How to Add a Break-Line in Dimensions? AutoCAD Tips!

Oftentimes, when drawing Details or Sections we need to show only a part of the whole drawing. To illustrate the continuation of the part usually we use Breaklines or Jog lines. These line breaks could be easily drawn by hand or by using the Break-line Symbol tool from the Express Tools. It gets more challenging though when drawing a Dimension break line.
As we’ve already discussed, Dimensions are some of the most important and often used objects in AutoCAD. This is why we should be able to quickly add a Dimension line break / Dimension line jog to illustrate that the object is bigger than depicted in the drawing.

Add Dimension Break symbol in AutoCAD

To add a Dimension break in AutoCAD we will use the DIMJOGLINE command, or more particularly follow the steps below:

  1. First, draw in the linear dimensions as normal.
  2. Then, type in the command line DIMJOGLINE and hit enter.
  3. AutoCAD will ask you to Select dimension to add jog or [Remove]: Select the dimension you want to add the breakline into.
  4. Lastly, specify the location of the Break/Jog symbol on the Dimension line.

Repeat the procedure for all the dimensions you need.

To Remove the break symbol from dimension, repeat the command. This time before selection of the dimension type in R for Remove, and then select the Dimension, to remove the jog.

Edit Dimension Jog Size

The editing of the Dimension Jog symbol is done from the Dimension Style Manager, as are all other dimension style settings.

  1. To Open Dimension Style Manager go to the Annotate Ribbon tab, under Dimensions, at the lower right corner, click on the small arrow.
  2. Select the Dimension Style you are using and hit Modify…
  3. Then, under Symbols and Arrows tab, at the lower right corner is located the Jog Height factor relative to the Text Height.

    Jog height is determined by the distance between the two verticles of the angles that make up the Jog.

This is the best and easiest way to add a Dimension Break symbol in AutoCAD. There are lots of other AutoCAD Tricks that you could learn with us!
Don’t forget to check them out and share this post with your friends and colleagues!

When Moved the object Elevation Changes in AutoCAD?

Learn why when Move or Copy in AutoCAD, program changes object Elevations and How to Stop That!

Why, when I move polyline in AutoCAD it changes the polyline elevation? Why when moving COGO Points in Civil 3D they lose their elevations? When I copy objects in AutoCAD they change their elevations, why?
The answers to these and other questions related to Elevations and Move in AutoCAD will be answered here!

AutoCAD Elevation OSNAP

The system variable OSNAPZ was introduced back in AutoCAD 2006 version. It controls whether object snaps are automatically projected onto a plane parallel to the XY plane of the current UCS at the current elevation. According to Autodesk’s site. Or in simpler words, OSNAPZ controls whether the objects/cursor will Snap and change the Z value (elevation) of the object.

To copy or move without changing the election, type on the command line OSNAPZ and enter 0.

OSNAPZ, 0 – Osnap uses the Z-value of the specified point

OSNAPZ, 1 – Osnap substitutes the Z-value of the specified point with the elevation (ELEV) set for the current UCS

If you found this information useful. Don’t forget to check our other AutoCAD Tips for more great Tips and Tricks just like this one!

How to Create Angular Dimension larger than 180 Degrees in AutoCAD?

How to create an Angular Dimension for larger than 180-degree angles? This is the topic of today’s article and as I said in previous posts, Dimensions are one of the most important objects in our Drawings. Without Dimensions, a drawing will be closer to a painting. This is the reason why we have so many Dimension Related topics. So being able to dimension properly is of great importance to every professional.

By default, AutoCAD’s Angular Dimension

DIMANGULAR is limited to angles less than 180 degrees. Or it seems like that:

At the first glance, it seems like this is the case. However, it is possible to create an Angular Dimension Larger than 180 Degrees using DIMANGULAR, to do that, you need to follow the steps below:

  1. Type on the command line DIMANGULAR and hit Enter. (or click on the icon)
  2. AutoCAD will prompt to Select arc, circle, line, or <specify vertex>: hit Enter again.
  3. Now, AutoCAD will ask to Specify angle vertex: pick the vertex (corner) of the desired angle.
  4. Next, on Specify first angle endpoint: pick one end of the lines.
  5. On Specify second angle endpoint: pick the end of the other line.
  6. Lastly, place the Dimension on the screen!

