Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 15, No. 19)24 May, 2010 By: Cadalyst Staff
This Week's Software Tips
Batch Plot with Sheet Sets and Selection Sets
Bart Hays uses sheet sets to manage his drawing sets, especially for batch printing. "I use the Sheet Selections function to create sets for individual vendors ... our CNC (computer numerical control) vendor only needs to see the CNC parts, our metal shop only needs the metal drawings, and so on. " View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Reduce Printing Time
Craig Montgomery uses AutoCAD's Publisher and sheet sets to increase efficiency when printing drawings. "Considering that most of us are in a hurry when plotting multiple files, having these sheet sets saved can save valuable seconds, even minutes." View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Dale Miksch gives us some tips to consider before publishing your drawings. "When I use Publish to send drawings to the printer, I always check the following first." View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Following are this week's reminders, tidbits, and miscellaneous updates from the Cadalyst Tip Patrol.
Sheet sets are useful for more purposes than just batch printing. They can help you manage your project files, to a certain degree. List every drawing or exhibit in the sheet set for every department; that way anyone that needs to print or see a file can find it easily.
Sheet sets can contain metadata for your project. Add a value to the Custom properties, and any drawing can reference it. For example, if you have a finish floor elevation for a building, it will be used in many drawings. If it changes, you have to go back through the entire set, find each occurrence, and update it. However, if you used fields to reference that custom property in your project's sheet set, you only have to change it once in the Sheet Set Properties Manager and all of your drawings will be updated instantly — and you won't have to open a single file.
Undocumented Hatch Command Options
Ralph Grabowski, publisher of upFront.eZine, tells readers about hidden options he has discovered in the new Hatch command in AutoCAD 2011. Details are outlined in a post on his WorldCAD Access blog.
May Hot Tip Harry Tips
Hot Tip Harry Needs Your AutoCAD Code!
Cadalyst's Hot Tip Harry (aka R. K. McSwain) is on the lookout for the latest and greatest customized routines and hatch patterns for AutoCAD. Exercise your programming prowess and submit the results to firstname.lastname@example.org. If Harry accepts your tip for publication, you'll receive $25 to spend in the Cadalyst Store. Review our tip submission guidelines and send your code today!
Set Current Dimension Style
Theodorus Winata, a design engineer, sent in a routine that allows you to set the current dimension style by selecting a dimension object. This is a good example of automating built-in commands. View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Lock and Unlock Viewports
Theodorus's second tip for the month allows you to lock or unlock all viewports with one quick command. View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Hook Hatch Pattern
Ted Kruysman calls this custom hatch pattern "Hook" because it is an array of J-shaped figures that resemble the hooked side of a hook-and-loop fastener. View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Neil Culver's tip comprises four text rotation routines, which either rotate text to absolute rotation angles of 0°, 45°, and 90°, or rotate it 180° relative to its current angle. View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Metric and Imperial Tools
Dave White submitted routines that he uses for assistance when working in drawings with mixed imperial and metric measurements. Draw a circle in an imperial drawing by specifying the diameter in millimeters, or specify alternate units for the Offset command. View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Dynamic Text Curve Align
First-time contributor Lee McDonnell submits a LISP routine that allows you to dynamically place text or mtext along a curve object, which in this context refers to a spline, arc, circle, or LWpolyline. View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Create Scale-Based Dimstyles
Scott Botting sends us a routine for creating scale-based dimension styles. This routine is designed to work in metric drawings, but the code can easily be adapted for imperial scales. View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Nemetschek Allplan Campus Marks First Year
The Nemetschek Allplan Campus online portal, which provides PDF documentation and a comprehensive international forum, is celebrating its first anniversary. Students of architecture and civil engineering can download Nemetschek Allplan software via the portal and use e-learning tools free of charge.
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Updates BIM Guide
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has released an updated version of its BIM Guide for project delivery. With this update, VA reportedly becomes the first large owner to require that construction product submittals use the COBIE (construction operations building information exchange) standard as the methodology to electronically transfer post-construction building information for facilities management.
Deals & Freebies
ARES CAD Solution Betas Available for Mac and Linux
Graebert, a provider of CAD solutions for desktop and mobile devices, has updated the beta versions of its ARES 2D/3D CAD software for Mac OS X and Linux, and is accepting a new round of beta testers for these products. The latest versions include new features, fixes, and specific support for DWG 2010 via DWGDirect 3.2.
