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I'm designer and 3D artist and I'm translating my portfolio in German. I'm uncertain how to translate some specific design words, in this case:

(of a boat, yacht)

  • side cross section

I found Abschnitt, Ausschnitt and Sektion, but there is no evidence when I try to check on Google images: for example, when I write yacht sektion I don't find yacht cross sections.

PS: I even didn't find the word in any German glossary.

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

The most common translation will probably be "Querschnitt". This is any view that shows how an object would look cut in half, usually along a central vertical axis. You can say "Seitenquerschnitt" to emphasise that this is a side cross section, but since this should be rather obvious in your case (unless you're designing a very unsual yacht) it will sound like "side cross section seen from the side (not from above or below)" Duh! :)

"Seitenansicht" and "Seitenriss" both mean a mere "side view" that does not reveal the interior.

If you're talking about a building, "Aufriss" is correct ("elevation" - also usually not showing the interior). "Grundriss" is a building's floor plan.

"Sektion" is more or less correct, but rarely used - sounds rather medical to me. I wouldn't recommend it.

"Ausschnitt" usally just means "detail" but can sometimes refer to a bit of the object being cut away to show the interior. But this is never a cross section - I suppose you'd say "with a section of the hull removed" or something.

"Abschnitt" means "section" in the sense of "part".

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thanks to everybody, it was very helpful. – Ste Nov 16 '12 at 12:19
Note for a boat, for example, a side cross section is a Längsschnitt, while a Front/Rear cross section is a Querschnitt. English thinks "seen from the side, then cut into", German thinks "cut lengthwise, then look at cut" – tofro Jul 19 at 14:41

Aufriss, Seitenriss, Kreuzriss, Grundriss - may depend on the exact direction of view. (As you say "side cross section", it should be "Seitenriss" or as is apparently more modern: "Seitenansicht von links bzw. rechts")


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