AutoCAD 2015 and AutoCAD LT 2015 BibleAutoCAD 2015 and AutoCAD LT 2015 Bible

The most comprehensive AutoCAD book around!

Make hatching in AutoCAD easy

Hatching can sometimes be frustrating, so I’ve collected a few hatching tips together, including links to other tips. Think of the collection as your personal hatching helper.

In case you don’t know, a hatch is a pattern of lines and dots that fills an enclosed area.

Create user-defined hatch patterns

When you choose a […]

Fillets–another approach using AutoLISP

Tommy Holder submitted a different approach to creating fillets–one that includes drawing the lines. For the earlier routine, see “Reduce mouse clicks and increase productivity with AutoLISP.”

Tommy’s approach is unique, I think. Instead of drawing the lines first, the AutoLISP routine prompts you for points, which are the endpoints of the lines. Here are […]

Tutorial: Create cool curves with splines in AutoCAD

Splines are mathematically-defined curves. They are an important basis for 3D modeling, but they are useful in 2D as well.

Note: Splines were significantly updated in AutoCAD 2011.

There are 2 methods for creating splines:

Fit Points: You specify fit points, which are on the spline (by default). Control Points: You specify the control points, […]

Repeat an AutoCAD command automatically

You probably know that after you execute an AutoCAD command, you can press Enter to repeat it.

But it might be quicker to set a command to repeat automatically, if you know in advance that you’ll use it a number of times in a row.

Some commands repeat automatically. In a sense, the LINE command […]

Switching among open AutoCAD drawings

You may have several drawings open at one time and want to switch between/among them. AutoCAD gives you several methods to do so. I can think of four.

Use the Windows taskbar

The Windows taskbar can show a separate button for each drawing. The system variable for this is, appropriately enough, TASKBAR. When set to […]

Keep your own styles, layers & blocks at the top of the list

You’re always creating styles — text, dimension, etc. — layers, and blocks. But when you open the Layer Properties Manager or any other list with these items, they are alphabetized. Especially if you’re sharing drawings with others who add their own styles, layers, and blocks, what can you do to make it easier to find […]

Manage embedded shapes (islands) when hatching in AutoCAD

It’s common to have closed figures inside other closed figures in AutoCAD drawings. When you hatch these shapes, you can specify whether or not the inner figures are also hatched. This becomes most important when you have 3 closed figures, one inside the other. In fact, you have 3 options for islands.

To set the […]

AutoCAD tutorial: Attach an xref

Xrefs (external references) let you view another drawing within your current drawing without actually inserting that other drawing.

Why use xrefs? Xrefs keep your drawing smaller. Each time you open a drawing, AutoCAD loads a current copy of the xref, so that you always have the most updated version. The drawing contains a link to […]

Autofill AutoCAD table data like you do in Excel

You can auto-fill data in an AutoCAD table like you can in an Excel spreadsheet. This makes it easy to copy data along a row or column and to automatically create incremental data, such as consecutive numbers.

To auto-fill cell data, click in a cell that you’ve already filled with a value. Click and drag […]

Dynamic blocks in AutoCAD–When and why?

I’ve written posts about how to create specific types of dynamic blocks and about some of their features, but I’ve never explained when and why you would use a dynamic block.

If you have a block library that contains variations on an object or component and you insert them at various scales and rotations angles, […]