Archive for Richard Sincovec

Civil 3D Lables vs. Annotative Text

Invariably, at some point while learning Civil 3D, most people will run into the question “Should I use Civil 3D Labels, or Annotative Mtext and Mleaders?”  The answer is a resounding “Both!”

Civil 3D Labels and Annotative Text have different properties, and for any given task, one may be more appropriate than the other.  So the big question becomes “How do I determine which one to use?”  Read on for details…


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Civil 3D Annotation Scaling Revisited

One of the most frequently-asked questions in the Civil 3D discussion groups has to do with how scaling works for Civil 3D labels and tables.  The question usually comes up phrased as “How come my text looks good in modelspace, but is huge (or tiny) in paperspace?” or “How come my Table columns overlap in paperspace?”

At first glance, Civil 3D labels and tables seem to scale much like Annotative Text.  However, Civil 3D Labels and Tables were capable of their auto-sizing behavior long before AutoCAD got Annotative Text, and do not use the Annotation Scale at all.  Instead, Civil 3D Labels size according to their own rules.  Read on for more…

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Displaying Lat/Long in Decimal Minutes

We recently had a client request that we display the Latitude and Longitude of Cogo Points formatted as degrees and decimal minutes.  This format seems to have become a standard display format of many hand-held GPS units.  Unfortunately, Civil 3D does not contain a built-in option for formatting Latitude and Longitude in decimal minutes.  No problem, I thought…  I’ll simply use some expressions.  But it turned out to be a much more difficult task than I expected…  Read on for the details.

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Customizing Civil 3D

One of the greatest strengths of Autodesk products is the extensive Application Programming Interface (API), which gives users the ability to customize and extend the functionality of the software. In the past, some favorite techniques included using Visual Lisp or VBA to create any needed customizations. However, technology has been changing, and with Civil 3D, we need a somewhat different approach…

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