This is by far, the easiest way to create a dimension for larger than 180-degree angles!

I hope you find our way to dimension Reflex Angle in AutoCAD (angles larger than 180 degrees) useful. Find out more great tips and tricks with us AutoCAD Tips and Tricks!

AutoCAD Arc Tricks (3 Interesting Arc Tricks)

Circles and Arcs are quite important AutoCAD Objects. Working with them is a bit challenging at the beginning, however, with time they start to make a lot of sense! We have older arc/circle-related topics that can be very useful for you. Just like the one where we explain 3 Ways to Convert Circle to Polyline in AutoCAD, Draw Tangent Line in AutoCAD, or How to Draw Circle Tangent to Two Lines/Circles.
In this post, we will look at some new fascinating Arc tricks that will definitely come in handy in moments of need! So without further ado, let’s get into the first one!

How to Draw Bisector of an Angle in AutoCAD using an Arc

The first Arc Trick that we are going to learn is Drawing Bisector in AutoCAD for any angle!

To draw Bisector in AutoCAD, Follow the steps below:
  1. Draw a Circle with Center at the intersection of the two Lines.
  2. Use Trim to erase the outter part of the drawn Circle.
  3. Draw a Line starting from the intersection of the two original lines (Circle Center), and ending at the Middle of the new Arc.

The last line you’ve drawn is the bisector of the Angle!

Draw the Point of Intersection of Arc Tangents

To draw the Point of Intersection of the Tangents of an existing Arc we will go through the following steps:

  1. First, Draw a Line from the Start of the Arc to the Arc’s Center point (Radius).
  2. Second, Draw a line from the end of the Arc to the Arc’s Center point (Second Radius).
  3. Next, Draw lines perpendecular to the radius lines.
  4. Now, Move the Perpendecular lines to the end of the Radius. These are the Tangents of the curve.
  5. Lastly, extend both lines, their intersection is the Point of Intersection of Arc Tangents.

This is the easiest way to draw the Tangent of Curve in AutoCAD and then draw the intersection of both Tangents.

How to Draw a Tangent Reverse Curve in AutoCAD using Circles

The last trick we will discuss today will be drawing a tangential reverse curve with a known radius. Again, the steps are as follows:

  1. Firstly, Draw a Radius from the end of the existing Curve.
  2. Secondly, extend the radius line with the amount equal to the Reverse Curve Radius.
  3. Lastly, Draw a Circle the center of which is the end of the radius line.

In Conclusion…

There are a lot of different ways to draw something in AutoCAD. Arcs and Circles may seem complicated at first, but when you draw a few drafting will become easier and more intuitive.

Today we’ve learned how to Draw the Bisector of an Angle using a Circle, how to Draw the Point of Intersection of Arc Tangents, and How to Draw a Tangent Reverse Curve in AutoCAD using Circles. Let us know if you know easier ways to draw these elements in the comments below.

Don’t forget to check our other great AutoCAD Tips and Tricks!

Copy Layouts in AutoCAD (3 Extremely Simple Methods)

Today we are discussing the topic of How to Copy Layouts in AutoCAD. I am going to explain 3 different methods, each suitable for a different occasion so you can choose the best one for you!

Creating Layouts from scratch every time can be very time-consuming and annoying. This is why the idea to Copy an already created Layout in the drawing or Import a layout from an older AutoCAD Drawing you’ve worked on is great!
Two of the tricks we are going to look at will help us Copy a Layout from Another Drawing file, while the last one will let us create a copy of a layout in the current drawing.

