Click here to Skip to main content
Click here to Skip to main content

Old Fashioned Analog Meter Control

, 12 May 2005
Rate this:
Please Sign up or sign in to vote.
This is an article on creating a control derived from the System.Windows.Form.Control class.

Sample Image

Introduction

This control class was written to simulate an analog meter or dial and also to learn about creating a custom control. This is an example of a meter. A meter shows the current value of a system. As the value of the system changes the changes get reflected on the meter.

Background

There aren't too many examples of controls that are derived from the Control class. This is understandable because there is no designer support. MSDN has some samples but they are very simple and can be found here. This article contains only the first part of the project which is making the control itself. I have added some designer support so that the colors of the meter face, border, needle, and numbers can be changed using the properties editor in Visual Studio. Creating Custom Controls-Providing Design Time Support 1 by Kodanda Pani was extremely helpful.

Using the code

In order to use the meter control, you must add the MeterControl.dll to the Windows Application Project References and to your toolbox under the Windows Forms Tab. Locate the MeterControl in your toolbox and drag it on to your form. The meter is drawn in the center of the form so you will have to adjust the size to fit the meter. In the case of the demo, I am using a tracker bar to change the value of the meter, like this:

private void trackBar1_Scroll(object sender, System.EventArgs e) {
    meter1.Angle = trackBar1.Value;
}

Angle is the one property the MeterControl uses to redraw the line in the proper location.

Points of Interest

In order to draw the numbers on the face and draw the line on the meter, I had to translate the center of the control and then use a transform. This was tricky at best. Here is the code to draw the line that points to the value of the meter.

private void DrawLine(Graphics g, int angle, int offset)
{
    Matrix m = new Matrix();
    PointF center = 
        new PointF(this.ClientRectangle.Width/2 ,this.ClientRectangle.Bottom -15 );
    m.RotateAt( angle+180, center );
    m.Translate( center.X, center.Y );
    g.Transform = m;
    g.DrawLine( meterlinePen, 0, 0, this.ClientRectangle.Width/2 + offset , 0 );

}

Notes

Next I'll be looking to add some flexibility for drawing the numbers on the face of the meter. Any suggestions would be most welcomed.

History

  • May 13 2005
    1. Made changes suggested by Mav.Northwind to fix flicker. Initialized angle to zero in constructor to draw line at resting place. Added Invalidate to the Angle property instead of using an event to redraw the meter.
    2. Added regions to make the meter control code easier to read, less cluttered.
    3. Added designer support to customize the look and feel of the control.

License

This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

A list of licenses authors might use can be found here

Share

About the Author

seagrrl

United States United States
No Biography provided

Comments and Discussions

 
GeneralAllow Min and Max values rather than 0 to 180 Pinmemberstensones30-May-07 23:52 
Questionhow to make it full circled meter PinmemberSridhar Manoharan15-Nov-06 1:18 
GeneralFixing flicker Pinmembermav.northwind13-Mar-05 20:44 
GeneralRe: Fixing flicker Pinmemberseagrrl15-Mar-05 20:04 
GeneralRe: Fixing flicker Pinmembermmcguirk122-Mar-05 4:54 

General General    News News    Suggestion Suggestion    Question Question    Bug Bug    Answer Answer    Joke Joke    Rant Rant    Admin Admin   

Use Ctrl+Left/Right to switch messages, Ctrl+Up/Down to switch threads, Ctrl+Shift+Left/Right to switch pages.

| Advertise | Privacy | Mobile
Web03 | 2.8.141022.2 | Last Updated 13 May 2005
Article Copyright 2005 by seagrrl
Everything else Copyright © CodeProject, 1999-2014
Terms of Service
Layout: fixed | fluid