Identity Utility and Colors in Civil 3D

Tags spreadsheet, Layer Standards, CAD Standards, AutoCAD, Civil 3D, customization, standard keys, Major Key, Minor Key, color, layer color, ACI, RGB


The neuroscience behind how we visually identify details in the complexity of the world around us is fascinating stuff. Somehow our brains can and do make sense out of nonsense…or not. Ok. Maybe I’m a crazy person for spending way too much time trying to comprehend how this all works. None-the-less the mechanics and the specifics do matter.

The ability to quickly identify particulars on the screen by color plays a significant role in daily Civil 3D productivity. In Civil 3D terms…

Is that an Alignment?

What kind of alignment is it? What part of the alignment is that? Is it a design alignment or an existing condition? You can change the Civil 3D Feature named to anything you prefer.

The Framework for AutoCAD Civil 3D employs a Key-based and Pattern method for Layer Standards. We made significant improvements to that in Release 7. I’ve talked recently about our newly upgraded Layer Standards Spreadsheet Tools that add even more flexibility and robust adaptability.

Consistent Layer property assignments based on the classic Key System works to every Civil 3D user’s and their organization’s advantage. Better publishing and faster quality control are just a couple of obvious reasons to pay attention.

It should be of no surprise to anyone that this approach is based on accepted industry standards. We’re just innovative about how we apply it for civil engineers and surveyors inside of AutoCAD Civil 3D.

The Utility of Color

No identity politics is actually involved. Color diversity is a good thing. Color identification is one reason we’ve always been avid supporters of style based publishing – STB. In STB, color can be used for a lot more things than plot definitions. Yet somehow, we also manage to support an interchangeable version of CTB for those that demand old school. Color is truly liberated to always work for you in the Framework for Civil 3D.

The Search to Find the Blue Meanies

Someone again asked if we had a list of the standard colors employed for Utilities and other thematic uses inside the Framework. Obviously, the list is in the all the versions of the Layer Standards Tools and included in the on-line Members help. Site Members have access to this type of useful resource every day. Register for free.

The Magic of Color Beyond the Code
Get the Framework for Civil 3D

I don't know for some reason I think of color and the Yellow Submarine movie soundtrack starts playing in my head.
Here’s an out-take from our recently updated Identity and Color page. Since there are multiple tables, I included a short table of contents.

The following tables should copy over (be sucked up) into an Excel spreadsheet or Word doc and hence to PDF with little to no issue if you prefer those formats. Many Framework customers post them on their cubie walls.

The supplied AutoCAD ACI to RGB conversion table makes the biggest list and seems to be currently sought after.

Color Identity Resources

The following resources are supplied to help with color identification for users and
as an aid to customization in the Layer Standards Tools and Style Library.

Utility Color Ranges

Utility colors agree with typical APWA and USA Markup color shades where possible.
See the Last Digit Rules and screen background conventions for swaps of color ranges.

ACI Range

Utility

Key

Second Utility

Key

20-24

Electric

UTEL

Steam

UTST

30-34

Sanitary

UTSS

Street Lights

STLT

40-44

Fiber

UTFB

-

-

50-54

Gas

UTNG

Fuel Oil

UTFO

50-54

Traffic Signal

TRSG

-

-

60-64

Cable

UTCA

TV

UTTV

110-114

Storm

UTSD

-

-

120-124

Telephone

UTPH

Communication

UTCO

150-154

Water

UTWR

-

-

172-194

Irrigation Water

UTIR

-

-

200-204

Recycle Water

UTRW

-

-

210-214

Industrial Waste

UTIW

-

-

220-224

General Utilities

UTIL

-

-

 
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Classic AIA Utility Color Ranges

Utility colors agree with typical APWA and USA Markup color shades where possible.
See the Last Digit Rules and screen background conventions for swaps of color ranges.

