DianeP

need to add survey data and build terrain after house was designed

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I have a client that has been designing her home in a lower end CA product.  She shared her design with me and wants me to place it accurately on the topographical land survey that she has provided and build the terrain.  This is out of the normal order I do things so I haven't attempted it just yet.  Have any of you done this before and can you let me know of any landmines I should be aware of or tips that could help me.  Thanks a bunch. 

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Hi Diane,  If you have not done so already watch some of the latest videos and give it a try in a blank plan file and if you like the results make a copy of your plan file and try it there. If you run into trouble ask more questions.

 

https://www.chiefarchitect.com/videos/watch/242/trace-a-terrain-lot-image-to-create-a-site-plan-or-terrain-perimeter.html?playlist=101

 

https://www.chiefarchitect.com/videos/watch/1056/import-a-surveyor-dwg-file-for-a-site-plan-or-terrain-perimeter.html?playlist=127

 

https://www.chiefarchitect.com/videos/watch/6082/grandview-how-we-modified-the-terrain.html?playlist=127

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I almost always build the terrain last, mainly because it can slow the file up quite noticeably.

it is quite easy to move the terrain relative to the building.

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On 1/30/2017 at 2:04 PM, Kiwideziner said:

I almost always build the terrain last, mainly because it can slow the file up quite noticeably.

it is quite easy to move the terrain relative to the building.

Kiwideziner what is the easiest way to place the building in the correct position on the terrain when you add the terrain data later?

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Diane:

 

usually the front door always faces towards the bottom of the screen

 

adjust the terrain accordingly

 

Lew

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Dianne

I just usually copy and paste the terrain into the house plan file then add a couple of dimensions and adjust the position with these and by rotating.

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Always start your plan at X0,Y0,Z0 using the the keyboard method. Starting from scratch I place a point marker using the above then four walls outlining the largest area I will be working inside of, then all four Elevation  views. This will place everything in your drawing in the center of your work area. Delete the temp or resize the walls to start your house. When the house is done create your terrain plan and adjust in respect to the setbacks. 

 

Hope this helps,

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Diane-

One method that I have used when I have separate terrain and plan files is to make a symbol of the structure and then place it on the terrain.

It's very easy to move around in all 3 axis. 

The beauty is  that when your client wants to see what the house looks like in different locations- then she can move it herself instead of having you do it over and over until I ends up where she wants it.

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2 minutes ago, RL-inc said:

Diane-

One method that I have used when I have separate terrain and plan files is to make a symbol of the structure and then place it on the terrain.

It's very easy to move around in all 3 axis. 

The beauty is  that when your client wants to see what the house looks like in different locations- then she can move it herself instead of having you do it over and over until I ends up where she wants it.

Rob, what a great idea. How do you make a symbol of the house when it has so many objects?  I thought symbols were for single objects.  I don't see where I can make a block out of the house, either.  Thanks!

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You can make a symbol out of any number of objects - as long as they show up in the camera tool.

Take a full perspective overview of the house - select tool- symbol - convert to symbol-.

I generally create as an exterior fixture- keeping the 2d block as plan view.

 

One trick that is a big time saver - create a layer set for "HOUSE SYMBOL"

On that layer set turn off EVERYTING that you don't need to see in the exterior view. ( cabinets, interior fixtures, lighting, etc...)

if CA has to regenerate those items every time it updates moving the symbol around it takes forever.

DESPAIN SYMBOL.PNG

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Rob nailed it. Just make sure to heed his advice to turn off everything in that layerset you don't need to see from the outside before you turn it into a symbol. Otherwise it will be another headache you don't need.

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yes, I prefer to make the house into a symbol

 

especially when there are other buildings

 

then I place each building into its own plan

 

this also helps when building/re-building roofs and framing etc

 

keeps conflicts from happening

 

Lew

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Diane,

 

I am going to stick my neck out here and say that I don't agree with most of the advice you have been given.

There should be no need to have 2 plans or create symbols, etc - that is just complicating things unnecessarily.

it makes no difference wether you draw the terrain before or after the house.

Just do it in the plan file in any order you want.

Why would you ever want to create a symbol for the house?

Even if I was to create a symbol (which I never would!), it would be the terrain and not the house!

 

Sure, you need to keep things close to zero datum, but that is a different topic altogether.

You should have your template plan set up close to zero datum. The zoom level will also save to your template plan so that the opening screen for a new plan is  the correct location in relation to zero datum and at the correct zoom level to just start drawing.

 

The easiest way to work is with suitable layer sets so that the plan doesn't get too messy with both the house and terrain being displayed and so that you end up with a suitable site plan that you can use in your layout.

 

 

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I'm going to agree with Glenn on this one.  If the client wants to relocate the house on the lot, move the terrain, not the house.  It has the same end result.  If you use a symbol for the house in a different plan with only the terrain and something changes on the house, you would have to re-create the symbol.

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to me recreating the house symbol is FAR easier than touching complex terrain

 

I usually had to have my partner do the terrain and I wouldn't want to "mess with it" at all ,,, ever

 

maybe for those who are masters at terrain maybe its not a big deal ???

