Redundant masters in a variable font

Hi, I have a question that is not Glyphs specific and that, I think, has an answer because I saw other fonts having kind of the same behavior that I’m looking for.

Let me explain. I’m making a 3 axis variable font with the axis being weight, width and outline. My design space is not a square but half of a square because the outline effect is not effective for the thin weights. So my masters at [weight = 0, outline = 0] and [weight = 0, outline = 1000] should be identical. In my working process, I only have masters at [weight = 0, outline = 0] and none at [weight = 0, outline = 1000], which works well for the design phase and for exporting fixed instances but obviously not for generating a VF. Then what I do is, when I want to test export a VF, I duplicate my [weight = 0, outline = 0] masters and change their values to [outline = 1000].

This is not a big issue but I keep feeling that there might be another solution for this particular design space. I tried to use virtual masters for this intent but they are not made for that. So my question is: is there another solution, or should I just continue as I do?


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Can you send me a test file?
You don’t need each corner of the design space to build a variable font. It sometimes makes it more difficult to compute the deltas for the other masters.

It’s also what I thought and what I did for other designs, but it seems that something is laking for this particular family. Email sent, thanks!

This works fine in the next Version of Glyphs.

Was this ever resolved?

I am running into a similar situation where I have to duplicate a couple of masters and change an axis value to get the VF to work.

It would be great if there wouldn’t be a need to duplicate masters, however, if there is a need to duplicate…maybe this can be integrated directly in the master info where, if possible, a single master can be assigned two sets of Axes Coordinates?

3.0.5 (3115)

FWIW I’d also brought this up here.

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There is probably some gross oversight but what if there was a + icon by Axes Coordinates that added an extra column of the axis names/values. The end result being that each set of values would represent an individual master with the same set of outlines, etc. This could be a way to avoid duplicating and creating redundant masters.

I have an idea about it. It will probably similar to the “Virtual Master” parameter.


Wondering if there was any luck getting the additional axis coordinates to work as a customer parameter?

Also, if it does work that way, would it be possible to add more than 1 additional coordinate per master?

Not sure what you are trying to ask, but I think I got it to work.

Great! Will it be available in the next update?

I am trying to ask is if it will be possible to list several sets of axis coordinates that will duplicate everything in the original master?

For example, if one set of axis coordinates for the original master is:
Weight: 1
Width: 1
Height: 100
Spacing: 0

Then can everything from the original master be duplicated for several other sets of axis coordinates, such as:
Weight=1, Width=1, Height=100, Spacing: 100
Weight=1000, Width=1, Height=100, Spacing: 0
Weight=1000, Width=1, Height=100, Spacing: 100

I am imagining that the custom parameter that adds an extra axis coordinate will look and behave (with input dialog pop-up) something like the Axis Location CP?

Screenshot 2022-03-21 at 12.24.20

The parameter is on the font level, next to the Virtual Masters, not at the master level.

It is available in 3.0.5 (3117)?

Next to Virtual Master is Import Master, is that the parameter you are referring to?

Why would it not be on the master level?

No, it will be in one of the next bigger updates.

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