A popular request is to export geometry in a Civil3D drawing to Google Earth in a KML/KMZ format. This post contains details on how to do it, with a step-by-step procedure for Civil3D. For recent versions of Civil3D, you will want to use the EXPORTKML command because it will support the most object types (including AECC objects). However it has some quirks and this procedure may help iron them out.
We have been receiving support issues ranging from program files being invisible (as in saying it can’t find a file you know is there) to outright alerts of our code being a virus. These have of course turned out to be false positives, a failure on the part of the antivirus software. A company that’s been in business for nearly 30 years does not produce viruses.
A frequent question is how to import Lidar data like LAS/LAZ or other point cloud formats into Civil3D. Here is a step by step procedure on the process, using Civil3D 2018 as the target. The procedure assumes you have your Lidar data files downloaded and ready in a folder.
Civil3D users notice that sometimes they can delete a surface by right clicking it’s name in the Prospector tab of the Toolspace, and sometimes they can’t (here’s one reason at least).
With many things in Civil3D, it’s not readily apparent what you need to do. Here is a step by step procedure on how to import FLT fault files. These files are ASCII files you can drag/drop into a notepad and you will see “#AdCADD DTM 12.00 User defined fault file” followed by numerous lines of coordinates.
AutoCAD has a long history, and we go back all the way. Our primary developer started using AutoCAD with version 1.0 on the original IBM PC with a 10mb hard drive and CGA graphics (now we have mp3 files larger than that). Here is a detailed history, including corresponding drawing versions, .NET framework used, etc.
A Civil3D forum user recently stated they have “been supplied ~500 .tiff files from a DEM which contain elevation data” and the prospect of repeating the built in Create Surface from DEM tool 500 times did not appeal to them (only to have 500 separate surfaces). So we set out to create a tool to help.
Most ESRI Shapefiles of contours are defined as flat polylines (at 0.0 elev) in the SHP file, and the user is expected to elevate the polylines using data defined in the accompanying DBF file. Here is a complete procedure using MapWorks to import these files with the polylines properly elevated.
Some dialogs (like the AutoCAD INSERT command) can show a tiny preview image. These are not always created or updated by the CAD engine. To create/update these, you need to manually use the BLOCKICON command. Following the command is a prompt allowing matching names. If you have a large collection you may want to use this, otherwise simply take the default <*>.
Be very careful when using the ALIGN command if your destination points contain varying elevations (Z values). The ALIGN command is a 3D command! If your destination points vary only slightly you won’t see the distortion but when you list your results, it will have a “Extrusion direction relative to UCS:”
You can work around the problem with point filters. When prompted for destination points, enter .XY, then use your object snap, then CAD will prompt for a Z, enter 0.0. This way you will get the alignment without the extrusion problem.