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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 - Quick and Easy Customizing

CAD Trainer Guy coming to Manila!

If you would be interested in some onsite, hands-on, AutoCAD training, please contact me directly for more information about my upcoming visit. I will be in the Philippines on October 1 & 2 [W/Th]. You can also check out my Training Menu at my website.

One of my new-to-AutoCAD students nailed it this week, "I now realize just how much you can do with AutoCAD!" What's even more exciting is the relatively easy customization you can do if you know where to look… so here are a few places to turn your attention!

…Add a System variable to a Field on your Layout tab
…Assign an object snap to a Function key
…Display a toolbar in the Ribbon workspace of AutoCAD 2015
…Use the Copy option when you Rotate objects

I hope you have all had a grand summer. The highlight of ours was our son Joshua's graduation [BFA, Digital Filmmaking & Video Production from the Art Institute in Cincinnati], so if anyone works where you could use a Production Assistant, please let me/him know!

Keep up the good work!

This month's articles

The CTAB System Variable in a Field
Add an Object Snap to a Function Key
Add a Toolbar to AutoCAD 2015
Rotate with the Copy Option

From the Vault

Originally published October 2004

Polyline Edit

In the February 2004 and April 2004 articles, I mentioned a couple polyline-related features, but I have failed to mention how you can convert lines into polylines in order to take advantage of the benefits of polylines.

First, by way of analogy, geometry created with the Line command is similar to toothpicks laid end to end. It's a collection of line segments whose endpoints are co-incident.

Polylines, however, have knuckles; they're connected at their endpoints. To convert lines to polylines…

  1. Launch the Pedit command (found on the Modify II toolbar, or from ModifyObjectPolyline).
  2. Select one of the lines to be converted into a polyline, then press <Enter> to accept the default option of Yes and turn the selected line into a polyline.

Tip: In AutoCAD 2004/2005, to suppress the prompt “Do you want to turn it into one?” that occurs after selecting the line to edit, set the variable PEDITACCEPT to <1>.

  1. You will now see several options:

[Open/Join/Width/Edit vertex/Fit/Spline/Decurve/Ltype gen/Undo]

  1. Enter J for the Join option, then select the additional lines that are to be joined with the line first selected. You can window the objects to be joined since AutoCAD will only join contiguous line segments.

Next month I'll take a look at some of the other Pedit options and their relationship with other AutoCAD features.

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