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I found this great guide for creating tubes from Bezier curves, but I am working with an imported set of straight lines that came from a shapefile (geographic data format). I would like to render these as 3D pipes, but this guide seems to only work with Bezier curves. I do not have the option to change the "Bevel Object" on these straight lines.

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Is there a similar way to just transform all of my straight lines into 3d tubes? I'm not worried about it looking perfect, I just need to see a 3d approximation of them.

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    $\begingroup$ I can't see how your "set of straight lines" is, but I assume they're just lines, no faces, like a "tube map": then for an approximate result you can try to convert them to curves (alt-c in object mode) then use the same approach (bevel object), perhaps. $\endgroup$ – m.ardito Sep 11 '17 at 12:52
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You can simply convert the straight lines into a curve then give them the bevel you want.

To convert the straight lines : Press Alt + C (Select Curve).

By this step the straight lines is converted to curve , so you can easily give it the bevel and control it also as a curve.

To give it bevel - When it is a curve - :

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