Available with 3D Analyst license.
Selecting features interactively is a quick way of defining a subset of features, streamlining your other GIS actions: 3D editing, 3D analytic processes, viewing attributes, and so on. ArcScene has three different selection tools for clicking or dragging in the view. Sometimes a particular tool will be better suited to your current use case, and this topic will help distinguish the options, as well as provide specific requirements and usage tips. The most effective 3D selection tool can be quite different depending on factors such as base heights, available surfaces, and the importance of what it is you need to select.
For each selection tool the following selection behaviors and keyboard shortcuts are the same:
- You can click or drag to select features.
- Press and hold SHIFT when clicking or dragging to add features to the current selection.
- Press and hold CTRL when clicking to deselect features from the current selection.
- Press and hold CTRL + SHIFT to select from the current selection and deselect the remainder.
- Press and hold SPACE to navigate the 3D view, while still keeping the current selection tool active.
- Clear a selection in the 3D view by clicking away from the selected features, or click the Clear Selected Features button on the Tools toolbar.
Using the Select By Screen Rectangle tool
This is the default selection tool on the Tools toolbar and will probably be your most frequently used selection method. The behavior of this tool is also mimicked in the Edit Placement tool when conducting a 3D edit session. It allows you to individually click features for selection or drag a flat, rectangular box across your screen. Everything drawn inside that view will be selected. This means sometimes features you don't see (behind larger features in front) will also be selected.
Dragging direction gesture
When dragging the selection rectangle, there is a difference in behavior depending on the direction from which you initiate the gesture. If you click and drag the box in a left-to-right direction, only those features completely within the shape will be selected. If you click and drag in a right-to-left direction, features completely and partially within the shape are selected.
This tool is useful if you want to select features quickly no matter if they are associated with a surface or not. As well, it is convenient because any way you navigate the view, the rectangle is always in the same orientation on the screen.
- Click the Select By Screen Rectangle button on the Tools toolbar.
- Select the desired features by dragging a rectangular box across the 3D view.
- Optionally, you can just click an individual feature to select it. Press and hold SHIFT if you want to add more than one feature to the selection.
Using the Select By Draped Envelope tool
This tool requires that a surface be part of the 3D view. In ArcScene, this is any custom surface you provide. Once you click and drag you will notice that the digitized shape will follow the custom elevation surface you click on. This behavior is also known as surface hugging and is the primary feedback feature for this tool. Even if the visibility of the surface is turned off, the outline of the draped envelope will mimic the pattern of the surface as feedback. It provides slightly greater selection restrictions than the Select By Screen Rectangle tool because it requires a surface.
The draped envelope option will select all features that are within the 2D envelope, including features that are draped on, or floating above and below, the surface.
A surface, such as a raster, tin, or LAS dataset, is required.
This tool is useful for selecting features where you want to ignore the heights of the features, such as all gas and electric features in a neighborhood.
- Click Select Features By Draped Envelope from the Selection drop-down menu on the Tools toolbar.
- Click and drag over a surface in any direction, keeping the left mouse button pressed.
- Drag a draped shape in both x and y directions.
Using the Select By 3D Box tool
If you need to select a 3D volume of features, perhaps within a stacked set of other features, then use the Select By 3D Box tool . The behavior that distinguishes this tool from the other 3D selection tools is that it allows you to more easily and precisely select features that are vertically located between other features.
You need to start your selection from a surface or a feature. If you first click in open space where no features exist, then the starting location of the 3D box will default to a height of zero.
This tool is useful for selecting stacked features such as transportation networks within buildings.
- Click Select By 3D Box from the Selection drop-down menu on the Tools toolbar.
- Click and drag to digitize the first stage of the 3D box. You will see only the base x,y plane of the box.
- Press and hold Z and move the pointer to extend the height of your box. You can drag in a positive or negative direction.
- Release the pointer.