A wireframe model is
an edge or skeletal representation of a real-world 3D object using
lines and curves.
can specify a wireframe visual style to help you see the overall
structure of 3D objects such as solids, surfaces, and meshes. In
older drawings, you might also encounter wireframe models that were
created using legacy methods.
Wireframe models consist only of points, lines,
and curves that describe the edges of the object. Because each object
that makes up a wireframe model must be independently drawn and
positioned, this type of modeling can be the most time-consuming.
can use a wireframe model to
- View the model from any vantage point
- Generate standard orthographic and auxiliary
- Generate exploded and
perspective views easily
- Analyze spatial relationships, including
the shortest distance between corners and edges, and checking for
- Reduce the number of prototypes required
ISOLINES system variable
controls the number of tessellation lines used to visualize curved
portions of the wireframe. The
FACETRES system variable adjusts
the smoothness of shaded and hidden-line objects.
Methods for Creating Wireframe
You can create wireframe
models by positioning any 2D planar object anywhere in 3D space,
using the following methods:
- Use the
XEDGES command to create
wireframe geometry from regions, 3D solids, surfaces, and meshes.
XEDGES extracts all the edges on the selected objects or subobjects.
The extracted edges form a duplicate wireframe composed of 2D objects
such as lines, circles, and 3D polylines.
- Enter 3D coordinates that define the X, Y,
and Z location of the object.
- Set the default workplane (the XY plane
of the UCS) on which to draw the object.
- Move or copy the object to its proper
3D location after you create it.
Wireframe modeling is
a skill that requires practice and experience. The best way to learn
how to create wireframe models is to begin with simple models before
attempting models that are more complex.
Tips for Working with Wireframe
Creating 3D wireframe
models can be more difficult and time-consuming than creating their
2D views. Here are some tips that will help you work more effectively:
- Plan and organize your model so that
you can turn off layers to reduce the visual complexity of the model.
Color can help you differentiate between objects in various views.
- Create construction geometry to define
the basic envelope of the model.
- Use multiple views, especially isometric
views, to make visualizing the model and selecting objects easier.
- Become adept at manipulating the UCS
in 3D. The XY plane of the current UCS operates
as a workplane to orient planar objects such as circles and arcs.
The UCS also determines the plane of operation for trimming and extending,
offsetting, and rotating objects.
- Use object snaps and grid snap carefully
to ensure the precision of your model.
- Use coordinate filters to drop perpendiculars
and easily locate points in 3D based on the location of points on
To drop a perpendicular line from a 3D
point down to the XY plane
To create wireframe
geometry by extracting edges