Technically speaking, Angola is within the bounds of the Tropic of Capricorn, and that's where I'll be spending the first half of February. I'll be with a number of AutoCAD users at the Chevron facility down there and I'm really looking forward to this opportunity. It seems like Shaan Hurley was having all the travel fun there for awhile.
This month I have 3D bookends: The Visual Style referenced as ‘X-Ray’ is presented as the lead article, then in the Basics we'll take a look at the ViewCube introduced in A2009. In the Power Tool, you may want to add the SETBYLAYER command to your on-going palette and the Odd Spot looks at the wonderful command that enables you to delete those annoying layers "with nothing on them"… by Name.
If you would like to contact me directly, you can do that also.
Blessings to one and all,
Maybe this year I'll get my 3D course finished for my customers, but until then I've enjoyed a 3D Tutorial published by a friend of mine, Paul Wysse, P.E. (www.swissco1.com). Among a vast assortment of other wonderful 3D information was a reference to the Visual Styles palette containing an option for X-Ray Visual Style.
The following is a brief overview of the Visual Style itself… and will probably only serve to make you dangerous.
Before you begin, I would recommend that you consider the following:
For those of you using the Ribbon, the Visual Styles pane is in the 3D Modeling Workspace, on the Visualize tab.
The following are some changes you may want to consider. After making the change, click OK to close Tool Properties, then click the X-Ray Visual Style button to implement the changes. If you see something you like, copy the button and rename it so you don't get confused later. Been there; did that.
Face Style: Gooch. Visible lines are more dominant; hidden lines recede.
Opacity: Higher number, less "see-thru". The preview image in the upper left corner of the Tool Properties dialog box will give you an idea.
Face Color Mode: Desaturate. Combined with Gooch, a nice X-Ray effect. If using Tint, take a look at setting the Tint Color to ByEntity.
Edge Mode: Isolines +
Number of Line: 4 +
Color: ByEntity +
Always On Top: No
Overhang Edges button
Overhang = 6, Jitter = Off [left block]
Jitter Edges button
Overhang = -6, Jitter = Low [right block]
Sometimes you get drawings that are a bit confusing, mainly because the Colors of objects are not set to ByLayer.
The SETBYLAYER command automates the assignment of object properties - such as the Color - to ByLayer. In the images, you see the Hatch object has the Color property set to White.
Change ByBlock to ByLayer? [Yes/No] <Yes>:
Include blocks? [Yes/No] <Yes>:
At the completion of those prompts, the properties of the selected objects will be configured to ByLayer. Works great on blocks, hatches, and dimensions.
Buried in the Format menu Layer Tools (or on the Ribbon, Home Layers panel (expanded), you will eventually see the mighty Layer Delete command.
Normally used graphically, the Layer Delete command provides you the opportunity to select an object on the layer to delete. After selecting the object(s), you receive a warning, literally…
******** WARNING ********
There are 4 block definition(s) which reference the layer(s) you are deleting.
The block(s) will be redefined and the entities referencing the layer(s) will be removed from the block definition(s).
You are about to delete the following layers from this drawing.
…and then the layers are listed and you are asked if you want to continue.
But what about those times when you have no objects on those layers to select and Purge isn't doing the job either? You can always use the Name option.
Select object on layer to delete or [Name/Undo]:
This also works great if the layer to be deleted happens to be either Off or Frozen.
Note: Locked layers cannot be deleted.
Introduced in AutoCAD 2009, the ViewCube is automatically displayed when you use the 3D Modeling workspace (or use a Visual Style like this month's opening article!).
Drag it, click it, "Home" it, spin it… totally fun.
The following are the variables related to the ViewCube with their defaults and value range. All of these settings can be configured using the variables or in the ViewCube Settings dialog box.
|Variable Name||Default Value||Value Range|
|NAVVCUBEDISPLAY||1||0 or 1|
|NAVVCUBELOCATION||0||0 [TR], 1 [TL], 2 [BL], 3 [BR]|
|NAVVCUBEOPACITY||50||0 to 100|
|NAVVCUBEORIENT||1||0 or 1|
|NAVVCUBESIZE||1||0, 1, or 2|
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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.