Frequently Asked Questions
Please see below for the most often asked questions, split into various categories for ease of reference. If you can’t find an answer to your question below, please Contact Us
Do you have a trial version?
All of our software packages come with an in built 7 day trial period. Once you have ordered your software you can install it (either from the DVD or the download file) and launch the software. You will be prompted to either enter the serial number or try it now. The trial period lasts for 7 days from the date of install and provides full functionality. At the end of the 7 day period you must enter your serial number to unlock the license or uninstall the software.
We then provide a full refund guarantee for this 7 day period, providing that the serial number has not been activated. Please note that once you enter the serial number we can no longer provide a refund as this locks the license to you and confirms agreement of our terms and conditions.
What is Arcon?
ARCON Visual Architecture is a high-end CAD application dedicated to designing building exteriors and interiors. Detailed plans can be rapidly drawn and cross-sections and side elevations can be generated automatically on screen.
Do I need CAD experience?
No. Our system has been designed to be easy to use for those with no previous CAD experience. Everything is modular and specific to building design enabling us to keep the system simple to use with specific modules for each part of the building.
Is it easy to use?
Yes. As with all software, there is a learning curve and you will need to spend a little time in understanding the toolset and where to start. However full documentation is supplied and as the tools are created for a specific purpose it is very quick to find your way around. Additionally we provide various tools, tutorials and guides and in addition we fully support the software from our UK office.
Can I produce drawings for planning submission?
Plans from ARCON can be output to a variety of different scales, fully and accurately dimensioned, on a variety of page sizes. They are suitable for submission to your local authority for planning approval and many ARCON users have achieved this, often with no previous experience. As always, we would recommend referring to your local authority as early as possible to ensure you create plans that meet their requirements.
What about building regs and working drawings?
Included with ARCON is the Creative Lines package. This is a powerful 2D editing and drafting tool which can be used to include more detail into your plans to ensure your drawings are suitable for multiple uses. Whilst we cannot provide advice on what you need to consider to meet building regulations, if you have the knowledge you can produce the required details within Creative Lines.
Can I produce elevations and cross-sections?
Of course. Elevations and cross sections can be produced simply by selecting a plane of view across your plan using the sectoin tool. One tool produces both and also gives you 3D cross sections.
Shop & Ordering
I have an older version, is there an upgrade path?
We offer a variety of upgrade options depending on which version you have. Please contact our sales team at firstname.lastname@example.org for information on the options available.
We offer a refund guarantee which works in combination with the in-built 7 day trial period within our Arcon software. The trial period is an option when you first launch the software and enables you to evaluate your purchase for a full 7 days with full functionality and support. During this period you do not need to activate the software license with the serial number.
Provided that the serial number has not been activated, we can provide a full refund for any purchases of our Arcon software during this trial period.
Please not that once the serial number has been activated we cannot provide a refund. Please also be aware that we cannot provide refunds for any third party or add-on products sold through our website.
How does the download order work?
Once your order for a download version of the software is completed and processed, you will be presented with a download link on the receipt confirmation page. A copy of this link will be automatically emailed to you.
The download takes the form of a single setup file (approx 800 mb-1.5 gb) which you should save to your system. Once saved simply run the setup file and follow the on-screen instructions. As an added security measure we ship serial numbers via separate email, together with a back-up download link. The serial number email is shipped within 48 hours. However you can use your software right away by using the fully functional trial mode, which also enables you to evaluate the software.
Please be aware that sometimes links to the download can get placed in your spam/junk email folders so ensure that you check these if you do not receive any emails.
Installation & Setup
Can I transfer my licence to a new computer?
Yes you can move the installation to new computer and there is a de-activation process to enable this; however you cannot install on both computers at the same time with the standard single license serial number. If you need to add the software to multiple machines, we have a number of options available which vary depending on the intended use, number of additional machines and the version you are running. Please contact our sales team for specific information.
We undertake many hours of work and expenses to design, develop and test each title prior to release. Our strict copy protection system ensures that our software is not illegally sold, copied or redistributed. Without this protection we would no longer be able to produce a quality product. This also prevents the transfer of the license to another person by selling the software after it has been used.
As a part of this system, all our software is sold under the terms and conditions specified in the license agreement, to which a user agrees prior to installation. The license agreement clearly defines that each product sold may only be activated on a single (1) machine at any one time. Accordingly, the software protection system will not allow multiple installations of the same software. Furthermore our pricing of the software has been calculated on the basis of a single user license.
Do I need to be connected to the internet?
Our software does not require an internet connection to function. If you are using the automatic license activation option, you will briefly require your computer to be connected to the internet until the product is activated. However a manual activation option is available for those machines not connected to the internet.
