Join Kacie Hultgren for an in-depth discussion in this video Creating sweeps, part of Modeling a Staircase with AutoCAD.
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- In this video, we'll use the Helix and Sweep tools to create a railing. Let's start with the Helix. Under the Home tab, you can find the Helix under the Draw menu. It's actually a 2D object. We're going to start our helix by zooming in on the origin. We're going to drag up a polar tracking point, and then type 45, enter. The top of this first baluster is at 45 inches. Then we'll snap to the center of this first baluster to set the radius of our helix.
Then we'll click enter to set the radius at the top to the same measurement. Now, look down at the command line. We want to set the turn height, and so we'll hit H, enter. If you remember before, we took the measurement from our first tier of steps to our second tier of steps, and that measurement is eight foot three. Translated to straight inches that's 99 so we'll enter that value here, 99, enter. Now we need to specify the turn height so we can sort of loop this around, and we are going to snap to the center of the top baluster.
You can see that we have set our helix. Now all we need to do is create a 2D profile-shaped sweep along this line. Let's orbit around, and actually, I guess we should go into a front view. Zoom in on the top baluster. We are going to create an ellipse. You can find the ellipse tools here on the Draw menu, or type EL into the command line. I want to align the center point of my ellipse with the end of the helix, and the center of the top of this baluster so I'm gonna choose that this first point of my ellipse is going to be a center.
C, enter to set that. Hover over that center snap mark. I'll drag out 1.5 inches, and then vertically just one inch. Let's orbit a little bit around. Now let's sweep this ellipse along this helix. I'll use the Sweep command. I'll select my profile first, and my helix next.
Now I have a railing going all the way down my staircase. I just have a couple things left here to do. I'm going to use the subobject grips to extend this face. I'll hold down the Control key, hover over the face, click on it, and I can grab that center grip, and I will extend it six inches. So type 6, enter. Then I'll go down to the bottom, orbit and zoom in and do the same thing. Hold the Control key, click on the face, grab that grip, and this time extend it nine inches.
Great! Our railing is finished, and that is the last step of our project course.