<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=445056146107513&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">

Product Review: AutoCAD Civil 3D

Scott Hacker

We’ve reached that point in the year where Autodesk has released their newest offerings and many of us have already upgraded or are planning to.  AutoCAD Civil 3D is most likely viewed as a stable, mature software, having made its debut in the 2000’s, addressing minor needs, etc. within the engineering community.  In the latest release, there is one “WOW” addition and several needed tweaks which will assist the user in providing an accurate and efficient product.

Pressure Pipes

Civil nation, your cries have been heard (well, sort of).  The functionality of pressure pipes has remained unchanged; however, we do have additional content in this release.  Default installs of C3D 2017 include the following materials and associated parts (butterfly valves and even a fire hydrant assembly; cue the parting clouds and the sun shining eternally on our grateful faces).

  • PVC (yes, that PVC, finally)
  • Flanged
  • Steel
  • Push-on
  • Mechanical
  • HDPE

PDF Converter

While technically not an improvement to Civil 3D (it’s an AutoCAD add, but we know that Civil sits on top of that platform), the ability to import PDF content directly into our drawing files has been added (and the crowd goes wild!).  The command PDFImport converts the pdf entities to editable geometry and text.  Also, older .DWG’s which utilized the PDF overlay in the previous version can now be opened in C3D 2017 and utilize PDFImport as well.  One caveat, the accuracy of the “new” AutoCAD content is dependent upon the quality of the original PDF, so results tend to vary.

Object Data Folders

For all of you “gotta be organized folk” (and yes, I am one of those), you can organize your object data into folders.  “What about data shortcuts?”  Yes, even data shortcuts!  Why stop there?  Autodesk didn’t, you also have the capability to create sub-folders!

These are just a sampling of the improvements made within AutoCAD Civil 3D.  All in all, Autodesk has released a solid version with the intent of improving user efficiency in all facets of design.