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AutoCAD 2013 & AutoCAD LT 2013 Bible

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Zoom quickly and more by controlling your mouse’s wheel

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Most mice have a wheel and you can use it in a number of ways — scroll it in 2 directions, click it, and double-click it. Plus, you can combine keys such as the Shift key with the mouse wheel to get even more capabilities. AutoCAD makes good use of your mouse wheel. Here [...]

Add a new tab to the AutoCAD ribbon

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When you start customizing the ribbon, you may want to create a new tab to hold all of your custom commands. On the other hand, you may want to add custom commands to existing tabs and put them in context.

If you want a new tab, here are the steps:

Type cui to open [...]

Change the color of almost any AutoCAD screen feature

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A reader told me he was having problems with his 3DCLIP command after upgrading to AutoCAD 2013. He wrote:

“I create 3 or 4 different 3d models that I then xref them together into an arrangement drawing. I then create my viewports for the different views I will need. In the past, [...]

Fix old, messy AutoCAD drawings

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Ralph, a subscriber to my AutoCAD Tips Newsletter, sent me a drawing that he called “an embarrassment.” He wouldn’t explain the details of why he thought it was so bad, but wanted some advice about how to fix drawings that have been revised over many years.

Old system variables

Some of the issues [...]

Get a head start with a customized template

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You should always start a new drawing either from an existing drawing (Application Button, Save As) or from a template.

What is a template?

A template is just like a drawing, but when you start a drawing from a template, the template creates a clone of itself, remaining unchanged. Many people have multiple templates [...]

How to get rid of the Welcome window and grid when you start AutoCAD

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Is this what you see when you start AutoCAD? If so, you’re not alone because it’s the default setup.

But you hate it, don’t you?

Here’s how to get rid of the Welcome window and the grid.

Did you find this post useful? Sign up to get the AutoCAD Tips Newsletter so you [...]

Create a custom command and add a keyboard shortcut for a real time saver

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Custom commands can really make your work go more quickly. Even if they save only a fraction of a second, they make you feel like you’re saving time — that extra smoothness is very satisfying!

Here’s one that I like. It creates a 1-segment line. Yes, I could press Enter to end the LINE [...]

Create shapes to insert over and over

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In AutoCAD, you can create custom shapes using code that resides in a text file. You can insert a shape using the SHAPE command. Custom fonts (especially non-Roman ones) are often created using this shape feature.

Shapes vs blocks

Inserting a shape is similar to inserting a block, so let’s start with the difference [...]

Easily share tool palettes with colleagues

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Tool palettes can be a great place to store blocks, custom commands, and more. For example, in this post, I explain how to use tool palettes for blocks. And here I explain how to use tool palettes for user-defined hatches.

But what if you want to share them with others? You can share tool [...]

Tutorial: Create a custom command for AutoCAD using AutoLISP

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AutoLISP offers powerful programming capabilities to AutoCAD, but you don’t need to be a programmer to use it. You can fairly easily create a simple custom command that can make your work go more quickly. In this tutorial, you’ll create a custom command that draws a red circle in any location and with any [...]