# Flattening 3D Geometry

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I have imported a survey where the geometry is a mix of lines and shapes drawn in 2D and 3D. Some of the site geometry is drawn in 3D and some is a 2D representation. To make it worse, the building outlines appear to be 2D when viewed in plan, but if you rotate the model around, the lines connect at one end to a point on the layer plane but the other end connect to a point 700' up the Z axis. So a 20' long wall looks correct in plan view, but is several hundred feet long.

How do I flatten the geometry so all the end points on lines keep their X and Y value, but reduce the Z value to 0 so I can have a 2D file as a starting point for the project I am working on?

My efforts at searching the archive turned up nothing.

File is attached for grins. The layer in questions is called J Clyde Topo.

1452_Signature_2017-04-12.vwx

• Vectorworks, Inc Employee

I would first suggest creating a viewport of the entire area in Top/Plan, then on the sheet layer you have the viewport on, converting the viewport to Lines or Polys via Modify > Convert to Lines/Polys

That SHOULD give you lines the length of which should be accurate in X and Y, that you can then copy back to the design layer. You may want to try one in Wireframe and one in Hidden Line to see if one gives you more desireable results.

I tried on both a new sheet layer and on a new design layer. On the design layer, this put all the building lines in a mass no where near the model. On the sheet layer, all the lines are now arranged in a wreath around the model.

A screen shot of the offending lines is attached. The red jagged line should be the building perimeters. They look correct when viewed in plan.

Edited by Chris Rogers

Normally I am used in CAD to select all and scale them from a Z=0.00 origin in Z direction to zero.

(Or use a flatten geometry option)

But it looks like VW Scaling left out the Z for asymmetrical scaling.

Another option, if the geometry was imported (DWG), to reimport using a 2D only option.

Edited by zoomer

Importing as 2D only worked for this scenario....although I am still surprised there isn't the option of flattening the geometry. Thank you for the help.

I am sure there is somehow any workaround for VW by mixing and converting things between

2D/3D + screen vs layer plane and help of a Viewport and such things.

Just too complicated to fiddle in as long as I have no real need for it

Edited by zoomer

Unfortunately the VW toolset is weak in this area. As in your example 3d linework often comes in as NURBS curves or 3d "polygons". It would be useful to have a command like Rhino's SetPt, which allows the user to set all the point values for one or more directions to zero. It would make fixing this geometry so it was flat on the ground plane very easy. Or it would be useful to have the ability to project 3d curves onto a plane, also possible in Rhino.

Kevin

These all appear to be 3D plane lines. Even worse, they are sitting nowhere near a realizing height, they at 14,000,000 feet in the air (about 2600 miles).

So the first thing to consider is moving the origin so the drawing is much closer to 0,0,0.

^  only 240 m for me in understandable units.

But I can't even pull their upper ends down in Z-only by grabbing one by one.

1 hour ago, Pat Stanford said:

So the first thing to consider is moving the origin so the drawing is much closer to 0,0,0.

Which I think was the problem that these lines exploded while importing at all.

I had similar behavior with delocalized objects and DWG exports when either far from origin

or trying to import DWG's with wrong file units assumption.

I assume the original DWG is pretty ok.

And not sure how this can happen.

Sorry, yes the Lines have a height of 2xx meters.

But what I thought to be ground 0.00 is about light years (or so) below the origin

I don't really get it, the Layers have proper heights and maybe the the most part sits

on ground, but not in reality - or so ...

The solution for healing these lines is :

1. Select all from a Side View

2. Modify : Convert all to 3D Polygons

3. Ungroup

4. Keep Selection

5. Go to top plan View

6. Modify Convert to Lines > Wireframe rendering

7. Ungroup

8. Keep Selection

9. OIP : Set their Orientation from "Screen Plane" to Layer Plane

Check from a 3D or Side View.

They should be now a) flat and b) sitting on active Layers height 0.00

Edited by zoomer

I think I would try and import the data again into a new blank file.

Make sure that under the import options, the Location tab, that one of the first two options (Center on First Import, Center on Internal Origin) are selected. Either of those should get you geometry that are close to the internal origin and be easier to work with.

If that import still comes in  2600 miles up in space, then as whoever sent you the file to fix it and send it to you again.

• 2 years later...
On 4/28/2017 at 12:28 AM, zoomer said:

Sorry, yes the Lines have a height of 2xx meters.

But what I thought to be ground 0.00 is about light years (or so) below the origin

I don't really get it, the Layers have proper heights and maybe the the most part sits

on ground, but not in reality - or so ...

The solution for healing these lines is :

1. Select all from a Side View

2. Modify : Convert all to 3D Polygons

3. Ungroup

4. Keep Selection

5. Go to top plan View

6. Modify Convert to Lines > Wireframe rendering

7. Ungroup

8. Keep Selection

9. OIP : Set their Orientation from "Screen Plane" to Layer Plane

Check from a 3D or Side View.

They should be now a) flat and b) sitting on active Layers height 0.00

It totally worked for me, thank you!

• 3 months later...

Has there been any development on this in the last couple of vwx releases? Having a similar (although much less severe) version of this issue now and was hoping for a quick fix..

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