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  1. #1
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    Default Help Binding Imported Raster PDF

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    Hi all,

    I'm using 2018 LT to import PDFs. Sometimes they're vector, sometimes raster. The vector are working well; the raster, not so much.

    Here's my process: I create a folder on my desktop for the working file. This folder contains my PDF and a new drawing. I import the PDF using the "PDFIMPORT" command, then trace over the raster image and save it. This is actually a temporary working file because I then copy/paste the drawing that I created by tracing into a new drawing and use the new drawing for the work. This is just company standard, but in this case it works well because the raster image is left behind. Once I complete the drawing, I copy everything onto our VPN, and move the folder from my desktop into a "Completed" folder. Herein lies the problem. Now that I've moved the folder, the x-ref link is no longer accurate, so if I go to open the temporary working file from the VPN or from my "Completed" folder I've lost my raster image. This also presents a problem if I attempt to email the temporary working file to a coworker.

    I've inserted the PDF image by copy/paste, but for some reason when I do that, I can't rotate or scale the image. If I start the rotate command and attempt to rotate it, say 90 degrees, I can see the image itself move slightly but it never rotates (it moves slightly because I didn't pick the "base point" in the exact center). Scale just plain doesn't work. It goes through the command like it would work, but it doesn't change it at all.

    When I use the PDFIMPORT command it imports it as an x-ref. When I go to the x-ref manager and right click the raster image it does not give me an option to bind it.

    Does anyone know how I can cause the raster image to be a permanent, but editable, part of the drawing?

    Thanks in advance for any help!

    Lydia

  2. #2
    Forum Deity Dana W's Avatar
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    Default

    Do these things.

    Stop using anything named IMPORT or PASTE for xref'ed images, pdf's, and dwg files. Instead use, XATTACH for dwg files, IMAGEATTACH for photo images (png, jpg, etc.), and PDFATTACH for pdf's both raster and vector types. These commands have discrete differences built around the file types and let AutoCad know what it's dealing with up front, and they will open up different dialog windows to deal with browsing for each different file type.

    Use the command PDFATTACH to re-attach the pdf document as an xref, to your drawing. You can insert it on top of the original xref point label that remains if you like, and then erase the original label.

    Different xref file types will open some different contextual tiles on your ribbon when the objects are selected after insertion. They are handy.

    Never BIND unless you are permanently archiving the stuff to a historical file or something. Instead, use ETRANSMIT to send drawings to other places through email. More on ETRANSMIT later.

    Copy or move the pdf or other xref file to the same folder or a folder just above the one that the final drawing is in unless other drawings are also using it. If other drawings are using it, always move it to a folder above the drawings or drawing folders so you don't end up with a multiple copy nightmare if you happen to have to update an xref. You can also keep ALL xrefs always in one location (folder).

    Once you have your xrefs as you like them, command XREF to open the xref manager dialog. Now right click on the unreferenced xrefs, if any. Select detach for each. Or, you can shift+select or ctrl+select more than one at a time and detach them all at once. This step will remove a little bit of extra size from your dwg file.

    If any xrefs are still mapped to the original location (in case of a move or copy of an xref) You can click on them in the xref manager, and re-map the "Found In" location.

    Once you have that cleaned up, in the xref manager, select each remaining xref, all at once, right click, select PATH, select MAKE RELATIVE.

    Now, when you are ready to ETRANSMIT, the command will gather up the dwg file, xrefs, and any other little items, like plotsyles (*.ctb files) connected to the dwg file, and neatly put them all in a zip folder for you to email.
    The S197 gen Ford Mustang, and the F-4 Phantom both prove the same theory. "With enough power applied, a school bus will fly."

  3. #3
    Junior Member
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    Default

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    Ok, here goes (better late than never, right? Or something like that?).

    First off, thank you for the advice! (And hi, neighbor to the South! Hope you fared OK through Irma! On a side note, I'm not sure if you go to a gym in your area (is that a crazy question lol?) but with my previous job I helped install some of the fitness equipment at the Oviedo YMCA, The ZOO Health Club in Oviedo, and the Anytime Fitness in Oviedo, all off of/around Red Bug Lake Road. I worked for a Precor/Queenax installer so we installed almost everything at the AF, most of the equipment at The ZOO, and some of the cardio at the YMCA).

    OK, back to the raster PDF issue. I did some testing with PDFATTACH but still do not seem to be getting what I'm needing. For a time, I just let it go as my co-worker was able to import PDFs fine on her own (so it was not necessary for me to email her files). However, she sent me a file today to look at, which of course didn't work since it wasn't ETRANSMITted. That wasn't a problem, as I went on our VPN to get the original. However, the original on the VPN had an xref mapping error somehow. This concerns me, as those are our archives. Yes, it's not too difficult to remap an xref. But some of our employees have limited AutoCAD training as AutoCAD is not their main job duty. So if at all possible, I'm hoping to be able to bind the PDF raster image to the drawing as a permanent part of the drawing, to avoid any mapping issues.

    Here's a little more information about our "system" that I should have provided in the first place:

    We never edit the PDF raster xrefs (beside scaling it up to 100%, rotating as needed, and moving), as they are from our customers. If they give us a new PDF image, we simply start a new drawing with it. I said "edit" up there, so that was my error. I should have said "scale and/or rotate, and move" as that is all we'll be doing with a raster PDF.
    Since we will not do any edits to the raster PDF xrefs, we do want them to be actually bound to the drawing. Once we've scaled them and/or rotated them, the only change we'll make to them is moving them up or down (to overlay them with the tracing lines we've drawn).
    Emailing is part of the issue, but the main issue at this point is that when we move things within our VPN we lose the mapping on the xrefs.
    The goal is to have the PDF raster image a "part" of the drawing so it doesn't have to reference anything external, in as few steps as possible.

    It does seem slightly ironic for me to be talking about others with limited AutoCAD skills because obviously, if I was that great at AutoCAD, I wouldn't have to ask these questions! But I'm hoping someone will have some suggestions.

    Any suggestions on how to accomplish this would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance!

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