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Civil AccuDraw

Civil AccuDraw preforms many functions similar to MicroStation AccuDraw but with greater capabilities for the civil designer. It allows the user to define a point's location with more sophisticated input options. It's intent is to eliminate the need to create temporary construction elements for complex point locations. There is a Horizontal and a Vertical Civil AccuDraw.

Before You Do Anything!

Simultaneous use of Civil AccuDraw and MicroStation AccuDraw will cause errors. Also, switching between the two while values are Locked will likely cause errors. To avoid these issues, it is imperative that MicroStation AccuDraw be toggled OFF when using Civil AccuDraw. It is highly recommended that the Auto Load option also be toggled OFF. This option can be found in MicroStation's AccuDraw Settings.

back to topHorizontal Civil AccuDraw Toolbar

The Civil AccuDraw Toolbar can be activated from the General Geometry Task menu. It's also available from the MicroStation menu in Tools > Civil AccuDraw > Activate Toolbar.

The Civil AccuDraw Toolbar changes depending on where your are working. The Civil AccuDraw Toolbar that is displayed when working in a 2D plan view is shown below. The 3D Civil AccuDraw Toolbar includes additional buttons that are also found on the Vertical Civil AccuDraw Toolbar. The Vertical Civil AccuDraw Toolbar is shown in the Vertical_Civil_AccuDraw section further down this page.

civil accudraw horizontal toolbar

The first button on the Civil AccuDraw toolbar is the Toggle Civil AccuDraw button. Similar to other MicroStation Toggles, this button turns amber when Civil AccuDraw is ON, as shown above.

The second button serves two purposes. A single left mouse click will summons the Civil AccuDraw Settings panel. A click and hold will cause a pop-up menu offering the most common Civil AccuDraw Shortcuts. Shortcuts are also programmed across your keyboard.

The remaining buttons allow direct selection of the Default Ordinate Combinations.

back to topAbout Civil AccuDraw

Visually the MicroStation AccuDraw drawing Compass has a grey perimeter with a transparent blue interior. It's square when working with rectangular coordinates and circular when working with polar coordinates.

The Civil AccuDraw Drawing Compass is always circular and distinguished by a blue perimeter and most important, the presence of a North Arrow. Similar to MicroStation AccuDraw, the center of the compass marks the current origin point. Some Keyboard Shortcuts are the same for both AccuDraws, but not all.

civil accudraw compass

The default Civil AccuDraw Compass has four evenly divided ticks also displayed in blue. These ticks are useful for direction indexing. The amount of compass divisions defined by these ticks can be adjusted in Civil AccuDraw Settings, found on the Display tab. In addition there are two ticks strictly dedicated to rectangular coordinates. They will visually override the blue ticks when they are collinear, as shown in the above graphic. The Green Tick indicates the Positive Y direction and the Red Tick indicates the Positive X direction. The rotation of the compass is independent and not necessarily aligned with North or the current view.

back to topCivil AccuDraw Settings

The Civil AccuDraw Compass defaults with a Floating Origin. This means that the compass moves to the last point placed. Also similar to MicroStation AccuDraw, indexing for both Axis and Distance is ON by default. Both of these features can be Toggled OFF in the Operation tab of the Civil AccuDraw Settings.

Civil AccuDraw interprets an offset as positive or negative depending on the position of the pointer. Values are acknowledged as Positive when the pointer is to the Right of the Base Element and Negative to the Left. This feature can also be Toggled OFF in Civil AccuDraw Settings.

Please be advised that some of the options on this Operations tab do not work properly in SS3. These include (but are not limited to):

  • Auto Load
  • Always Show Compass
  • Show Accudraw Dialog

back to topHorizontal Ordinates Described

Civil Accudraw Ordinates
X Absolute X value
Y Absolute Y value
dX Delta X from last point
dY Delta Y from last point
Station The distance measured along a Base Element. Use the Set Origin shortcut to select the Base Element. Station syntax allows the use of the Plus delimiter however it's not required. Keying in a station value of 10+45.33 yields the same result as 1045.33.
Offset The distance measured perpendicular from a Base Element. Use the Set Origin shortcut to select the Base Element.
Distance The horizontal distance.
Direction The direction specified by a Bearing. This ordinate is only available when the compass is aligned with North (Y Axis is locked on due North). See Bearing Syntax to learn how to specify a Bearing.
Angle The direction by an angle measured clockwise from the positive X Axis (signified by the RED compass tick). This ordinate is only available when the compass is NOT aligned with North (Y Axis is NOT locked on due North). See Angle Syntax to learn how to specify an Angle.

back to topDefault Ordinate Combinations

Take note that two of the Default Ordinate Combinations operate with two origins and therefore, two compasses.

