This month's tips are like those special items you may find as you walk along the beach; not exactly part of your daily regimen and it depends on when you take your walk. My customers are driving these tips again, too. I did some training in Dallas for a US Defense contractor and decided to customize the training on the spot… and learned something along the way (which is always an added blessing to any training session).
Then after my NeoCon 2006 AutoCAD Toolbelt presentation, Lee Ambrosius came by to say hello and answered a question of one of the attendees; thank you Lee! [If you're looking for a good AutoCAD reference book, check out the book Lee recently co-authored when you get a chance: AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT All-in-One Desk Reference for Dummies]
And finally, the Basics this month covers a procedure I don't typically promote, and yet there are times when it can make sense. Specifically, dimensioning Model Space objects in Paper Space. That will make many of you cringe, but take a look and see if, for certain applications, it may not be a bad idea.
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Blessings to one and all,
Dynamic blocks (A2006 / A2007) have many wonderful characteristics, among them is the ability to have a single block with multiple "visibility parameters". In other words, you can have a single block of a door in which you can display a variety of sizes. In my recent training, the customer did electronic diagrams requiring two different cabling configurations… GRB and GRBHV… so here's what we did:
Note: If you have not worked with Dynamic Blocks before, the Block Editor can be a bit disconcerting because your drawing appears to have disappeared with the exception of your block geometry. Don't Panic. The Block Editor is an entirely separate graphic environment in which you assign the dynamic features to your block.
When you click OK to close the Visibility States dialog box, you will notice the yellow box with the exclamation point is removed, indicating a successful assignment of two or more visibility states.
Note: You can move the position of the Visibility parameter icon at any time while you are in the Block Editor.
Have you ever wanted the text stating the plot scale of the viewport to automatically change if you change the plot scale? Lee Ambrosius came by my training room after my NeoCon session in Chicago last month and offered the following solution to a question that came up after class.
Note: In A2006/A2007, to get the previous editor to come up when you double-click Dtext, set the variable DTEXTED to <1>.
Now THAT'S pretty cool! That Object feature in the Field command is full of powerful stuff like that. Take a look at my August 2005 for another application for Object properties.
Yes, AutoCAD 2007 has combined the Xref dialog box and the Image dialog box and turned them into an All-In-One palette called External Reference. Whatever. My customer, however, had some "issues" that were unable to be resolved in the new Xref palette. After taking a look in some Forums (not unlike our CADTutor Forum!), she found two commands you may find useful as well: Classicxref and Classicimage.
Disclaimer: This is something you want to consider only after mastering dimensioning in Model Space. That said, before you begin, there are a few pre-requisites:
Given the above, here's how it works:
So here are the questions opponents to this method bring up:
What if you move the viewport?
Answer: Use the DIMREGEN command. Try it.
Next question, what if I Pan the objects in the viewport?
Answer: Use the DIMREGEN command. No, really; try it. And believe it or not, that command even works if you change the plot scale in the viewport!
So out of the boodles of people reading this, there's a possibility that someone got, shall we say, "unexpected results".
Answer: Use the DIMREASSOC command and follow the prompts.
The benefit to this procedure is more evident for those of you who are working with 3D solids in Model Space and you have three views in a Layout. If you were dimensioning the model in Model Space, you would have to reorient the UCS and make sure it was in the right place in relation to the solid and it would be quite the tedious affair. By dimensioning the solid views in the Layout, you can more quickly accomplish your goal.
Michael, here is another solution regarding your topic "Unrecognized Fonts". This is a 'bigfont' solution, not a shape solution.
Real chocolate "coins": The Aztec Indians used the cocoa bean as currency. (As far as Godiva Chocolates are concerned… it still is!)
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Note from Michael: I want to thank all of my customers for continuing to retain my training services (some for over two decades!) and let you know your donations do not go to me personally, but to the ongoing maintenance of the CADTutor ship as a whole and to support the yeoman efforts of my friend and CADTutor captain, David Watson, to whom I am grateful for this monthly opportunity to share a few AutoCAD insights.