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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…

October - One-derful!!!

It's a God-thing.

I had no idea that 14 years ago I would be given the opportunity to make an impact on the professional lives of so many. Only God knew what was ahead, and hopefully, the contributions I have made through Michael's Corner have equipped many of you to be more productive and a bit more savvy using AutoCAD. And apart from all the AutoCAD bashing that is going on, I'm sure it has a long life ahead.

So, in an effort to keep the AutoCAD fires burning, here's what I have for my final installment…

…A reminder on how to customize your hot keys
…Three Power Tools — one for Zoom, one for editing, and one for Layers
…Two Odd Spots — one for Layers and one for Hatching
…Buried text treasure
…And how to Search 14 years of the Archives

As for what's ahead for me, I will continue to present a variety of AutoCAD sessions — Fundamentals, Intermediate, Customizing, Updates, and 2D & 3D. I will also keep training CAP Designer, 20-20 Worksheet, Visual Impression (those three from 20-20 Technologies, Inc.), and some Revit Fundamentals. Next year I'm looking forward to being very involved in training CET (from Configura, Inc.) when Herman Miller joins the growing number of manufacturers embracing this software that is being touted as the ‘Future of Space Planning’. Personally, I'm looking forward to spending a bit more time with Donna, my lovely bride of 30 years. When this posts, we'll probably be within days of going on our 30th Anniversary vacation to the Tanque Verde Ranch in Tucson; Ee-Hah! We had such a good time when we went for our 20th, we figured we'd do it again!

Ah, and I'm hoping to have The AutoCAD Workbench, Final Edition out before snow flies.

And with that, Mike drop! …so to speak.

The LORD bless you and keep you;
The LORD make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;
The LORD lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26

This month's articles

Change F1 to ESC
Smoother Zoom
Stretch with Extension
Lock Layers with a Crossing Window
Layer Columns & Hatch Background Color
Text Frame on Mtext

From the Vault

Originally published January 2010

AutoCAD Timesavers

Incremental save percentageAt AU last month I attended one of Lynn Allen's classes - Lynn being the official Autodesk Technical Evangelist - and she was her typical entertaining self. One of her standard classes is "90 AutoCAD Tips in 90 Minutes" and I wanted to pass along just a few of them, specifically since I've been getting regular inquiries regarding speeding up AutoCAD.

AutoCAD Timesavers

  • In OptionsOpen and Save tab, set the "Incremental Save Percentage" to 100. This is the variable ISAVEPERCENT.

  • In OptionsOpen and Save tab, when saving down to a previous version, clear the checkbox for "Maintain Visual Fidelity for Annotative Objects".

  • Layout regen optionsIn OptionsSystem tabLayout Regen Options, set it to "Cache Model Tab and Last Layout". This is equivalent to setting the LAYOUTREGENCTL to <1>.

  • Viewres is a very close relative of Blipmode. Thankfully, Blipmode/On is no longer the default, but not many of us got the memo about Whiparc superseding Viewres. Set WHIPARC to <1> and you won't get hexagons for circles anymore when you zoom in.

  • In the Workspace Settings dialog box, your system will move quicker if you set it to "Do Not Save Changes To Workspace".

    Do not save changes
  • In the Layer Properties Manager, right-click on one of the headers, then turn off the Status column.

    Turn off Status
  • The Join command will turn an Arc into a Circle!

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