Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
A 2-D CHART COMBINED WITH A 3-D CHART
A 2-D CHART COMBINED WITH A 3-D CHART
If you attempt to create a combination chart that uses any of the 3-D chart types,
you’ll find that Excel does not allow this. If you must create such a chart, the only
option is to create separate charts and overlay one on top of the other.
Figure 8-57 shows an example of a 2-D line chart overlaid on a 3-D column
chart. I stripped the line chart of all elements (except the line itself) and made the
Plot Area and Chart Area transparent. I then carefully sized and positioned the line
chart so that it aligned properly with the cone chart.
When overlaying charts, the stack order of the objects is very important. The
top chart in the stack must be higher in the stack order. To change the stack
order of objects on a worksheet, select the object, right-click, and use the
Order menu on the shortcut menu. When working with charts, you must
select the chart object (not the chart). To select the chart object, press Ctrl or
Shift while you click the chart.
Figure 8-57: A 2-D line chart on top of a 3-D column chart
When overlaying charts, it’s important that you keep the value scales identical.
In this case, I set the value scale for both charts manually. It was still necessary to
adjust the height of the line chart to force the axes to line up. Letting Excel adjust
the scaling often results in mismatched scales and an inaccurate chart.
Overlaying charts is a manual task and will almost always require a bit of trial
and error to get things looking right. It can also be a frustrating experience because
Excel has a tendency to resize chart elements automatically when you make
changes to a chart.
COMBINING TWO CHARTS IN ONE FRAME
Figure 8-58 shows a 3-D pie chart and a 3-D column chart, presented as a single
unit. These are, in fact, two separate charts. The “frame” effect results from adding
a border around a range of cells. Both charts have a transparent Chart Area and
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