ACI Range

Utility

Key

Second Utility

Key

20-24

Electric

POWR

Steam

STEM

30-34

Sanitary

SSWR

Street Lights

STLT

40-44

Fiber

FIBR

-

-

50-54

Gas

NGAS

Fuel Oil

FUEL

50-54

Traffic Signal

TRSG

-

-

60-64

Cable

CATV

TV

CCTV

110-114

Storm

STRM

-

-

120-124

Telephone

PHON

Communication

COMM

150-154

Water

WATR

-

-

172-194

Irrigation Water

IRRG

-

-

200-204

Recycle Water

NPW~

-

-

210-214

Industrial Waste

INDW

-

-

220-224

General Utilities

UTIL

-

-

 
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Color Range Named Themes

The table is provided to help identify typical color shade ranges by a set of typical theme names.

  • Styles in Styles library collections may refer to the list named themes for convience.
  • Even numbered ACI color ranges are named to keep the list of themes simple.
  • Odd numbered ACI color ranges are or may be employed in the Layer System and Styles.
  • Colors are applied by Keys in the Layer Standards Tools on the NewKeys sheet
    Precedence values are employed to calculate resolved Layer colors and properties for combinations of Keys
  • See the Subassemblies Code Tool for forced colors in General Feature Line, Marker, Link, Shape Styles.
    These and other Styles that employ forces colors are matched and relative to Layer Standards Key colors above.
  • See the Last Digit Rule in Layer Standards Tools documenation for lineweight, plot, and lineweight properties.
  • ACI color ranges that are swapped by default for screen background differences are listed here

ACI Range

Theme

Swap ACI

Swap Theme

Comments

1-9

AutoCAD

-

-

Optional

10-19

Reds

-

-

Optional

20-24

Browns

-

-

-

30-34

-

-

-

-

40-44

Yellows

-

-

-

50-54

-

150-154

-

Swapped

60-64

Limes

160-164

Blues

Swapped

70-74

-

170-174

-

Swapped

80-84

Greens

180-184

Purples

Swapped

90-94

-

-

-

-

100-104

PaleGreens

-

-

-

110-114

-

-

-

-

120-124

Cyans

-

-

-

130-134

-

-

-

-

140-144

PaleBlues

-

-

-

150-154

-

50-54

-

Swapped

160-164

Blues

60-64

Limes

Swapped

170-174

-

70-74

-

Swapped

180-184

Purples

80-84

Greens

Swapped

190-194

-

-

-

-

200-204

PalePurples

-

-

-

210-214

-

-

-

-

220-224

Pinks

-

-

-

230-234

-

-

-

-

240-249

Reserved

-

-

% Screens

250-255

Reserved

-

-

50% Screens

 
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ACI to RGB Conversion Table

The following table lists AutoCAD ACI numbers to RGB True Color values.
The list complies with AutoCAD 2017+ release equivalents. Older releases and Update versions may vary.

See the provided lookup sheet reference in STB Layer Spreadsheet Tools for example color representations.

Note that there are duplicate RGB values in this table supplied from official Autodesk sources.

