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News from your Leading Autodesk Systems Integrator

John Sayre, Technical Marketing Manager for Autodesk, and Eric Chappell, Civil Community Evangelist for Autodesk, put together this great video that explains the way to use the Autodesk Shared Reference Point productivity pack tool to seamlessly share a file between Civil 3D, Revit, Navisworks, and Infraworks so that the content of the files locates itself on the site correctly.  I highly recommend watching this video:

When launching Civil 3D you receive a message similar to this: Autodesk has provided several solutions to resolve this. . . 1. Uninstall the AutoCAD 2017.1 update OR 2.  Install the AutoCAD 2017 SP1.1 OR 3. Uninstall the Bridge Module If you choose this option, simply go into your Control Panel and find the Autodesk Bridge Module, right click, and select "Uninstall": You can read more about it here:   Error: "Rex startup failed" when launching AutoCAD Civil 3D

I met with a client who had a need to make his quick profiles a permanent part of this drawing. This is a quick way to accomplish this. And yes, I know we could have simply drawn an alignment and made a profile as well.

Last week the Civil Immersion blog site released a video that explains how to extract a point list that notates a point with station and offset in respect to an alignment in your drawing.  I highly recommend watching this video, especially if you're a surveyor.   While watching the video it triggered in my memory the very first blog I ever posted back in 2010 for a site that no longer exists.  In my post I go in the opposite direction of the video.  I import points that have stations and offsets and create a point label style that expresses the values.   Here's the original post. . . A few weeks ago one of our clients called me up with an uncommon question. He had an Excel file (CSV format) that had point numbers, northings, eastings, elevations, offsets, and station numbers as follows: (I’ve replaced the column headings with the correct title to make the file format clearer.) His desire was to import these points into Civil 3D with a label style that would only express point numbers, elevations, offsets, and station numbers as ...

NOTE:  This cannot be done directly in Civil 3D because Civil 3D overwrites the command sequence and therefore the output is incorrect.    Therefore you must begin this process in Map 3D and then complete it in Civil 3D. First let’s discuss the setup needed in Excel.  Setup the columns in your Excel file so that each column represents the needs of your transparent command, quadrant, appropriate ENTER placeholders, bearings, and distances.  Similar to this: Notice that in order to add the single apostrophe in the transparent command cell you must enter two apostrophes in the Excel formula line: Now select the cells and copy them to your clipboard: Now, launch Map 3D and turn off object snaps, object snap tracking, and dynamic input.  I found these had to be disable for this to work correctly.    Start the line command and pick start point. Click your cursor in the commandline, right-click and paste. Here is the image of the linework from the above spreadsheet beginning at 0,0 and continuing from there: Save the file and, if you need to convert it to a parcel or label it, ...

I've seen this issue in the past (as far back as Civil 3D 2010) and had not been able to figure out the cause until recently.   A user contacted me the other day with this issue so I just had to figure it out.   The company created a project folder and a survey database to that folder, but when they attempted to create a new local database they would receive a box stating the survey database does not exist and could not be recreated and it looked like this: Initially, I was unable to recreate the issue.  I then attempted to recreate the issue with the exact same folder structure he had but on my local drive, guess what...I got the same error.  After some testing, I was able to finally figure out that since the folder had an apostrophe in the name the error was being generated.  We removed the apostrophe and all worked fine.  

Autodesk released this funny video/commercial which humorously highlights the abilities of AutoCAD Civil 3D.  I hope you enjoy it and have a good chuckle.  If you're in the civil engineering industry you'll definitely want to watch this video:

Civil 3D 2017 Service Pack 1 has been released.  The service pack includes a number of fixes for issues that were discovered by the Autodesk internal testing team and by customers using the Customer Error Reporting Utility.   For all the items fixed with this release read this:  Civil 3D Service Pack 1 Readme File Currently, you can only download Civil 3D 2017 Service Pack 1 from within the Autodesk Desktop App.  

