3D-MC: How to create a sloping plane surface

Learn how to create a sloping plane surface using 3D-MC.

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3D-MC: How to create a sloping plane surface

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Sloping Plane Surface

Creating a sloping surface is similar to a flat plane surface with the addition of defining the direction of the slope(s).

Creating a Sloping Plane Surface is a simple process.  The operator will need to enter three elements for the sloping surface.

  • Elevation: Will set the elevation of the surface as it did when creating a flat plane surface.  The elevation is typically set after the surface has been defined.
  • Main Slope: Will define the direction of orientation of the first slope and set the slope grade.  This step is typically done first.
  • Cross Slope: Will define the cross slope of the planar surface.

Sloping Plane Surface (Setting Direction/Grade)

Setting the Main Slope can be achieved a few different ways.

  • Direction/Grade: If a GPS heading of the main slope is known the operator can enter the heading value in the Direction Box and set the grade at the defined heading.

Sloping Plane Surface (Setting Direction/Grade From Points)

Setting the Main Slope can be achieved a few different ways.

  • If the operator has a set of points (pad corners) in the points file they can select the points using the select point button.
  • When using the select point option the Direction/Grade will be set from the location and elevation of the points.
  • The direction and grade can be edited by simply selecting either the direction or grade and changing the values.
  • A positive or negative slope is determined by defining the direction of the points selected.  From A to B a slope heading uphill is positive.

Sloping Plane Surface (Setting Direction/Grade from Topo Shots)

The operator can use the A/B button to take survey shots using the machine to set the Direction and Grade.

  • Survey shots will be taken from the last point of the steering the machine used.


  • In this example two hubs have been provided to set Direction and Main Slope. (A/B)
  • Position the blade near the Hub A and touch the topo shot button associated with A.
  • Move the machine and position the blade near Hub B and touch the topo shot button associated with B.

The Direction between Hub A/B will be set as will the Grade.

  • The Grade will need to be manually set as the hubs were for alignment only.
  • The N,E,Z values were set from Hub A.

Sloping Plane Surface (Setting Elevations)

The operator can set the proper elevation by either:

  • Selecting a point from the points file which has the correct elevation
  • Take a topo shot on a on a known elevation 

When using the topo shot option be sure to position the blade where the last steering point was used and set the blade to match the known elevation. 

Sloping Plane Surface (Crossfall)

The Crossfall can now be entered.

  • When looking in the direction from A to B a positive slope will flow up tot the right.

The arrows on the Grid lines are showing the direction of fall.