Before you start working with AutoCAD Arhitecture, make sure you apply the following settings in order to help your work to be easier.
At the bottom of this tutorial you can find a video screencast showing you how to apply these settings for easy operation in AutoCAD Architecture.
Making Special Snaps Active
During your work you often need to find special points of the objects, like ENDpoints, MIDpoints, INTersection and PERpendicular.
- Right-Click above the OSNAP toggle below the Drawing Window Status Bar of the AutoCAD window, and choose from the drop-up menu Settings…
Pay attention that in the displaying dialog box only in the figure shown toggles are turned on.
ATTENTION! Pay attention if the Allow general object snap settings to act upon wall justification line toggle is turned off.
- Press OK to close the dialog box.
ATTENTION! Later on you will continuously need the function to find special points of the editorial work.
However, there will be editing steps when the currently set automatic grip (Object Snap Mode) interferes with your work. Typically when an object’s start point, insertion point, etc… does not go to the specified place, because the automatic ENDpoint, INTersection or PERpendicular “pulls on” the point or the object.
In this case, the simplest solution is to turn off the object snap mode temporarily by using F3 function key. When you need it again, you can switch it back by pressing the F3.
TIP: If the OSNAP is on and you cannot safely specify the desired object snap, it is recommended to use SHIFT + Right-Click. Then the necessary object snap can be chosen from a list. In this case, all others will be turned off for only specifying one point and only just the selected one will be active. After clicking, the original status will be restored at once. This works even when the OSNAP is off, but temporarily you want to use the object snap while specifying a point.
To Allow Dynamic Input
New versions of AutoCAD Arhitecture make dynamic user input possible in editing operations (e.g. for the length of the next wall segment). Also displaying command prompts and options became possible not only at the command window but next to the crosshair (the latter in a drop-down menu) as well.
Now let’s fully utilize this operation mode:
- Right-click above the DYN toggle on the lower Application Status Bar and choose Settings… from the drop-up menu.
- Ensure that in the displayed dialog box toggles shown in the figure are turned on.
- Press OK and exit the panel.
- Pay attention that the DYN (F12) toggle is turned on.
- Place your cursor under the editing window, above the icon next to the MODEL title, and then press the Right-Click button.
- Choose the Display Layout and Model Tabs command from the drop-up menu.
- The Layout tabs will be displayed the traditional way at the bottom of the editing window.
- If anytime you want to switch back to the new method again, go above one of these tabs, and then again press the Right-Click button. You can find there the Hide Layout and Model tabs command for this purpose.
Setting Used Units
Click on the Customize icon next to the Command Window, and then click on Options… to open the panel.
For good operation of ACA 2014 it is important to set the parameter value of both Source content units, and Target drawing units to millimeters on the Options panel User Preferences tab, in the Insertion scale field.
NOTE: If you use the Imperial profile, the right setting is Inch instead of millimeter.
If you don’t apply this setting, the Xref drawings coming from Project Navigator with Drag and Drop techniques will be displayed in incorrect size and unit.
Do not close the Options panel; the next settings will be made here as well.
In order to see the same results whenever you do these exercises, it is necessary to customize the operation of the right button of your mouse.
Stay on the User Preferences tab, open the Right-Click Customization panel and make the necessary settings according to the figure. Turn on the Turn on time-sensitive right-click toggle at the end, because the Default Mode and the Command Mode will become inactive.
Close the panel by pressing Apply & Close, and then close the Options panel by pressing OK.
This ensures means that by clicking the right mouse button no menu will drop up but in command mode the first click is equivalent to pressing ENTER.
NOTE: The “Pressing ENTER” term is used many times in this book. With these settings it is suitable and more comfortable to use the right mouse button instead of ENTER; so you needn’t release the mouse during your work. In fact, if someone has a better hand, he may also use the SPACE button with the same result.
Displaying Layout and Model Tabs
At the former AutoCAD Model space and Paper space Layout tabs were lined down in the editing window shown in this figure.
In the new version these tabs are hidden, replacing them with two icons displaying down on the Application Status Bar. As the old method is more expressive, so now let’s turn back the old mode.
Changing the Appearance of Toggles in Application Status Bar
Before version 2009, status changes in the Application Status Bar were available in a shortened text form. Since AutoCAD 2009, mainly because of space saving reasons, these status change toggles can be displayed in icon forms as well.
Let’s reset them to text form for easier handling.
Press the Right-Click button above any icon, then turn off the Use Icons toggle.
I hope youe enjoyed this part of the AutoCAD Architecture video tutorials series. In the next article I’ll show you how to start a project in AutoCAD Architecture. If you liked this tutorial make sure you subscribe for more in the upper right corner (where you can also download the first chapters of my AutoCAD Architecture eBook free) and also subscribe to my YouTube channel.
If you would like to create the whole project of a two-story house with Sheets and Annotation, please follow the link and buy my eBook, which guides you step by step (Imperial and Metric version available).