Sunday, August 16, 2009

Civil 3D 2010 Hot Topics

Civil 3D 2010 has many new features in case you havent seen them.

The "Intersection Wizard" is amazing, and moving an intersection, re-alignning an alignment automatically redoes the entire intersection. However, lets talk about a few of the "lesser known" yet extremely powerful features.

These are my list of "Hot Topics" introduced in 2010 of Civil 3D.

1. Ribbons... These are number one on my list because in the past, menu changes have been simply that, changes or relocations of commands, pulldowns and commands. This time, the entire menu structure not only changed, but it became extremely intuitive. For example, simply selecting an alignment changes the entire ribbon so that all the commands shown become actions associated to alignments. This method works for each of the Civil 3D objects.

2. Project Objects onto Profile... This long needed command lets you take an object, block, Fire hydrant, tree, etc. and "project" it up to the profile view at the correct elevation. Features lines can be projected to profile view, then "grip edited" to change the elevations and create conceptual grading, or corridor targets.
How about showing the ROW line as a Vertical line in your cross sections? This would help with visual inspection of daylight lines running outside the right of way.

3. Link Offset Alignments... Creating an offset alignment that is dynamically linked can be extremely powerful. This enables an alignment to be moved and have the offset alignments moved along with it automatically.

4. Create Widening... along with item 3 above, the create widening command will creates bus turnout and turn lanes with just a few clicks of a button. Grips on this widening sections make changes extremely easy to accomplish. Try it and find out.

And lastly but certainly not least:

5. Profile Label Offsets... We've all been there, profile completed, and ready for labels, but wait... the labels are too close together, they overlap, they simply cannot be plotted (much less read) like this. This very nice command will offset them automatically so they are completely readable.

Well, there you have it, my list of "Hot Topics" if you're interested in seeing these in action, visit to see a video of a free webinar. While you're there, join our webinars every Wednesday at 10:00 am pst. Become a member and get even more free information.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Styles and Templates

Styles and Templates are of course necessary for Civil 3D to do its job properly. That job of course is to make objects in Civil 3D display correctly as well as plot correctly.

There is however, a "secondary" reason which turns out to be far more important than display or plotting. Styles and Templates assist in, and in fact can control the vast majority of the Cad Standards within a company. Yes, you heard correctly, i said the Cad Standards, which everyone either forces down someones throat, or has forced down their throat can be maintained and enforced through simply using the company styles and templates.

I realize this is a fairly broad statement, but just think about it... If the templates accessible by all drafters, designers or engineers using Civil 3D are the same, and utilize the same styles... then everyones drawings will look the same. What an amazing concept.

Till next time.... happy drafting.