ACI

R

G

B

RGB

1

255

0

0

255,0,0

2

255

255

0

255,255,0

3

0

255

0

0,255,0

4

0

255

255

0,255,255

5

0

0

255

0,0,255

6

255

0

255

255,0,255

7

255

255

255

255,255,255

8

128

128

128

128,128,128

9

192

192

192

192,192,192

10

255

0

0

255,0,0

11

255

127

127

255,127,127

12

165

0

0

165,0,0

13

165

82

82

165,82,82

14

127

0

0

127,0,0

15

127

63

63

127,63,63

16

76

0

0

76,0,0

17

76

38

38

76,38,38

18

38

0

0

38,0,0

19

38

19

19

38,19,19

20

255

63

0

255,63,0

21

255

159

127

255,159,127

22

165

41

0

165,41,0

23

165

103

82

165,103,82

24

127

31

0

127,31,0

25

127

79

63

127,79,63

26

76

19

0

76,19,0

27

76

47

38

76,47,38

28

38

9

0

38,9,0

29

38

28

19

38,28,19

30

255

127

0

255,127,0

31

255

191

127

255,191,127

32

165

82

0

165,82,0

33

165

124

82

165,124,82

34

127

63

0

127,63,0

35

127

95

63

127,95,63

36

76

38

0

76,38,0

37

76

57

38

76,57,38

38

38

19

0

38,19,0

39

38

28

19

38,28,19

40

255

191

0

255,191,0

41

255

223

127

255,223,127

42

165

124

0

165,124,0

43

165

145

82

165,145,82

44

127

95

0

127,95,0

45

127

111

63

127,111,63

46

76

57

0

76,57,0

47

76

66

38

76,66,38

48

38

28

0

38,28,0

49

38

33

19

38,33,19

50

255

255

0

255,255,0

51

255

255

127

255,255,127

52

165

165

0

165,165,0

53

165

165

82

165,165,82

54

127

127

0

127,127,0

55

127

127

63

127,127,63

56

76

76

0

76,76,0

57

76

76

38

76,76,38

58

38

38

0

38,38,0

59

38

38

19

38,38,19

60

191

255

0

191,255,0

61

223

255

127

223,255,127

62

124

165

0

124,165,0

63

145

165

82

145,165,82

64

95

127

0

95,127,0

65

111

127

63

111,127,63

66

57

76

0

57,76,0

67

66

76

38

66,76,38

68

28

38

0

28,38,0

69

33

38

19

33,38,19

70

127

255

0

127,255,0

71

191

255

127

191,255,127

72

82

165

0

82,165,0

73

124

165

82

124,165,82

74

63

127

0

63,127,0

75

95

127

63

95,127,63

76

38

76

0

38,76,0

77

57

76

38

57,76,38

78

19

38

0

19,38,0

79

28

38

19

28,38,19

80

63

255

0

63,255,0

81

159

255

127

159,255,127

82

41

165

0

41,165,0

83

103

165

82

103,165,82

84

31

127

0

31,127,0

85

79

127

63

79,127,63

86

19

76

0

19,76,0

87

47

76

38

47,76,38

88

9

38

0

9,38,0

89

23

38

19

23,38,19

90

0

255

0

0,255,0

91

125

255

127

125,255,127

92

0

165

0

0,165,0

93

82

165

82

82,165,82

94

0

127

0

0,127,0

95

63

127

63

63,127,63

96

0

76

0

0,76,0

97

38

76

38

38,76,38

98

0

38

0

0,38,0

99

19

38

19

19,38,19

100

0

255

63

0,255,63

101

127

255

159

127,255,159

102

0

165

41

0,165,41

103

82

165

103

82,165,103

104

0

127

31

0,127,31

105

63

127

79

63,127,79

106

0

76

19

0,76,19

107

38

76

47

38,76,47

108

0

38

9

0,38,9

109

19

88

23

19,88,23

110

0

255

127

0,255,127

111

127

255

191

127,255,191

112

0

165

82

0,165,82

113

82

165

124

82,165,124

114

0

127

63

0,127,63

115

63

127

95

63,127,95

116

0

76

38

0,76,38

117

38

76

57

38,76,57

118

0

38

19

0,38,19

119

19

88

28

19,88,28

120

0

255

191

0,255,191

121

127

255

223

127,255,223

122

0

165

124

0,165,124

123

82

165

145

82,165,145

124

0

127

95

0,127,95

125

63

127

111

63,127,111

126

0

76

57

0,76,57

127

38

76

66

38,76,66

128

0

38

28

0,38,28

129

19

88

88

19,88,88

130

0

255

255

0,255,255

131

127

255

255

