Importing Symbols with Custom Counter Holes

Reference Number: KB-03021
Last Modified: June 22, 2018

The information in this article applies to:

Chief Architect Premier or Chief Architect Interiors


When I import a symbol from an outside source, such as an oval sink, and it is placed into a base cabinet, it creates a rectangular countertop hole. How can I customize the hole it creates in the counter?


The sink symbols that exist in Chief's library have CAD Blocks that have been custom made for those symbols. These CAD Blocks include a Custom Countertop polyline set to act as a hole in the counter, allowing a custom size/shape hole. To customize this hole, you will need to create a customized CAD Block for the symbol you imported.

To import the symbol

  1. Select File> Import> 3D Symbol , browse to the desired symbol and click Open.

  2. On the Import 3D Symbol dialog:

    • Select the appropriate Category. It defaults to Fixture (Interior), which is perfect for this example.

    • Check Add Symbol To Library.

    • Press OK.

      More detailed instructions for importing 3D Symbols can be found in Knowledge Base Article 00117: Importing a 3D Symbol from an Outside Source

After the import process completes, the symbol will attach to your mouse allowing you to click to place it, but this is not necessary at this time.

To customize the hole in counter

  1. Go to CAD> CAD Block Management , locate the CAD Block entry named the same as the imported symbol, select it, and click Insert.

  2. Click to place the CAD Block in a blank space in the plan.

  3. Select the CAD Block and click the Explode CAD Block edit button.

    It is imperative to not miss this step. If the original CAD block is blocked again it will not show in the Symbol Specification dialog in the next section.

  4. Using the CAD tools, such as Oval  or Ellipse , draw an enclosed polyline the size and shape of the desired hole.

    Note: You may also take this time to customize the CAD Block in whatever way you want - sometimes the CAD Block that is automatically generated will contain visual aspects you do not care to show in plan view, such as extra lines and drains.

  5. Select the newly created polyline and press the Convert Polyline edit toolbar button, choose Countertop and press OK.

  6. In the Custom Countertop Specification dialog that displays, check the Hole in Countertop box and press OK.

  7. Group select the entire CAD Block, including the newly formed Hole in Countertop and click the Make CAD Block edit toolbar button.

  8. Select the Open Object  edit button to open the newly created CAD block and make note of the name of the block.

To associate the CAD block with the symbol

  1. Select the entry for your 3D Symbol in the User Library, right-click  on it, and choose Open Symbol .

  2. In the Symbol Specification dialog:

    • On the 3D panel make any appropriate adjustments to the symbol's origin and Rotation. Typically, this means adding a negative value to the Z position equal to the distance the symbol should be lowered from the bottom of the symbol down into the counter top, and rotating the symbol if it's not currently right side up.

    • On the 2D Block panel, select the CAD block you just created.

      Note: The Hole in Countertop polyline will not display here, though it will still cut a hole in a countertop where the object is placed. 

    • On the Options panel, under Special Placement, set it to Inserts into Countertop and press OK.

Now that the symbol in your library has been updated to use the new CAD Block containing the countertop hole, it can be dropped into base cabinets with an appropriately sized and shaped hole