Author Topic: Software-packing a truck  (Read 6980 times)

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DeeCap

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Software-packing a truck
« on: Sep 02, 2011, 11:41 am »
Are there any TD's (or people that know TD's) who toured and used any truck packing software?

If so, can anyone recommend any?

Thanks!

LizzG

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #1 on: Sep 02, 2011, 11:55 am »
Our TD uses vectorworks (which can be an expensive program).

nick_tochelli

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #2 on: Sep 02, 2011, 01:04 pm »
Our TD used Auto-CAD. Again, expensive.

Try any of the programs listed here. I can't sample about half of them because they are Windows based, but one of them might work.
http://www.freebyte.com/cad/cad.htm#2D3DCADSystems

avkid

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #3 on: Sep 02, 2011, 04:42 pm »
As far as I am aware nothing exists specifically for this application.
Philip LaDue
Shore Production Group LLC
IATSE Local #21 Newark, NJ

nick_tochelli

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #4 on: Sep 02, 2011, 08:15 pm »
As far as I am aware nothing exists specifically for this application.

True. But if you draft your pack before hand you'll have a basis to go off of......that you'll throw out the window as soon as you try to pack the truck and discover your initial plan doesn't work for sh....well you know.

Tour I went on discovered really really late in the game that both of our sets weren't going to fit in the truck....during tech. Just before we hit the road. We had to cut 2/3 of one of the show's sets in order to travel.

Mac Calder

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #5 on: Sep 02, 2011, 10:55 pm »
I use a scale rule and square-ruled paper. Whilst I have pretty much every cad package known to man, I find it easier to just scribble on paper. That said, most of my items are cubic in nature - so it tends to be fairly easy to guesstimate. I generally only need to scribble out something when I need to know whether I can fit x cases across in which orientation etc. Once I have a decent spacial reference, I eyeball the rest.

I play a lot of tetris too... That helps I think
« Last Edit: Sep 02, 2011, 11:01 pm by Mac Calder »

BayAreaSM

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #6 on: Sep 03, 2011, 01:47 am »
To bounce of what Nick mentioned - we didn't have a software program for our pack when we went to China on tour, but we did a pre pack plan before we left the US. However, when we got to China, after Shanghai, every other city provided us with the most unbelievable trucks - nothing we could have ever prepared for or mapped out. (One was a refrigerated meat truck - with hooks coming out of the ceiling!) I second Mac's suggestion - but like Nick said, be prepared for stuff to just not work, because when it comes to reality of what can be lifted high and what can't, etc

Sometimes you can develop an even better pack when you're packing the truck. Sometimes things make more sense when you're in the moment, though I know that doesn't help with planning for beans.

planetmike

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #7 on: Sep 03, 2011, 08:12 am »
When I went to the college first year, my parents and I packed the trunk of the car pretty densely, like Tetris. And I took a bunch of stuff. The second year I pre-packed the stuff into boxes, trunks, lots of square-shaped containers. While it may not have been as efficient, it was much easier to load and unload the car. Does the same principle (pack stuff into cubes, then just pack the cubes) hold for show equipment?

nick_tochelli

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #8 on: Sep 03, 2011, 12:47 pm »
For the most part, yes. Most things are packed into road cases which makes part of the pack very simple. You make rows of road boxes, set a strap, make another row, set a strap etc. It's when you get to the set pieces things become more interesting. Especially if your set is curved....that was a fun pack to figure out.

But the set will usually provide cubby holes to hide things into. Like on my Tour of R+J we had a boat load of pipes that we originally threw under the initial rows of road boxes in the nose of the truck. We found that unloading the boxes with pipe under them was an annoyance so we ended up having them ride inside our stair units instead. Strapped strip lights on top of road boxes, flipped hampers upside down on top of road boxes, married stair units so they would stack on top of load bars.....You can lay out all the plans you want, but like BayAreaSM alluded to....you just never know where you can fill in space and what can fit where until you actually hit the road and start working with your pack.

valence

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #9 on: Sep 04, 2011, 11:01 pm »
In the past, I've used both vectorworks and autoCAD (the free student versions) to plan a truck pack--however, these were mostly useful for communicating the pack to others, not for the actual planning.  It's too hard to think in 3D, especially with odd shaped things, when staring at a monitor.
Road cases (all of ours are a standard size, or are in multiples of each other), I represent with scraps of wood chopped into the appropriate shapes and I've made crude cardstock models of other things (drinking straws are the right size for our pipes).

Scott

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #10 on: Sep 05, 2011, 02:24 pm »
You're probably better off spending the time playing Tetris (or even better 3-D Tetris); there seems to be a consensus amongst the frequent truck packers I know is that this does sharpen your packing skills.

avkid

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #11 on: Sep 05, 2011, 04:21 pm »
Philip LaDue
Shore Production Group LLC
IATSE Local #21 Newark, NJ

DeeCap

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Re: Software-packing a truck
« Reply #12 on: Sep 06, 2011, 08:35 am »
Thanks for all the advice! I don't have Vectorworks or Auto Cad, and it looks like I don't have to waste the money buying that software

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