CadAvenue Demos Mech-Q Engineering Routines for AutoCAD
CadAvenue.com, a U.S.-based office operated by ASVIC and the makers of Mech-Q engineering software for AutoCAD, has announced that its software suite is now available for AutoCAD 2011 and AutoCAD LT 2011 32- or 64-bit. Users can request free demo versions of Mech-Q's piping, mechanical, structural, and ducting routines, as well as the full suite.
Spatial Offers Trial of 3D ACIS Modeler, 3D InterOp R21
Dassault Systèmes subsidiary Spatial is offering a 90-day evaluation of its 3D ACIS modeling engine and 3D InterOp Suite, a CAD file translation tool. Release 21 (R21) of the software delivers new capabilities for engineering and manufacturing applications, improves application developer productivity with a streamlined interface, and adds support for large-scale point clouds.
Opportunities & Honors
Bentley Institute Launches Learning Qualification Program
Bentley Systems' Bentley Institute has launched a Learning Qualification program, designed to help Bentley users gain recognition for milestones in professional learning and skills development. It builds on existing Bentley Institute programs, including Bentley LEARN, that help infrastructure professionals advance their careers and infrastructure organizations to secure new work.
Autodesk Plant Solutions Team Builds Customer Council
Autodesk is seeking volunteers to join its Plant Customer Council. Members will share their opinions; complete short surveys; participate in beta and usability testing, as well as test drives; and possibly be visited by Autodesk Plant Team members in their offices.
Océ Names ProRepro Green Reprographer of the Year
Digital document management company Océ has announced the winner of its third annual "Green Reprographer of the Year" award. California-based ProRepro was selected from a pool of entrants who outlined their achievements in the area of green business practices and highlighted how these efforts have assisted their customers to meet their own sustainability goals.
Alibre Sponsors Gadget Design Contest
Alibre is sponsoring the MAKE magazine/Design News"Gadget Freak" contest, which encourages inventors to create gadgets incorporating electronic components that involve sensing, motion, timing and/or networking elements. The contest winner will receive $1,000 and a chance to sell their gadget in kit form in the Makers' Market.
Books & Training
Third Edition of Finnish Design Yearbook Now Available
Design Forum Finland has published Finnish Design Yearbook 2010–11, edited by design journalist Anne Veinola. The overview of contemporary Finnish design covers more than 200 products, designers, and manufacturers, and includes articles and interviews.
Mark Your Calendar
Seeing is Believing: CS5 Production Premium Road Show
Through June 10, 2010
These free, in-depth seminars are intended to acquaint digital artists with the new Adobe Creative Suite 5 Production Premium, including Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe After Effects, Adobe Photoshop Extended, and more. Read more
Webinar: CGschool Visualization Courses
June 7–11, 2010
Each of these five free, one-hour webinars consists of an overview of a course currently offered at the CGschool. Topics include V-Ray Advanced, 3ds Max Advanced Modeling, and Beginner to Intermediate Mental Ray. Read more
August 30–September 2, 2010
Las Vegas, Nevada
Intergraph 2010, the international conference for users of the company's engineering and geospatial software, will feature nearly 200 sessions led by industry authorities and customers from around the world. Read more
AVEVA World Summit — Americas
October 18–20, 2010
Las Vegas, Nevada
AVEVA has replaced the ISEIT and AMUM conferences with the AVEVA World Summit, designed for current or future AVEVA customers from the process, power, marine, and offshore industries. Read more
For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Cadalyst.com. Are you hosting an event that you would like to include in our calendar? Submit details at least two weeks in advance to email@example.com.
What's New at Cadalyst.com
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ArchiCAD Insights Tutorial: ArchiCAD's Rotated Views
Use ArchiCAD's Oriented Views feature to work with models at various angles. Read more
Autodesk Fortifies Digital Prototyping with Ground-Breaking Inventor Features and New Products for 2011
Direct manipulation, as-you-go visualization, and design automation are new for Inventor, and Inventor Publisher and Alias Design for Inventor join the product line. Read more
In her easy-to-follow, friendly style, long-time Cadalyst contributing editor Lynn Allen guides you through a new feature or time-saving trick in every episode of her popular AutoCAD Video Tips. Subscribe to the free Cadalyst Video Picks newsletter, and we'll notify you every time a new video tip is published. All exclusively from Cadalyst!