Please join me at Autodesk University 2016, November 15-17. Class ID: LD LD21702 Class title: Green Stormwater Infrastructure - Living on Rooftops Class Type: Instructional Demo   Class ID: TR21683 Class Title: InfraWorks 360 Traffic Simulation - The Civil War At Intersections Class type:  Instructional Demo   Class ID: TR21668-L Class Title InfraWorks 360 - Bringing Your Road and Bridge Project To life Class Type: Hands-on Lab

I'm rehashing this one because a user asked me if it was possible to create a profile from a feature line.   I must give credit where credit is due. My good friend, Phillip Lynch, showed me this cool feature. Scenario: so you’ve been given a set of points in line and have been asked to generate a profile from those points only. You don’t have an existing surface, nor do you need one. All you need is the profile of just the points. Problem: you cannot create a profile without first sampling an existing ground surface. Problem solved. . . First, generate a feature line from those points. This can be done with a 3DPOLY that you connect from node to node and then converting the 3DPOLY to a feature line or by manually drawing a feature line from node to node. The node object snap must be used to absorb the point elevation: Then select the feature line to active the context sensitive ribbon. In the ribbon you’ll find the quick profile tool: In the “Create Quick Profiles” dialog box set your styles as ...

As I talk to more and more clients and we begin the discussion of LIDAR data and how to use it in Civil 3D it is evident that some folks have missed the message on how to import LIDAR point cloud data into Civil 3D. This has been possible in Civil 3D for sometime now but it has been either underused or ignored altogether. Here’s the process. . . In a new drawing, in the Settings tab, right click on the drawing name, and select Edit Drawing Settings:   In the Units and Zones tab set the coordinate system of the drawing:     In the Prospector tab, right click on point clouds, and select Create Point Cloud:   Give your point cloud a name and assign it a style.  I like the LIDAR Point Classification style because if the LIDAR data is collected properly you will see a color assigned to the points based on their code:   Select your format (in this case LAS).  Hit the plus symbol to import the LAS file then use the ellipse button to ...

Autodesk created the much anticipated River and Flood Analysis tool a few years ago, but it was only available to anyone who had a subscription for the Infrastructure Design Suite Ultimate. Recently, that has changed. According to the Autodesk website, in their features section for Civil 3D, this tool is now available to any Civil 3D 2016, Infrastructure Design Suite Premium 2016, or Infrastructure Design Suite Ultimate 2016 user on desktop or maintenance subscription:   So if you are on 2016 and on subscription and you want this tool all you need to do is follow these steps to download it: Login to your Autodesk Account site: Navigate to the “management” section in the site and click on “Product Enhancements”: You might have to search for it (I used CTRL+F to search for the word “river” to get me there), but you should see in your list the link ...

I know most of you love the plan and profile sheets (plan production) tools provided by Civil 3D, but I also know that there are a lot of gripes about how to control match lines, especially when you want a non-rectangular viewport.  Well, my friend, Jeff Bartels, Autodesk Infrastructure Technical Specialist, has put together a great video that walks you through the process of creating a dynamic block to relieve all your stress about sheets. The catch. . .if you're not already doing so then you'll need to be using the sheet set manager to take advantage of the block, and, of course, you'll need to have a basic understanding of dynamic blocks. I hope you enjoy it.  I know I'll be referencing this video a lot in the coming future. 

This is one of recycled posts from my old blog site (which no longer exists).  It was originally posted August 10, 2012.  I'm bringing it back because I've noticed that we're beginning to get phone calls concerning this again.  Though the images are older, the content and process is still the same for newer versions of the software.     Over the past few weeks we’ve had several calls from people who have desired to take their current Civil 3D drawing and save it back to an earlier version. The call usually comes after the user attempts to open their drawing in the earlier software. The result is usually that the Civil 3D objects appear as empty boxes in their older software. For this discussion I will demonstrate how to take a Civil 3D 2012 drawing and save it back to a Civil 3D 2010 drawing. It’s not as simple as using the SAVEAS command. 1. In your drawing (current version of Civil 3D) – navigate to the Output tab and select the “Export to LandXML” button:     2. In the “Export to LandXML” dialog box ...