So you’re excited about Autocad Civil 3D 2013 having the ability to create pressure pipe networks? You open the software and while creating a parts list, you realize some of the parts you need aren't created in the Civil 3D Content Library. What now, learn part builder? No way, too confusing and takes too much time. At this point, you might be thinking Autodesk added a useless feature to Civil 3D as far as your company is concerned. Well, reading this blog is going to change your view on that.
Some of the new features in Autocad Civil 3D 2013 don't necessarily jump out and grab you to let you know they're there. Those features include the ability to use the Autocad 3D capabilities to create a 3D solid and convert it into a part for use in a pipe network. The reason this is important is the way parts have been created in the past was using Part Builder which is a powerful parametric tool for creating pipe network parts. However, this tool is difficult to learn and takes some time to master. When you don't have that time to learn a new piece of software to create a pipe part, this method is an excellent alternative. The image below is of a 3d solid created in Autocad.
Once the part is created in the Autocad format, a new command called AUTODESKCONNECTIONPOINT can be Inserted to tell the part where it should connect to the pipes you are placing them on.
After we have determined the connection points, we can publish the part. Another new command called the PUBLISHPARTCONTENT will convert your part into a file to be placed on your network. Now that the part exists outside Autocad, we can add the part to our content library. A decision needs to be made on which library it should be placed. That library would be opened in the Content Catalog Editor or "CCE" for short. This editor can be opened in Windows 7 by selection the Start Button>All Programs>Autodesk>Autocad Civil 3D 2013>Content Catalog Editor. Here, You can open the library you would like to include the part in and import the part to the library.
With your part catalog complete, the parts can be used in a pressure pipe network in Civil 3D. This may be the easiest way to get the custom pieces and parts your company requires for their designs. For more information on this feature, the link below will open a document provided by Autodesk with the installation of Civil 3D 2013. If you are unable to download the file, and have Civil 3D 2013 installed, you can follow the directory below the link to find the file on your system.
C:\Program Files\Autodesk\AutoCAD Civil 3D 2013\Sample\Civil 3D API\Part Publishing Wizard\PartPublishingWizardUsersGuide.docx