Copy Layout from another Drawing in AutoCAD

Often times when starting a new project or just a new drawing, we may want to use an already existing template. This template can include preset viewports, title block, text fields, etc. Alternatively, we may want to Import a preset Layout setup used in older a drawing. So to Copy a layout from another drawing in AutoCAD, follow the steps below:

  1. First, in the current drawing Right-Click on a Layout Tab below, and choose From Template…
  2. Next, a window will pop-up called Select Template from file, here navigate to the file you want to Copy a layout from and hit Open. It can be either Drawing file .dwg or a Drawing template .dwt.
  3. Finally, AutoCAD will ask which layouts do you want to Import in the current drawings. Choose the ones you need and hit Open.

    You can chose more than one!

That was it, you successfully Copied a Layout from another Drawing!

Import Layout from an Active Drawing

The second Trick will let us copy a layout from another currently Active Drawing. I really like this one, as I don’t have to navigate to the directory of the other file. It can be really helpful when you are using a lot of different layouts and not all of them are arranged in templates.
To import a layout from active drawing follow these steps:

  1. In the new drawing, type on the command line ADCENTER to open the Design Center.
  2. There, go to Open Drawings tab and click on Layouts, under the drawing you are going to use as a template.
  3. At Right side, you will see all the layouts in that drawing. Right-Click on the one you want to import and hit Add Layout(s)

Note: You can select more than one layout from the list and add those at once!

Copy Layouts in the Current Drawing

The last method will let us copy already created layouts in the current Drawing. It is quite basic but can still save us lots of time! To make a Copy of Layouts in the current Drawing, follow the steps below:

  1. Right-Click on the Layout you want to copy.
  2. Select Move or Copy…
  3. A window will pop up, there select where to paste the copied Layout and dont forget to check Create a copy mark.
  4. Hit OK!

The new Copy of the chosen Layout will be placed before the layout selected in the Move or Copy window.

If you found this information useful. Don’t forget to check our other AutoCAD Tips for more great Tips and Tricks just like this one!

How to Convert Circle to Polyline in AutoCAD? (3 Simple Tricks!)

In this post, we are going to look at 3 Simple Ways to Convert Circle to Polyline. This can be very useful when drawing a complex geometry consisting of several lines and circles. As well as, when drawing a polyline that needs to have an Arc section with a specific Radius or Diameter.
I am sure you could think of many more instances when we might need to convert a Circle to Polyline in AutoCAD so let’s check how could this be done.

Transform a Circle into Polyline using Break Command

In this method, we will Convert a Circle to Polyline by breaking it first and then closing the broken part. Follow the steps below:

  1. Draw a Circle with the desired Radius/Diameter.
  2. Type on Command Line BREAK to trigger the Break command.
  3. AutoCAD will prompt to Select object, click on the circle once to select it.
  4. Now, click again somewhere on the Circle to Specify second break point.
  5. At this point, we are left with an Open Arc. To Transform it to Closed Polyline, type on Command Line PE (PEDIT)
  6. Select the Arc, AutoCAD will ask if you want to turn it into Polyline, type Y.
  7. After that, the program will ask to select an Option, Select Close.

That was it! You successfully converted a Circle to a Polyline!

Draw a Polyline Circle using Donut!

In my mind, the easiest way to draw a Circle Polyline in AutoCAD is using the DONUT command. It is a great tool that consists of two arc polylines joined end-to-end with specific Width.
For the purposes of creating a Polyline Circle, we won’t need to specify a width so the inner and outer diameters will be the same. Follow the steps below for more detailed explanation:

  1. Type on the command line DONUT, to start the command.
  2. AutoCAD will prompt to, Specify inside diameter of donut: type in the desired Diameter.
  3. Then it will ask to, Specify outside diameter of donut: Type in the same value as for the inside.
  4. Lastly, Specify center of donut Just click on the screen where you want to have your Circle Polyline drawn.

