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I have been using Revit for almost 3 years and recently using vectorworks because of the firm requirement. I have really hard time co-op with the site modeling. Specifically for hardscape alignment and overall site modeling. I have watched all the videos but nobody is explaining about hardscape aligned on sloped surface (I i am not asking about texture bed nor drape surface and not even simple slope percentage), I also tried site modifier but it's tricky.  i want real 3d model in place hardscape  with uneven site. All of the suggested things on internet is time consuming and making me dislike this software. No offend but i might be wrong. Any suggestion would be highly appreciated. 

Sometimes i am not able to see site model where as sometimes hardscape went somewhere else.

Why i am not able to save hardscape with slab style? 

I am not able to send fences on site model.

sometimes i feel like software got some real glitch. 

Sometime i really feel tired with software or do i need more practice with that? 

Any good course where can i learn all this stuff.


Disclaimer: i am working on project where someone already created 2d design and i am working on creating 3d design. 


Screen Shot 2020-07-20 at 10.44.29 PM.png

Screen Shot 2020-07-20 at 10.43.23 PM.png

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

To control slopes on Hardscapes, I recommend you use the Aligned Slab as the 3D option. With this, you can add Surface Modifiers (Stakes and Grade Objects) to control the levels and slopes you require. Then uncheck the Interpolate option to ensure that you have the smallest number of triangles, rather than the smoothest surface. 
These will also modify the surface of the terrain. 

I have attached a small example, which I hope will get you started, but there are some resources in Vectorworks University that I think you will find useful:



http://app-help.vectorworks.net/2020/eng/index.htm#t=VW2020_Guide%2FSiteModel2%2FEditing_hardscape_objects.htm&rhsearch=aligned hardscape&rhsyns=


The aligned hardscape also has the option to draw profile lines to create a custom surface. And it will respond to elevations of other objects.


In my example file, look at the surface modifiers on the hardscape, then look at the existing site and then return to the proposed site. That will show you what the grade objects have done. 

I hope this helps.

Hardscape Example.vwx

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Thanks Tamsin. Your example was truly helpful. Further it would be great help if you could advise the steps for the creation of the hardscape. e.g. did you create an aligned slab hardscape object after creation of site model and manually adjusted the stakes or is it possible for the hardscape to assume the vertex elevations by itself? should we use the aligned slab(top) option? Your steps would be vary helpful. Once again your example was very helpful and one of the only once to clarify this topic.

Thanks again.

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@Tamsin Slatter Hi Tamsin, I ran into this conversation about hardscape alignments. I'm having trouble with it as well. As you can see I have 2 slabs, and a ramp between them. I'm trying to align the "ramp" to both these slabs, but something seems to not be working, and when prompting the "edit surface modifiers", nothing is visible. Could you point out what I have wrong in this model? Thanks!


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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

To answer both questions:

@SiddharthIn my example file, I created a flat site model from a rectangle (create site model from boundary command), and then edited the 3D surface to push-pull some definition to the surface). I then created the hardscape using the Hardscape tool - and selecting a preconfigured style on the toolbar, then drew the hardscape. I then changed its 3D type to Aligned Slab (I did not choose a modifier - the Grade Objects act as the modifier). I then chose Edit Surface Modifiers and added the Grade Objects to define the levels - I could also have used Stake Objects to define spot heights.)


@Anna Guzman I have had a look at your file. Some problems come to light immediately: the geometry is too far away from the internal origin, and that is why there is nothing to see when you choose to edit the Surface Modifiers. If you scroll to 0, you will see it is there. To resolve this, run the command Tools > Origin > Center Drawing on Internal Origin, and this will move it closer, but retain the user (world) coordinates. Alternatively, if there is a project coordination point defined for this project, draw a circle that is centred on this point, that is large enough to cover all the geometry, and then run the Center Drawing on Internal Origin command. This will place the coordination point on the internal origin and retain the world coordinates. You can then delete the circle.

Now, onto the Hardscape:
The 3D geometry is all on one design layer, with the Hardscapes. An Aligned hardscape will align to:

  • Other Hardscapes
  • Walls
  • Extrude (their tops)
  • Roadways
  • Site Modifiers
  • Massing Models
  • Landscape Areas
  • 3D Polygons

Your file has extrudes all around the hardscape, and these are affecting the alignment. 

So, in my quick example, I created a new Design Layer and moved the 3 Hardscapes onto this layer. For the ramp hardscape, I ensured that I changed Align with Objects on to a custom layer, and selected the layer which has the hardscapes on it. 
I then edited the surface modifers, and added 2 grade objects either side of the hardscape just at the lower end of the ramp - you will see them. I have made their elevation quite extreme so hopefully it will be obvious what you need to do to control the slope. Remember you can also add Stakes. You may also wish to explore the option to add Profile lines as these can also control the top surface of the hardscape.


I suggest you both study the help sections on this, as they are helpful!:
http://app-help.vectorworks.net/2020/eng/index.htm#t=VW2020_Guide%2FSiteModel2%2FAligning_hardscapes_with_existing_geometry.htm%23XREF_61436_Aligning&rhsearch=aligned hardscape&rhsyns=

http://app-help.vectorworks.net/2020/eng/index.htm#t=VW2020_Guide%2FSiteModel2%2FModifying_aligned_hardscapes.htm%23XREF_54692_Modifying_aligned&rhsearch=aligned hardscape&rhsyns=



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