Changing the Display of Walls in 3D

Reference Number: KB-00378
Last Modified: January 14, 2020

The information in this article applies to:

Chief Architect Premier or Chief Architect Interiors


The walls in my model are visible in floor plan view and I can select them and open their specification dialog, but when I create floor camera or floor overviews, they are not visible. Why aren't my walls visible in these 3D views and how do I correct this?


There are several reasons why walls that are visible in floor plan view might not be visible in 3D views. In X12 and newer, Hide Camera-Facing Exterior Walls could be turned on in your camera view. Another option is that the walls are specified as Invisible in their specification dialogs. A third reason is that the "Walls, Normal" layer is not set to display in 3D views. Finally, it is possible that the ceiling heights of the rooms that the walls are enclosing are set to 0, which prevents the program from generating walls upward. 

To show or hide camera-facing walls in 3D

Starting in X12, walls facing the camera can be toggled to show or hide in that view. This allows you to view the interior from the exterior.

  1. Create a 3D camera view by navigating to 3D> Create Perspective View Create perspective view parent tool icon or 3D> Create Orthographic View Create Orthographic View parent tool icon.

  2. Select  3D> Camera View Options> Hide Camera-Facing Exterior Walls Hide Camera-Facing Exterior Walls tool icon.

    Walls facing the camera are hidden from view so you can see inside the structure

  3. If you want to see your exterior walls again, you can return to 3D> Camera View Options> Hide Camera-Facing Exterior Walls Hide Camera-Facing Exterior Walls tool icon to toggle this functionality off.

To restore the display of walls in 3D

  1. Click one of the walls to select it, then click the Open Object  edit button.   
    Make sure Invisible is deselected under wall specification

    • On the General panel of the Wall Specification dialog, make sure that the box beside Invisible is unchecked.

    • If unchecking the Invisible check box does not resolve the problem, proceed to step 2.

  2. Select Tools> Layer Settings> Display Options  from the menu, select the Camera View Set from the Available Layer Sets drop-down list, then make sure that the various wall layers, particularly Walls, Normal are set to display.

    • If you are using a different layer set for your camera views than the default Camera View Set, make sure to select it instead.

      Make sure that the walls, normal layer is set to display

    • Click OK

    • If turning on the Wall layers in 3D does not resolve the problem, proceed to step 3. 

  3. Select Edit> Reset To Defaults from the menu.  

  4. In the Reset To Defaults dialog:  

    • Click the radio button beside All Floors.  

    • Check the boxes next to: Floor Heights, Ceiling Heights, Wall Top Heights and Wall Bottom Heights.  

      Reset floor, ceiling, wall top, and wall bottom values to default

    • Click the OK button to close the dialog and restore the default floor, ceiling, wall top, and wall bottom heights in your plan.

  5. Select Build> Floor> Rebuild Walls/Floors/Ceilings  from the menu. 

    You can also reset the floor and ceiling heights of rooms in your plan on a room-by-room basis in the Room Specification dialog; however, Reset to Defaults is a faster and more thorough option.