I've had this problem before and I can't remember what I did to get it to work. I have most of the image combined, but there are a few spots i am fighting with and they
won't combine. They just go to the back. I've tried putting everything on one layer, I've tried numerous other things with no luck. Hoping I can get some insight here. I attached a PDF of the file.
the white areas are what won't combine. PDF
Chris is right, it's the curve directions (or fill rule) that are wrong.No need to weld before combining, by the way.I also noticed that there is a duplicate object under the biggest white object, which means that even after correction, it appears to still be black and not a hole.In my next post there's an explanation about curve directions and fill rules that I wrote recently in another thread.
About curve directions and fill rules:When working with vector objects, it is sometimes important that the curves are running in the right direction.For example in some cases (most of the times it doesn't matter) when cutting on a cutting plotter or engraver.It can also be important when curves are combined.If, for example, both the outer and inner curve of an "O" run in the same direction, and the fill rule is set to Winding (Nonzero) *, the inner curve will be filled instead of a "hole".Could also be worth knowing that "normal" objects in Draw have the Even-Odd rule by default, and therefore the curve directions are normally not important.Text converted to curves though, will usually have the Nonzero rule by default (to avoid that overlapping characters create holes where they overlap), and sometimes also imported objects, which may lead to confusion.
There are two ways to open up the "hole":
I personally prefer to change the curve direction (that's why I have a shortcut key) because then I know that the hole won't be filled no matter what rule is active.
* If you find it interesting, here are descriptions of the Nonzero and Even-Odd rules. :-)