127,255,255

132

0

165

165

0,165,165

133

82

165

165

82,165,165

134

0

127

127

0,127,127

135

63

127

127

63,127,127

136

0

76

76

0,76,76

137

38

76

76

38,76,76

138

0

38

38

0,38,38

139

19

88

88

19,88,88

140

0

191

255

0,191,255

141

127

223

255

127,223,255

142

0

124

165

0,124,165

143

82

145

165

82,145,165

144

0

95

127

0,95,127

145

63

111

217

63,111,217

146

0

57

76

0,57,76

147

38

66

126

38,66,126

148

0

28

38

0,28,38

149

19

88

88

19,88,88

150

0

127

255

0,127,255

151

127

191

255

127,191,255

152

0

82

165

0,82,165

153

82

124

165

82,124,165

154

0

63

127

0,63,127

155

63

95

127

63,95,127

156

0

38

76

0,38,76

157

38

57

126

38,57,126

158

0

19

38

0,19,38

159

19

28

88

19,28,88

160

0

63

255

0,63,255

161

127

159

255

127,159,255

162

0

41

165

0,41,165

163

82

103

165

82,103,165

164

0

31

127

0,31,127

165

63

79

127

63,79,127

166

0

19

76

0,19,76

167

38

47

126

38,47,126

168

0

9

38

0,9,38

169

19

23

88

19,23,88

170

0

0

255

0,0,255

171

127

127

255

127,127,255

172

0

0

165

0,0,165

173

82

82

165

82,82,165

174

0

0

127

0,0,127

175

63

63

127

63,63,127

176

0

0

76

0,0,76

177

38

38

126

38,38,126

178

0

0

38

0,0,38

179

19

19

88

19,19,88

180

63

0

255

63,0,255

181

159

127

255

159,127,255

182

41

0

165

41,0,165

183

103

82

165

103,82,165

184

31

0

127

31,0,127

185

79

63

127

79,63,127

186

19

0

76

19,0,76

187

47

38

126

47,38,126

188

9

0

38

9,0,38

189

23

19

88

23,19,88

190

127

0

255

127,0,255

191

191

127

255

191,127,255

192

165

0

82

165,0,82

193

124

82

165

124,82,165

194

63

0

127

63,0,127

195

95

63

127

95,63,127

196

38

0

76

38,0,76

197

57

38

126

57,38,126

198

19

0

38

19,0,38

199

28

19

88

28,19,88

200

191

0

255

191,0,255

201

223

127

255

223,127,255

202

124

0

165

124,0,165

203

142

82

165

142,82,165

204

95

0

127

95,0,127

205

111

63

127

111,63,127

206

57

0

76

57,0,76

207

66

38

76

66,38,76

208

28

0

38

28,0,38

209

88

19

88

88,19,88

210

255

0

255

255,0,255

211

255

127

255

255,127,255

212

165

0

165

165,0,165

213

165

82

165

165,82,165

214

127

0

127

127,0,127

215

127

63

127

127,63,127

216

76

0

76

76,0,76

217

76

38

76

76,38,76

218

38

0

38

38,0,38

219

88

19

88

88,19,88

220

255

0

191

255,0,191

221

255

127

223

255,127,223

222

165

0

124

165,0,124

223

165

82

145

165,82,145

224

127

0

95

127,0,95

225

127

63

111

127,63,111

226

76

0

57

76,0,57

227

76

38

66

76,38,66

228

38

0

28

38,0,28

229

88

19

88

88,19,88

230

255

0

127

255,0,127

231

255

127

191

255,127,191

232

165

0

82

165,0,82

233

165

82

124

165,82,124

234

127

0

63

127,0,63

235

127

63

95

127,63,95

236

76

0

38

76,0,38

237

76

38

57

76,38,57

238

38

0

19

38,0,19

239

88

19

28

88,19,28

240

255

0

63

255,0,63

241

255

127

159

255,127,159

242

165

0

41

165,0,41

243

165

82

103

165,82,103

244

127

0

31

127,0,31

245

127

63

79

127,63,79

246

76

0

19

76,0,19

247

76

38

47

76,38,47

248

38

0

9

38,0,9

249

88

19

23

88,19,23

250

0

0

0

0,0,0

251

101

101

101

101,101,101

252

102

102

102

102,102,102

253

153

153

153

153,153,153

254

204

204

204

204,204,204

255

255

255

255

255,255,255

 
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