Clean Up Lines with AutoCAD's Change Command

26 Oct, 2015

The Change command is an old command, but a trusty one (especially if you work on drawings created by AutoCAD amateurs). Join Autodesk Evangelist Lynn Allen as she shows you how to quickly clean up lines that don’t meet perfectly, and how to force lines to be orthogonal.

Video Transcript

Hello there, this is Lynn Allen. Thanks for joining me for another AutoCAD tip, courtesy of Cadalyst magazine. I hope you are having a great week so far. Mine's going pretty well.

Today I'm going to share with you an add-on to a tip that I gave you five years ago. I'm sure you've seen all of my video tips since, right? I'm sure I look exactly the same as I did five years ago, right? That would be nice. I'm going to share with you a tip that has to do with the Change command. The Change command has been around since the very early days of AutoCAD. That means that it was back when dinosaurs roamed the Earth. It is an old, dusty command. But I'm telling you it comes in handy. It can do some things that takes many more steps in the new commands inside of AutoCAD.

For example, if you take a look at this drawing, these lines look like they are going horizontal, but they are off by just a little bit. We've all worked with people who think they know AutoCAD, but they really don't. They probably shouldn't be using it.

This command comes in handy when you are dealing with people like that. I want those to be horizontal, all right? There are variety of different ways of doing it, including erasing them and doing them again. Let me show you how it's done with the Change command. The Change command is so old that you have to type it in. It's not in the Ribbon or menu or anything; it's not worthy of that, apparently.

I'm going to grab these three lines that are not horizontal. Here's the catch. You have to have the Ortho on, otherwise very different events will occur. Now basically what you are going to do (let's turn on my object snaps), you pick the point that you want to use as the new endpoint for these lines where the x is, and you'll see it straighten them all out. It kept the beginning points, the start points of the lines, and I just modified the other so they will be horizontal. And then you can change the endpoints if you needed to. Nevertheless, they are horizontal. Yay! Saved me some steps. Better than drawing them all over again.

So here's another situation. Those lines look like they all converge on that corner. But then, have you ever done this? You zoom in, and you find out they did not use object snaps. It's not that hard, people! So what do you do? I suppose you could fill it with a zero degree radius. You could erase them and start all over again. I'm going to show you how to do it with just one command — the Change command. Easy steps.

Let's go back in the Change command. Now this time I need my Ortho off, otherwise they are all going to end up going horizontally or vertically. That's not what we want. I'm going to come in here, and I'm going to select all of these objects. Now you are going to pick the point where you want the real convergence point to be — the end point of all those lines. Which one do you want that to be? Let's zoom in. I'd like it to be that point right in there, right in the middle. Now watch all the lines. Check it out! One command. One step. It's all fixed. You don't have to get too mad at the guy that made that terrible mistake, well maybe actually you probably should anyway. Easy, easy, easy.

So those are two more tips with the change command. Really handy command that's top secret. Nobody knows about it except for you and me. Impress your friends. I'll see you back here in two more weeks.


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AutoCAD Tips!

Lynn Allen

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!

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