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Remove duplicate and overlapping objects

Duplicate and overlapping objects waste ink and mean that your drawing isn’t accurate. However, often, they’re invisible.

The OVERKILL command, part of Express Tools, can help. This command deletes duplicate objects and goes further to combine overlapping lines and arcs. However, it’s not on the menu, toolbar, or ribbon, so you have to type it on the command line. For that reason, many people don’t know about it. (Update: As of AutoCAD 2012, this command is part of core AutoCAD. and is now on the ribbon. Go to the Home tab, Modify panel, and expand it to find the button.)

When you start the command, the next prompt is Select objects: and you can type all and press Enter to apply the command to the entire drawing. Then press Enter again to end object selection.

The Overkill dialog box opens.

AutoCAD Express Tools Overkill

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To keep the default settings, just click OK. If there are duplicate or overlapping objects, you’ll see a message like this:

1 object(s) deleted.

You can specify lots of settings to control the process. For example, you can check the Ignore LAYERS check box to delete overlapping lines, even if they are on different layers.

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The Numberic Fuzz text box determines how exact two objects must be to be considered duplicates. The default, 0.000001, deletes almost exact objects. You can change this to 0, to delete only objects that are exactly on top of each other.

The PLINES check box, on by default, removes duplicate line or arc segments within a polyline, or lines and arcs that overlap a polyline. If you uncheck this, the command only removes duplicates of entire polylines.

The OVERLAP check box, also on by default, combines objects that partially overlap into one object.

The END to END check box combines objects that don’t overlap, but are end to end, such as two colinear lines with one common endpoint.

Click OK to execute the command.

51 comments to Remove duplicate and overlapping objects

  • Tricia

    OMG! Thank you, thank you! This is a wonderful command to know.

  • Fairy

    Thank u very muchhhhhhh….

  • Ale

    how to join two collinear polylines into one that has a gap between them. is the reverse option from break at point…..

    thank u!

  • Jerry

    Thanks for the tip. I have removed over 2K unneeded lines from my veryt first drawing. This has saved me hours of work.

  • Ellen

    Wow, that’s a lot of lines! Glad it helped.

  • Asad

    Ellen,

    Really dont have words to say you thanks. i just reduced my file size from 80 mb to just 6 mb by this command, actually file contained duplicated 3d contours which slowed down the speed of autocad.
    thanks again:)

  • Tim

    I haven’t drawn in CAD in years and I forgot this little command. Now I can execute it and get back to work. Thanks so much Ellen.

  • PRAKASH

    SUPERB! THANKS ALOT.

  • Thankssssssssss a lottttttttttt, its so nice

  • Thanks for the tip :)
    That one really helps.

  • Subaru

    HUGE HUGE THANKS!! 😀

  • okiehawk

    I have used this command for years. However when we updated to version 12 in 64 bit format, when the dialog box displays the computer locks up.

    Is there a visual basic problem in this environment?

    I have a 32 bit of version 9 that works great.

  • Ellen

    Yes, I believe that VBA doesn’t work in 64-bit.

  • How to remove overlapping dimension in auotocad12

  • Ellen

    I’m not aware of an automatic way. Perhaps an AutoLISP routine could automate the process.

  • Butch

    Ellen,

    We’re still stuck here in ACAD 2009 :( We do have the OVERKILL command and find it very useful. Every so often….out of seemingly nowhere….I will open a drawing and see that there are duplicates of EVERYTHING. Seriously, it’s like someone copy/pasted the entire file of linework on top of itself, although that did NOT happen. Have you ever heard of this? I’ve only experienced this in ACAD 2009.

  • fastpassthrough

    I have tried the delete duplicate objects with no luck, i have a 3d file brought into autocad to edit then to mastercam to program if i can get rid of all the duplicates this will save time in mastecam to program andy help on settings?
    thank you

  • Thanks for the helpful article. I actually forgot the name of the command, but your article was just there at the right time. Thanks once again.

  • M Sajjad

    Thanks its really working amazing Thanks alottt…..

  • Max

    Hi,

    Could you please tell me, if I use Overkill command, will it make changes to basic geometry or size of the drawing?

    I am afraid that this command should help only to remove duplicate objects and not the profile of the drawing.

