from Civil to Inventor

The Autodesk enthusiast exile

Civil 3D – Default Surface Style Thought

The default surface style sets the appearance of the surface that is created, provided that it isn’t changed during the application process.  It can be accessed through the command settings in the Toolspace environment.

I am writing this while my computer chugs on a HUGE data file I am importing, and it occurred to me that I don’t remember what the default style is for this project.  I have had some large surfaces to load, and occasionally failed to get the drawing stabilized, not because there is a problem with the data file (besides the huge size), but because after it is loaded, there is not enough memory to display it.

Reduce the overhead by creating a default style that has the least amount of displayed information as possible.  For me it is 10’ contours using continuous lines or just a border.  This way when the beast is displayed, you can get a grip on the drawing before you run out of resources.

December 15, 2008 Posted by | Surfaces | , , , | Leave a comment

Civil 3D – Simple Surface Paste

I’d like to explain the merits and simplicity of editing an existing flawed (or legacy) surface with another updated region.  Sometimes careful data sifting is required, and in those cases this method will not do.  However, those situations are few, and the Paste method is a great option.  This discussion will follow the notion that the original data needs to be replaced.

The two Key features of Paste Surface are Unbelievably simple to use, and completely overwriting the original data.  The entire region being pasted in will occlude the existing data in that region. 

Here, let me show you.  I created a surface to be used as the incoming data.  Since there was additional locations beyond the target surface I applied a polyline ‘outer’ boundary, and performed some routine surface edits to make sure everything was up to par.


I’d like to stress 2 things at this point: Surface Boundary and Edits.  Continue reading

November 15, 2008 Posted by | Surfaces | , , , , , | Leave a comment

EG Volume Surface calculations

The topic discussed in this post is a routine calculation, usually related to FG cut and fill quantities. Occasionally, a client has some fill stockpiled and wants the volume to determine how much additional fill he or she may need.

The following example is intended to show how to derive a volume of a portion of a surface. The overall procedure involved is the same no matter whether you are performing quantity calculations on FG fill, or simply want to see how much dirt you need to store after digging that goldfish pond you always wanted. (It’s just an example, not a desire! If I can’t cornmeal it and fry it, I’m not digging a pond for it).

The steps involved are fairly simple:

  • Create the sample surface
  • Identify the limits of the volume calculation
  • Create a comparison surface
  • Create a volume surface

Notice in the following image, the Surface named ‘EG-SURF1’. You should be able to identify the 3 mounds piled together, and the data points that established them.

clip_image001 Continue reading

November 6, 2008 Posted by | Surfaces | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Importing metric points into foot surface

I recently posted a solution to a metric data import problem.

Check it out on….

Importing Metric Point files into a Foot Surface on

November 4, 2008 Posted by | AutoCAD Civil 3D, Points, Surfaces | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Surface Patching

In this exercise we will begin with the data imported in the previous posts, Import points scenario.

In this post we will Import a point group into an existing surface, and edit the surface to get rid of any legacy data. 

We will cover:

  • Cleaning out legacy points from a surface
  • Importing Point Groups into a surface
  • Exporting and Importing XML data for surfaces Continue reading

October 16, 2008 Posted by | Surfaces | , , , , , , | Leave a comment