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  • AutoCAD 2025

    Well, it’s that time of year again when Autodesk bestows us with the latest release of their flagship drafting application. Here is the Official Documentation. Read on to see which features speak to this blogger.

    File Format

    This is probably the most-asked question, and I’m happy to say that there is yet again, no format change. We are still on the 2018 format. Good news for everyone!

    Activity Insights

    More actions are being logged into the Insights.

    If you use the DWG History tools, these have been merged with Activity Insights. Note: the history is now only available within the Insights palette. The DWGHISTORY command no longer exists, though the functionality is still there.

    AutoCAD 2025

    AutoCAD 2025

    Markups

    Markups from Autodesk Docs are now supported.

    Assigning specific annotation styles is now possible.

    Polygonal revision clouds are supported.

    Comments attached to markups are selectable.

    Hatch

    This one is pretty cool! Draw a new hatch object without creating or specifying a boundary. E.g. use the new hatch rectangle command to quickly create a hatch. Not limited to rectangles; any shape is possible.

    A new hatch path option is available. This creates a hatch of a specified width along a path, like a polyline.

    AutoCAD 2025

    Blocks

    AutoCAD can use machine learning to detect linework and convert that linework to a block. Imagine a drawing where all the door blocks were exploded. You would prefer that they had not been. Use the new command to identify those door lines and convert them to a block

    AutoCAD 2025      AutoCAD 2025

    ESRI Maps

    ESRI maps are now integrated into AutoCAD. Now, you can use five additional types of Esri maps to assign geographic location information to a drawing file.

     

    AutoCAD 2025

    AutoCAD 2025

    For any questions reach out to your sales rep or contact us at info@solidcad.ca

    Civil 3D: Object Names and Style Descriptions

    Does your company require the use of a specific naming convention for Civil 3D objects? Has it been difficult to adhere to that standard? If so, read on for some tips.

    When an object is created in Civil 3D, it requires a name. This is the naming convention for a new alignment using the out of the box Civil 3D drawing template. It will be named Alignment – (1), the next one will be Alignment t – (2), etc. This name is not very descriptive, and I hope you’re using something better than this already!

    Here is an example of a company’s strict naming convention.

    1234-C-Granville-ALG

    • 1234                     =             project number
    • C                            =             civil
    • Granville              =             road name
    • ALG                       =             alignment

    Users must refer to a naming standard, often a PDF document somewhere on the network, and this can take time. Under pressure, users sometimes skip the formalities and use a non-standard name. We must make it as easy and fast as possible for them.

    Why not embed this standard into the drawing template itself so users won’t need to open another file? Here is how this could be done directly in your Civil 3D drawing template. The users’ responsibilities would be to edit the mixed-caps data and leave the ALL CAPS data.

    Prompting the user with the information they need when they need it will help to ensure better efficiency and (potentially more important) reduce the chance that they use non-standard names. This can be done for all relevant Civil 3D objects in the Settings tab by:

    • Editing the Feature Settings for the object in question.

    • Configuring the name template.

    • Clearing any child overrides so all alignments get named properly regardless of the command used.

     

     

     

     

    While we’re on the subject, it can be beneficial to include a good description with styles so that users are prompted when or why to use a style. I try not to have make the description so long that my users need to scroll to see the entire thing. They won’t! Make it concise.

    Civil 3D: 2024.3 Update

    Civil 3D 2024 has a new update: 2024.3. You can use Autodesk Access to install it or download it from your Autodesk page.

    Here are the notable enhancements.

    Civil 3D: 2024.3 Update

    • When creating a new corridor, expect to see this new dialog. It allows for the creation of multiple baselines right at the time of corridor creation. For large corridors, this could be a significant time saver.
    • In that same new dialog, feature lines can be more efficiently chosen by filtering based on criteria such as Name, Style, Layer, and Site.
    • Assign alternate assemblies in Corridor Properties for multiple baselines and regions simultaneously.

    Civil 3D: 2024.3 Update

    • The Dynamo Core has been updated to version 2.19. Note, that this can cause issues with Dynamo scripts created prior to 2.19…
      “if you have no nodes set as “Output”, nor a Slider or Boolean Input, it will never show your Inputs in the Dynamo Player.”
      “Adding a node as an Output will “solve” this issue”

    In the API, Added the ability to call the API to export C3D objects to the ArcGIS FileGeodatabase to automate workflows from C3D to ArcGIS.

