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Creating parent/child dimension styles

From: AutoCAD: Tips, Tricks, and Industry Secrets

Video: Creating parent/child dimension styles

When we create dimension style, we're telling AutoCAD how we'd like our dimensions to look. The settings that we choose are then applied to all dimensions using that style. If you think about it, this is a one-size-fits-all approach. I mean, maybe I'd like my linear dimensions to use a different arrowhead style than my angular dimensions and maybe I'd like my ordinate dimensions to be a different color than the other dimension types. Well, if you have the desire, you can actually be that specific with your dimension settings and you can do it by creating parent-child dimension styles.

Creating parent/child dimension styles

When we create dimension style, we're telling AutoCAD how we'd like our dimensions to look. The settings that we choose are then applied to all dimensions using that style. If you think about it, this is a one-size-fits-all approach. I mean, maybe I'd like my linear dimensions to use a different arrowhead style than my angular dimensions and maybe I'd like my ordinate dimensions to be a different color than the other dimension types. Well, if you have the desire, you can actually be that specific with your dimension settings and you can do it by creating parent-child dimension styles.

In this lesson we're going to learn how to create child dimension styles that target specific dimension types. On my screen I have a drawing that represents a sawhorse design and I would like to apply some dimensions to this drawing. So I'll start by creating a dimension style. I'll open the Annotation panel and then we'll open the Dimension Style Manager. I'll select New and I'm going to call this style custom. I'd like the Dimension Style to be Annotative and I'll click Continue. Now, I'm going to keep most of the default settings. However, I am going to jump to the Primary Units tab and I will change the Unit format to Fractional.

This will allow me to dimension the geometry using inches. I'll come down to the Suffix field and add the inch symbol to all of my dimensions. All right, let's click OK and close and then we'll try out the new dimension style. Let's create a linear dimension from the endpoint here to the endpoint here. I'll pull this out. That one looks great. Let's create one more. I'll press the Spacebar to re-enter the command and I'll create a dimension from the endpoint here to the endpoint here.

So far the style is working fantastic. Here's where we have a problem. Let's Zoom in on the right side view and this time I'll create an angular dimension. I'll select this line and this line and I'll pull out the value. Take a look at this. It says 30 degrees inches. I'm getting this extra inch designator because I told AutoCAD to apply that suffix to all dimensions, and this is obviously incorrect. To fix this, I'm going to go back to Dimension Style Manager.

I'll select Modify and I'll remove the suffix. I will then click OK. Then I'll click New and I would like my new dimension style to be based on the custom style. However, I'm not going to give this a name. Instead I'll open the Use for fly-out and I'll select Linear dimensions. Notice the Name field is grayed out. That's because I'm creating a child dimension style based on this parent style. Let's click Continue. Now, these settings will apply to linear or straight line dimensions only.

In here I'll add the inch symbol as a suffix and I'll click OK. Notice that the current dimension style is still custom. However, custom has a child style that applies to linear dimensions only. If we select this style, we can see the revised settings over here. Let's click Close and from now on whenever I create a linear or a straight line dimension, AutoCAD will add the inches designator. Let's zoom in and I am going to change my annotative scale to 1:4, and this time I'd like to create a radial dimension.

I'll select this arc and I'll pull out the value. Now, some people don't care for the extension lines that are applied to radial dimensions. It's no problem to turn them off. However, I don't want to turn off extension lines for all of the dimension types. So let's create another child style that applies only to radial dimensions. And while we're at it, let's add a suffix to these as well. Once again, I will open the Dimension Style Manager. I'll select New. I'll open the flyout and I'll select Radius dimensions and click Continue.

I will add the inch designator as a suffix and then I'll jump to the Lines tab and I'll suppress the extension lines. I will then click OK and close. As you can see this now reads 1 inch and the extension line has been removed. Let's select this. I'll grab the grip and I'll pull the dimension up to here. When I'm finished, I'll press Escape. So from now on, whenever I create a radial dimension using the custom style, I will never again be bothered with those extension lines.

So the next time you create a dimension style, remember that you don't have to create a one-size-fits-all group of settings. By creating child styles under the main dimension style, you can have customized settings for each dimension type.