That was it! Now you have A Circular Polyline!

Convert Arc to Polyline in AutoCAD

Lastly, we are going to look at how to convert Arc to Polyline. The process is identical to Converting Circle to Polyline that we discussed above. The steps are:

  1. Draw an Arc Object.
  2. Type on the command line PE (PEDIT)
  3. Select the Arc, AutoCAD will ask if you want to turn it into Polyline, then type in Y.

The Arc Object is now a Polyline!

Hope you find the trick useful!
Don’t forget to check out our other AutoCAD Tips and Share the post with your Colleagues!

How to Use Offset in AutoCAD, an in-depth Article!

In this post, we are going to learn everything about Offset in AutoCAD. We are going to look at what exactly the Offset command means and does, how to use Offset in AutoCAD, the different types of offset distance specification.
Furthermore, we are going to elevate our knowledge even further. Learning tricks like creating Multiple Offsets and Double-side offsets.

Offsetting an object creates a parallel copy of the source at a specific distance in an extremely short time! With the help of Offset, we can create concentric circles and parallel curves as well as parallel rectangles and polylines.
For better understanding, we will go through each case below.

How to Use Offset in AutoCAD

First, let’s start with the basics. To learn how to use Offset in AutoCAD, follow the steps below:

  1. Offset Icon is located at the Home Ribbon Tab, under Modify. You can also start the command by typing “O” on the command line.
  2. AutoCAD will ask you to Specify offset distance or [Through/Erase/Layer] <1.0000>:
    At this point we can directly set the desired distance for creating a parallel line/arc/circle or choose one of the options:
    • Through – This option lets you create a parallel object through a point specified on the screen instead of typing in the desired distance.
    • Erase – If you choose this option, AutoCAD will ask if you want to erase the source object after the creation of the new parallel one.
    • Layer – Lets you choose if you want the new object to be created in the same layer as the source object, or in the layer you have currently active.
  3. After specifying the offset distance, choose the object you want to offset (create a parallel copy of it).
  4. AutoCAD will now ask to choose the side to offset, you choose the side relative to the source object by clicking on the screen with the mouse.

Offset a Polyline:

Offset a Circle:

Note: The routine won’t execute fully after the first copy, you can directly select another object or the newly created one to create a new offset copy.

How to create Multiple Offsets in AutoCAD

Often times we need to create more than one parallel copy of our object. For example, if drawing stairs.
AutoCAD gives us the opportunity to create Multiple Offsets with much less effort than selecting and offsetting the object every time. Follow the steps below to learn how to use the Multiple Offset function:

  1. Start Offset command the usual way as discussed above.
  2. Specify the desired Offset Distance.
  3. Select the Object to Offset Multiple Times.
  4. After selecting the Object AutoCAD Prompts to Specify point on side to offset or [Exit/Multiple/Undo] : This time instead of choosing a Side for the Offset, Select Multiple (hit M key).
  5. Now, you can choose the side to create the Offset objects.

As you can see, this trick greatly improves the functionality of the Offset command.

Using Extended Offset in AutoCAD

Extended Offset is part of the Express Tools in AutoCAD. It has the advantage to create Multiple Offsets and/or erasing the Original Object using Keyboard shortcuts.

To trigger the Extended Offset type in EXOFFSET on the command line. Or find it on the Express Tools ribbon, under Modify drop-down menu.

The tool works almost the same way as the normal Offset command, to Create Multiple Offsets Press SHIFT key while specifying a Side to Offset.
To Erase the original Object press CTRL Key while specifying a side to Offset.

Extend, Fillet or Champfer Polyline Sigments when Offset

AutoCAD lets us choose how do we want to treat the potential Gaps between Offset Segments of Polylines. If we would like to Extend the parallel lines where they meet, Fillet the distance between them or Champfer it. All this is controlled with a system Variable called OFFSETGAPTYPE.

The default Value of OFFSETGAPTYPE is 0. When chosen, AutoCAD extends line segments to their projected intersections.