    Who is Strasman Architects?

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    Strasman Architects

    COMPANY PROFILE

    Who is Strasman Architects?

    Architecture is not merely about designing structures; it’s an intricate blend of art and science that shapes the built environment, reflecting the cultural, social, and technological nuances of its time. Most importantly, it’s a collaborative process where designers focus on bringing to life the visions of their clients. Strasman Architects is an experienced Canadian Architecture and Interior Design Firm, who is widely recognized for their highly collaborative approach to award-winning designs. For over forty-five years, they have focused on providing elegant, sustainable solutions for technically complex projects. They are driven by discovery – meaning they listen to their clients to fully understand their vision and the challenges they will face, long before they begin to resolve a design. The emphasis on discovery is derived from their respect for their clients’ priorities and the project’s needs, rather than enforcing preconceived notions of what their design should be. This approach respects budget and schedule as well as form and function, and layers in an inherent sense of stewardship for the environment and the community they work in.

    Strasman is one of Canada’s leading architects for transit facilities. With 200+ transit projects already completed, they are recognized and sought after for their expertise in transit maintenance facilities for buses and light and heavy rail systems as well as their extensive experience with transit station development, including new and existing stations across Toronto and throughout southern Ontario. Strasman has executed landmark and critical infrastructure projects for transit authorities such as Toronto Transit Commission (TTC), Metrolinx, VIA Rail, York Region Transit, Grand River Transit, BC TransLink, and Calgary Transit, among many others.

    TTC WELRT

    Their firm continues to grow with over 40 team members, located in their head office in Toronto and their studio in Vancouver. By leveraging a diverse range of expertise and technical skills, they can tailor project delivery to meet the unique requirements of each client. Their approach involves employing a versatile set of technical tools, including but not limited to Revit and Revitzo for model coordination and clash detection, as well as AutoCAD and MicroStation. Additionally, they use an extensive suite of visualization tools such as Rhino, V-Ray, and SketchUp to enhance the overall project experience.

    Their team’s use of these tools is not just a static process, but a dynamic one. Strasman’s employees are actively involved in continually discovering powerful methods to harness the capabilities of their software and do so by seamlessly integrating new tools as they become available. In an ever-evolving technological landscape, Strasman fosters a culture of innovation and effectiveness in software usage.

    VIA Rail TMC Rendering Interior

    Strasman is actively shaping the Canadian architectural landscape through several impactful projects. Currently, the firm is spearheading the design for the TTC Waterfront East LRT (Queen’s Quay to Union Link), contributing to the modernization of the VIA Rail Toronto Maintenance Centre as part of a design-build team, and designing key facilities within the new Skytrain Operations and Maintenance Centre 4 (OMC 4) in Coquitlam, British Columbia. Additionally, Strasman is also involved in the phased revitalization of TTC Warden Station, overseeing bus maintenance and storage facility renovations for two York Region Transit facilities, and playing a pivotal role in the development of a new maintenance facility at the Mid-Halton WWTP.

    After more than 500 projects, and 25 awards for their designs, we are eager to see how they continue to contribute to the evolution of architecture through their work.

    Rutherford

    Why you should replace your AutoCAD/Civil 3D Tool Palettes with Hive CMS libraries

    As an organization grows, it will navigate through projects of different size and nature. Rules and structures need to be fixed, and when managing engineering data comes into play, engineering and production standards need to be applied.  

    Within AutoCAD and Civil 3D, an engineering firm, a contractor or a government agency will gather standards through templates, support files, specific symbology for lines, blocks and infrastructure representations (Civil 3D styles and Labels).  

    The closest thing out-of-the-box to a user-friendly interface to structure these standards is a Tool Palette: 

    AutoCAD Civil 3D

    Pros of using a Tool Palette: 

    • Drag-and-dropping objects in the tool palette is an easy way to bring in some content (mainly AutoCAD but limited to assemblies for Civil 3D).  
    • Buttons can launch complex commands, scripts and lisp routines. 

    Cons of using a Tool Palette: 

    • Limited in terms of Civil 3D objects integration. 
    • Launching “non-AutoCAD” files from the command demands complex command buttons, with proper mapped drive on a server (i.e.: Word/PDF documents containing design standards shared to the whole Team) and are near impossible to launch from a cloud data connector (i.e.: OneDrive, Google Drive, and even Autodesk Construction Cloud). 
    • No search engine is available to sift through growing amounts of standards, commands and files that could scale up with your growing organization as time goes on. 
    • Deployment across an organization is extremely complex, due to Tool Palette “obscure” ties in a user profiles and file structure. Same goes for updating your standards over time. 

