View a Curve Plot

Display a curvature plot to see how the curvature varies along a curve.

For any point on a curve (except lines), a circle can be constructed that resembles the tangent direction and the curvature of the curve at that point. The inverse of the circle's radius, calculated as (1.0 / radius), is the curvature of the curve. The curvature plot draws curvature values sampled at a number of points along the curve as vectors normal to the curve and with a length proportional to the curvature. The end points of the normal vectors are then connected to form a curve. This latter curve is used to verify whether the NURBS curve is "fair" or not. The "fairness" of a curve is a completely subjective matter. In general, a curve is fair if its curvature plot is continuous and as smooth as possible.

  1. Select a curve or many curves.
  2. Launch the curve plot tool.
    • From the View menu, select Curve Plot.
    • Press Ctrl+Shift+P.
  3. Click Apply to select objects and then click "Apply to selected objects."
  4. Choose from the following options:
    Note: The curvature plot updates when you modify the curve.
    Option Description
    Scale Define the scaling factor for the normal vectors. The default value of 5 is suitable for most cases.
    Density Define the number of curvature samples per point. The default value of 10 is suitable for most cases.
    Color Click Choose to select the color used to display the curvature plot.
  5. Close the curve plot control panel to disable the curvature plot.
    Note: The curvature plot stays visible when the tool is open. You can continue modeling with the curve plot control panel open.
  6. Optional: To temporarily turn off the curvature plot, click Disable.
  7. Click X to exit the tool.