Reduce Clipping on a 20km Square Model

Hi Everyone.

Having spent some time stitching together Geolocate terrain data for an area approx 20kmx20km (to check views from a development of houses in the middle of a mountain range) i am now having severe clipping issues when trying to check views from inside the house models. Whilst ‘clipping’ is nothing new the normal tricks are doing nothing to fix the problem.

  • I have tried reducing the scale of the model by 10,000
  • Tried moving the core of the model (where the camera is) to the origin point 0,0,0
  • Tried copying and pasting the whole thing into a new file (wont copy, too big)
  • Tried importing file into a new file.
  • Deleted all scenes and advanced cameras.

Really hoping not to have wasted a few hours putting together all the terrain for nothing.

Can anyone suggest anything, plugins, settings etc?

Trimble, could you maybe just fix this clipping issue thats been a problem for 10+ years!!


Hey there! In your particular case clipping usually occurs when you have a very large model and you also have a geometry somewhere that’s very small and you’re trying to zoom in on that geometry. It depends, on the model. It can be because of the houses or you might have a stray wandering edge somewhere in the file. If you could share your file, maybe we could have a look and find the bugger.

Hi VahePogossian. Thanks for your reply.
Sadly i cannot share the model due to confidentiality issues. It is also over 450mb in size!!
I think you are correct with the small objects vs larger terrain comment. I had xref’d the house models into the terrain model and when i zoom extents they are a very small element in the hole model. (compared to the terrain)
I wonder if i was to simplify the ‘rooms’ to a simple box with an opening (to review views) if this might help.
Will give it a go and report back.

Status Report…
Removed all the houses to isolate the terrain. Turns out the terrain itself clips the viewport when you get too close.
Guess i have to reduce the extents of the terrain shown. Kind of defeats the purpose of building this model. :frowning:

Clipping is frustrating indeed. I bet it’s bad on a 400km model. How about cutting the file into 4 geographic sections, n s e w and taking your pictures in various directions from different files?

I had another thought … Could you use an external renderer? As an experiment I made a 4 sq mile plane and put a small box on it. Then I zoomed in on the box until it was clearly clipping bad in the foreground and sent that to my external render program. Lo and Behold… no clipping in the render, a full cube in the foreground. The hard part of this solution for you might be in lining up the view you want to send to a renderer if you can’t see the foreground. But a realtime render like Visualizer (won’t work with 17) could help you navigate in a separate window?

Hey Endless…
Thanks for the emails.
I use Vray w/ SketchUp and it does work as you note, but its so heavy a model that the processing times are proving frustrating.
I had hoped to keep it in its native programme.

I had another thought. take a series of still shots from the model and stich them together in photoshop. Then apply this to a wrap around background plate and rotate it to align the view from a known positon. Its not a 3D model as such ut it may solve the problem for now.

I cant understand how Trimble (and Google Previously) could know about this issue for so long and not deal with it (I had this issue back in 2002 when i started using sketchup. Haven’t had this problem in years and assumed it was fixed)

Yeah, I get that. Surround the houses with a sphere painted with the view on the inside. Sounds tedious, or just a series of flat photos of terrain, placed outside the window strategically. Could you turn the terrain off and take a picture of the inside of the house, then switch visibility and take a picture from the same position of the terrain only, then matte the two in photoshop? workarounds all.

I have no experience with your particular situation, but you may be able to use Google Earth to get rough estimates of viewlines from particular locations. I’ve used it in the past to plan mountaineering trips so that I’ll know what landmarks should be visible from my routes.


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