Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 13, No. 1)6 Jan, 2008
This Week's Software Tips
Congratulations December Winner!
Hatch to Correct Scale
"This LISP routine makes the Hatch layer if one isn't present and hatches points using the ANSI37 pattern per Dimscale. I also use code to make it easier for my drafters to change the Dimscale and everything that would need to be changed for different scale drawings such as Mtext, Ltscale, etc. ... I made a toolbar that runs code in ACAD.LSP. For example, the 1/8" scale button is called out as 96, the scale factor. The code to change everything necessary to 1/8" scale in Architectural Desktop 2006 looks like the following. (It would need to be tweaked for v2008.)
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Historically, this sort of thing has been done using AutoCAD scripts. Matching the hatch scale to the drawing's Dimscale obviously must be done according to your company's standards. Note that the colon used in the LISP routine may affect other programs. Otherwise, this approach is good for companies using such a setup and can be tweaked easily to fit the needs of others. Many users and shops, it should be noted, do not use Dimscale (other than as set to 1). Such users would have to customize this tip further.
Note: These follow-up tips have not been tested by the Cadalyst Tip Patrol.
Follow-Up: Generate Drawing Title
John Michalik also shared his process for attributed title blocks: “We have one drawing file called TITLEBLOCK.DWG. This file is created by inserting a blank sheet from the project and erasing everything but the attributed title block information. In the title block, all the sheet-dependent information (sheet number, name, scale, etc.) is blanked out. All of the static data (issue date, project name, client data, total number of sheets, etc.) is filled in. This file is also where things like interim review stamps and engineer seals are placed. Each sheet has a border with the title block in it and the TITLEBLOCK.DWG file is then referenced into it. In the sheet files, the reverse situation is applied to the title block for the border in the sheet, the static information is blanked out since those lines are filled in by the TITLEBLOCK.DWG reference file and the sheet specific data is filled in. This way we are able to quickly and consistently make global changes to the total sheet count, project information, and more, and it is identical across the entire set.”
Follow-Up: Find A Command
“For example, to find the Ddedit command in the list (which edits text), click on any command and type a few letters, E-D-I-T. The command selection moves through the frame like a search. Don’t wait too long, though, because you’re not actually typing, so the frame of reference is short. In this case, no edit text options are shown. No worries, try again, but this time type T-E-X-T. Looking through the text options, you’ll see Text, Edit. There’s your command.
“The search filter found below the command list is very useful too. Type in a word, and any command description containing that word will come up. The only down side is that the search area is a little less forgiving. For example, to find the same command as above, you have to either stop at Edit or Text and look through the large hits list. Or you must know that you need to search for Text, then the Text, Edit will come up easily. With some practice though, both methods become pretty easy.”
Follow-Up: Revise All Attribute Blocks
MicroStation Tip: Workspace Preferences and Plotting Large Files
"To change workspace options, go to Workspace / Preferences / Look & Feel. By selecting the box for Use Windows File Open Dialog, you have a host of options for browsing while moving from drawing to drawing, attaching references, etc. There's even a button called Directory History that remembers the 10 previous directories you visited."
Also, "When plotting a drawing with a large file size, you don't have to wait for the preview image to refresh to get started plotting or changing the plot scale, etc. Just move your mouse over the preview area and select the Reset button."
Opportunities & Honors
BE Conference Call for Presentations and Awards Submissions
Objet’s Connex500 Wins First Place for Best Innovation
Inventor LT Wins 2008 Award from START-IT
VectorWorks Architect 2008 Named #1 Software in ACE Awards
Training: Doctor Walt's KeyCreator 7 Workbook
The Week's New CAD and Related Products
General Software: Lattice Technology XVL Product Line
CAD: CADopia v8
CAD: Open DCL v4.1
Visualization: Maya 2008 Extension 1
Visualization: Piranesi v5
AEC: VectorWorks 2008 Service Pack 2
AEC: Revit Architecture Plug-In
AEC: Envisioneer v4.5
MCAD: GrafiCalc Expert 2008
MCAD: thinkreshape v1
CAM: 7-Axis Measuring Arm
Mark Your Calendar
Test Drive: Using the IES Plug-in within Revit Architecture
3D Scanning 2008
BE Conference 2008
For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Cadalyst.com.