How do I manually activate the software?
The software can be activated manually as follows:On start-up you will be presented with an activation dialogue box
Click on ‘Activate’ Enter the serial number that came with your software and click ‘Activate’ You will then have a choice of automatic or manual activation Select ‘Manually’ You will then be given a hardware code. Make a note of both this hardware code and the serial number you entered earlier Contact our helpdesk by telephone or by email at email@example.com and provide us with both of these numbers and the title/version of your software in order that we can generate the activation code for you.
Please be aware that during busy periods, it can take up to 24 hours for us to obtain the activation code for you.
My ceiling and floor colours are linked, how do I change them?
By default, the ceiling of the room reflects the texture applied to the floor of the same room. You can of course change each seperately. To do ths double click on the room in construction mode to open the room properties box. On the right hand side click the button ‘Textures’. Select the ceiling tab and use the drop down and browse buttons to select the texture you require.
How do I zoom into my drawing?
The zoom tool allows you to click & drag the area you wish to focus on/zoom on. There are 2 drag & zoom methods to choose from; is Best fit (free) and Best fit (center). When using Best fit (center) the inital click of the mouse will be the focal point of the zoom. Therefore you can click on the center point of where you would like to zoom-in to.
The other method, Best fit (free), allows you to simply click and drag the area you wish to zoom-in to and the center point(focus point) is automatically calculated. This is the most commonly used meothd. If you feel that you are having difficulty dragging and zooming into the correct area, then try chainging to Best fit(free).
To change the zoom type, simply right-click on the zoom tool and select the option your prefer.
Another option that is not as popular, is the simple click-to-zoom setup. By right-clicking on the zoom too, you will see various numbers and you can enter your own number that allows you to choose the zoom amount. When this option is chosen, you simply click once and you will zoom in by the designated amount.
How do I choose to draw using the inside or outside wall edges?
After the first click when placing a wall, press Ctrl+W to switch between the wall axis: internal, center and external alignment.
Press Ctrl+Q to change the axis at the beginning of the wall; press Ctrl+E to change the axis at the end of the wall.
Why can't I edit an element I have drawn in construction mode?
Within ARCON 3D, there are a number of objects which you may find that once placed, cannot be selected again to edit, move or delete (eg. dimensions, windows etc).
This is because, in default mode not all object types are selectable. This is however, fully customisable to suit your own requirements.
Using the menus, navigate to:
Options > Program > Snap and Select > In Construction Mode… (or use the keyboard shortcut CTRL + Spacebar)
Select the ‘Selectable Elements’ tab. You will see a variety of object types. Ensure those you require are ticked and press ‘OK’.
Why does my cursor 'jump' around the drawing?
You have multiple options for snapping to items and making use of the grids and guidelines to ensure accuracy when placing objects.
You may notice on occasion that the cursor seems to ‘jump’ in stages rather than move smoothly between points. This is because the increment tool is switched on. Using incremental points can be useful if you always want to move a certain distance or angle. However, most of the time you may not want this. To turn it off right-click on the Grid On/Off icon on the top toolbar. In the section marked Grid Angle ensure that the ‘Use’ checkbox is unticked.
How do I remove the SH/PH text from my windows?
By default, window sill heights are displayed directly under the window they relate to. This can sometimes mean that they overlap when many windows are located in a small area and often users wish to remove them. To turn off the display of window sill height, right click on the ‘Architectural Display’ icon and un-tick the ‘window sill height’ check box.
There are additional display check boxes here too that enable text display to be toggled off for a number of elements such as staircase details and door and windows dimensions.
How do I draw my 3D model?
In Arcon, we draw our plans in a traditional 2D plan view. The system then automatically creates the 3D model which you can view in a single click of the mouse. In 3D you can then change the look and style of the model.
How do I add objects or textures?
The objects and textures catalogue is located in the 3D design mode, to enter this press hotkey F12. Notice on the top right hand corner a icon that looks like an open book. Click on this a menu will appear on the right hand of your screen.
This is your Textures/Objects Catalogue. If you see only File System and Drives you will need to drag the right hand side border of the catalogue so you can view the object files/texture files.
From these files you can simply Drag and drop your objects/texture into your projects.
How do I colour just a single wall?
In Design mode the whole room is always coloured or textured. How can I colour or texture individual walls?
Change into Construction mode and double-click to open up the Wall dialog. Within this dialogue un-check the Use Lower Wall Texture (Only for outside Wall) box.
This will make the texture drop down box active, this is where you can select a colour for your wall. If you wish to use a texture that is not contained within the drop down menu, click the arrow next to the drop down menu which will display a cascading window, select Browse to view alternative texture.
