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[3D]"Transfer" differents surfaces into a single plane


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I'm making a car model on autocad 3d and I have to make all of its differents surfaces flatten on a same plane (similar to papercrafting). I must get the "real sizes and dimensions" of all rectangles and triangles that compounds my model.

This is about 20 differents planes defined by the lines of the car.

The idea of this project is to make it possible to build the car from a printed paper.


Ive tried to use UCS making the "new xy" plan on the diferents surfaces but it would take like a day to make this in the whole model.

I've also tried rotating the surfaces, but inst accurate enough.


The car is not yet solid; I just used the normal line commands. I'm plannig to use 3DFACE to create all the surfaces.


The only thing I could come up with was to define various UCS and then use 3DALIGN with a previous rectangle made on the WCS. But this is not very efficient.


Does anyone have any suggestion?

Is there any way to "transfer" the differents surfaces to a same plane so that I can get the "real dimensions" (the real area, line sizes) of them?

I'm not sure being clear enough..



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Try the FLATSHOT command, it should project your surfaces onto a single plane and make the projection into a block.

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Hey nestly,

Can I use this command multiples time in a single execution? (select various surfaces at once and project them onto the xy plane?

Should I use it with the WCS or both the differents UCS (one for each different surface)?

The creation of a block is part of the command or it's a step two in what I'm trying to do?


Ps: I've tried using this command but it only gives me 4 small cilinders as a block. Ive selected the side window for this to happen

Edited by JulioPieri
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Oh, I missed the part of your post that said you used lines. Flatshot will only project 3D objects, it won't project lines, polylines, arc, circles, etc.


Without seeing your actual drawing, my next suggestion would be to use the FLATTEN command. Be aware however that this will actually move everything onto the xy plane, so be sure to keep a copy of your original.


To be honest, I don't think there is much value in using 2D objects in 3D, rather I would suggest creating your objects as 3 dimensional objects from the start.

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I see. Can I create this 3d objects you said from my 2d lines? I'm not used to the 3d in autocad. I have the 3 views of the car in 2d (up, side, front). From these 3 views I made (with lines) the 3d. Is there any way to create the 3d car from these 2d views (use them as alignement, reference, etc). It would be better to remake it, once it's not very accurated.

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Can I create this 3d objects you said from my 2d lines?


It's hard to say without seeing it, but yes, it's likely you can use the profiles made from lines to make solid objects, which you can then use to find the overlapping regions that make up the body.


If you wouldn't mind posting the drawing (if it's under 500KB) we'd be able to give a more complete answer.

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Here is the .dwg of my drawing.

Note that the 3d is not perfect (some lines are not matching) and the 2d projections are not completed. when i figure what to do, ill correct the projections. i dont see how to correct the 3d errors.


If i dont find any way to do what im trying to, ill just use the HyperSlow method: using the projections, join lines from the same object to obtain the 'real dimension' (with descriptive geometry).

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Thanks for uploading the drawing, however I can't open your 2013 format drawing because I'm using AutoCAD2011 at the moment.


Here's a really quick demo of how 2D geometry can be used to create 3D models. The car is just the standard automobile block(s) that's include on the toolpalette which I exploded into just lines and arcs.


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wow! thats awsome.

how can i select the area as one? pedit the lines to join them?

is that possible to shape the solid once i make this process? I mean, use the extrude to make a rough solid and then 'dig' some parts, extrude others, etc.

The only problem is that might work only for 'regular' cars (front and back similar).

My car (Ford Starliner) is different the front from the back.


Here is some pictures of the design openned.



i hope this is enough to get an idea of my model.

Thanks for the video.


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My demo may have been a bit misleading because I didn't actually use the EXTRUDE command to make most of the 3D solids, I used the PRESSPULL command to create the extruded solids. With PressPull, you need only select an enclosed area (like a quarter panel) and AutoCAD will automatically create a region and allow you to extrude it into a solid in one operation. Yes, you can do all the things you asked, you just need to get familiar with the 3D commands, Visual styles, and especially how to manipulate the UCS and Layers because you'll definitely need to be able to "turn" off certain parts of the car in order to work on other areas.


Even though I did it in the demo, you really wouldn't want to extrude the whole front profile through the car, because as you said, the front is shaped differently than the rear. Also not shown is the demo is that at some point, you'd also have to extrude the top view down through the side and front profiles to shape it from the top as well. Most likely, you wouldn't extrude regions in bulk like I did in the demo, for complex objects, you often need to break them down into smaller parts. With enough attention, you could model a quarter panel that would actually fit on a Starliner.

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so basically you think i must remake the 3d model using different types of 3d commands, is that right?

as i'm not used to the 3d commands, i think it would be extremely hard to do it without knowing the rights commands.

from a 'linned' 3d dont you think its possible to get what im after? something like using LOFT, 3DFACE or anything like that to turn the model into a 'correct' 3d form?

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No, I actually think you profiles are probably fine, and you can do something very similar to what was done in the demo to get most of the model converted into real 3D objects.

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ok. thank you very much for helping me.

Actually, i just found some inaccurances in my drawing, so i'm basically remaking it.

once its done, ill try what is shown on that demo.

ill use the front view do press/pull against the press/pulled side view. once that is made, ill try to do the rear.

to do the differences on the rear part, what commands would you recomend me to use? as ive said, im not used to 3d, so im looking for the most optimized way to do it, avoiding using unecessary commands or even wrong commands.


thanks again!

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