When OFFSETGAPTYPE Value is set to 1, AutoCAD fillets line segments at their projected intersections. The radius of each arc segment is equal to the offset distance.

If OFFSETGAPTYPE Value is set to 2, AutoCAD chamfers line segments at their projected intersections. The perpendicular distance from each chamfer to its corresponding vertex on the original object is equal to the offset distance.

So if, on the other hand, AutoCAD Offset is not working properly and instead of extending the Offset lines is creating Fillet or Chamfer, don’t forget to Check OFFSETGAPTYPE System Variable’s Value!

Double Offset at Once!

We can use an additional Lisp routine created by @LeeMac from The program works almost the same way as the original Offset Command. The difference is that it will create an offset on both sides of the selected Object. To use the routine follow the steps below:

  1. Download the Lisp from here.
  2. Load the Lisp into the AutoCAD.
  3. To trigger the program type in DOFF on the command line.
  4. AutoCAD will ask you to Specify offset distance or [Through/Erase/Layer] <1.0000>: here we are able to use the same settings as the Standard Offset command.
  5. Select the Object to create offset.

AutoCAD does not Offset Polylines, Why?

Sometimes AutoCAD Doesn’t want to offset the polylines we choose to, let’s see why and when that happens. And how to Fix Offset problems.
Check if one of the following issues are present in your case:

  • Is there a zero length segment in the Polyline you are trying to Offset?
    – To get rid of zero length segments in Polyline you can try using Overkill to get rid of those.
  • Are you trying to Offset 3D Polyline?
    – Quick way to convert 3d Polyline to normal Polyline is to Explode it, selecting all segments and setting their Z geometric values to 0, then Joining those elements again to create normal Polyline.
  • Nothing happens when Offseting polyline?
    – Check if the offset value and the Drawing Units are the same.
  • Cannot offset on both sides?
    – Quite a lot of times AutoCAD doesn’t want to Offset a polyline at one of the sides. The solution I personally use is to offset it the oposite side first and then Offsite the new parralel polyline back by doubling the Offset value.

Hope you find this information useful. Don’t forget to share with friends and colleagues.
For more great AutoCAD Related posts check our Page AutoCAD Tips.

How to Add Center Mark and Centerline in AutoCAD

Have you ever heard of Center Mark and Centerline tools? These are great features introduced in the AutoCAD 2017 version.
With the help of Center Mark, you can now add an interactive object to both Circles and Arcs, that represents the center of the circle with just one click of the mouse.
The centerline tool, as the name suggests, adds a line in the geometric middle of two previously selected lines.
Today, we will take a closer look at these AutoCAD tools and will find out how to leverage their benefits in the best way possible.

Add a Center Mark in AutoCAD

We will start with the Center Mark tool as it quickly grew to one of my favorite productivity tricks while drawing.

To add a Center Mark to a Circle or an Arc, go to Annotate ribbon tab, there under Centerlines, you will see the Center Mark icon. Click on the icon and then click on the circle or arc. Then just hit Enter to exit the command.

When firstly added, the Center mark will span the whole diameter of the circle. Fortunately, it is dynamic, and changing the circle’s diameter will change the Mark automatically. When you change the radius/diameter of the circle Center mark will adjust its size. You can also change the size of the extensions by using the Grips or Properties palette.

From the properties palette, you can also change some other interesting features like:

  • Change the linetype and color of the Center Mark Extensions.
  • Size of the Center Cross.
  • The gap between the Center Cross and the Extensions.
  • The Size of each Individual Extension.
  • Rotation of the Mark

Add a Centerline in AutoCAD

Secondly, we will take a look at the Centerline tool. To add a Centerline between two other lines, go to the Annotate Ribbon Tab, then under Centerlines, you will find the Centerline Icon. Click on it and then select the two lines between which a centerline needs to be added. Hit Enter to exit the command.

