Introduction to 3D Modelling

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AutoCAD is known for its 2d sketching and drafting features, but that does not mean it has any less features for 3d modelling. There are plenty of options and commands for a solid 3d model and modifying it to requirements.

There are a number of commands, here are a few of these;

Command/Shortcut: EXTRUDE / EXT
Location: Draw > Modelling > Extrude

This command lets you obtain a 3D object by extruding a 2D face along a line or path. You could create a cylinder, for example, by selecting a 2D circle and extruding it along a path. 

Command/Shortcut: REVOLVE / REV
Location: Draw > Modelling > Revolve

The revolve command creates a 3D solid by revolving a 2D object around an axis. 

Command/Shortcut: SWEEP
Location: Draw > Modelling > Sweep

Unlike the extrude command, the sweep command allows you to extrude 2D objects without the 2D face being orthogonal to the beginning of your path. 

Command/Shortcut: UNION / UNI
Location: Draw > Modelling > Sweep

This simple command lets you combine two objects to make one complete object. This is great for combining predefined 3D objects.


If you’re modelling in 3D, you should be taking advantage of the viewport feature. As we all know, 3D CAD models can be extremely complex—you have to be aware of every angle and view.

With that in mind, the viewport command allows you to split your drawing area into different windows to project multiple views of your model. You just need to type ‘Viewports’ into the command window, and a dialog box will pop up. You will be given options on how to display your model, e.g. into three sections showing top, front and right-side.

This is great if you need to observe your model from different aspects. If you make any modifications to one window, it will affect the other windows simultaneously. 

3d model autocad
Back to: Basics of AutoCAD

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