Monday, August 4, 2014

This is not CAD or Autodesk related.

Please join my son's 5k team or donate to help fund the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Richmond. My son Ryan was born with down syndrome. He is three years old and we are raising money to support the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Richmond.

http://www.firstgiving.com/team/270582

Thanks,
Vince

Friday, July 11, 2014

AutoCAD Hatch Tip


Have you noticed when placing a hatch pattern to an area and it's broken into pieces? Here’s a quick fix for this issue.

·         Click the hatch pattern.

·         Click the Origin pull down on the ribbon.

·         Select the origin that will best suite your needs. In this example, I selected the Center Origin.


 
 
This tip also applies to older versions of AutoCAD.



That is it.
 
 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Civil 3D Reference Pipe Network Issue


So I’ve been trying to resolve the Civil 3D Reference Pipe Network issue. If you are not aware of the issue, when you synchronize the reference pipe network, the layers and styles are reset back to default. I think I have a fix for it. As I was poking around in the data shortcut XML file for the pipe network, I decided to change the a few settings. I know there is a notice in the XML file to “<!--PLEASE DO NOT EDIT THIS FILE!-->” but this was on a test file. I changed the Layer and useLayer settings within DisplayProperties. The only thing is I'm not sure where the settings are in Civil 3D to have it change this are of the XML file.

Here are the steps for the test.

·         I created two different pipe networks in a source file called Existing Network – 1 and Existing Network – 2.

·         Created the data shortcuts.

·          I modified the XML for Existing Network – 1 as shown below.

·         Created the reference networks into a new file.

·         Changed the layer and style of the pipes and structures to meet my needs.

·         Flipped over to the source file and clicked save.

·         Flipped back to the reference file to synchronize the pipe networks.

·         Existing Network – 1 retained the layers and styles and Existing Network – 2 was set back to default.

 

 Below is the modified pipe network XML and the default XML. The modifications are in bold and red.

Modified XML:

<?xml version="1.0"?>

<!--PLEASE DO NOT EDIT THIS FILE!-->

<ProjectInfo><ProjectDesc></ProjectDesc><Shortcuts><Shortcut name="S:\303\35601-TARGET_T1018\DWG\35601C-PFSTRM.dwg:Existing Network - 1"><DwgRelPath path=".\35601-TARGET_T1018\DWG\35601C-PFSTRM.dwg"/><Criteria><File name="S:\303\35601-TARGET_T1018\DWG\35601C-PFSTRM.dwg"/><Object type="AeccDbNetwork" useType="-1" name="Existing Network - 1" useName="-1" version="0" useVersion="0" handleLow="96155" handleHigh="0" useHandle="-1" parentHandleHigh="0" parentHandleLow="0" parentAlignmentShortcutName=""/><DisplayProperties layer="C-STRM-PIPE-E" useLayer="1" color="1" useColor="0" lineType="ByLayer" useLineType="0" lineWeight="-1" useLineWeight="0"/></Criteria></Shortcut></Shortcuts></ProjectInfo>

 

Default XML:

<?xml version="1.0"?>

<!--PLEASE DO NOT EDIT THIS FILE!-->

<ProjectInfo><ProjectDesc></ProjectDesc><Shortcuts><Shortcut name="S:\303\35601-TARGET_T1018\DWG\35601C-PFSTRM.dwg:Existing Network - 2"><DwgRelPath path=".\35601-TARGET_T1018\DWG\35601C-PFSTRM.dwg"/><Criteria><File name="S:\303\35601-TARGET_T1018\DWG\35601C-PFSTRM.dwg"/><Object type="AeccDbNetwork" useType="-1" name="Existing Network - 2" useName="-1" version="0" useVersion="0" handleLow="96374" handleHigh="0" useHandle="-1" parentHandleHigh="0" parentHandleLow="0" parentAlignmentShortcutName=""/><DisplayProperties layer="0" useLayer="0" color="1" useColor="0" lineType="ByLayer" useLineType="0" lineWeight="-1" useLineWeight="0"/></Criteria></Shortcut></Shortcuts></ProjectInfo>
 
If you have any questions or comments on this, please email me and I'll be happy to talk about it a little more.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Plotting GEOMAP Aerial Imagery in Civil 3D 2015

Autodesk has made it easier to import and print aerial imagery in Civil 3D 2015. The GEOMAP tool was introduced in Civil 3D 2014 with aerial imagery provided by Bing. GEOMAP allows the user to display the aerial imagery but the user was unable to plot it. Civil 3D 2015 is available for download and the GEOMAP tool has been improved. The user is allowed the plot the aerial imagery. Below are the steps to import the aerial imagery into a drawing using the new GEOMAP tools. In order to use the aerial imagery, you are required to sign in to an Autodesk 360 account.
 

To sign up for an Autodesk 360 account, go to www.360.autodesk.com.

I’m using local GIS parcel data for a reference location of this exercise.

1.   Sign in to Autodesk 360.


2.   Click Yes to use Online Map Data.


3.   Make sure the project is in the correct location.


4.   Set the correct Coordinate System for the project. I usually set the Coordinate System in the Toolspace Settings Tab.
     a.   Click the Toolspace button on the Home tab of the ribbon.
     b.   Click the Settings tab on the Toolspace.
     c.   Right click the drawing name on the top of the view.
     d.   Click Edit Drawing Settings….
     e.   In the Units and Zone tab, select the Zone Categories.
     f.   Select the Available Coordinate System. (This project is located in central Virginia, USA so the coordinate system is NAD83
Virginia State Planes, South Zone, US Foot, VA83-SF)
 
 

5.   Once the coordinate system is set, a Geolocation tab will appear on the Ribbon.
 

6.   In the Geolocation tab, you can change the coordinate location, add position markers, turn the aerial map on and off and capture
aerial imagery for plotting.


