Making Civil 3D do Water Pipes and Networks Part I

Civil 3D is setup for gravity pipes, however you can use it to help you design, draft and annotate other types of systems, like forcemains, natural gas, cable conduit, or even water networks if you have some creativity.

Make Pipe Styles to match how you want to see your water pipes in plan and profile.

Make yourself Parts list that includes your water pipes, and for now, just null structures.****I changed my mind on the null structure thing.  Pick a simple cylinder, but still use the style tricks below.  See Water Part I (1/2) for how to do this***

Make a rule set that puts your pipe in with desired cover and no slope. This will get you started, but your pipes will definitely need hand tweaking (coming in Part II)

Draw in the centerline of your water pipes.

At first, your null structures probably will look like this:

But if you make a structure style that is no show it almost looks right:

Now, make that no show style NOT do part masking:

You’d never even know it was there.

Coming soon, Part II- Profiles and Part III- Tricking Civil 3D into doing your laterals, valves and hydrants.


  1. Christian Barrett says:

    Very nice, I like that a lot, thanks.

  2. katesz says:

    I like it a lot. Very helpful.

  3. […] you have your water network in plan (as in Water Networks Part I  and Water Networks Part II) you can add these pipes to profile view for vertical design and […]

  4. Carlos Marquez says:

    Is it possible to create water structures i.e. for Tees, valves, fh, etc… and use them instead the null structure?, create specific properties for that particular part?

  5. Brett Long says:

    Same as Calos M. Water fittings i.e. Tees, Valves, 90s, 45’s etc. Great so far. Looking forward to Part II and III.