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This video is part of

Image for AutoCAD: Tips, Tricks, and Industry Secrets
AutoCAD: Tips, Tricks, and Industry Secrets

66 video lessons · 8209 viewers

Jeff Bartels
Author

 
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  1. 1m 28s
    1. Welcome
      53s
    2. Using the exercise files
      35s
  2. 47m 11s
    1. Adding relevant data to Quick Properties and tooltips
      5m 38s
    2. Creating custom ribbon tabs and panels
      8m 55s
    3. Creating macro-enabled tools
      10m 29s
    4. Increasing speed with command aliases
      4m 44s
    5. Finding commands and system variables using Auto Complete
      2m 35s
    6. Optimizing the size of palettes
      3m 17s
    7. Accessing drawings using Favorites
      2m 25s
    8. Controlling notification bubbles
      2m 24s
    9. Restoring hidden messages
      3m 53s
    10. Following a blog from within AutoCAD
      2m 51s
  3. 1h 0m
    1. Disabling mode settings on the fly
      3m 28s
    2. Finding hatch boundaries in busy drawings
      3m 32s
    3. Generating boundaries from difficult shapes
      2m 20s
    4. Calculating the overall length of multiple entities
      6m 16s
    5. Calculating the area of multiple shapes
      4m 42s
    6. Flattening geometry to a single elevation
      4m 0s
    7. Trimming all entities to one side of an object
      2m 42s
    8. Eliminating duplicated geometry
      5m 10s
    9. Creating true offsets
      3m 44s
    10. Finding errors when joining multiple entities
      6m 48s
    11. Moving and copying entities using Windows shortcuts
      2m 24s
    12. Solving expressions using the command prompt calculator
      5m 1s
    13. Using the Calculator palette
      10m 25s
  4. 21m 17s
    1. Bringing all text objects to the front
      1m 20s
    2. Underlining single-line text
      1m 21s
    3. Managing numbered and lettered lists
      3m 36s
    4. Creating superscript and subscript text
      3m 18s
    5. Removing formatting from MTEXT
      3m 26s
    6. Using fields to identify who revised a drawing
      3m 10s
    7. Squeezing text into tight spaces
      3m 5s
    8. Hiding extra annotative scales
      2m 1s
  5. 16m 55s
    1. Creating "one-click" dimensions
      1m 52s
    2. Dimensioning angles greater than 180 degrees
      1m 40s
    3. Creating dynamic dimension breaks
      2m 20s
    4. Making linear dimensions act like aligned dimensions
      2m 44s
    5. Finding dimensions with false values
      1m 38s
    6. Creating parent/child dimension styles
      4m 45s
    7. Making dimensions easier to read
      1m 56s
  6. 14m 40s
    1. Making global edits to attribute data
      4m 1s
    2. Clipping references using curved geometry
      2m 21s
    3. Exchanging one block symbol for another
      3m 3s
    4. Using drag-and-drop to insert content
      3m 17s
    5. Creating a block library in two clicks
      1m 58s
  7. 10m 42s
    1. Making global changes to layer names
      3m 19s
    2. Converting all object properties to BYLAYER
      1m 43s
    3. Navigating layer lists using the keyboard
      2m 5s
    4. Producing a hard copy of the layer settings
      1m 34s
    5. Removing stubborn layers
      2m 1s
  8. 25m 1s
    1. Accessing viewports within viewports
      3m 21s
    2. Creating viewports with islands
      6m 5s
    3. Creating legends using the Change Space tool
      3m 55s
    4. Rotating viewport content to match layout
      4m 55s
    5. Importing layouts from template files
      2m 3s
    6. Visualizing multiple design alternates
      4m 42s
  9. 30m 18s
    1. Consolidating backup files into a single folder
      2m 48s
    2. Launching applications from within AutoCAD
      3m 53s
    3. Creating custom linetypes
      5m 9s
    4. Incorporating symbols into custom linetypes
      2m 48s
    5. Salvaging data from a corrupt drawing
      3m 57s
    6. Applying hyperlinks to drawing objects
      3m 34s
    7. Converting drawings from name-based to color-based plot styles
      2m 0s
    8. Identifying the owner of a drawing
      1m 18s
    9. Incorporating drawings into PowerPoint presentations
      4m 51s
  10. 31s
    1. Goodbye
      31s

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