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AutoCAD Tutorial

AutoCAD 3D Modeling: 3D Faces

August 1, 2003


The simplest form of a surface in AutoCAD is a 3DFace. 3DFaces are flat surfaces with 3 or 4 straight edges. The 3DFACE command is used to create 3DFaces. The following tutorial shows you how to create such surfaces and how to fix the edge problems with the EDGE command.

Note: This tutorial is designed for AutoCAD 2004 though might be applicable for other releases.

1. Download r16_3d_faces.dwg.

Note: If you are using AutoCAD 2002 or an earlier release download r15_3d_faces.dwg.

2. Open the drawing in AutoCAD. It contains a square, a hexagon, and a Wireframe box [Figure 1].


Figure 1 - Click on image to enlarge

3. Invoke 3DFACE (Draw > Surfaces > 3D Face).

4. Click the corners of the square (clockwise or counterclockwise).

5. Press Enter to exit the command. The square is covered with orange lines [Figure 2].


Figure 2 - Click on image to enlarge

Note: After invoking 3DFACE by clicking the first 3 corners a triangular surface will be created. If you press Enter the face will appear. You can specify the forth corner to create a quadrilateral flat face. Still you have the chance to continue with the command. If you continue the last two corners of the previous face will be considered as the first two corners of the current face. Therefore you need to specify one or two corners to create the new 3D face. Press Enter to halt the command.

6. Alter the shade mode to Flat Shaded [Figure 3].


Figure 3 - Click on image to enlarge

7. Invoke 3DFACE.

8. Click all the corners of the hexagon in clockwise or counterclockwise direction. The hexagon is covered with a surface [Figure 4].


Figure 4 - Click on image to enlarge

Note: Actually the hexagon is covered with 3 separate faces.

9. Alter the shade mode to 2D Wireframe. The edges of faces are visible inside the hexagon [Figure 5].


Figure 5 - Click on image to enlarge

10. Invoke EDGE (Draw > Surfaces > Edge).

11. Select the internal edges to toggle their visibility.

12. Press Enter to exit the command. The internal edges are not visible anymore [Figure 6].


Figure 6 - Click on image to enlarge

13. Cover the side faces of the box with 3D Faces. Try not to use more than one 3DFACE command [Figure 7].


Figure 7 - Click on image to enlarge

14. Alter the shade mode to Flat Shaded [Figure 8].


Figure 8 - Click on image to enlarge


About the Author

Alireza Parsai is the founder of cadpanel.com. He is a mechanical engineer with more than 12 years experience with AutoCAD. Alireza is an Autodesk Authorized Author, the AutoCAD consultant for Al Khawarizmi Institute, a contributing editor for Augiworld magazine, a writer for CAD Digest, an instructor for AUGI Training Program, and an elected speaker for Autodesk University 2002. He has written 7 books in Farsi, 3 booklets in English, and more than 30 articles for different magazines and newsletters. You can reach him at alireza.parsai@cadpanel.com or visit his website www.cadpanel.com

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