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Creating a Bell Footing

Reference Number: KB-00532 Last Updated: 12-09-2014 08:23 AM

The information in this article applies to:

Chief Architect Premier or Chief Architect Interiors or Chief Architect Lite

QUESTION

How can I create a bell ­footing?


ANSWER

As the name implies, a bell footing is a bell-shaped footing at the base of a ­pier.  While there is not an automatic bell footing tool in Chief Architect, creating one manually is a straight-forward task using items from the Geometric Shapes library category.

In this example, a bell footing is created from the bottom up by stacking cylinder and pedestal objects.  We will also learn how to place the footing under a foundation pier as well as how to add this footing to the Library Browser for use in any plan.

To create a bell footing

  1. Open the Chief Architect plan in which you would like to create a bell footing.

  2. Select Tools> Reference Floors> Down One Floor to go to the Foundation floor.
    • If you do not have a foundation, select Build> Floor> Build Foundation from the menu.

    • In the Foundation Defaults dialog, specify a Pier foundation, and click OK.

  3. Select Library> Library Browser from the menu to open the Library Browser window.

  4. Navigate to the Chief Architect Core Catalogues> Shapes library category and click the to display its contents, expand the Cylinders library, and select the Vertical Cylinder (large).

  5. When you move your cursor into the drawing area, it will display the Geometric Shapes icon.



    • Click once in an empty space floor plan view near your foundation to place a cylinder at that location.

To modify the cylinder

  1. Click on the cylinder to select it, then click the Open Object edit button.

  2. In the Geometric Shape Specification dialog:



    • Specify the Height of the bottom section of the footing.

    • Specify the Width and Depth of this bottom section.

  3. Click OK to close the dialog and apply the change.

To create the bell footing

  1. Return to the Shapes library category:

    • Expand the Pedestals library and select the Cylindrical pedestal.

    • Click once in floor plan view near the cylinder created in step 4 to place a pedestal at that location.



  2. Click on the pedestal to select it, then click the Open Object edit button. In the Geometric Shape Specification dialog for this object:



    • Specify the Height of the next section of the footing.

    • Specify the Width and Depth.

    • Specify the Floor to Bottom height. This will be the same as the Height of the cylinder below it.

    • Click OK to close the dialog and apply the change.

  3. With the pedestal still selected, use the Move edit handle to move it into position directly over the cylinder.



    • Hold down the Ctrl key on your keyboard to override move restrictions and place the pedestal accurately.

  4. To see the results so far, select 3D> Create Orthographic View> Backclipped Cross Section , then click and drag a camera arrow through the two geometric shapes.



    Click on the pedestal to select it so that the two separate shapes are more distinct.



  5. Close the cross section view to return to floor plan view.

To continue the bell footing

  1. Return to Floor Plan View.

  2. Return to the Geometric Shapes library category and place a second Cylindrical pedestal in your plan, near the first two objects created above.

  3. Click on the pedestal to select it, then click the Open Object edit button. In the Geometric Shape Specification dialog:



    • Specify the Height of the next section of the footing.

    • Specify the Width and Depth.

    • Specify the Floor to Bottom height. This will be the sum of the Heights of the two items beneath it.

    • Click OK to close the dialog and apply the change.

  4. With the second, smaller pedestal still selected, use the Move edit handle to move it into position directly over the first two objects.



  5. To see the results, again select 3D> Create Orthographic View> Backclipped Cross Section , then click and drag a camera arrow through the three geometric shapes.



To place the footing under a pier

  1. Click on the Select Objects button, then hold down the Shift key on your keyboard.



    • Click and drag a rectangular selection marquee around the stacked geometric shapes created above.

    • When you release the mouse button, all three objects will be selected as a group.

  2. With the objects group-selected, use the Move edit handle to move it into position under the pier.

    • Do not worry about exact placement at this time: we will adjust its location in a moment.

  3. Select 3D> Create Orthographic View> Backclipped Cross Section , then click and drag a camera arrow through the footing.

  4. In the cross section/elevation view, select Window> Zoom from the menu, then click and drag a rectangular zoom marquee around the pier and footing.

  5. Click on the top pedestal shape of the footing to select it, then Move it so that it is centered under the pier and at the proper height.



  6. Repeat step 4 with the two other shapes to center the footing under the pier.



To add the footing to your library

  1. Before closing the cross section view, click the Material Eyedropper button.

    • Click on the pier to load its concrete material into the Material Painter.



    • As soon as you do, your cursor will display the Material Painter icon.

    • Click on each of the geometric shapes to apply the new material to its surface.



    • To select a new material, click the Material Painter button and choose a new one from the Select Library Object dialog.

    • When you are finished using the Material Painter, click the Select Objects button.

    • Close the cross section view to return to floor plan view.

  2. Click on the Select Objects button, then hold down the Shift key on your keyboard.

  3. Click and drag a rectangular selection marquee around the stacked geometric shapes created above. When you release the mouse button, all three objects will be selected as a group.
  4. Click the Make Architectural Block edit button to group the three shapes into a single object.

  5. Click on this new architectural block to select it, then click the Add to Library edit button to add the architectural block to the Library Browser.

    • You can then choose to Rename this object, and move it to the appropriate folder that you have created for it.



The bell footing architectural block that you added to your library has the default concrete material used for foundation walls. When you place it in a plan, it will be located at the height that you placed the geometric shapes at before it was blocked. This height will be relative the floor that it was placed on.