 

we all have reasons for the methods we choose and we do what works best for us

 

Lew

 

 

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37 minutes ago, lbuttery said:

maybe for those who are masters at terrain maybe its not a big deal ???

 

Lew,

 

I think you are over dramaticising building a terrain and are unnecessarily dissuading users from using the better technique.

My suggestion would be to first try it all in one file, and if really turns out to be too difficult and beyond you, try Lew's method.

You really don't have to be a "master of terrain" to make something that works - no more than you have to be a "master of roofs" to make something work.

You shouldn't need to get someone else to do it for you or do something that is second best.

 

EDIT: On second thought, if you have trouble with the terrain, don't use Lew's method.

Post back here and I , or someone else will help sort you out.

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My suggestion would be to first try it all in one file, and if really turns out to be too difficult and beyond you, try Lew's method.

 

Glenn:

 

this is a good suggestion

 

I would say that 99% of our plans had house and terrain in one plan

 

sorry if I gave an impression otherwise

 

my recommendation comes IF there are complications

in terrain or roofs etc or playing with location of the building(s)

 

then having the independence can be very helpful

 

complications for one user can be quite different for another user

where a "master" may not see complications a "lesser" user might

 

my partner was skilled enough that he didn't need me

I certainly needed him

 

he needed me to run the business as he still had a full time job

and lived in the deep piney woods

 

I lived in the Wash DC market and could scare up the clients

 

that is what partnerships are about - mutual benefits

 

Lew

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On second thought, if you have trouble with the terrain, don't use Lew's method.

Post back here and I , or someone else will help sort you out

 

Glenn:

 

while this also is a good idea

 

it comes with a caveat

 

once it is "sorted out" what happens if there is a change needed

 

now the user has to come back and seek help again

 

IF there are complications they can't handle

 

after my partner Joe fixed a complicated terrain or roof I didn't want to "mess it up"

so having independence by using separate plans was very helpful

 

I could play with the roof of the separate garage or gazebo etc and not interfere

with the main roof with all its complications

 

each time Joe had to "sort things out" I had to pay him

 

Lew

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12 hours ago, glennw said:

Diane,

 

I am going to stick my neck out here and say that I don't agree with most of the advice you have been given.

There should be no need to have 2 plans or create symbols, etc - that is just complicating things unnecessarily.

it makes no difference wether you draw the terrain before or after the house.

Just do it in the plan file in any order you want.

Why would you ever want to create a symbol for the house?

Even if I was to create a symbol (which I never would!), it would be the terrain and not the house!

 

Sure, you need to keep things close to zero datum, but that is a different topic altogether.

You should have your template plan set up close to zero datum. The zoom level will also save to your template plan so that the opening screen for a new plan is  the correct location in relation to zero datum and at the correct zoom level to just start drawing.

 

The easiest way to work is with suitable layer sets so that the plan doesn't get too messy with both the house and terrain being displayed and so that you end up with a suitable site plan that you can use in your layout.

 

 

 

I am rarely sticking my neck out when I agree with Glenn.......  I agree with Glenn......  house and terrain in one file......   only use symbol for a house if your really know what you are doing  (I have used this  on only one project,  multiple houses on one lot),  if you want to move site relative to house,  set up anno/layer set with house locked and terrain unlocked.....  move terrain relative to house,  do not move house relative to terrain.

 

 

 

 

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For OPs very specific needs:

 

Create polyline outlines of all structures in the plan; move these to a unique layer, call it Footprint.  Turn off all layers.  Move to floor 1 and create the Terrain Perimeter.  Input the perimeter data--get the shape right.  Add the North Arrow and Sun Line.  Turn on the Footprint layer.  Adjust the Terrain Perimeter by ONLY moving the Terrain Perimeter via drag/rotation as it relates to the polyline Footprint.  Turn off Footprint.  Add the Elevation Data to the terrain.  Check your work in 3D Overview camera.  Lock terrain layers.  Edit plan as normal.

 

If a simpleton like me can do it, then anybody can.

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By no means was I trying to imply that mine was the best / only way to incorporate the house and terrain- just the most efficient way that works for me.

I can and do have projects that have the terrain created in the main plan file and they work just fine.

My real intent was to help the OP with a method that I think is quite simply and effective for locating the structure on a particular parcel.

 

In regards to updating the model and creating additional symbols based on design revisions of the structure- I find it quite simple really.  For any design revisions I always create a new plan file anyway.

Then a symbol of that revision can be created, dated and saved to be dropped on the lot in the terrain plan.

Once all the revisions are done and the location is confirmed I can copy the terrain to the final CD file - done deal.

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The problem I am having is that I have placed tree symbols and text in various places on the terrain.  When I move the terrain the trees etc do not stay in their place in relation to the terrain.  Wish there was a way to block it together.  

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Diane, For that situation you might want to make a copy of the layerset you are working with and lock all the layers that you want to stay in place, so that when you select the terrain you can easily select all the terrain features at the same time to move.

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