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AutoCAD Productivity

Tool Palette Basics

by Michael Beall

From: AutoCAD Productivity Articles #144
Originally published: February 2016

I learned something new about tool palettes last year — thanks to Nate at Wellcare in Tampa — and I wanted to pass it along. It's a trick that I should have thought of and can be used in a number of situations in AutoCAD. Specifically, the Ctrl key!

Short version: Rather than doing a right-click Copy / right-click Paste — which always put the copy at the bottom of the tab — simply hold down Ctrl, then drag & drop.

How to Copy Tools Onto and Between Tabs on a Tool Palette

  1. Open the Tool Palette (Ctrl + 3). [For future reference, if you're new to palettes, I have a sample palette on my website, complete with a block source drawing and instructions.]

  2. Copy a toolTo copy a tool below itself, hold down Ctrl, select the tool, then drag it down a smidge and release. You should see a very small plus-sign at your cursor indicating that you are making a copy.

  3. To copy a tool between tabs, hold down Ctrl, then drag your cursor onto another tab and hold it there. You will initially see a No-Can-Do sign, but then it will flip over to that tab.

  4. Drag your tool to the desired location — you will see the same plus-sign at your cursor — then release!

    Copying between tabs

See all the articles published in February 2016

Michael's Corner

Between 2003 and 2016, Michael Beall (and one or two guests) wrote almost 600 articles for CADTutor. The focus of these articles is AutoCAD productivity, and although some of them are now more than a few years old, most remain relevant to current versions of AutoCAD. The article above is just one example. Check out Michael's Corner for a full listing.

Tip of the Day

Offset to the current layer

Offset command Layer optionWhen you use the offset command, the new object always ends up on the same layer as the source object. That's the default option but you can have objects offset to the current layer.

Start the Offset command, Modify ❯ Offset from the pull-down menu or OFFSET from the command line. At the prompt, enter L for "Layer" and then C for "Current". Now, each time you use Offset, objects will be created on the current layer.

To set Offset back to the default, use the same sequence but enter S for "Source".

Today's tip is by JBullseye74

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