Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Fired up over Hydrants

Hydrants are a feature people have been wanting since pressure pipes were added to Civil 3D, but have you ever tried to place one in your drawing? Where are the darn hydrants? There is a Hydrant category under the PVC parts list, but you have to manipulate the settings, like all the great functions in C3D, in order to find it. Here’s how we “put out the fire”, and added the Hydrant to our parts list.

Start with setting your ‘Pressure Network Catalog’ to PVC. To do this, from the Home tab, click the drop down next to ‘Create Design’. The tool on the lower left of this pull down will allow you to change what parts catalog you are using. Select PVC.


Return to the Home tab and click on ‘Pipe Network’, select ‘Pressure Network Creation Tools’. When the ‘Create Pressure Pipe Network’ dialog box pops up, under ‘Parts List’, select the drop down next to ‘Edit Current Selection’, and select ‘Create New’.

This prompts the ‘Pressure Network Parts List’ – “New Part List” function to appear.  Name your parts list. If you have ample time you can opt to choose your materials, select what pipes, fittings, and appurtenances you want to use. If not, just simply give the new list a name allowing you to move on to actually locating the elusive Hydrant… 

Right click on your newly created parts list and click on ‘Add type.’  At the bottom of the list is the Hydrant – click on the plus sign to expand the Hydrant category and select the Hydrant by clicking the box to the left. Click ok to save.

Click on the box next to ‘Hydrant_MJ’.
Don’t stop here – you still have to select the size of Hydrant. We weren’t joking when we called it elusive.  Expand your “New Parts List” and right click on Hydrant_MJ. Select ‘Add size’ and select the  ‘Add all sizes’ option, as shown below.

To add a hydrant to your design, draw your pipe network, select the hydrant on the dropdown for appurtenances, and click on ‘Add Appurtenance’. You can now click on your pipe network and add in a hydrant where you need one.

With that, you can now add fire hydrants to your drawing! Check out the video below to see all of the steps described, and others available at ADSK Solutions. For further training and questions, please email

-Tyler McMillin, E.I.T.

UAV to Civil 3D - GIS Mapping

Just posted to our YouTube channel, 'Adding a GeoTIFF to Civil 3D':

This video shows a GeoTIFF captured by our UAV, and delivered in Civil 3D. We used ReCap 360 to process the data.

-Tyler McMillin, E.I.T.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Civil 3D 2015 service pack 1

#1  Issue that has been resolved where material take off would compute only half of the areas of the materials when more than one baseline existed. Download sp1

