When working with Navisworks, quite often you will have quite a sizeable project in terms of area. In these cases, sometimes it’s difficult to take a good look at just the areas you need.

Many design packages allow you to create sections and Navisworks is no exception. Much like the others they provide views of a localised area of the project. Once the section is produced a viewpoint can be created to save it to be used later.

In this article, we will look at the 2 ways in Navisworks to create these useful views; Section Planes and Section Box. In this article, we will look at Section Planes.
Regardless of which method you are using you need to enable sectioning first, which is done from the ‘Viewpoint’ tab on the ribbon, see below:

navisworks section plane view enable sectioning

Once you have enabled sectioning the ‘Sectioning Tools’ tab will appear as below. This ribbon tab is only accessible when sectioning is active and it is from here you can choose the method by which you wish to create the section view.

navisworks section plane view enable sectioning planes

Once selected you may find that your model gets sectioned immediately depending upon what plane is active and its current position – see below screenshot where the model has been cut along the top.

navisworks section plane view enable sectioning top

Looking at the ribbon in the ‘Planes Settings’ panel we now need to work with the section planes to both activate them if required and manipulate them to give us the required results. In the below image I’ve opened the ‘Section Plane Dialogue Launcher’ which gives you a good interface to see what each plane is tasked to do and which one is currently active.

navisworks section plane view enable sectioning planes settings

As you can see from the above screenshot there are 6 section planes and you can choose which combination is used and to what direction the plane is going to intersect the model. In this case, plane 1 is active and its alignment is top.

The ‘Transform’ panel in the ribbon allows you to manipulate the section plane.

Move’ allows you to adjust the position to where the plane intersects and into a position relative to the object.

navisworks section plane view enable sectioning planes transform

Rotate’ enables you to adjust the orientation of the plane if you require a section that’s not perpendicular. You will also see in the plane settings panel below that the alignment is now ‘Custom’. Setting it back to ‘Top’ will reset the plane again.

navisworks section plane view enable sectioning planes rotate

Fit Selection’, positions the plane relative to what you have selected. Note the orientation of the pane is not adjusted.

navisworks section plane view enable sectioning planes fit selection

To use multiple section planes, simply activate them in the plane settings and set the orientation. As a default, each plane should be set in different orientations. Once they are set you can link them together so the move as one. See example below where front and top planes are linked.

navisworks section plane view enable sectioning link section planes

Once you’ve create the required section, save the viewpoint into your project so you can return to it later and don’t forget to give it a relevant name! :)

I hope this article has been useful. Also, check out section boxes in Navisworks, another way to create your sections. You can also learn from our experts how to best utilise this software by joining our Navisworks training courses

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