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Michael’s Corner

Michael BeallMichael's Corner is a monthly publication written by Michael E. Beall, Autodesk Authorized Author and peripatetic AutoCAD trainer. Michael travels all over the USA, bringing his fantastic experience and great understanding of AutoCAD to his clients. Michael's Corner brings together many of the tips, tricks and methods developed during these training sessions for the benefit of all users.

Michael's Corner provides something for every AutoCAD user. Every month, a number of articles cover a wide range of topics, suitable for users at all levels, including "The Basics" for those just starting out. Essentially, the aim of Michael's Corner is to help all AutoCAD users work smarter and faster.

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This month…

August - Two…

OK folks, just to be clear, I'm not retiring from training, just from authoring Michael's Corner.

I'm having waaaaay too much fun traveling around the planet, meeting new Designers, seeing friends, eating at recommended restaurants. And the most satisfying part is knowing that I'm enabling my customers to be quicker, better, smarter, and faster.

The fate of Michael's Corner has yet to be determined, but I'm still going to be available for training on AutoCAD, CAP Designer, 20-20 Worksheet, Visual Impression, Z-Axis, Revit fundamentals, and next year, CET from Configura.

I will definitely miss this venue for posting AutoCAD tips & insights, but as many of you know, the CADTutor Forum, is ripe with answers to questions you didn't even know you had!

In this next-to-last Michael's Corner, we lift the hood to discover more about…

…Visual Style properties
…Practical applications for a named view
…How to flip back to Model Space with a macro
…Forcing layer colors to Black & White in a viewport
…Creating a dual-display Dimension style with Ft-In, as well as Inches

And for those of you who would like the last 14 years in book form (or PDF), YES, I am currently updating The AutoCAD® Workbench to include 'em all. The AutoCAD Workbench, Final Edition will be updated to A2017 and, “Lord-willing and the creek don't rise”, will be out in time for Christmas or sooner.

Keep up the good work!

This month's articles

X-Ray Visual Style Update
Named Views
Macro to Switch from Model to Paper
Forcing the Colors to B&W in a Viewport
Dual Dimensions in a Dimension Style

From the Vault

Originally published April 2009

3D CLIP and a Named View

Front Clipping On/Off

There are lots of cool 3D features in AutoCAD and even more so in the newly released AutoCAD 2010, but I promised I would have an overview of the (buried) 3D Clip command, so that's what you will find here. I have also included in this exercise the process of saving a named view.

Please note that the 3DCLIP command can only be accessed from the command line.

Instructions to Clip a 3D Elevation and Create a Named View

  1. On the Model tab, set the view to Right [View3D ViewsRight].
  2. Type 3DCLIP, then press <Enter> and the Adjust Clipping Planes window opens.
  3. Click the button on the toolbar for Front Clipping On/Off to turn that clipping plane On. The black line is used to position the Front clipping plane and the upper (magenta) line is used to position the Back clipping plane.
Drag clipping line
  1. Using the unique cursor, click and drag the Front Clipping Plane line as desired. The clipping of the 3D furniture is dynamic; you will see the objects physically clipped as you move the clipping plane. This is most obvious when you clip a 3D chair (see figure).
  2. Once you have the elevation the way you want it, Close the Adjust Clipping Planes window. Press Esc to exit 3DClip.
  3. To save this view with a name, click ViewNamed Views to open the View Manager dialog box.
  4. Click the New button and enter a name for the view - Interior Elevation - then click OK.
  5. To test that view, go to a layout tab and activate the viewport where you want the elevation view.
  6. Open the View Manager [ViewNamed Views], then select the elevation name from the list on the left, then click Set Current.
  7. Click OK to close the dialog box and your view will be displayed in the viewport.

Note: Since the clipping planes are "perpetual" in the drawing while they are On (regardless of your view), you will need to run the 3DCLIP command again to turn Off the Front Clipping Plane.

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