Corridor Modeling and Analysis
  • A data-specific issue has been resolved where attempting to rebuild a corridor would cause the application to close unexpectedly.
  • An issue has been resolved where material take off would compute only half of the areas of the materials when more than one baseline existed.
  • An issue has been resolved where the corridor feature line areas were not using the code set styles assigned to the corridor.
  • An issue has been resolved where the elevation target in the DaylightBasin and DaylightBasin 2 subassemblies was incorrectly solving for the basin elevation.
  • An issue has been resolved where the German Country Kit assembly GermanSA_Fahrbahn_ausserorts was missing the feature line on the right side in a cut terrain situation.
Pipe Networks and Pressure Networks
  • An issue has been resolved where data-referenced gravity pipe network styles were reset when the source model was updated and the network was synchronized.
  • An issue has been resolved where data-referenced pressure network styles were reset when the source model was updated and the network was synchronized.
  • An issue has been resolved where pressure networks were not created properly when using the Create Pressure Network from Industry Model command.
  • An issue has been resolved where an invalid part and/or pipe style within a pipe network would cause the application to close unexpectedly.
Alignments and Profiles
  • An issue has been resolved where editing an alignment when another profile had been superimposed onto its profile would cause the application to close unexpectedly.
  • An issue has been resolved regarding the adjustment of the profile station range when creating a profile after creating and deleting an unrelated alignment.
  • A utility which provides the ability to save an AutoCAD Civil 3D 2015 survey database for use in AutoCAD Civil 3D 2014 is included in this service pack. This utility can be accessed from the AutoCAD Civil 3D Toolbox after installing this service pack.
  • An issue has been resolved where attempting to delete a survey figure from the Figures Editor would cause the application to close unexpectedly.
Grading and Surfaces
  • An issue has been resolved where deleting all grading projections and repeatedly running the UNDO command would cause the application to close unexpectedly.
  • An issue has been resolved where deleting points from a surface when the DACH Extension is installed would cause the application to close unexpectedly.
  • An issue has been resolved where draped images that were rendered when hardware acceleration was turned on would be mirrored.
  • An issue has been resolved where a description was not included from a data-referenced source object.
  • An issue has been resolved where unexpected characters and text was added to objects in a drawing and within any drawings that were opened during the AutoCAD Civil 3D session.
  • An issue has been resolved where starting AutoCAD Civil 3D in zero document state startup mode would cause the application to close unexpectedly.
  • An issue has been resolved where the correct CODES file was not being read from the registry.
  • An issue has been resolved where modifying an object on a locked layer would cause the application to close unexpectedly.
  • An issue has been resolved where a curve label would show its content reversed when located at 0 and 180 degrees in a drawing.
  • An issue has been resolved where the Print button in the Hydraflow Express Rainfall IDF Curve dialog box would not work properly.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Civil 3D 2014 Update

I was working in Civil 3D again today. Yes it is Saturday and I was trying to get some work done when Autodesk provided me a balloon notification to update my Civil 3D 2014 software because it was out of date. I clicked the click and it brought up the image below. Selected update, read the readme. Yes I did do it and software is up to date. The readme displayed many reasons to install the hotfix. Most solutions were to enhance stability.

While I waited for the install to complete I searched for other important updates and solutions.

GIS professionals = MAPIMPORT or MAPEXPORT doesn't work
Point Cloud professionals = AutoCAD Reality Capture Memory Leak Hotfix
 Review most recent updates and solutionsCivil 3D Updates & Service PacksTroubleshooting

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

State plane versus Aussumed coordinates

It has become more and more common to capture information with state plan coordinates. Unfortunatley data still is required with assumed coordintates. Client demands and request provide reality capture firms delivering data state planes and assumed coordinates. AutoCAD Civil 3D will deliver both if styles and settings are set up properly. I have provided an image below and images to compare your existing workflow and data with ADSK Solutions Solu-arounds.

As posted above; create a new style and select segment direction and select grid direction. Place this under segment direction to copy the style attached. Both coordinates will match. It is recommended to create multiply lable styles to display pertinant information. To display state plane and assumed coordinates users can select the settings tab from the prospector and right click drawing settings. In the transformation settings specify grid and rotation angle. This will display the assumed coordinates. Contact to understand Stae plan and assumed coordinates.

Chad Studer

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Download Civil 3D 2014 now

First thing I recommend is downloading Autodesk ReCap Studio and inserting point clouds. They did a great job with the new point cloud engine.

I will provide a dataset upon request.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Autodesk ReCap Point Cloud Software for download

Create intelligent 3D data from photos and scans
Autodesk® ReCap delivers powerful and easy to use workflow on the desktop and in the cloud to create intelligent 3D models from laser scans and captured photos. Rather than beginning with a blank sheet, Autodesk ReCap now enables any designer, architect or engineer to add, modify, validate and document their design process in context from existing environments.

