Autocad 3d navigation

by Design Workshop Sydney

Navigating the 3d workspace in Autocad 3d is essential to working efficiently with the program. There are several methods of navigation – we show you how in our Autocad 3d coursesautocad-3d-navigation
As well as panning, zooming and orbiting (rotating), we can view our models using orthogonal and isometric preset views. The six Orthogonal (parallel to the UCS) viewpoints are: top, bottom, left, right, front, and back. These can be accessed by either selecting from the drop-down list in the 3D Navigate panel (Pre-2009) > View > 3DViews, or by typing in the Command window: -view > O > F >Enter (for example), or by right-clicking in the drawing. Post-2009: via the View tab. There are also the View Cube and Steering Wheels.
The four Isometric preset viewpoints are views from above with no perspective distortion: Southwest, Southeast, Northeast, Northwest Note: typing vtoptions (View Transitions) allows you to control the speed (in frames per second) of the transitions from one view to another.
Another option is the Viewpoints Presets dialog box (above left): View > 3D Views > Viewpoints Presets (in 2010 this is in View > Named Views > select  Left and Set to Current)
Click the Set to Plan View button > OK. To return to Viewpoints Presets right-click on the screen for “Recent Input”. On the left hand box click in the135˚ segment – this is the angle from the X-Axis. On the right hand box click in the 60˚ segment – this is the angle from the X-Y Plane > OK. Repeat for 250˚ from X-Axis and -45˚ from the X-Y Plane. Note also another method is using the Tripod and Compass (above right).
View > 3D Views > Viewpoint, or type vpoint > Enter x 2. The compass on the top-right corner represents a globe. The centre point is the top (north pole), the outer ring is the bottom (south pole), and the inner ring is the equator. Simply click inside the globe to choose a viewpoint. Panning and zooming work in much the same fashion as in 2d drafting. See the Pan and Zoom tools in the 3D Navigate control panel. You can also pan by pressing down on the Mouse-wheel and dragging. (This can be  changed with the System Variable mbuttonpan.) If you press Shift at the same time you can pan around the object orthogonally. You can also Zoom by scrolling up and down on the Mouse-wheel. (This can be changed with the System Variable zoomfactor.)
Double-click the mouse wheel to initiate the Zoom Extents. You can also: View > Zoom > All (or  Z > Enter A > Enter, as in 2D drafting). Right-click > Reset View.
The 3d interface in Autocad is user-friendly and easy to learn, and we take time to teach a broad range of applications in our classes including modeling, materials, lighting and animation. See many examples of our clients’ work on our Facebook page. For more information there are lots of resources on the web, but try the Autodesk site to begin with: Support options and user forums are also available from the home page.
Other related Autocad 3d Blog Posts: