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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.

This month…

October - One-derful!!!

It's a God-thing.

I had no idea that 14 years ago I would be given the opportunity to make an impact on the professional lives of so many. Only God knew what was ahead, and hopefully, the contributions I have made through Michael's Corner have equipped many of you to be more productive and a bit more savvy using AutoCAD. And apart from all the AutoCAD bashing that is going on, I'm sure it has a long life ahead.

So, in an effort to keep the AutoCAD fires burning, here's what I have for my final installment…

…A reminder on how to customize your hot keys
…Three Power Tools — one for Zoom, one for editing, and one for Layers
…Two Odd Spots — one for Layers and one for Hatching
…Buried text treasure
…And how to Search 14 years of the Archives

As for what's ahead for me, I will continue to present a variety of AutoCAD sessions — Fundamentals, Intermediate, Customizing, Updates, and 2D & 3D. I will also keep training CAP Designer, 20-20 Worksheet, Visual Impression (those three from 20-20 Technologies, Inc.), and some Revit Fundamentals. Next year I'm looking forward to being very involved in training CET (from Configura, Inc.) when Herman Miller joins the growing number of manufacturers embracing this software that is being touted as the ‘Future of Space Planning’. Personally, I'm looking forward to spending a bit more time with Donna, my lovely bride of 30 years. When this posts, we'll probably be within days of going on our 30th Anniversary vacation to the Tanque Verde Ranch in Tucson; Ee-Hah! We had such a good time when we went for our 20th, we figured we'd do it again!

Ah, and I'm hoping to have The AutoCAD Workbench, Final Edition out before snow flies.

And with that, Mike drop! …so to speak.

The LORD bless you and keep you;
The LORD make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;
The LORD lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26

This month's articles

Change F1 to ESC
Smoother Zoom
Stretch with Extension
Lock Layers with a Crossing Window
Layer Columns & Hatch Background Color
Text Frame on Mtext

From the Vault

Originally published November 2012

Add Your Own Drop-down Menu to the QAT

New Drop-downIt looks like I've covered all the other customized dropdown options: Adding another tool to a drop-down on the Quick Access Toolbar, and adding another tool to a drop-down on the Ribbon.

This month I thought we could make our own drop-down on the Quick Access Toolbar with our own collection of tools. (Thanks to my customer, Bridgette in Lincolnshire, for asking about this in our training last summer. You and your team were quite an inspiration!)

In this exercise, we'll add a couple View positions, and a Visual Style.

How to Create a Drop-down on the QAT

  1. Type CUI, then press [Enter] to open the Customize User Interface.

  2. Under Customization in All Files, expand Quick Access Toolbars.

  3. ViewRight-click on Quick Access Toolbar 1, then click New Drop-down. Enter a name for the drop-down. Mine is MC_Nov12.

  4. Under Command list, in the Search Command List field, enter 'view' to narrow the list to only those with the word 'view' in their name.

  5. Drag and dropDrag the command View, SE Isometric up and release it next to the NAME of your drop-down, not Primary Command.

    After you release the command next to the name of the drop-down, the command will appear below Primary Command. I know, very curious.

    Primary Command
  6. Drag up the command View, SW Isometric and release it just below the first one when you see the line below it.

  7. Change the word in the Search field to 'Visual', then drag up a few of your favorite Visual Styles.

  8. Insert SeparatorTo make the list look more organized, right-click on the command prior to your first Visual Style, then click Insert Separator.

  9. Click OK to save your edits and close the CUI.

    New drop-down

…check out your new drop-down on the Quick Access Toolbar!

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