Civil Accudraw Ordinates
X - Y civil accudraw tool Rectangle Coordinates.
dX - dY civil accudraw tool Delta Rectangle coordinates measured from the last point.
Station - Offset civil accudraw tool Station and Offset from a Base Element. Use the Origin Keyboard Shortcut to select the Base Element.
Delta Station - Offset civil accudraw tool Delta Station from the last station and an Offset, both ordinates reference the Base Element.
Distance - Direction / Common Origin civil accudraw tool Distance and Direction from a common origin. The Direction ordinate is replaced by the Angle Ordinate when the compass is not synchronized to North.
Distance - Direction / Different Origin civil accudraw tool Distances from the first origin and Direction from a second origin. The Direction ordinate is replaced by the Angle Ordinate when the compass is not synchronized to North.
  1. Set the beginning origin point for the Distance ordinate.
  2. Supply and Lock the desired distance for the beginning origin.
  3. Select the Origin Keyboard Shortcut (O). This defines the threshold between the beginning origin and the second origin.
  4. Set the second origin point to the location to be used for the direction origin.
  5. Rotate the compass as necessary to align with either North or to an existing base reference element. Refer to Compass Control Keyboard Shortcuts to manipulate the Civil AccuDraw compass.
  6. Advance to the Direction field of the second origin. Refer to Dialog Control Keyboard Shortcuts to navigate the Civil AccuDraw dialog. Supply and Lock the desired direction, either a bearing or an angle depending on the compass rotation.
  7. There is likely to be more than one geometric solution.  Move the pointer near the intended solution.
  8. Data Point to accept the newly constructed point.
  9. Reset to clear the two compasses.
Distance - Distance / Different Origin civil accudraw tool Two Distances from different origins.
  1. Set the beginning origin point for the first Distance ordinate.
  2. Supply and Lock the desired distance for the beginning origin.
  3. Select the Origin Keyboard Shortcut (O). This defines the threshold between the beginning origin and the second origin.
  4. Set the second origin point to the location to be used for the second distance origin.
  5. Supply and Lock the second distance.
  6. There is likely to be more than one geometric solution. Move the pointer near the intended solution.
  7. Data Point to accept the newly constructed point.
  8. Reset to clear the two compasses.

Other ordinate combinations can be created if needed. Go to the Favorites tab on the Civil AccuDraw Settings panel for that functionality.

back to topCivil AccuDraw Keyboard Shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts have been established for Civil AccuDraw similar to MicroStation AccuDraw. Many of these keyboard shortcuts are the same for both AccuDraws where ever possible, which implies that not all are the same. Note that some of the Dialog Control Keyboard Shortcuts also operate in Vertical Civil AccuDraw.

Dialog Control Keyboard Shortcuts
Keys Description
Left/Right Arrows Cycles through the configured ordinate modes for the field in focus. Also operates in Vertical Civil AccuDraw.
Tab Advance to next input field in the Civil AccuDraw dialog panel. Also operates in Vertical Civil AccuDraw.
Enter Locks the value of the current input field and the padlock icon appears. This keyboard shortcut is unlike the MicroStation AccuDraw shortcut and does not provide Smart Lock. Also operates in Vertical Civil AccuDraw.
End Unlocks the current locked value and the padlock icon disappears. Also operates in Vertical Civil AccuDraw.
Shift-End Clear all Locks and all padlock icons disappear.
Up/Down Arrows Switch between Floating and Fixed dialogs. Also operates in Vertical Civil AccuDraw.
Q Quits Civil AccuDraw.
Compass Control Keyboard Shortcuts
Keys Description
O Moves the Drawing Plane (The compass) to a position defined by a following Data Point. It serves to pick the Base Element for the Station and Offset option. It also serves to pick the Reference Profile for the Station and Profile Offset option.
T Rotates the Drawing Plane to that of a standard Top View. It synchronizes the Green tick (Y Axis) of the compass to align with due North. The Angle Ordinate in the dialog panel will change to the Direction Ordinate.
V Rotates the Drawing Plane to align with the view Axis. The positive Y axis is adjusted so that it projects straight up and the positive X axis projects to the right.
R-Q Quick Rotation of the Drawing plane to a dynamically specified orientation. This keyboard shortcut operates the same as in MicroStation AccuDraw.
R-E Orients the compass to an element.
R-V Rotates the view to match the current compass rotation.

