So, Rick over at Simply Civil 3D just posted about calculating volumes between two profiles. Now, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with the method he offered, I’m just going to offer a different solution.

Now, first off, you can’t calculate the volume between two profiles, Rick’s solution was to calculate the volume between two surfaces along an alignment and the two profiles are surface profiles of these two surfaces. You can calculate the area between two profiles but if all you have is profiles, you can’t calculate a volume. That being said, here is an alternative method to the problem.

Here’s the situation. I have an alignment and two surfaces and I want to know the volume between the two surfaces within 25′ of the alignment. Simply offset the alignment left and right 25′. When you offset an alignment, you’ll get a polyline. Draw line segments that close off the polyline and join it all into one closed polyline.

Next, we need to have something to calculate the volume from. Create a volume surface that uses the two surfaces that were used to create the profiles.  If you aren’t sure how to create a volume surface, click HERE. Once you have the volume surface created, you can calculate Bounded Volumes (Analyze Tab, Volumes and Materials Panel). It will ask you to select the volume surface and the bounding polyline and then will report the results at the command line. You can then copy and paste this as text into your drawing. The advantage to this method is it’s quick and easy to do. The advantage to Ricks method is the table that is created will dynamically update if the surfaces change and it will allow for the creation of a Mass Haul diagram.