Join Josh Modglin for an in-depth discussion in this video Civil 3D settings hierarchy, part of AutoCAD Civil 3D Essential Training.
- [Instructor] We just were introduced to the Tool Space palette, found in Civil 3D. One of the four tabs within the Tool Space, is settings. Settings provides us, not just settings, which we'll take a look at in a minute, but also all of the different types of styles. So, for example, within Surface, we have the Surface Styles, but also the Labels that are related to the Surface. Those styles, the different types, all can contain many different styles within each type.
So, there's a lot of setup that goes on beforehand. Thankfully Autodesk provides us some great templates to start with. But besides the Styles, the settings control default settings. And there's a bit of a hierarchy to those settings. So, if we right-click on the drawing name, we find some defaults. Our Label Styles, text style, text height, and other settings. Drawing settings. And so if we go into our Drawing settings, there's many different controls to the Drawing settings.
Such as the Scale, and this is associated, of course, to our annotative scale down below. And the coordinate system that's associated to the drawing. More than that, we have Object Layers. As we create an alignment, begin to really consider these Civil 3D objects as very smart, dynamic controlled blocks. So, if you think about a block, when you create a block, it may have a line and a circle and a square, and each one of those objects, can have their own layers.
But when you insert that block definition into the drawing, the entire block is associated to a layer, as well. And so, when we create an alignment, by default, our alignments will automatically go to this layer, called C-UTIL-ALIN. And then the sub-components, may find themselves on different layers, all controlled by the Style. So, Object Layers really apply to the overall, big-picture object, that we're working with. The Abbreviations tab, controls the smart labels that are applied to our alignments, as well as working with super elevation control, as well.
So, as we label these objects, when we start an alignment, and we have our label there, is the Alignment Beginning labeled BP. More than that, when we place station and offset labels, and the offset labels finds itself on the left side, do you label that L, or LT, or do you write the whole word? This is the control for those labels. Additionally, you have Ambient settings. Ambient settings are similar to the units, found within AutoCAD Drawing.
And you have those units still here, because we're working on top of AutoCAD. Linear units, architectural, decimal, things of that sort, as well as angular units. Are you using decimal, radiance, surveyor unit, something similar. And of course, the precision to those units. Civil 3D goes a step further. It says, we need more than just simple linear and angular, we need more information. And so, for example, when we are working with elevations, what is our unit, what's our precision? When we're working with Stations, what is our unit, what is our precision, and then even, the Delimiter Position for a station.
If we're working in the United States, this is usually the case, but if we're working in metric, or even in other countries, you may find Delimiter positions similar to to what you see here. When we're working with Grades and Slopes, when it asks us for a slope, what kind of format is it expecting? Notice the format here? Run to rise. So, when it says, I need to know the information for a slope, I can type in three and it knows that means three to one, not three percent.
So, a lot of different controls, here in the Ambient settings. We're not changing the precision of the drawing, we're controlling how we're working with the functionality and the commands, as well as how the software is going to read back to us. Some additional settings, in the General. In Driving Direction. Also, Save Command Change settings. Show Tool Tips, which you've seen pop up a few other times. So, a lot of controls here in the Ambient settings, and we're going to see those Ambient settings, and different feature settings in a minute.
But Ambient settings really drive how the software works with us. So, that's the Drawing settings. That's the start. That's the parent hierarchy you could say, of all of it. Now, if we come to a specific feature, and right-click, notice we have the same option, Feature settings, Label Style Defaults. So, we could have Label Style Defaults for the entire drawing, and then Label Style Defaults that are overridden just for working with surfaces. Let's look at the Feature settings of a Surface.
Within the Feature setting, notice that we have those Ambient settings here, as well. The Ambient settings are actually reading from the Drawing settings. Now, we could override those here, and say something specific, that when we're working with Surfaces, this is what we want to see. More than that, though, you notice that there's specific settings for the feature, Default Styles, for example. So, when I create a surface, what is that surface style going to be applied to that surface? What is the default style? Now again, we can change that at any time, but it's similar to setting the current layer.
When we're creating a line or a circle in AutoCAD, that current layer, that's what those objects will automatically go to. We can change that at any time, but it's easier if we have those defaults set correctly ahead of time. Another good example, is within the Feature settings of a Profile. So, not only do you have the Default Styles, but within Profile Creation, you have a lot of other settings, such as Passing Eye Height, Stopping Eye Height, Headlight Angle, Headlight Height, and so on.
Settings that will help establish your stopping sight distance, passing distance, and so forth. So, a lot of controls within the Feature settings. They start with the Drawing settings, the Ambient Control's there, that we can override. But they also have very specific controls within the feature. But we haven't stopped with the hierarchy yet. There's one more level of hierarchy. Within each feature, there's a folder called Commands, and every command that is associated to that feature, is found in that list.
If we right-click on there, notice there's settings for that, as well. What do we have? Well, we have the Ambient settings. The Ambient settings are reading from the Feature Ambient settings. Now, the Feature Ambient settings are reading from the Drawing settings that we have. We see a hierarchy going on here, so far. Additionally, you have, the Features settings, such as Default Styles. And lastly, you can tell by the icon, specific controls just for that command.
Such as in this case, this is where the Default Layer for points is found. Deep within the Command settings. So, the Settings tab, found within Tool Space, is the key to being able to successfully have the end result of our drawings look, and act the way we feel they should. More than that, it will truly speed up our work, to have all of the settings and styles in place ahead of time. Now, if you're working at a company, most likely, someone has already established a template for you.
Autodesk ships with some great templates out of the box. But, you can tell that because these settings are per drawing, it is very useful to have this setup to be efficient, working with Civil 3D.
This course gets you up and running with AutoCAD Civil 3D. First, instructor Josh Modglin shows how to model a surface, lay out parcels, and design geometry, including the making of horizontal alignments and vertical profiles. Next, Josh demonstrates how to create corridors, cross sections, pipe networks, and pressure networks. Then, he covers working with feature lines and grading objects, and how to share your data. He wraps up by providing an overview of plan production tools.
- Navigating the Civil 3D interface
- Using point groups and description keys
- Importing survey data
- Managing figures
- Creating and analyzing surfaces
- Creating parcels
- Working with alignments
- Working with profiles and profile views
- Working with assemblies and subassemblies
- Creating Basic and Advanced Corridors
- Using an Intersection Object
- Making sample lines, cross sections, and section views
- Creating a pipe network
- Understanding pressure parts
- Creating and editing feature lines
- Creating and editing grading objects
- Sharing and referencing data
Skill Level Beginner
Some of the exercise files do not properly function.
This course was built to work with the latest release of AutoCAD Civil 3D. If you are not running AutoCAD Civil 3D 2018 there are some exercise files that will not work for you.