Understanding MicroStation/J : A Basic Guide to MicroStation/J(R) 2D Drawing and 3D Modeling Using Smart Solids(TM) / Edition 1

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Understanding MicroStation/J covers the essentials of the both 2D drawings and 3D models including the new SmartSolids found in MicroStation/J.It continues the straightforward and easy-to-read format as seen in its predecessor, Understanding MicroStation 95/SE, a highly acclaimed and widely adopted textbook.Readers are shown actual screen captures along with "pointed" information that have proven to be exceptional features.MicroStation/J is simplified and streamlined into the basic essentials needed to learn and use the software from a beginning level. It also contains up-to-date information about Java and ProjectBank as well as the new productivity enhancements introduced in MicroStation/J.

The first fifteen chapters cover the use of CAD in two dimensions.Chapters 16-21 discuss three-dimensional topics, such as rendering, solid modeling with SmartSolids, and using 3D models to create drawings. The final chapter focuses on ProjectBank, a new concept in MicroStation, along with Java and object-oriented CAD.

Numerous examples and end-of-chapter Questions and Exercises give readers the opportunity to test their knowledge and practice what they've learned.This book can be used as either a course textbook or a self-instruction manual.It is geared toward engineering/architecture students but also addresses the needs of people working in industry, especially those involved in the field of transportation.

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Editorial Reviews

Illustrates the basics of creating 2D drawings and 3D models using the MicroStation/J program. Starting with the graphical interface, the text walks through the basic 2D elements of lines, circles, and text, and their modification and manipulation. The more advanced topics of cells, patterning, dimensioning, and reference files are then addressed. The final chapters discuss 3D rendering, solid modeling with the new SmartSolids feature, and using 3D models to create drawings. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780130257079
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
  • Publication date: 10/3/2000
  • Edition description: PACKAGE
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 558
  • Product dimensions: 8.31 (w) x 10.85 (h) x 1.14 (d)

Read an Excerpt



This book, Understanding MicroStation/J, follows in the footsteps of my successful previous text, Understanding MicroStation 95/SE. The text and its illustrations focus on the core software called MicroStation/J®. This includes the new SmartSolid™ technology used for 3D modeling that is now incorporated into the core product. This book continues the tradition of being an easy-to-read text covering the basics of creating 2D drawings and 3D models using MicroStation/J.

I have been using MicroStation® in my engineering graphics class since the fall of 1995. Throughout the years, I found that MicroStation can be intimidating, especially to someone new to CAD because of its overwhelming number of options and settings. I set out to create a text that shows you actual screen captures and concise explanations—all on the same page! Understanding MicroStation/J cuts through all the bells and whistles of the software and covers the practical essentials of MicroStation/J for the engineering and architectural fields. It is not intended to be an in-depth, extensive technical production reference. Rather, it is for the person wanting to learn the basics of MicroStation/J without having to sort through all the highly technical jargon. This straighttorward, concise presentation of a complicated subject is advantageous whether you are teaching yourself or others.

Several aspects of this book set it apart from others:

Extensive use of illustrations. These highlight the various tools' settings and options that appear in the dialog boxes of the software. You, the reader, can seeexactly what is being discussed since important points are indicated directly on the dialog box. You see information where and when you need it.

2D and 3D in a single book. You don't need to go out and purchase two large technical references to get started with MicroStation. This book covers the basics in both worlds.

Numerous examples. These show you how the software techniques and concepts covered are applied.

Exercises and questions. Included at the end of the chapters, these can be used in the classroom setting or for hands-on experience and review.

Understanding MicroStation/J is organized so that you learn to walk and then run through the power of MicroStation/J. The first fifteen chapters cover MicroStation/J in 2D. Starting with the graphical interface, the text moves quickly into basic 2D elements such as lines, circles, and text, and their modification and manipulation. Chapter 3, "Nifty Gritty," is a quick step-by-step example of how to create, edit, and print a simple drawing. The benefit of this chapter is that you can become productive early on rather than having to read several chapters before producing and evaluating a rough drawing. This is extremely important in a classroom setting but is also advantageous to any beginner because it exposes the power of the software. Chapters dealing with printing and measurements emphasize the concept that elements are drawn to represent real-size objects. Chapter 11 covers AccuDraw® and SmartLine®, topics that are easier to understand after some experience has been gained. Chapters 12 through 15 deal with the more advanced topics of cells, patterning, dimensioning, and reference files.

