New Feature: Playlist Center! Pick a topic and let our playlists guide the way.

Start learning with our library of video tutorials taught by experts. Get started

AutoCAD 2011 New Features
Illustration by Richard Downs

Creating splines using fit points or control vertices


From:

AutoCAD 2011 New Features

with Jeff Bartels

Video: Creating splines using fit points or control vertices

When you need to create smooth non-geometric curves, there's nothing better than a spline. Splines allow you to create free-form geometry that doesn't have to conform to strict dimensions. In this lesson, we're going to look at the new options available in AutoCAD 2011 for creating spline geometry. I'm going to start by opening up my Draw panel and I'll launch the Spline command. Take a look at the command line. Notice there's a new option down here called Method. I'm going to right-click and select Method from this menu.
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 2m 4s
    1. Welcome
      1m 28s
    2. Using the exercise files
      36s
  2. 14m 2s
    1. Adapting to the updated Drawing window
      4m 4s
    2. Introducing the Navigation bar
      5m 28s
    3. Accessing the web-based help system
      4m 30s
  3. 27m 36s
    1. Understanding the new visibility controls
      3m 5s
    2. Selecting objects that have similar properties
      3m 24s
    3. Creating new geometry based on existing objects
      2m 20s
    4. Making selections when entities overlap
      4m 11s
    5. Applying transparency to objects
      5m 44s
    6. Controlling text alignment within linetypes
      8m 52s
  4. 16m 38s
    1. Automating the creation of geometric constraints
      5m 35s
    2. Applying constraints to text rotation
      3m 8s
    3. Using the updated Parameters Manager
      7m 55s
  5. 38m 40s
    1. Streamlining hatch creation
      5m 56s
    2. Editing hatch objects dynamically
      4m 36s
    3. Editing polylines using multifunctional grips
      6m 14s
    4. Creating splines using fit points or control vertices
      10m 30s
    5. Editing splines using intuitive grip menus
      8m 17s
    6. Using the JOIN command to connect contiguous geometry
      3m 7s
  6. 18m 56s
    1. Exploring the updated 3D working environment
      6m 50s
    2. Simplifying the creation and editing of solid models
      5m 59s
    3. Introducing new tools to edit mesh models
      6m 7s
  7. 1h 25m
    1. Introducing surfaces
      2m 50s
    2. Understanding associative surfaces
      7m 9s
    3. Creating composite models using surfaces and solids
      9m 3s
    4. Producing a smooth blend between surfaces
      7m 20s
    5. Trimming and extending surfaces
      10m 55s
    6. Projecting geometry onto a surface
      5m 29s
    7. Filleting the edge between two surfaces
      6m 37s
    8. Creating offset and network surfaces
      8m 45s
    9. Pushing and pulling surfaces into freeform shapes
      10m 52s
    10. Analyzing surface continuity
      6m 15s
    11. Assembling the composite model
      10m 40s
  8. 22m 2s
    1. Introducing the new Materials Browser
      6m 10s
    2. Applying materials to an assembly
      6m 2s
    3. Customizing render materials
      5m 17s
    4. Creating a high-resolution image
      4m 33s
  9. 16s
    1. Goodbye
      16s

Watch this entire course now—plus get access to every course in the library. Each course includes high-quality videos taught by expert instructors.

Become a member
please wait ...
AutoCAD 2011 New Features
3h 46m Intermediate Apr 21, 2010

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In AutoCAD 2011 New Features, instructor Jeff Bartels highlights productivity and creativity enhancing additions to the AutoCAD toolset. This course covers improved functions for selecting and creating geometry, updated modification tools for hatches and polylines, simplified parametric constraint tools, and the new dynamic surface modeling techniques for creating complex shapes. Exercise files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Applying transparency
  • Maintaining text readability within linetypes
  • Automating geometric constraints
  • Streamlining hatch creation
  • Using control vertices to create splines
  • Exploring the updated 3D workspace
  • Creating surfaces using the Blend, Patch, or Network tools
  • Trimming and extending surfaces
  • Working with the new Materials Browser
  • Customizing render materials
Subjects:
CAD 2D Drawing 3D Drawing
Software:
AutoCAD
Author:
Jeff Bartels

