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Moving Around in the 3D Window

Updated July 08, 2021

This article applies to:
  • Terrain 3D
  • Terrain Forestry
  • RoadEng Civil
  • RoadEng Forestry
This Knowledge Base article is an excerpt from one of our tutorial files. The files referenced in the article, as well as the full tutorial document, are available in our Tutorial Installer.  

In this exercise, you will use the Zoom, Pan and Rotation functions to change the 3D view. You will also use the current point to help navigate in the 3D window and to help to find corresponding points in Plan and 3D views.

Note: Refer to Getting Started section for file install folders (<RoadEngCivil> and <Defaults and Layouts>).

  1. Open the Terrain Module.

  2. File | Open <RoadEngCivil>\DTM\Topo with issues.terx

  3. Select View | New Window | 3D. A 3D window will appear on your screen. The rendered surface should be visible; if it is not, press Zoom Extents in the View tab of the tool bar (this does not always work if your model contains stray points).

  4. View | Tile Vertically to show Plan and 3D windows side by side (see figure below).

Figure 1: 3D and Plan Windows depictng file Topo with issues.terx

Now we need to move around in the two windows to find problems with the model. In the 3D window, Zooming and Panning behave in a similar way to the Plan window (see previous exercise Moving Around in the Plan Window).

  1. Use the zoom tools in the tool bar or the middle mouse wheel button to move around in the 3D window.

Rotating the 3D image

The 3D window also allows you to rotate the image.

  1. In the 3D window, Click and drag with the left mouse and notice how the 3D view changes. It may take a little practice to get the hang of it.

3D Window Options

  1. Make sure you have a current point defined by clicking with the selection cursor on a feature in the Plan Window. Note that the current point is represented by a three-dimensional red cross in the 3D window.

  2. Right click in the 3D window | Active Window (3D) Options... The dialogue box shown below will pop up.

Figure 2: 3D Options Dialogue Box

The 3D Options dialogue box allows you to change many of the rendering options including camera and target positions. You may wish to experiment with some of these options if time permits. Press <F1> or the help key for more information.

  1. Select the Contents tab. Turn on the Track Mouse check box.

  2. Select the View tab. Enable the View Current Point. This sets the target position to the current point.

  3. Press OK to accept the change and close the dialogue box.

  4. Select different current points in the Plan window with the mouse, or by typing the <Ctrl-N> or <Ctrl-B>. Notice how the 3D view tracks the current point.

Notice that when you move the mouse over the 3D surface, there is a cursor tracking your position in the Plan window. Similarly, if you move the mouse over the Plan window, a line will appear in the 3D window indicating your position.

If you click on the surface (left mouse), the view will change to center that point, and if you click and drag (left mouse) the image will rotate about the point you first click on.

Note: If the 3D window is empty or if it doesn’t rotate in a predictable way, use the 3D window options to change the mode to View Current Point (Right click |Active window (3D) Options…). You must have current point selected. This will scroll the image into view and change the rotation point to the current point.

  1. When you have finished experimenting with the 3D window, File | New. Do not save changes.