Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 13, No. 36)29 Sep, 2008
This Week's Software Tips
Quick Leader Attach
"Qlattach even works if the leader is to label an object in the opposite direction. Merely draw the quick leader without a tail, then use Qlattach in the same manner. The new leader gains a tail and moves to the beginning of the mtext of the original quickleader. Then move the tail end to the other end of the mtext. This leader will move with the others. The routine to grip, copy, and then hold the Shift key works again in this position as well, and Qlattach should be employed again. All the new leaders move with the mtext."
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Good tip! It will definitely save time with future editing of already completed drawings.
AutoCAD 2009 Tips
"The new Find Text toolbar is helpful because it does reduce the time for finding text in the drawing and replacing it if needed. The new toolbar prompts a slightly different dialog box with a "^" button (to open more options in the dialog box).
""The new Action Recorder option (found in Ribbon / Tools / Action Recorder) is very useful and has a lot of potential, especially for people who depend on running script files. I used it to xref a PE engineering stamp to a bunch of drawings. I initiated the Action Recorder, clicked on the Record button, then attached the stamp to current drawing like I usually do, from its proper location. Then I clicked on the Stop button in Action Recorder and followed the prompts to save it under some meaningful name. I then saved and closed the drawing, opened the next one and initiated Action Recorder again, clicked Play, followed the prompts, and the stamp was attached. You can add some intelligence to your recordings by including user input and inserting notes.
"To toggle on and off the ribbon bar when you need to save some space on your screen, use the CUI to create a new command and call it something like Ribbon Toggle. Add this code:
"Now you can add your new command wherever you like: toolbars, tool palettes, etc. Or, using CUI, drag your new command to Keyboard Shortcuts / Shortcut Keys Panel, and assign a keyboard key to it."
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Thank you, Len. The text editors in AutoCAD 2009 now resemble word processors like Microsoft Word and WordPerfect. The new Action Recorder, found in other applications as well, will be a big time saver.
Note: Follow-up tips have not been tested by the Cadalyst Tip Patrol.
Follow-Up: Rotate View in Paper Space
Shawn Evjen wrote, "In AutoCAD 2000, 2008, and 2009, and Architectural Desktop 3.3, I like the UCS to be rotated to the screen so that my arrays work properly. I have two routines I use, one to rotate the UCS and plan in model space or a paper space view. These are “2rt” for two-point rotate, and “world” to reset them. The “2rt” command asks for a base point and the X-direction. You can align the view to any line by selecting points along the line, or leave the default at 0,0.
"I would also replace the line (setq a1 (* a1 57.29578)) with (setq a1 (/ (* a1 180) pi)) because if you use the command five or six times, some of your lines will get skewed and not be true to ortho. At least that is the experience I had when testing my routines."
We received this from Sally A. Higgins: "I use paper space for plot setup with my title block only. All drawing is done in model space and then xrefed into the drawing containing the title block. The tabs are then set as needed for site, erosion, utility, etc., viewports. I also use the Dynamic View (DV) command with the Layer Manager. I've never used the Locked command and never had a problem as Layer Manager holds the view/windows. DV also does not affect the original model space UCS. In paper space, toggle (floating) model space. Type DV and select all or window all; use T choice to rotate to desired position, then X to exit. Check the window model scale to be sure it is still to scale; in some cases you may have had to zoom out to get all of the drawing. Now save the layer view with the Layer Manager. Note: This is not an actual rotate, so it does not affect your UCS in model space.
"In AutoCAD 2009, you have to be in floating model space to save the view. When layers are set as you want them, save the view using the Layer Manager icon. It will hold all your settings with no freezing needed. This allows me to move through my tabs with no unfreeze/freeze slowdowns. All my work is actually done in the model space mode, so I have no fear of losing or moving a viewport setting. And if I do, a simple reset at the Layer Manager brings the saved view back. Once the window view is saved in Layer Manager, there is no reason to return to paper space until it is time to plot.
"On long curving roads, where it is required to hold the road as close as possible to horizontal with the bottom of the sheet, this is a very fast and easy way to set up your sheets: Hold model space at the original UCS and rotate all views to save plot views with very little fuss."
MicroStation Tip: Editing Placed Dimension Text
Axiom offers many MicroStation Tips on its MicroStationTips.com Web site.
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Autodesk P&ID Productivity Study
2008 Market Report and Survey
New Whitepapers on Cadalyst's Whitepaper Library
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Deals & Freebies
Free 3D Communication, Documentation Software
Free New 3D Viewer
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Opportunities & Honors
Fifth Annual Extreme Redesign Contest
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The Week's New CAD and Related Products
Hardware: Ricoh Wide-Format Color Scanner
AEC: Data Reduction Software
GIS: Geo Blade Viewer
MCAD: Alibre Design v11
MCAD: RP Export Plug-Ins
CAD: VersaCAD 2008
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Mark Your Calendar
Webcast: ArchiCAD 12 -- Accelerating the Design Experience
ArchiCAD 12 Seminars: Accelerating the Design Experience
Webcast: BIM on Small Projects -- Focus on Residential
Gerber Technology: Software Users Conference
Webcast: Affordable BIM for Small Firms -- ArchiCAD Start Edition
Webcast: BIM on Mid-Size to Large Projects -- Focus on Commercial
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!