How do I draw a French Balcony?

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cbe's picture
How do I draw a French Balcony?
SoftPlan Version:
2014 Plus

I am working on a detached garage.  I need to show a French balcony at each of the French doors on the plan.  Has anyone here ever attempted this and if so, is there a way to show it in 3D?


In case anyone hasn't seen a french balcony, I am attaching a pic of one as well as the garage where I need the balconies. 




- Cory

Bill Wimberley
Bill Wimberley's picture
French Balcony

There are a couple ways you can do that in 3D. Both are rather time consuming. But with practice they aren't that bad.

Planes and Images

Create a clean image of the front and another of the side of the balcony. You could do this by either drawing a 2D version of the balcony in SoftPlan and filling the spindles and railings with Solid Paint or you could take your image you have and remove everything but the spindles and railings in an image program such as Photoshop. If you are going to use SoftPlan's Paint you will probably need to use Adjust Size to make the balcony much larger, say 5 or 10 times larger, so that the paint will fully fill in the spindles. Make the spaces between the spindles a solid color that is not used elsewhere in the image. Make the top left pixel of the image the same exact color as the spaces between the spindles. Draw Planes for the front and sides using Draw ⇒ Solid ⇒ Plane. Give the planes the proper height and offset to form the balcony. Give the Planes a different type. For example you could make the front Solid 1 and the sides Solid 2. In SoftView select Edit Surface and select the front plane. Give it the front balcony image and check "Scale" and "Transparent". Scale will make the image cover the entire plane. Transparent will look at the top left pixel of the image and any other matching pixels will be transparent so all you will see are the spindles and railings. Repeat for the sides using the side image.

3D Model

Either find a similar 3D model or create one in Sketchup or SoftPlan. You can create one in SoftPlan by drawing the railings and spindles using Draw ⇒ Solid ⇒ Polygon 3D in a new drawing file. Give the railings and spindles a "Height" equal to the depth of the railings and spindles. Be sure that the Solid types you assign are not used elsewhere in your project. Repeat for 1 side in a new drawing so that your front is in one drawing and the side is in another. Move the front drawing into the model area and create a 3D of the model. Export to a 3D format such as DWG or 3DS. Repeat for the side, removing the front from the model and replacing it with the side drawing. Use the Symbol Wizard to create a symbol of the front of the balcony. Repeat for the side. Place the front and 2 copies of the side symbol in your plan to form the balcony front and sides. Use a Solid Cube for the floor.

Bill is the owner and maintainer of

Cadworks's picture
French Balcony

You can get one from Sketchup 3D wharehouse. Find the one you like (French Balcony search). Save out of sketchup. (get rid of the lady first)

Use the symbol wizard to import. Place on plan and change offset until it is where you want