AutoCAD can quickly convert 3D information into an easily editable 2D format.
AutoCAD is a software solution for both three-dimensional and two-dimensional technical drawings, suitable for engineers, architects and designers. Often, users look to convert three-dimensional (3D) information into a two-dimensional (2D) drawing format to gather editable data for drawing production. While a 3D model may contain more information than its flattened counterpart, users typically work in a 2D work-style when producing technical drawings, such as floor plans. Using the AutoCAD Express Tools allow users to quickly engage in 2D drawing creation without having to tediously trace information from a 3D source.
1. Open AutoCAD from the Windows Start Menu by clicking “Start,” “Program Files,” “Autodesk,” and “AutoCAD.” The application will start up in a new window.
2. Import the 3D Map into AutoCAD from the top pull-down menu. Click “File,” “Import/Export…” to open a new window in which you can browse your computer’s files. Double-click on the 3D map to import the file into AutoCAD. Make sure that the file is a “.DWG” formatted file so it can be read cleanly by AutoCAD.
3. Click on a location in your model space to insert the imported object into your CAD file. Allow for the import dialog to load and read the referenced file.
4. Type in “Flatten” into the command bar and press Enter. A new dialog will appear in the command bar asking you to select the object you wish to flatten. Click on the imported 3D map and press Enter. The 3D object will now be converted into a 2D drawing. The command can take several minutes to process if the imported map is very complex.
5. Save the flattened 2D drawing by clicking “File” and “Save” from the top pull-down menu.