After experiencing the two-dimensional world, you are ready to work in three dimensions. Chapters 16-21 discuss several important 3D topics relevant to the beginning MicroStation/J user. Chapter 16 gives you the ability to view (and manipulate the viewing of) a three-dimensional design file. This ability is important even when you are not involved in the creation of the 3D model. The use of auxiliary coordinate systems in both 3D and 2D design files is discussed in Chapter 17 along with the advantage of using AccuDraw in 3D. Chapter 18 on rendering and visualization tools benefits anyone working with a 3D model. The chapter is set up so that existing files that come with MicroStation can be used to experiment with rendering. That way, when you go to the next chapter of creating models, you already know how to render them! Chapter 18 also includes an example showing how to produce a FIyThrough animation.

Chapters 19-20 deal with creating a 3D model. The emphasis here is on using SmartSolids to create and modify three-dimensional solid models. Chapter 19 focuses on the basic solid primitives and Boolean operations. Chapter 20 discusses using a 2D shape to create a 3D model as well as making modifications to the model. Chapter 21 covers Drawing Composition and its use in both 2D and 3D. With Drawing Composition, the 3D model itself is used to develop the standard engineering views, including sectioned views. Chapter 22 discusses Engineering Configurations, and some of the new technology, such as ProjectBank™ and Java ™. This discussion will give you some idea of the direction that MicroStation is heading.

Finally, the text includes an appendix that has information about the default settings of MicroStation/J seed files and the directory structure. Tables indicate the default view attributes, working units, active attributes, and other important details of seed files.

This text's contents are a result of what works and what doesn't (after many semesters of trial and error) in the simplification of a vast amount of information and techniques. Because this text covers the basics, there are numerous tools and utilities found in the software that intentionally are not covered. For example, this text does not cover tags, points, parabolic elements, grouping, multilines, and curves. Some of these are not widely used; others are just specialized extensions of the simpler tools covered in the text.

Understanding MicroStation/J is an easy-to-read guide to using MicroStation/J. It won't make you an expert, but it will give you a great foundation on which to base your knowledge of the software. You'll experience the important aspects of the software without all the pain of digging through extensive information. It is a great text to teach out of, but, most importantly, its format and coverage have a great track record. This approach has proven to be a considerable benefit to learning MicroStation—whether you're a student or not!


Many thanks to all the people involved in this project. First, I want to thank all of my students at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. They served as an informal advisory board and understood when I needed a coffee break during class! Thanks go to the Mechanical Engineering Department at UN-L for their past and present support and to the State of Nebraska Department of Roads for making material available for my use. The awesome image(s) of Nebula GNX used for this text were provided by Charles J. Wood of Jacobs Facilities Inc. located in Arlington, Virginia. My sincere thanks to Charles. The people at Bentley Systems, Incorporated are also acknowledged for their support of this project. Steve Ethofer of Clarinda deserves kudos for quick and reliable service for production testing. A big thank you to Rande J. Robinson of the North Carolina Department of Transportation, who reviewed the manuscript in its development. Rande's straightforward feedback was greatly appreciated.

Once again, I want to applaud the efforts of the folks at Prentice Hall. I am extremely grateful that they still had the patience to work with me! Thanks go to Debbie Yarnell, she inherited this project (and me) and did a commendable job. Thank you to Louise Sette and the entire production team at Prentice Hall for putting it all together. Special thanks to Steve Helba for remaining available even after his promotion. Many, many thanks to Katie Bradford for her hard work, encouragement, and understanding. She was a great asset to the project and again deserves a round of applause.

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Table of Contents

Ch. 1 Introduction to MicroStation/J 1
Ch. 2 Starting Up 11
Ch. 3 Nitty-Gritty Drawing 37
Ch. 4 Drawing Aids and Tools 53
Ch. 5 Printing a Hard Copy 93
Ch. 6 Lines, Circles, Arcs, and Polygons 111
Ch. 7 Text 137
Ch. 8 Measurements and Information 159
Ch. 9 Changes and Modifications 173
Ch. 10 Manipulation 203
Ch. 11 AccuDraw and SmartLine 227
Ch. 12 Cells and Cell Libraries 255
Ch. 13 Patterning 281
Ch. 14 Dimensioning 303
Ch. 15 Reference Files 337
Ch. 16 Special Considerations of 3D Space 361
Ch. 17 Auxiliary Coordinate Systems and AccuDraw in 3D 381
Ch. 18 Rendering and Visualization 395
Ch. 19 3D Modeling with SmartSolids 429
Ch. 20 Advanced Model Construction and Modification 463
Ch. 21 Drawing Composition 491
Ch. 22 Engineering Configurations, ProjectBank, and Java 535
App Seed File Information 543
Index 547
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