7.   Click the down arrow under the Map Off button on the Online Map panel of the ribbon.
     a.   Map Aerial - This will turn on the aerial imagery.
     b.   Map Road – This will turn on the road map without the aerial imagery.
     c.   Map Hybrid – This will turn on the aerial imagery along with the road map.
     d.   Map Off – This will turn off the map imagery.

8.   Click Map Aerial to turn on the aerial imagery.
 

9.   The Capture Area button will activate after the aerial imagery is turned on.

10.  Pan and zoom to the project area.

11.  Click the down arrow under the Capture Area on the Online Map panel of the ribbon.
     a.   Capture Area – This will allow the user to specify the captured area.
     b.   Capture Viewport – This will capture an area of the current model space extents.

12.  Click the Capture Area button and select an area around the project limits.
 

13.  Click Map Off to turn off the aerial imagery.
     a.   You will now see the captured area. This image is now printable.
     b.   The captured area is reading Bing data and does not save a local copy of the image.
 

14.  The captured aerial imagery can be adjusted within the properties palette.
     a.   Select the captured aerial image.
     b.   Open the properties palette.
     c.   The Map Type can be adjusted to Aerial, Road and Hybrid.
     d.   The Resolution can be adjusted to Coarse, Optimal, Fine and Very Fine.
 


15.  If additional aerial imagery is need for the project, delete the captured area and repeat the steps selecting a larger area.
16.  Enjoy plotting the aerial imagery.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Logitech G510s Gaming Keyboard for Civil 3D and 3DS Max


I needed a new keyboard so I purchased a Logitech G510s Gaming Keyboard. Since I use AutoCAD, Civil 3D, and 3DS Max, I felt I could benefit from the macro keys on a gaming keyboard. I'm not sure how well it's going to work with the Autodesk software but I'll gave it a shot. Once I get all the macros keys setup, I’ll post a full review.



 
I have a few macro keys setup for AutoCAD Civil 3D.
 
 
 

 
After using the Logitech G510s gaming keyboard for a week, it has been a great help so far. The software profiles are nice and clear on the display. The media buttons and volume roller works well. Creating commands for the G-keys was easy using the Multi Key option under the Command Editor. I have not had time to test the G-keys on 3D Studio Max and other software but will try to do so in the coming days. It took a few days to get use to but the G-keys are a big help with AutoCAD/Civil 3D. The only issue I’m running into is the space bar will double space every so often when I type. Other than that, the overall keyboard and G-keys are working great for AutoCAD/Civil 3D.

 
More to come.
 

Friday, February 21, 2014

Creating a Quick Retaining Wall using Civil 3D Feature Lines and Grading Objects

If you need to create a retaining wall due to some sort of limits, I’ll show you how to quickly create a wall with feature lines using the grading objects from the finished grade.

As you can see in the images below, the grading object and contours daylight well into the RPA limits. I would like the retaining wall to be built about 10’ outside of the RPA but maintain the finished grade slope to the top of wall.

  • RPA limit is the bold magenta dash line.
  • Grading Objects are Green.
  • Feature Lines are Red.

 
 
 


Steps:
1.   For this exercise, I already have an existing surface and a proposed surface created using the grading objects and features shown in the above images.
2.   Offset the RPA line 12.2’ outside of the limits to create the inner bottom of wall.
3.   Trim the newly created line where it crosses over the daylight line/grading object.
4.   Offset the line again 2.20’ towards the RPA limits to create the outer bottom of wall.
5.   Click Feature Line from Objects from the Create Design panel then select the inner bottom of wall.
6.   Set the standard Site and Styles and check Assign Elevations.
7.   Click Ok.




8.   Select the Finished Grad surface.
9.   Click Ok.




10.   Create another Feature Line from Objects then select the outer bottom of wall.
11.   Set the standard Site and Styles and check Assign Elevations.
12.   Click Ok




13.   Select the Existing Grad surface.
14.   Click Ok.




15.   Click the Modify tab on the ribbon.
16.   Click Stepped Offset on the Edit Geometry panel.




17.   Type 0.10 for the offset distance.
18.   Select the inner bottom of wall then specify the side to offset the feature line towards the RPA limits.
19.   I’m going to create a 6 inch high lip above the finish grade so type 0.5 an elevation difference.
20.   Click Stepped Offset again.
21.   Type 2.00 for the offset distance to create the top of wall.
22.   Select the newly created top of wall line then specify the side to offset the feature line towards the RPA limits.
23.   Type 0.0 for an elevation difference to form flat top of wall.
24.   Cap the ends of the walls with 3D Polylines or Feature Lines.
25.   Delete the Grading Object within the area of the retaining wall.



 
26.   Add the retaining wall Feature Lines to the Finished Grade surface as Breaklines.

 

 
27.   Adjust the surface boundary limits to the outer bottom of wall.


Below are 3D prospective images of the existing ground retaining wall added the finished grade surface.




Thursday, December 5, 2013

Autodesk University 2013 Day Three!!

Day three was fantastic.The classes were awesome. I'm sad AU has come to a close but I'm already thinking of AU2014. I hope to see all the great people I met next year.