The two lines which we will select don’t have to be parallel, the Centerline will be automatically added to non-parallel lines too! When a Centerline is added between two lines, it will be dynamically linked to them. This means that when changing one of the two lines, the Centerline will adjust so it is in the center of the two again!

From the properties palette, you can also change some interesting features like:

  • Color, Layer,linetype and Linetype scale of the Centerline.
  • Start and End extensions

For further editing of Centerlines, you can type CHPROP on the command line and then select the Centerline you will edit. AutoCAD will prompt to Enter property to change [Color/LAyer/LType/ltScale/LWeight/Thickness/TRansparency/Material/Annotative]:

Hope you find the trick useful!
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How to Create Automatic Area Label (4 Step Solution!)

Checking the area of a closed object, a polygon is a common practice when working with AutoCAD. We all know the AREA command that displays the area in the command line. Previously we have even looked at a way to get automatically a summarized areas of several objects.

The issue with these practices is that when the polyline or the object is revised, the label text remains unchanged. This leads to a lot of issues if not taken care of in time.

That Is why, today we are going to look at, how to create an area Label that Dynamically changes when the source object gets changed.

How to create automatic Area Label in AutoCAD

To create a dynamic label/leader we will use AutoCAD text Fields. To learn how, follow the steps below:

  1. Firstly, create your MLEADER  and fill in a constant text for prefix or suffix. For example: Area: …….. s.f.
  2. Secondly, right click on the text area where the area number will be shown and choose Insert Field.
  3. Now, a window called Field will will pop-up here we set the desired properties for the automatic text.
    1. Under Field Category choose Objects that way we will find the wanted field easier.
    2. Field Name should be also Object.
    3. To Choose the Specific Object for which the Automatic Area Label will be created, Click on Select Object button at the middle top of the window.
      AutoCAD will bring you back to the Model Space so you can select the desired object using the mouse.
    4. After going back to the Field window, for desired Property select Area as this what we want to use.
    5. The Format depends on your personal preference, in the example we have chosen Decimal.
    6. Under Format, you will see Precision, there you set the precision for the area text.
  4. After setting up the Field, hit OK. The Automatic Area Label is created!

Note: The field text will be displayed with a grey background fill. Don’t worry, the filling won’t be plotted it is just there as a reference for the Field Text.
If you really don’t like to see it, go to Options then under User Preferences, under Fields, uncheck Display background of fields.

If you found this information useful. Don’t forget to check our other AutoCAD Tips for more great Tips and Tricks just like this one!

How to Quickly Copy from Xref (Copy from Block) in AutoCAD

Many times I have wondered how to Quickly Copy objects from an Xref or from a Block without opening it first and then using the good old Copy and Paste.

I know it sounds silly, but, often times when coping from external reference or from a block, we end up with the very big or very small item. This is because those objects were drawn on a completely different scale than the one we are using in the host drawing.

Wouldn’t it be great if we could Copy from Xref directly with just one command the same way we are copying objects from the current drawing?

It definitely will, and it is possible with one small trick that we will help you find today!

Directly Copy from Xref or from Block!

To Copy nested objects directly from the host drawing follow the steps below:

  1. First, type on command line NCOPY to start nested objects copy.
    • AutoCAD Prompts to Select nested objects to copy or [Settings]:. As in Settings you can choose to either use to Bind or Insert the Newly copied Objects.
  2. Secondly, choose the objects you want to copy and hit Enter.
  3. Now AutoCAD will ask you to Specify base point or [Displacement/Multiple] :
    • The first option is to directly Specify Base Point and then place the object in the where you seem fit.
    • The second option Displacement, lets you choose a specific values for the displacement of the new object.
    • The third option, Multiple lets you Paste multiple times the objects you have selected.

That was it, almost as easy as using the typical Copy command.

Hope you found the post useful, to learn more interesting AutoCAD-related Tips and Tricks Visit our AutoCAD Tips and Tricks page.

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