How do I select glass/transparent objects to move and edit them?
Glass objects are objects that are semi transparent. You may find that not only are glass objects difficult to select and move but they are also difficult to texture.
To select and move a glass objects, simply hold down the Ctrl key when clicking on it. Do the same when dragging textures onto glass objects, simply hold the ctrl key before dropping the texture onto the object.
I'm struggling to place objects when in a 3D view
Design mode is ideal for reviewing your 3D model and adding finishes such as textures and objects. Some users struggle with the accurate placement of objects in the 3D space as it can be difficult to align items. The solution is to remain in Design Mode and then on the inside top icon bar, on the left hand side use one of either the black and white or colour plan views. Each of these can be used to align objects more accurately.
I can't see my symbols in Creative Lines
Within Creative Lines (now a part of the Arcon package) there is a library of 2D symbols to enhance and assist your 2d drawings for such uses as applying for planning permission or submitting drawings for building regulations. Theses symbols are accessed from the main menu by navigating to Symbols>Library. This will open the symbols catalogue where you can browse the pre-drawn objects.
On occasion, users may find that their symbol library is empty and they do not have objects in the library. This is generally because the path to the symbol library has not been correctly set during the installation process. To rectify this simply select the browse icon in the symbol window (the icon that looks like an upside down F). This opens up a path change window where you can navigate to the symbol library. The standard location for the library is: C:\Program Files(x86)\Eleco\ARCON …….\CLines\Program\Library\Symbols
Once you have highlighted the folder, hit the Set Default button to set this as the standard folder for the symbols library and then hit OK. You should now be able to browse and access all of the pre-defined symbols.
I get an error message: No Connection to Calculator
These errors occasionally happen when the software has not been entered into the windows registry incorrectly (often caused by anti-virus software being active during installation). Before taking the following steps, make sure your Arcon software has been closed.
The simplest method is to uninstall the software. Once this has been done, temporarily disable your anti-virus software and re-install your product. This should allow all the files to be correctly registered and once complete, you can then re-activate your anti-virus software.
The alternative way to resolve this is to navigate to the start menu and Start>Run (in XP).
So type the following (or copy/paste) in the ‘Run’ box (all of the red text). The example below is for Arcon 3D Architect. If you are using one of the other titles the process is exactly the same but you will need to change the file path to the appropriate one for your specific software title. Also be aware that if you are running on a 64bit machine, you will need to use the Program Files(x86) folder.
regsvr32 “C:\Program Files\Eleco\ARCON 3D Architect\Program\AcCtrls.ocx” and hit enter
regsvr32 “C:\Program Files\Eleco\ARCON 3D Architect\Program\mbutil.dll” and hit enter.
Then try your software again and you should be up and running.
What version of Windows will Arcon run on?
All of our current Arcon range of software is fully compatible with Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8 and 8.1. It will run on both 32bit and 64bit versions of Windows (running in 32bit compatibility mode on 64bit systems).
Please note that older versions of Arcon including the Arcon+ range, will not be compatible with newer operating systems. You should check the system requirements of your specific version prior to upgrading your operating system, otherwise an upgrade to your Arcon software may be required. Contact our sales team for upgrade prices.
Will it run on Mac OS?
Unfortunately, we do not currently have a Mac compatible version available. However it is possible to run the software on a Mac by running Windows either through Bootcamp or Parallels. (Please note however that due to the license protection system we use, it will not run on VMWare)
I can't print on a single sheet
One common problem when printing is when you set your project to A4 landscape and try to print, it will often print on 2 sheets of A4 portrait. This happens because although you have set your project options to A4 landscape, you have not set your printer to match.
There are two ways to solve this. Firstly, you can navigate to File>Printer Setup and change the paper size and orientation here before trying to print. Alternatively, set your project options to ‘use printer default’ so that you project paper size and orientation always match what you have set for your printer (this works pdf printer tools too). The second option is generally preferred.
Why can't I import my DXF/DWG?
Like a lot of file formats, the details of the DXF format has changed over time and changes to this format is not in our control. Accordingly, newer versions of software that export or save in DXF format may be using a newer version of the format. Generally this can be overcome by simply selecting to save the DXF file as an older format from your original source.
What to do if you do not have access to the original source:
1. Try selecting DXF from the file type drop down when importing, this has sometimes overcome some DXF compatibility issues.
2. There are some DXF/DWG conversion programs that you can download. Try doing a web search for such programs…most of them allow you to back convert the files to older versions.
If you are still having problems, we are happy to assist you with importing these types of file. Simply contact our support team for help and advice.