and the length of the bottom part. I do not have any experience with creating DC’s with parts that are not along the typical red, green, and blue axes. Can anyone help give me a strategy to crete this? Thanks in advance!

Gutter_Downspout.skp (143.0 KB)

For a height change in your component you will set it up so the upper pieces, shown selected here, get moved vertically and the long vertical component will have its LenZ adjusted. Changing LenZ is a scaling operation in just the vertical direction so that wont change the cross section dimensions and won’t affect the distance off the wall. The parts at the bottom would then be fixed in place so everything happens at the top.

Something like this. I simplifie your model by exploding the top parts and converting them to a single component. The bottom parts were also exploded and converted.
Screenshot - 10_25_2022 , 3_04_17 PM

By the way, it’s best if you are consistent with your component usage and also best if you don’t use scale to manually change the lengths of objects. That scaling gets in the way of making the DCs work correctly.


Thanks @DaveR! Would I also be ables to use the scale tool to snap to a point in the model without entering the length in the component options dialog? Any ideas on how to dynamically adjust the depth of the upper portion?

Yes, you could do that and set the component so it can only be scaled in the Z direction.
Screenshot - 10_25_2022 , 3_37_14 PM

Depth? Do you mean height?

If you imagine the roof eave (overhang) from the exterior wall - I’m referring to being able to change the downspout assembly to adjust to a roof eave depth that the user would input measured horizontally

That gets to be a little more tricky. You’ll need to set of the angled straight section so it can be scaled in its length and figure out the math for where to locate the top elbow. This will also affect the length of the long vertical so you’ll have to deal with that math, too. @pcmoor will likely be along and will have more for you but frankly if I needed to add downspouts to my projects I’d probably skip the DC and just manipulate them manually. More likely I would just draw a Follow Me path and a profile and make it on the fly.

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As per Dave, DCs are time consuming so
if you use DCs, then best to value add to their development, for items, fill in some custom attributes to create a BOM. I nominate a “g” for gutters. h could be hardware, t timber… that way you create lists without other interference.
Make DCs reusable
The pipes, as suggested before should be made from one starting DC, with the generic functional and list attributes, then reused for other shapes in the series, like hip and ridge iron, valley gutter… sections with length, just a matter of making each unique, swapping the geometry, scale definition and rename. Saves filling all those attributes!
Suggest use instance names to make labelling simple

Gutter_Downspout (1).skp (158.1 KB)

try to align most in same axis, then its trig all the way

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Thank you @pcmoor! This will really speed up workflow when adding gutters to projects. You’ve inspired me to learn some trigonometry. I’m also wondering if we could add some additional functionality:

  • At the bottom use either “Elbow A” or “Elbow B” (included in skp file) based on user selection and adjust the bottom spout rotation vertically and horizontally to that orientation?
  • Add the option to hide or show the bottom spout for areas where an upper gutter runs down onto another roof instead of hitting the ground.
  • Add the option for a “kick out” for areas where the gutter meets a wall plane that protrudes further than the rest of the wall - (see screenshot) maybe this would be a seperate DC?
  • How hard would it be to make it so the red axis would be parallel to the gutter direction so that the component could be used with Profile Builder assemblies?

I also updated the corner arcs to use only 3 segments instead of 6 to reduce file size

Thanks again for all your help!

Gutter_Downspout (1).skp (118.4 KB)

Gutter_Downspout (3).skp (157.0 KB)

Hi Kevin
This is an update to incorporate some or the above, however there is a slight inaccuracy that creeps in sometimes during the changes, will look in some of the reasoning, but for now if check the overall