Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 13, No. 11)24 Mar, 2008
This Week's Software Tips
Place Text Along an Object
Sharing Sheet Sets
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Maybe a future release of AutoCAD will address this issue and allow layouts of opened sheet sets to be modified by concurrent users -- similar to xrefs.
Automated Engineering Stamp
(defun trap1 (errmsg) (setvar "insunits" iu) (setq *error* temperr)
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Good thinking! Keep in mind that insertion locations can vary a lot (requiring user input), so an AutoLISP routine might not work for everyone. For some users, the Stamp command along with AutoCAD's Digital Signature feature might be exactly what you need. Also be sure to check the client's standards. Some may require drawings to be real-time signed (not a photocopied signature image).
AEC Object Clean-Up
"I recently discovered the command ExportToAutocad. This will essentially Wblock your entire drawing into a new AutoCAD file and remove all AEC objects. It will also flatten 3D objects such as wall styles created in AutoCAD Architecture. This has been a lifesaver for me. The command can be a little complicated, though. When you enter it at the Command line, you have a series of options:
Export options [Format / Bind / Bind Type / Maintain / Prefix / Suffix / ?] <Enter for filename:
"Some of these are useful, but typically I just want to remove the AEC objects without binding or changing file formats. In addition, the command is very tedious to type into the Command line. So I wrote a LISP routine for this command:
(defun C:exp ()
"This will execute the command and create a new file in the same folder with the same file name and a '-fixed' suffix added to it. I simply overwrite the original file with this new one and all AEC objects are removed."
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Be careful with this procedure. It dumps a lot of valuable information that another drafter included in the drawings for a purpose. Consider upgrading to the appropriate vertical release to maintain this extra information or at least have the original creator of the drawings send you a version sans the AEC objects.
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Good tip! Add to that the Windows Character Map (accessed through the Mtext Editor), and users will have a vast array of characters at their disposal. In the Mtext Editor, right-click then select Symbols / Other to access this feature.
Note: These follow-up tips have not been tested by the Cadalyst Tip Patrol.
Follow-Up: Isolate and Unisolate Layers
Ron Adams followed up on the same tip, saying, "In addition to the excellent information already shared for Isolate and Unisolate layers, I have altered the ACAD.PGP file to automate the following commands as well, and am quite happy with the results.
MicroStation Tip: Study Model Rendering for the Masses
Today's MicroStation tip courtesy of Axiom and MicroStationTips.com.
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Opportunities & Honors
Russian Magazine Wins Gold Medal
Rapid Prototyping Contest Winners Announced
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The Week's New CAD and Related Products
General Software: ZEdit Pro
CAD: TurboCAD Professional v15
MCAD: Abaqus BioRID II
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Mark Your Calendar
Bellingham AutoCAD User Group Meeting
3D Modeling Symposium Berlin
Synergis Field to Finish Civil 3D Workshop
2008 ESRI Southeast Regional User Group Conference
12th Annual Portland CANstruction Competition
CPDA Design/Simulation Workshops
2008 ESRI Education User Conference
2008 ESRI International User Conference
2008 Society for Conservation GIS Conference
2008 ESRI Health GIS Conference
2008 ESRI Europe, Middle East, & Africa User Conference
For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Cadalyst.com.
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Autodesk Technical Evangelist Lynn Allen guides you through a different AutoCAD feature in every edition of her popular "Circles and Lines" tutorial series. For even more AutoCAD how-to, check out Lynn's quick tips in the Cadalyst Video Gallery. Subscribe to Cadalyst's Tips & Tricks Tuesdays free e-newsletter and we'll notify you every time a new video tip is available. All exclusively from Cadalyst!