CAD Clinic: Profile and Section Styles

12 Apr, 2006 By: Phillip Zimmerman

Discover the settings and values found in the profile and section view styles.

The two most complicated object styles in Civil 3D are the profile and section view styles. How a profile and/or section view displays on the screen is the result of two sets of styles (a view and a band set style). A view style controls the grid structure of and annotation of a profile or section view. Additional annotation below (or above) a view is the result of an attached band set, and it provides an alternative method of annotating station and elevation values. A profile band set also can contain horizontal, vertical and super elevation values. These additional pieces of information allow designers to know what is going on horizontally while they are designing vertically.

This article concentrates on the settings and values found in the profile and section view styles. Both styles use the same dialog box to define their styles.

Profile View Style
A profile view style contains values that affect the structure and annotation of a profile view graph. A profile view style is a multiple tab dialog box with each tab controlling different aspects of the view (figure 1).

Information tab. The Information tab contains the name, description and details of who created the style and when it was created.

Graph tab. The Graph tab contains values affecting the title and the direction of the profile, exaggeration and grid clipping options (figure 1).

Figure 1. The Graph tab of the Profile View Style dialog box.

The Graph view title area at the upper left defines the text style, height and contents of the title. The text icon launches the Text Component Editor, where you can change the contents of the title. The Title position area defines the location of the title. You can locate the title above or below and justified to the left, center or right of the grid. The last setting in this area controls the title border and the distance (gap) between the title and the profile grid.

The upper right of the Graph panel sets the direction of the profile view (left-to-right or right-to-left). The middle portion sets the vertical exaggeration. Setting this value to 1 creates a grid with no vertical exaggeration. The larger you make the number, the greater the amount of vertical exaggeration. Under the vertical exaggeration settings are the grid clipping options. These toggles have four possible combinations. Toggling on Clip Vertical Grid will stop the vertical grid lines at their intersection with a profile. Toggling on Clip Horizontal Grid will stop the horizontal grid lines at their intersection with a profile. The settings in the lower right set additional numbers of grid lines above, below and to the right and left of the profile or section in the view.

Axes Annotation
The Axes Annotation tab affects the station and elevation annotation for the view. The left side controls the horizontal axis, and the right controls the vertical axis.

The top left side sets the axis (top or bottom) and the text style for all horizontal annotation. The Select Axis drop-down menu lists the axis for the settings. The Axis Title section sets the location of the title, its content and format, and offset. The bottom area sets the Major and Minor ticks, their size and text height. The Text icon launches the Text Component Editor to define what text appears at each tick type.

The right side has the same controls as the left side, but it sets the values for the right or left axis of the view (figure 2).

Figure 2. The Axes Annotation tab of the Profile View Style dialog box.

Text Component Editor
When you select a text icon in the Axes Annotation panel, the Text Component Editor displays. The editor's content depends on which icon you select. If you select the icon in the Axis Title area, the content is the title of the axis (figure 3). If you select a major tick icon, the focus is the annotation at the major tick (figure 4). You can change the text style, justification, font and color of the label component when using the settings in the Format tab.

Figure 3. Text Component Editor displaying the axis title area.

Figure 4. Text Component Editor displaying a major tick.

The settings of the Display tab control the visibility of all of the values from the Graph and Axes Annotation tabs (figure 5).

Figure 5. The Display tab of the Profile View Style dialog box.

Section View Style
The Section View styles have exactly the same structure as a Profile View styles but affect road sections. An additional control for section views is how to place them in the drawing. Do you want to place them as individual sections, in all of the sections or pages of sections? To address this question, a section view has two styles that create the rules for importing the views: sheet and group plot styles.

Sheet Styles
The all or a page grouping styles depend on an area or sheet size. Both styles use a grid spacing value for Civil 3D to align the sections. Besides the sheet or area size, the most critical values for sections are the grid spacing details. Civil 3D uses the grid spacing values to position sections on a sheet (figure 6).

Figure 6. Grid spacing values to position sections on a sheet.

Group Plot Styles
The Group Plot Style dialog box defines the insertion point of a sheet or group, how the sheets or groups stack and how many grid lines separate each section horizontally and vertically (figure 7).

Figure 7. The Group Plot Style dialog box.

The profile and section view styles affect the grid and annotation that appears in a drawing. The Graph tab of a view style sets the title, direction, grid clipping and if addition grids are present. The Axes Annotation panel of a view style defines the location and format of the annotation around the grid. Even if you define values for all possible settings, the settings of the Display tab control are what actually display in any one view.

When working with section views, be aware that they use the same dialog box as profiles. Section views have two additional styles to define how they are organized when placing them in a drawing: group plot style and sheet size.

About the Author: Phillip Zimmerman

AutoCAD Tips!

Lynn Allen

In her easy-to-follow, friendly style, long-time Cadalyst contributing editor and Autodesk Technical Evangelist Lynn Allen guides you through a new feature or time-saving trick in every episode of her popular AutoCAD video tips. Subscribe to the free Cadalyst Video Picks newsletter and we'll notify you every time a new video tip is published. All exclusively from Cadalyst!

Follow Lynn on TwitterFollow Lynn on Twitter

Which device do you typically use to read content?
A desktop computer / tower workstation
A tablet
A smartphone
A laptop or mobile workstation
I regularly use both a desktop computer and a smartphone for this purpose
I regularly use another combination of devices for this purpose
I prefer to print out articles from the website and read them on paper
Submit Vote

Download Cadalyst Magazine Special Edition