Creating splines using fit points or control vertices

When you need to create smooth non-geometric curves, there's nothing better than a spline. Splines allow you to create free-form geometry that doesn't have to conform to strict dimensions. In this lesson, we're going to look at the new options available in AutoCAD 2011 for creating spline geometry. I'm going to start by opening up my Draw panel and I'll launch the Spline command. Take a look at the command line. Notice there's a new option down here called Method. I'm going to right-click and select Method from this menu.

In AutoCAD 2011, there's now two ways or two methods for creating a spline. There is the Fit method and the CV method. CV stands for control vertices. Let's look at the Fit method first. I'll select that and then I'll start picking some points on screen. The Fit method is very similar to how we've created splines in prior versions of AutoCAD. The arcs that I'm creating are based on, and pass through the fit point locations, where I'm clicking on the screen.

When I'm finished with my spline, I'll hit the Enter key on my keyboard. Let's look at some of these settings associated with the Fit option. I'm going to pan my drawing up. We'll launch the Spline command again and take a look at the command line. Notice there is an option down here called Knots. Once again, I'll right-click. We'll select Knots from the menu. This represents our Knot parameterization. Now there are three parameters we can choose from. Our Knot parameter affects the shape of the curve as it passes through the fit points.

Now what I'd like to do is create three splines, one using each parameter, such that we can see the difference. Chord happens to be the default, so I'll select that and I'm going to create my splines using these circular targets. That way all three splines have the same fit point locations. So let's draw our spline from the center of this circle to this one to this one. I'll connect them all and then I'll hit my Enter key. I will then hit the Spacebar to go back into the Spline command. I'll right-click and select Knots.

This time we'll use the Square root parameter. Before I draw my spline, I'm going to open up the Properties panel and I'll change my current color to red. This way we can tell the difference between the geometry. I will then move through and connect all of my center points, and I'll hit Enter. Let's hit the Spacebar again to re-launch Spline. I'll right-click and select Knots. Finally, we'll take a look at the Uniform parameter. As before, I'm going to open up my Properties panel and this time I'll change my current color to green.

Now as I draw the spline from center to center to center, take a look at my command line. Notice there is a setting down here called toLerance. At any point while creating any of these three splines, I could have adjusted this tolerance setting. Keep this setting in mind. It's going to be important in just a second. Let's finish up the spline. Then I'll hit Enter. When I zoom in, you really can't see much difference between the three options, that is, until we adjust our tolerance value. Tolerance controls the distance the arc is from the fit point.

Now the default tolerance setting is zero. That's why all of these arcs pas through the fit point. Tolerance and your Knot parameter kind of go hand in hand. As you increase the tolerance, your Knot parameter will have a greater effect on the shape of the spline. I'm going to back up just a little bit, and rather than redrawing these splines with a different tolerance, I'm going to create a crossing selection to select these and then I'll hit Ctrl+1 to bring up my Property Changer. I'll click-and-hold this slider and drag this to the bottom.

Let's change our Fit tolerance right here. I'm going to set this to 1 and hit Enter. Notice the change in the shape of splines. Once again, I'll click in the tolerance field and I'll set this to 2 and hit Enter. We can see the effect in our geometry. When I'm finished, I'll hit Escape to deselect my splines, and I'll close the Property Changer. Let's look at another setting associated with the Fit method. Maybe I'd like to create a nice smooth transition between these straight segments.

I'm going to launch my Spline command. I'll create my spline from the endpoint here, and let's take a look at this start tangency option. I will right-click and select that from the menu. Start tangency controls the direction at which I am exiting my start point. I will define that direction by Shift+Right-click. I'll select Parallel and I'll hover over this line to acquire the angle. I will then place my cursor on the other side to snap to that direction and I'll click.

