A question that is often asked is which material setting has priority? You can apply materials to an element in many different ways (in order of priority): ByLevel, assigning by colour & level (the “traditional” MicroStation method), OpenBuildings Designer Families & Parts, ByLevel overrides, attaching to an element, attaching to a single face.

In order from first to last:

  1. Rendering without defining materials

Firstly, place an element and render the view. The element renders in its base colour:

  1. Family & Part

(Only if OpenBuildings Designer is used.)

Assign a Rendering Property to a Part by opening the Dataset Explorer and switching the Parts View to “Rendering Properties”.

Turn on the Render Toggle for the Part, then click in the Render Palette column to browse in a palette. Select the Render Material and commit your changes back to the dataset.

Note: The palette should be located in one of the folders pointed at by the MS_MATERIAL configuration variable.

Re-render your view; the element renders using the Part’s Rendering Properties:

  1. Level

Open Level Manager and assign a material to the correct level:

Click on the Material column to select the Palette and Material. If you don’t see this column, right-click on the header and pick Material from the available options.

Once assigned, re-render the view.

  1. Assign Material

The “traditional” MicroStation assignment is next in the priority order.

In Visualization > Materials > Assign Material select the palette and material and click on an element to assign the material to the element’s level and colour.

Render the view:

  1. Attach Material

Assigning materials to an element applies the same material to all elements on the selected level in the chosen colour. Should you need any of those elements to use a different material, it is necessary to use Attach Material to the specific element.

In Visualization > Materials > Attach Material select the palette and material and click on an element to attach it to that element only.

Render the view:

  1. Level overrides

In Level Manager, switch to Overrides and follow the same steps for defining a material by level (point 3, above). Turn on Level Overrides in View Attributes.


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