Flipping Cross Sections in to a 3D Model

I am trying to take my cross sections from cad and flip them into a 3D model. Half of the cross sections flip over to 3D and look right along the aliment. The other half don’t sit on the alignment or it says "grids have no valid Cross-sections. I have gone through everything I think and have not been able to fix why only half of the sections flip over properly. I have attached a link to my project.

Here re the flipped sections Nathan - The issues that you had with the setup are as follows

  1. You had Style Multiple selected - the sections you have are type single

  2. You had your Max grid text distance from grid set to 5’ - I changed that to 0.5’. This I guess is the biggest issue that you had other than 1 above - the Grids layer defines the size (width x height) of the sections and is used to create a search box inside which it finds the content of a section. If you imagine that box as having a 0 extension around it. When you enter a value here like 5’ that adds 5 feet to the ends of all the grid lines, making the search area for each section larger so it can capture that that maybe falls outside the grid like the grid labels etc or in some cases linework of the sections that stick out the side of the grid (like you have in this example), however by making it too large, it can then find data in adjacent sections also which totally hoses the process and stops sections from converting like you experienced here. What I do is measure from the end of the grid line to the insertion point of the grid labels to find the distance needed - in this case the value is 0.4’ so I entered 0.5’ as that is greater than 0.4 but less than the distance to adjacent sections (above, below or right / left of the sections). The station label is picked up by a piece of text on its own layer above each section - the distance does not apply here. Just make sure that the value entered here doesnt increase the height or width greater than half the distance between any pair of sections.

  3. Station Text in this example is above the section - when I opened the file it said below?

  4. then I pick the 3D lines - pick all of the data, grids, station, offset and elev labels plus any lines that you want to flip in the process

  5. Pick the Station Labels, Gridlines and Grid Text layers - make sure that there are no duplicate lines (that includes Ticks plus grid lines for the same elevations or offsets ie delete ticks, and make sure that the outside lines of the grid are not a box or 2 or more sides of the section box, and make sure that there are no duplicates. Same for all the Text - it is not uncommon to find missing station labels or duplicate labels which will totally screw up the process.

Then select Plan view and you are good to go.


You may want to explode lines in plan view before you flip them to 3D - that way you can often build the surfaces needed faster in 3D after flipping

Sort out the data for the sections onto as many separate layers as needed / possible - the more separated the data by layer the easier it is to work with in 3D after flipping


In the sections some linework was sticking out the side of the sections - I extended the grid lines to cover those areas so that they get picked up - there is not enough room above or below the section to increase the search area in (2) above which would work in some cases - but in this case the bits outside the grid were up to 40’ outside and that means you have to extend the grids to provide the correct search area for the section data.

The enclosed file is I think complete


Nathan St Laurent.7z (129.8 MB)