Download Autodesk RECAP
  • Autodesk ReCap Studio - Seamlessly integrated with Autodesk Design and Creation suites, Autodesk ReCap Studio makes it easy to clean, organize, and visualize massive datasets captured from reality.
    Download Autodesk ReCap Studio for free
  • Autodesk ReCap Photo - Autodesk ReCap Photo helps users create high-resolution textured 3D models from photos using the power of cloud computing. Autodesk ReCap Photo will be available April 12, 2013

    View Autodesk ReCap Demo Video

  • Contact ADSK Solutions for professional trainig and innovative solutions for design. 248-906-2375

    More information:

    Tuesday, December 18, 2012


    I have been working with Leica HDS Laser Scanners since 1999. My company is a Leica HDS GOLD dealer and we specialize in implementing scanning and creating deliverables utilizing Leica HDS and Autodesk software. Over the past few years the typical solution(easy) is to work with PTS file format and it does provide a solution, but we can also convert the PTS format to LAS or E57 format. We are located in Michigan and MDOT requires a LAS in their RFP.

    We recommend exporting Leica HDS IMP data in pts format and converting it to a LAS file for importing into Civil 3D or REVIT. This will reduce the file sixe by almost 75%. To convert the PTS to LAS we can utilize a very simple and free software called POINTZIP. Yes this is free software and yes the icon is a DUCK. I was afraid to download this free software with the .exe extension and the picture of a duck., but now after testing this product I give my stamp of approval. now.

    Download while it is FREE


    During the conversion process color can be retained if you select the xyzRGB option below.


    Once Civil 3D is open, simply right click Pointclouds from the Prospector and Create Point Cloud. From Revit, select insert POINTCLOUD, select the las file and convert to PCG.
    Select Truecolor to display Pointcloud color from the images that were taken. Below is an image of what to expect once the pointcloud is imported.
     We plan to elaberate on our next post about the advantages and disadvantages of points directly imported into Civil 3D or any Autodesk format. We will also provide solutions for importing pointclounds into Revit, Navisworks, and Factory CAD. We will also provide solutions and workflows for working with the new E57. E57 file format is a compact, vendor-neutral format for storing point clouds, images, and metadata produced by 3D imaging systems, such as laser scanners.
    Happy Holidays to all!
    Chad Studer

    Monday, December 17, 2012


    ALL I want for Christmas is a Civil 3D APP. I have been looking at these and wanting to test them forever. Now that Autodesk University is behind us it's time to start playing again. Please post if you have downloaded any APPS and feel free to review them here. I will begin my reviews the first of the year.

     My favorite so far is the E57 file format for pointclouds. I will discuss this more on my next post along with the LAS file format for pointclouds in Civil 3D.

    E57 file format plug-in for Pointclouds in Civil 3D 2013

    The next review will be makinga copy 3D polylines/Featurelines and placing them in 2D.

    Thursday, December 13, 2012

    Civil 3D Medians and Curb Islands made easy in CORRIDOR

    Autodesk University was great again this year. My biggest regret was not meeting with every client that was lucky enough to be out there. I would also like to thank the clients that did hangout. First year that the CRAPS table thanked me for coming to AU.

    I spoke for the 4th year in a row and the title of my class was AutoCAD® Civil 3D®: "Curbing" Your Enthusiasm. I presented Conditional corridors for driveways, ADA ramps and sidewalks. I also provide a SOLU-AROUND for medians. Below shows a small portion I presented about medians. I will provide the ultimate part about my class after this solu-around.
    This method of creating medians was not practical until the 2012 version. In version 2012 we can add multiple baselines alignments to a single corridor and all assemblies show up together in cross section view. So why not create alignments from each island and use the corridor surface as the profile? This would be dynamic and update as the corridor changes. Unfortunately Civil 3D corridors will not accept the elevation from the corridor profile. Solu-Around, create a new surface called medians. Now paste the corridor surface into it.

    ·         Create a corridor surface
    ·         Create a surface called medians
    ·         Paste the corridor surface into the medians surface
    ·         Create alignment from the edge of pavement around the median
    ·         Create profile from median surface.
    ·         Create assembly using only curb attached to the assembly
    ·         Add the alignment, profile and assembly to existing corridor
    I will post part of the AU class or recorded Solu-Around at I will provide
    direct link here.