Useful Model Viewing Options

Hello everyone!

Today I am writing about some useful features on the View and Show ribbon tabs that many people do not know about.  Or maybe you know these options are available but you don't ever use them.  These ribbon tabs include options for the most common view tools, such as zoom, pan, rotate and common view angles, but they also have some other very useful tools that are worth learning about.

Display Mode

There are three display mode buttons located on the View ribbon tab.  These buttons determine if the model is being represented as Single Line View, Wire-Frame View or Solid Model View.  The default setting is Single Line View mode, but users may work in any mode and have the ability to switch between modes for best results. 

                                                        Single Line View


                                                        Wire-Frame View


                                                  Solid Model View

The user has the option to change the number of wires represented when the Wire-Frame View mode is chosen.  This option can be found under View > Settings.  The user can change the number of wires to any number from 4 to 20 under "No. of Wires."  There are also many other View Settings options available in this dialog to review.

View Ports

There are also three viewports available on the View ribbon tab that the user can choose to view the model in.  The View Port buttons determine whether the modeling area is split up into one, two or four viewports based on the Single Viewport, Double Viewports and Quad Viewports options.  The different viewport options help the user to easily work in a view which is convenient and can be switched back and forth while modeling and/or viewing results.  To modify or use the View ribbon tab common tools in a specific viewport, make sure to select the viewport first so that it appears highlighted with a yellow box around it.


                                                     Single Viewport    

                                                   Double Viewports


                                                    Quad Viewports

Show Options

There are a lot of different Show Options available on the Show ribbon tab.  These options include showing Pipe Properties, Temperature, Pressure, Additional Weights, Concentrated Forces, Imposed Displacements, Thermal Anchor Movements, Valve Data, Flange Data, Tee Data, Soil Properties, Length, Reference Points and Joint Type and User SIF Data.  The Show Pipe Properties pull down menu allows you to choose between graphically viewing the model by Pipe Diameter, Schedule, Wall Thickness, Pipe Material, Pipe Identifier, etc. in a color plot.  The Show ribbon tab also includes a Reset Show Options button that can be used to reset all of the options selected to the default settings.  While selecting Show > Show Options allows the user to access even more show options, it is helpful to know that most of these common option buttons are available with one simple click directly on the Show ribbon tab.  

                                                   Show Temperature                                              


                                   Show Valve, Flange & Tee Data      


                                                          Show Length    


Selecting Show > Show Options opens the Show Options Dialog box.  This dialog box provides all of the different options to plot and review data and components in the model.  The user can choose to plot Pipe, Structure and Support Properties, Component Data, Xtra Data and Color Plots and also Show Connected Segments here.  The user can also Preview the updates to the model plot before accepting the changes.  This is a very useful dialog box, take the time to look at it and understand the options.  Again, most but not all of these common option buttons are available with one simple click directly on the Show ribbon tab.

Show Insulation

The Show Insulation button on the Show ribbon tab can be used to display the insulation on any piping in the model with some transparency applied.  It does not give specific properties about the insulation, but simply shows which piping has insulation.  The color of the pipe insulation can be changed by going to Tools > Settings > Colors and choosing Pipe Insulation.


Measure Distance

The Measure Distance button on the Tools ribbon tab acts as a graphical distance calculator.  It can be used to check distances and clearances between pipes and structures.  The user would select the Measure Distance button and then choose the FROM and TO points and click Calculate down in the Status Bar.  Remember that the Status Bar is in the lower left corner of the screen.  The user can choose the FROM and TO Points by clicking on points in the model with the mouse or typing in the name of the points.  The DX, DY and DZ Offsets and the straight-line distance will then be displayed in the Status Bar.  To stop using the Measure Distance tool, simply click Close on the Status Bar.


I hope this information about these model viewing tools was useful to you!  There are many easily accessible options on the ribbon tabs in AutoPIPE that are often overlooked or forgotten about.  Try to get used to using these tools, as the simple one-click button method will make your modeling and viewing results more efficient!