Welcome to 3DCADForums

Join our CAD community forums where over 25,000 users interact to solve day to day problems and share ideas. We encourage you to visit, invite you to participate and look forward to your input and opinions. Acrobat 3D, AutoCAD, Catia, Inventor, IronCAD, Creo, Pro/ENGINEER, Solid Edge, SolidWorks, and others.

Register Log in

Moving things around in the tree


Super Moderator
In another thread, Leemans69 asked the following question:

I do, however have another question for you if you get some time. It seems that I am somewhat restricted as far as moving geometry (planes, surfaces, pads, pockets, etc...) around in the tree.

For instance I seem to get some error messages when attempting to copy and paste. Also if I want to create a mirror or translation of solid and have the result be created in another part body or geometrical set, it won't let me.


Super Moderator
Assuming you are working, like most CATIA users, with Hybrid Design disabled:

There are different methods to move things in the CATIA Part tree. It depends on which branch of the tree you are dealing with. Geometry that defines a CATPart can be located in 3 different branches:
Part Body - the solid model features that define the part
Geometric Set - wireframe and surface geometry (typically construction geometry)
Ordered Geometric Set - wireframe and surface geometry (typically construction geometry)​

Points, Lines, Planes, Surfaces, etc. are normally in a Geometric Set. These can easily be rearranged in the Geometric Set or moved to a different Geometric Set by using the contextual menu item CHANGE GEOMETRIC SETS, select the same or different set, and choose the geometry to move before. With Geometric Sets (unordered) there are no restrictions regarding how geometry is organized.

Geometry that is in Ordered Geometric Sets can also be moved with the CHANGE GEOMETRIC SET menu item. But there are restrictions as far as the order goes. Parent geometry must come first (higher in the tree), with child geometry after (lower in the tree) than the parent. Because of this restriction, most users do not use Ordered Geometric Sets.

Solid features (such as Pads and Pockets) are in the PartBody branch of the tree. With solids, the sequence is very important. The shape of the part can change based on the sequence (order) of features. Features can be moved with the contextual menu item REORDER, but they can only be moved before/after another feature that is not highlighted in yellow.

Sketches are unique. A Sketch can be moved to any of the three branches listed above. When a Sketch is moved to a Geometric Set, it will also appear in the Part Body under the feature that is using the Sketch. Sometimes, Sketches are used for several features, in which case they will appear multiple times in the tree.
Last edited:


Super Moderator
You also asked about Copy & Paste.

Using the normal Copy & Paste will duplicate the geometry or feature into the same or different branch of the tree. It is common to copy & paste something like a Plane and then edit the copied Plane to a new location, rather than create a new plane.

There is also the Paste Special option, which provides even more possibilties when copying things.

What kind of errors are you getting when you Copy & Paste something?