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Create layer overrides to create plot variations

Recently, a reader asked how to plot a drawing in black & white except for text. I had a few thoughts — plot styles and layer states, for example — but one idea was layer overrides.

Let’s say that you want to create some plot variations of your drawing. One way to do this is to change the properties of a layer in a viewport.  In this way, you have one layout with a viewport showing layers with their given properties — color, linetype, etc. On another layout, you might change the layer properties for a very different result. You actually make these changes per viewport, but I’ll assume one viewport per layout in this tip.

For example, you could change a layer’s color from green to black on one of the layouts. This feature is called layer overrides.

Set a layer override

Here is how to set layer properties for a viewport:

  1. Display a layout and double-click inside the desired viewport to enter model space.
  2. Open the Layer Properties Manager. You now see 5 special columns –  VP Color, VP Linetype, VP Lineweight, VP Transparency, and VP Plot Style .
  3. To override the properties of a layer for that viewport, click the layer’s item in the desired  column, just as you normally do to change a layer’s property.

When the overridden viewport is current, the Layer Properties Manager displays a light blue rectangle for that override. The Layer drop-down list in the Layers panel on the Home tab also shows the light blue rectangle.

autocad-tips-override layers-to-create-plot-variations-1

Remove a layer override

To remove an override, open the Layer Properties Manager and do one of the following:

  • To remove one property override for a layer — let’s say Color –  right-click the Color  column for the layer with the override and choose Remove Viewport Overrides For > Color > In Current Viewport Only or In All Viewports.
  • To remove all property overrides for a layer, right-click the layer and choose Remove Viewport Overrides For > Selected Layers > In Current Viewport Only or In All Viewports.
  • To remove all property overrides, right-click any layer and choose Remove Viewport Overrides For > All Layers > In Current Viewport Only or In All Viewports.

How do you create plot variations? Do you use layer overrides? Leave a comment and share your expertise!

1 comment to Create layer overrides to create plot variations

  • tommy

    1. I would handle this with a .ctb plotstyle setting special colors properties. I would start with MONOCHORME.CTB for all colors are BLACK only needing to set the TEXT layer color BLACK to RED.

    2. Another method may be to change all object property colors to meet the condition. A bit overkill when it can be done with PlotStyles. (To me not a CAD Smart method)

    Granted Layer Overrides work but it sure is a lot more work setting it up especially if there are many layouts with many viewports. But I have seen designer save one Layout with viewports for specail plot requirements using layer overrides.

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