    For example, here’s the first level of Tool Palettes file’s structure: 

    AutoCAD Civil 3D

    And here’s the second level of Tool Palettes file’s structure: 

    AutoCAD Civil 3D

    Hive CMS is a desktop application that will solve these issues, leveraging a cloud system to easily share your CAD standards and design files (AutoCAD, Civil 3D and non-drawing-based files).  

    Developed by CTC Software, Hive supports organizations to share content via a cloud platform, completely compatible with supported versions of AutoCAD and Civil 3D. Among the different types of shareable content, you will find: 

    • AutoCAD Blocks, 
    • AutoCAD/Civil 3D Commands (handling all other kind of object creation and more), 
    • Civil 3D object styles and labels, 
    • Civil 3D assemblies, 
    • Templates, 
    • Lisp routines and script files, 
    • Non-drawing-based files (basically every other types of files like Office files, PDF, PKT, and so forth). 

    Hive stores these elements in libraries, as shown in the Hive CMS main interface: 

    AutoCAD Civil 3D

    And then browsing through the different libraries your organization WANTS you to see and work with. 

    AutoCAD Civil 3D

    As you are connecting in your CTC account, Hive CMS filters what shareable content your CTC Account administrator has given you access to.  Depending on the “contribution” level you have access to, you can add, manage and assign “tags” that are basically extra metadata that will help your team search and filter through your shared content. 

    Here’s some tags as an example: 

    AutoCAD Civil 3D

    The search engine from Hive CMS is extremely powerful, helping you sift through your organization ever-changing and ever-growing standards. The Filter menu allows you to do some advanced search using content name and metadata, and even save it for further uses (for you or for your entire organization). 

    AutoCAD Civil 3DT

    o use a piece of content, just click it from the Hive CMS interface and it will launch in your currently opened drawing or will add itself to your current drawing (for Civil 3D styles and labels), ready to be used. 

    To launch a file, like a new drawing from a template or opening a PDF document in your default application, just click it from your library: 

    AutoCAD Civil 3D

    While there are some subtilities to upload content to your libraries (not covered in this blog), uploading files in Hive CMS is done as easily as drag-and-dropping your files from Windows File Explorer to the “Add content” tabular editor, assigning a Library (and appropriate Tags) and clicking the Process button. 

    AutoCAD Civil 3D

    In conclusion, the Hive system will help your organization to better support your CAD and Civil teams with scalable tools that are easily shared and covering any needs you want from a custom user interface, a custom Tool Palette and so much more. Hive makes your standard deployment easier, safer and way more user-friendly for everyone involved (administrators, superusers and users alike). 

    AutoCAD – Editing with Groups & Layers

    AutoCAD – Editing with Groups & Layers 

    Trying to edit geometry that is overlapping or right next to multiple objects can sometimes be challenging. 

    We can simplify the process by doing the following: 

    • Lock the layers of the geometry we don’t want to modify
      Any object that is part of a locked layer cannot be modified (move, copy, delete, etc.)
       
    • Group together different objects, blocks, geometry, etc.
      Grouped geometry becomes one single object that is easier to manipulate

     

     

    ]For any questions reach out to your sales rep or contact us at info@solidcad.ca 

    AutoCAD and Civil 3D: New Tool for Migrating Files to Autodesk Docs

    Read until the end to see which extensions for Civil 3D are now available for download!

    If you use AutoCAD and especially Civil 3D and you use Autodesk Docs and the Autodesk Construction Cloud (ACC), then you should consider this tool.

    From the download site:

    “It provides guidance throughout the whole data migration process including data integrity checks, fixes, and uploading. It enables you to clean up data integrity issues so that the uploading process can be completed successfully and efficiently while keeping files as a single source of truth.”

    Interestingly, it is only available at the Autodesk App Store, but it is free.

    This tool will help fixe those pesky “Related Data” folders as it identifies potential errors before upload, and it provides a mechanism to repair them.

    Highly recommended.

    Civil 3D: 2024 Extensions Released

    For any questions reach out to your sales rep or contact us at info@solidcad.ca

    AutoCAD: 2024.1 Update

    The AutoCAD team has updated the 2024 release and there are some cool new features. Use Autodesk Access to install it or go to manage.autodesk.com and download it. Check out the release notes to read the official documentation. Read on to find out more.