    Thanks.

  • Hans Graveman

    Max use the purge command to delete unused items

  • Jirka

    Thank you!!!

  • Alan Vien

    hello Ellen,

    I have been trying to get answer to my question online but so far have been unsuccessful.
    I hope you may be able to help.
    I use overkill command in AutoCAD 2013 but the dialog box is not working.
    AutoCAD says “UNABLE TO LOAD DIALOG BOX”
    My attdia, filedia and cmddia are all set at 1.
    I have the same program on my laptop and it’s working fine.
    Is there an AutoCAD file that controls this dialog box?
    Thanks in advance.

  • mukesh

    thanks alot for this commond

  • Milad Kosari From Iran

    Thanks for the helpful article.

  • venkat

    hi iam using auto cad 2013.if i use this command my system gets hanged up.plz tell the solution

  • Hans

    Alan is the pathname to the dialogbox listed in options?

  • kay9

    Thanks!!! I have this CAD file i needed to load onto navigational software and it was so large. Then i realized EVERY single object in it had at least 3 duplicates, and that’s where i got stuck. Well, thanks to you – i’m unstuck now! Happy as a lark :)

  • rohit

    thanks a lot this is very helpfull for me.
    kindly explain me attribute command
    rohitmathanker87@gmail.com

  • favas

    hi anybody can help if the text is overlapping (duplicating) overkill command doesn’t work its only layer and lines etc…not text..

  • Hans Graveman

    Favas

    In autocad 2014 I copied some text and used Overkill it worked just fine.

    Command: OVERKILL

    Select objects: Specify opposite corner: 8 found

    Select objects:

    7 duplicate(s) deleted
    0 overlapping object(s) or segment(s) deleted
    Command: E
    ERASE
    Select objects: Specify opposite corner: 1 found

    Hans Graveman

  • Hesham

    Thank you ,,Thank you ,,Thank you ,,

  • JAY-AR

    Thank you so much!!! this help me a lot, Thank you ,,Thank you ,,

  • Rintu Maity

    Dear All,

    I have one drawing there number of blocks is there on that drwing sheet but due to my fault number of blocks is overlaped to each others.OVERKILL command is not working for the same,if anyone can know pls reply.

  • ch.udhay teja

    how to remove duplicates and overlaps in the pline in autocad 2004

  • Jakub

    Thank you! You saved my life (at least part of) :-)

  • Shailesh

    Thankssssssssss a lottttttttttt, its so nice

  • Shradha Verma

    hi! so I was using this sheet with a lot of Macros, like a lot! And i had an object (checkbox) placed next to the macro which would activate the macro. I saved this file a thousand times and when someone else saved it, after that I could not open the file anymore. It said that the image in the file is broken and needed repair. After a lot of digging, we found out the the checkboxes were somehow duplicated and when we deleted the duplicated checkboxes, we could save the file!

    Do you have any insights on what might have gone wrong or how we could fix it? Thanks!

  • yamen

    thanx alot
    but
    when i have lines and make boundary from its with bo command and return to use overkill to delete the first lines it gives me unjoind lines and i have no profit from boundary command i used can you help me please

  • KUMAR

    i draw sld diagram in auto cad2010. now i want to delete particular line, but cant do that.. please help me

  • Joshua

    Thanks, thats really helpful

  • Sangam Sardesai

    Thanks a ton! Proved to be of great help!!

  • Linto

    How to remove overlapped blocks ?

  • Neat little command which will save us a load of time when making warning signs.
    We use a engraving machine which runs every line it gets in the acad file. Imagine the frustration when you see the mill go round 5 times for nothing…
    Thanks.

  • MilanB

    1400 objects deleted… Nice thank you! 😀

  • Ayman

    when I trim it create double line there is any way I can fix this issue ??

  • Hosam

    Thanks Ellen for the neat command

  • Hans Graveman

    Linto
    Just use erase crossing and R (remove) click one on the overlapping blocks

  • Jacob

    Thanks so much!!

  • Ross

    Is there a way to do this with Blocks? I have a drawing with the same block stacked on itself multiple times in multiple places. As far as I know Overkill doesn’t work on blocks.

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