Base Elements

To set a new Base Element for Station and Offset:

  1. Activate Civil AccuDraw.
  2. Set Ordinate Combinations to Station - Offset.
  3. Cycle through the input fields so that the input focus is on either Station or Offset. Any other ordinates don't work.
  4. Issue the Origin Keyboard Shortcut (the "O" key). The prompt directs you to Select a Reference Element or Reset to return to command. Select the element that you wish to be the Base Element. Once selected the prompt should revert to the Station - Offset Ordinate Combination.

This assignment is remembered until it's changed to a new element.

General Civil AccuDraw Features
Keys Description
Space Opens the Pop-Up tool box.
G-K Open the Key-in dialog.
G-S Open Civil AccuDraw Settings.

 

back to topAngle Syntax

The following delimiters are supported between Degrees, Minutes and Seconds.

  1. Colon or Semicolon, for example:

    DD:MM:SS DD;MM;SS
  2. Caret to designate Degrees, Single Quote to designate Minutes and a Double Quote to designate Seconds. For example:

    DD^MM'SS"

These 3 delimiter formats shown above my be mixed and matched should you have the need. A Decimal Point delimiter happens to work for angles in decimal format.

Bearing Syntax for Direction

The following seems to work consistently for Civil AccuDraw, however Bentley usually has a few ways to do anything... Here's at least one way to do it!

Format: [Latitude Direction][Degrees]:[Minutes]:[Seconds][Longitude Direction]

Where the Latitude Direction is either N (for North) or S (for South).
Where the Longitude Direction is either E (for East) or W (for West).
The only delimiter that is stable is the Colon. Most important, do not use any Spaces. The Space key is reserved in Civil AccuDraw to open the Civil AccuDraw Pop-Up Tool Box.

Example: Key in N35:36:37E to obtain [North 35 Degrees 36 Minutes 37 Seconds East]

Important: Pointer position plays an important roll when specifying a Bearing. Be aware that despite providing a unique/singular direction, the acknowledged direction can be exactly 180 degrees off depending on the pointer position.

back to topBentley Communities Demonstration Video

If you made it this far then chances are good that viewing a demonstration video has value.

back to topVertical Civil AccuDraw

Civil AccuDraw is also available when working with profiles. The Civil AccuDraw toolbar changes to present Vertical Ordinate Combinations whenever OpenRoads is focused on profiles, this toolbar is shown below.

civil accudraw vertical ordinate toolbar

The first two buttons are the only buttons that stay unchanged from the Horizontal Civil AccuDraw toolbar. The remaining buttons allow direct selection of the default Vertical Ordinate Combinations. Every ordinate combination requires a Station specification. These Vertical Ordinate Combinations are described as follows.

Vertical Civil Accudraw
Station - Elevation Raw Elevation value.
Station - Elevation Difference Delta Elevation measured from the last point placed (depending on the Vertical Geometry tool used).
Station - Profile Offset Profile Offset from another profile. The Reference Profile is identified the same as a Base Element is identified in Horizontal Civil AccuDraw.
Station - Slope Slope defined from the last point placed (depending on the Vertical Geometry tool used).

Unlike Horizontal Civil AccuDraw, there is no compass. Otherwise Vertical Civil AccuDraw operates essentially the same as Horizontal does. Keyboard Shortcuts are the same if applicable.

Station syntax allows the use of the Plus delimiter however it's not required. Keying in a station value of 10+45.33 yields the same result as 1045.33.

There are two Ordinate Combinations that react differently depending on the Vertical Geometry tools being used.

  1. Station - Elevation Difference: With respect to the Profile Line Between Points tool, the Elevation Difference is based on the elevation of the last selected point. However the Profile Complex By VPI tool requires that an origin point be placed first. Once the origin is defined, the elevation difference is measured from there.
  2. Station - Slope: This option reacts similar to the Station - Elevation Difference option. It also refers to the last selected point when using the Profile Line Between Points tool. And also requires an origin point be placed when using the Profile Complex By VPI tool. However, it might be easier to specify the Slope in the command's regular cursor dialog in lieu of specifying the Slope (and origin) in Civil AccuDraw.

 

Reference Profile

To set a new Reference Profile in Vertical Civil AccuDraw for Station and Profile Offset:

  1. Activate Civil AccuDraw.
  2. Set Ordinate Combinations to Station - Profile Offset.
  3. Cycle through the input fields so that the input focus is on either Station or Profile Offset. Any other ordinates don't work.
  4. Issue the Origin Keyboard Shortcut (the "O" key). The prompt directs you to Select a Reference Element or Reset to return to command. Select the element that you wish to be the Reference Profile. Once selected the prompt should revert to the Station - Profile Offset Ordinate Combination.

 

New Hampshire Department of Transportation
PO Box 483  |  7 Hazen Drive  |  
Concord, NH  |  03302-0483
Tel: 603.271.3734  |  Fax: 603.271.3914