By now, you probably already heard about new release of Civil 3D - called Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D 2015. If you would like to give it a trial run and see how it works, you can download free trial version from here.
The first thing you will notice when you open it is that the interface looks different using that dark theme. Next is optimizing graphic performance and stability when working with larger models. This is platform change that comes from vanilla AutoCAD. We may write about that in the future in greater detail but for now let’s cover some significant changes in Civil 3D.
We continued with 2013-2015 model interoperability. For the most part you should be able to go back and forth between versions. There are some specifics you need to be aware of and they are documented in help.
- You may notice some general performance and stability and some previously known issues were resolved.
- Point Cloud Performance is also improved. With introduction of new point cloud object you may feel smoother and faster experience when interacting with point cloud and 3D.
- We still have our legacy point cloud tools, such as creating points and building surfaces.
- New point cloud objects navigation will be smoother.
- Vertical Alignment design – to improve usability, ability to find fit when defining vertical curve. You will notice that as you move lines around that the values are updating automatically. This is especially useful when doing that first pass before fine tuning it. Also this allows capability to change constraints in the properties parameters.
- Align/profile locking - a long time request to allow users to opt whether they want to lock their PVIs to alignment geometry points. When changing alignment geometry profile will follow, but as needed, will show number of lines and vertical curves will be impacted and marked. So now the engineer may review those changes and make edits as necessary. It is going to maintain elevation and based on the choice selected will delete where there is no solution based on how it is being created. Very intelligent.
- Corridor model targeting, frequency and output settings. This feature gives much cleaner corridor with ability to adjust targeting and frequencies. It is fully dynamic meaning that adjusting feature line used for targeting will introduce more frequencies automatically.
When targeting to a polyline to feature line as shown in the picture program will that line and then it will use natural frequency creating something like this:
So we used to have to adjust manually create different regions there or creating more frequencies (start, mid, end of curve). Now at an increment, by curvature and both.
Subassembly Composer has many improvements and we may cover then in the future, but you can use help to get familiar with it.
Lots of improvements come in the area of production drafting. My favorite one is the object label association.
- Object label association – when you create label it is automatically associated with object. We were always able to do so and to see it the properties where the information is coming from, but we were unable to change the association. Now we can.
- Corridor section labeling – we were able to create labels based on the code set styles but they were often displayed cluttered. Now with new types of label showing in Section labels dialog you have option “Corridor Points” and off course, you can use staggering.
- Now we have ability to create sliced solids such as from pipes or even bridges. Now that will be possible to get projected onto your profile.
- Autodesk Vault can now work with pressure pipes
- Export to DWG/DGN allows exporting multiple files files simultaneously. This will have new interface and be accessible from EXPORT3DDRAWING command or from Export menu.
- We can now export KML and KMZ files format (Google Earth) from Toolbox
- There are some improvements with labels, criteria-based design, profiles, etc. More about it you can find in help.