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The Array command can also be used to create copies that are arranged into columns and rows. In this lesson we are going to learn how to create a rectangular array. On my screen I have got some chairs. This chair on the left represents what I am starting with and these chairs on the right represent the array that I'd like to create. To copy my chair into rows and columns I am going to use the Array command. Array is located in the Modify panel of the Ribbon. I will click to launch the command and then I will make sure that my Array type is set to Rectangular.
I will come down here and click Select Objects and then I will select the object I'd like to copy and right-click. Let me move this over a little bit, and how many rows do we want? The rows go left to right. In this case, I want 4 rows. So I am going to accept the default value. It looks like I need 3 columns. So I am going to change this to 3 and I will press Tab to accept this value. Notice as I make my changes we can see the preview update over here.
Now, how far apart are the rows and columns? I can see my Row offset is 42 inches. That is a center to center distance, not necessarily the walking space in between these chairs. So I will change my Row offset to 42 inches. Could I also enter 3 foot 6 inches? Yes, I could. That will also work. In fact, when I click in the Column offset you will see AutoCAD will make that change for me. My column offset is going to be 36 inches or 3 feet.
I will press Tab to accept that value and at this point I will move down and click Preview to take a look at my array. Now, if I like this, I can right-click to accept it. If not, I can press the Escape key to adjust my settings. Since I have built this array from dimensions, I know this is perfect. So I am going to right-click to accept it. Now that we understand the workflow behind the rectangular array, let's try and use the tool in a practical example. On my screen I have a design for a bookshelf and I would like the shelves in this bookshelf to be adjustable.
To accomplish this I am going to drill some holes in the inside of these faces. I will then be placing 3/8 inch dowels into these holes to hold up the shelves and I'd like to create a pattern of holes such that I can adjust the shelves in 3 inch increments. Now, I have got a finished example of what I am looking for right here. Let's see if we can replicate this rectangular array on this unfinished board. The first thing I am going to do is place the hole in the lower left corner. To do that, I will use my Offset command.
My Offset distance is going to be 3 inches and I will offset this edge to the inside and I will press Escape. Now, I am going to offset this lower edge up, 12 inches. So I will press the Spacebar to go back into the Offset command. I will type 12 inches and I will offset this line up and then I will hit Escape. Now, I will launch the Circle command and I will place the circle to the intersection right here and this circle has a diameter of 3/8th of an inch.
So I am going to right-click and select Diameter from the menu. I will type 3/8 inch and I will hit Enter. Now this hole is quite small. To make this a little easier to see I am going to eliminate my sketch geometry. I will do that by launching the eRase command, I will select both of these lines and I will hit Enter. Alright, let's complete the rest of the copies using a rectangular array. I will launch the Array command. This is going to be a rectangular array. I will click Select Objects and I will select my circle and right-click.
Let's move this over a little bit. Now how many rows do I want? There are 13 sets of holes. So I am going to have 13 rows, I have 2 columns. Let's take a look at Row offset, how far are the rows apart? We can see that right here, 3 inches. I will enter my row offsets. Finally, how far are my columns apart? We can see that value right here. I will set my Column offset to 10 inches.
Now that I am finished, I will click Preview. That looks perfect. If I like this I can right-click to accept it or I could always press my Escape key if I wanted to explore other options. What if I wanted my shelves to be adjustable at every 2 inch increments? Let's click Preview. We can see the difference. I am going to put things back the way they were. I will press Escape and I will change this back to 3 and I will click OK to accept it. As you can see a rectangular array is yet another way to create copies of your entities.
It's the perfect tool to use when your copies are arranged in columns and rows.
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