I will then pick a point just about in between these endpoints. Notice as I move, my spline segment will always maintain its tangency to that line. I will draw my spline to the endpoint of this segment and then I will right-click and I'll select end Tangency this time. I would like to define the direction of my end tangency to be the endpoint of this segment. Using those tangency options, I was able to create a nice smooth transition between these straight- line segments. Let's back up.

I'm going to pan the drawing over and we'll find some open space here. This time, let's take a look at the control vertices method of creating a spline. I will launch the Spline command. I'll right-click and select Method. We'll choose CV and I'll pick some points on screen. Notice the difference. In this case, I'm creating control vertices, which define these angles that influence the way my geometry curves. Now that I'm finished, I'm going to hit the Enter key. When I'm finished with my spline, I'll hit Enter.

Let's take a look at some of the settings that are associated with the CV or control vertices method. I'm going to re-launch the Spline command and take a look at the command line. Whereas Fit has a Knots settings, CV has a Degree setting. I'm going to right-click and select Degree. Now there are three possible settings for Degree, 1, 2 or 3. The Degree setting controls the maximum number of bends you can have in each span. Once again, we'll create a spline using each setting, so we can see the difference.

I'm going to start with a Degree setting of 1 and I'll draw my spline to the center of each of these circles. With a Degree setting of 1, we have no curvature. Our spline is essentially nice, sharp, straight segments. I'm going to re-launch the command. I'll right-click and select Degree. This time, we'll try a value of 2. As before, I'm going to change my current color to red, so we can see the difference between the entities.

We'll connect the same centers. With a Degree setting of 2, I get a single curve or a parabolic curve in each one of these spans. Finally, we'll re-launch the command. I'll select Degree. We'll set this to a value of 3, which happens to be the default. I'm going to change my current color to ByLayer. With a Degree setting of 3, I can have two curves per span. We can easily see the reverse curve in this span in the middle.

Now that we've seen some of the new ways we can create spline geometry. Let's try and use some of these tools in a practical example. I'm going to zoom out. Let's pan the drawing over. On my screen, I have a civil engineering example. This is a drawing of a large wooded lot. I've got a pond right here. On the west side of the lot, I have an existing bike path. Now in this case, we're going to do some conceptual design. I would like to create the conceptual proposed centerline of a new bike path that deviates from the existing path and traverses through my property.

Then reconnect to the path in the southwest corner. To create my design, I'm going to zoom in. Then I will open up the layer control and I will set my current layer to the proposed centerline layer. I will then launch the Spline command and I would like to use the Fit method, because I would like to draw my spline using the fit points. The first point of my spline will be at the Shift+Right-click, nearest to right here. I'd like to use a start tangent, so I will right-click and select that from the menu.

I would like to define my start tangent direction by a point, Shift+Right-click, nearest to here. I'll back up a little bit and I'll pick my first fit point. Let me back up a little bit more, so we can center the lot on screen. I'll pick some more fit points to create my path. Now, this path is conceptual, so I can go any place I want. Because I'm using a spline, I can create this free-form geometry much faster than if I was using traditional commands like Arc and Line and Polyline.

I'm going to weave this right through here. Finally, I'll zoom in to do my connection. I would like to connect at a point, Shift+Right-click, nearest to here. Let's use an end tangent. I'll right-click and select end Tangency from the menu. I'd like its direction defined by a point nearest to here. There we go! Let's back up and take a look. This is going to be a 10-foot wide path. So I will launch my Offset command.

My offset distance will be 5 and I'll hit Enter. I would like to offset my centerline to this side. Let's zoom in a little bit. I will offset the centerline to this side. And I'll hit Escape when I'm finished. Finally, I will select the edges of my path. We'll open up the layer control. We will place these on the proposed edge of pavement layer. Splines are a great way to create smooth, fre- form geometry, without the need for entering specific dimensions. In AutoCAD 2011, we have even more flexibility and control when creating our spline geometry.

There are currently no FAQs about AutoCAD 2011 New Features.

 
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.
Upgrade now


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

join now Upgrade now

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed AutoCAD 2011 New Features.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Notes cannot be added for locked videos.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.