    Here is Autodesk Help. Here are the release notes.

    • Autodesk Assistant

    AI-guided self-service and options to contact support from within the product. Find solutions to product questions, request a callback if needed, or create a support case. It’s only available in English.

    AutoCAD 2024.1 Update AutoCAD 2024.1 Update

    Markup Assist and Import

      • Markup Assist now can detect and identify markups in flattened PDFs.
      • The Markup Assist icon on the Trace toolbar indicates when Markup Assist is in the process of detecting markups.

    AutoCAD 2024.1 Update

     

    • Trace
      • When a drawing does not contain any traces, the Traces palette has been updated to make it easier to create a new trace or import markup.
      • COPYFROMTRACE, allows you to copy objects from a trace into the drawing, now provides command line feedback about scale factor when copying objects from a trace layout to a viewport.
    • Activity Insights
    • Some of the drawing event labels have been updated for clarity.

    AutoCAD 2024.1 Update

    • File Open
      • Improved file open performance when opening a drawing that contains large numbers of annotation scales. Large numbers of annotation scales can occur when there are lots of drawing references that might pull in additional annotation scales.
    • Pan and Zoom
      • General performance improvements when using pan and zoom commands.

    For any questions reach out to your sales rep or contact us at info@solidcad.ca

    Civil 3D: 2024.1 Update

    The Civil team has updated the 2024 release and there are many cool new features. The Civil 3D updates include the AutoCAD update, but they don’t include the Map 3D update, so don’t forget to install that too.

    Use Autodesk Access to install it or go to manage.autodesk.com and download it. Read on to find out more.

    Official documentation for the Civil 3D 2024.1 update

    Official documentation for the Map 3D 2024.0.1 update

    Official documentation for the AutoCAD 2024.1 update

    This is not an exhaustive list; please refer to the documentation for a complete list.

    • Subassemblies
      • Import custom subassemblies without creating a tool in a palette.

    Civil 3D Update

      • Add subassemblies from the Prospector.

    Civil 3D Update

        • Replace a subassembly by selecting a new PKT file.

    Civil 3D Update

    •  Corridors
      • Create transitions across regions.
      • Copy and paste transition sets.
      • Better highlighting to identify areas in a transition.
    • ArcGIS
      • Save back changes to AutoCAD objects.
      • Improved support for arcs
      • Improved performance.
      • Layers are alphabetically sorted.
    • Pressure Networks
      • Pipe runs are less likely to become detached from their underlying pipe run alignments. Added warning messages that are displayed when the pipe run status is not correct after editing the pipe run.
      • Move and rotate pipe runs with AutoCAD MOVE and ROTATE commands.
      • Property set compatibility.
      • Automatically swap a tee for a wye when gip editing the pipe run.
    • Gravity Networks
      • Connect pipes and structures to parts within other networks.
      • The Text-For-Each component can now be added to band styles.
    • Project Explorer
      • New Subassembly category with many new and usable options.
      • Export slope patterns to 2D.
    • Rail
      • Added the ability to create cant on spiral or tangent entities by adding user-defined curves in the Cant Curve Manager dialog box.
    • API
      • New content for corridor transitions and gravity networks.
    • Dynamo
      • Core updated to 2.18.
      • Player updated to 3.0.

    For any questions reach out to your sales rep or contact us at info@solidcad.ca

    Autodesk Software Downloads

    History has indicated that when downloading Autodesk software, one must also manually choose to download and install the appropriate updates for said software. This is often a point of contention as it’s an extra step. “Why can’t the updates be rolled up into the downloads?” you may ask. Well, starting September 19th, and slowly until Mid-October, downloading applications WILL include the most recent updates. No extra step!

    But I did say it was “often” a point of contention; it isn’t always. Some organization need to control the versions installed on their users’ computers. This paragraph is for you. Simply put, the latest updates WILL be part of the downloads soon and you may not have the option to choose an application with an earlier update. So far, there’s limited information and I can’t provide you with answers to your inevitable questions like “Can I choose not to have updates rolled into the download?” and “Will I be able to remove the updates once the app has been installed?”

    Once the new plan has been rolled out, I hope to be able to answer these for you. Stay tuned.

    Autocad Update

    For any questions reach out to your sales rep or contact us at info@solidcad.ca