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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…

December - Making it Happen at Autodesk University 2014!

The annual event is always pretty stunning. Thousands of people with the full gamut of skill sets (and then some!) milling about Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas on a mission to, basically, kick it up a notch. As this goes to press, I have practiced my hands-on Lab a few times and have worked out the missteps, made the appropriate notes, and have the timing down pretty well.

This final offering for 2014 includes some customizing, as well as a couple features that have been around for quite some time, but I had never thought about them until they were brought up by a customer… which is what has driven these topics for the last 12 years!

With an eye toward a more productive 2015, we have…

…A tip on automating the repetition of a viewport plot scale with the click of a button.
…Some old fashioned display tricks you may find interesting
…An option worth considering if your drawing ‘disappears’ when you Zoom/Extents
…How to keep track of the time you spend in a drawing

Thank you all for your continued interest in Michael's Corner. It was a good year for me with 21 new customers and another country added to my ‘Trained In’ list bringing the total to eleven! The first quarter of 2015 is shaping up nicely already with my calendar already booked into mid-March.

Wishing you all a relaxing and joyful Christmas season and a promising New Year!

This month's articles

Automating the Application of a Viewport Scale
Pan and Zoom Antiques
Zoom Extents = Air
Drawing Information

From the Vault

Originally published October 2013

Split Views in Model Space

Selecting viewport configurationBack in TILEMODE <1> days (that would be pre-AutoCAD 200x for those of you just beginning with AutoCAD in this century), the splitting of Model space was commonplace for both 2D and 3D applications.

Power Tip: Yes, the TILEMODE variable is still around, so if you want to create a macro to flip over to a Layout, there's your answer!

Although I have written about this already—in December 2007 in a 3D application on a Layout, then a few years ago, in March 2009 (after I had just returned from training Chevron in Angola, West Africa)—I thought it was worth repeating.

In my recent training for the furniture manufacturer, inscape, I used the Viewport feature in Model space edit a 3D block. A recent addition to AutoCAD is the panel called Model Viewports.

How to Setup a Split Screen in Model Space

  1. Open a drawing containing 3D objects and position your eyeball/view as necessary.

  2. On the View tab, click the Viewport Configuration dropdown to display the available arrangements.

  3. Click Three: Left.

  4. Notice each view has its own Viewport Controls (covered in January 2012), so you can set a view for each viewport.

    Front view
  5. It's particularly helpful to see the edit occur in all views at the same time, too.

    Objects seen in different views

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