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AutoCAD New Year’s Resolutions: Tuesday Tips With Frank

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Happy 2020 to all of you from the Tuesday Tips team at the AutoCAD blog!

We’re about a week into the new year, which is usually just enough time for those pesky resolutions to be forgotten. You may have already begun using your treadmill as a clothes hanger, and don’t make me remind you about that double-cheese burger you snuck into your new diet.

Personal resolutions are good, but so are those you can apply to your AutoCAD work. I’ve created a list for you to consider. Choose any or all, or make your own, as the new year is the perfect time to re-think your workflow.

I Resolve To:

  1. Keep my AutoCAD files clean by Purging, Auditing, and using the OVERKILL command.
  2. Adhere to my office CAD standards. They’re there to keep everyone consistent, to streamline production, and to create a better deliverable.
  3. Draw on the correct Layer, and not draw on Layer 0 (unless I’m creating a block).
  4. Not use DEFPOINTS as a non-plotting layer. If one doesn’t exist, I will contact my CAD manager.
  5. Use the Spellcheck tool often when editing text in AutoCAD. So often that it becomes second nature.
  6. Lock AutoCAD viewports once they are set up.
  7. Not Explode Blocks or Dimensions.
  8. Save my work often, and not rely on Autosave.
  9. Try some new techniques and tools, such as DWG Compare, Quick Measure, or even a specialized toolset.
  10. Take advantage of the contextual right-click pop-up menus by not using right-click as Enter.
  11. Give time-sensitive right-clicks a try if I just can’t do number 10.
  12. Try both the AutoCAD web app and mobile app and think about how they can be included in your workflow.

2020 Vision

That’s only a dozen. I could write these all day, but who wants to read a blog post the length of War and Peace? I’ve written about many of these in the last few years, so follow the links if you’re interested in learning more.

These are mostly just good practices, but trust me, they’re not always adhered to. None of them are hard to do. All are much easier than getting in 10,000 steps a day. None require any sacrifice (OK, maybe number 10, but not if you do number 11), so they’re more palatable than starting a new diet.

So, let’s take this first week of the year to consider our work habits, make some resolutions to improve, and hopefully we’ll all have the best, most productive AutoCAD year ever.

More Tuesday Tips

Check out our whole Tuesday Tips series for ideas on how to make AutoCAD work for you. Do you have any favorite AutoCAD tips? Tell us in the comments!

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tombu

Excellent List! Not following resolutions 3, 4, 6, and 7 are the ones that drive me nuts the most when viewing others drawings. Resolution 8 everyone has to learn the hard way! I usually keep SAVETIME set to 10 minutes and the acaddoc.lsp I share with users here sets it to 15 if it's either higher or set to 0.

(if (or(= (getvar 'savetime) 0)(> (getvar 'savetime) 15))(progn(setvar 'savetime 15)(princ "\nAutosave every 15 minutes.")))

I switched to using Time-Sensitive Right-Clicks many years ago and have added Right-Click Shortcut Menus for modifying almost every type of object(s). It rare for me to search for a button to modify anything.

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SLW210

Always keep my drawings clean, going through modifying old drawing I sometimes spend more time cleaning them up than actually making the modifications.

 

I am the CAD STANDARDS.

 

Keyboard shortcuts and right click menu mostly here. Thumb Button set for Enter.

 

Never use AutoSave or BAK and never lost more than a couple minutes of drawing time, usually much less or nothing, AutoSave used to cause crashes, probably still does and BAK saves the previous version, so you have to double save for that to be useful and or save very often.

 

I never used Defpoints for anything, in days long gone now I just had a No-Plot layer or a few of them and froze them when plotting. So I don't really get the Defpoints thing, there has always been a better way. Most all old drawings here I have to redo.

 

First thing I do is lock the Viewport once the scale is set, etc. Holy Cow! the number of drawings I get or run across with unlocked Viewports, WTH!

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Louis Lord

Hmm, some really helpful tips here. Thanks a lot

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BIGAL

Cleaning up CIV3D is very different purge only does a 1/2 job, need to do purgestyles 1st otherwise purge says objects are being used.

 

You can also set the way autosave works not just time but how hard it saves a full 100% or a partial % now where is that command, one I set and forget.

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tombu

ISAVEPERCENT (System Variable) http://help.autodesk.com/view/ACD/2020/ENU/?guid=GUID-469DFA87-1986-4BDA-918B-1E3F9D6FCDC2

Controls the amount of space allocated in DWG files for incremental saves, which affects the number of quick save operations that can be performed before a full save is required.

Type: Integer
Saved in: Registry
Initial value: 50

When the file save estimate exceeds the specified percentage, the next save will be a full save. Valid values can range from 0 to 100 percent.

  • A value of 0 means that all save operations are full saves. A full save optimizes the size of a DWG file, but is noticeably slower on large drawings.
  • A value of 100 increases the space available to append changes to the maximum possible. This value results in the greatest number of incremental quick save operations between full saves at the expense of larger file sizes.
Note: To optimize speed, automatic saves are incremental, temporarily overriding the value of ISAVEPERCENT with a value of 90. A full save occurs when the number of changes exceeds the ISAVEPERCENT setting. Saving to a different format always results in a full save.

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BIGAL

Thanks Tombu.

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