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Exploding elements

From: AutoCAD 2011 Essential Training

Video: Exploding elements

In this lesson we are going to learn how to explode our geometry. Now the word explode sounds a little more exciting than what we will actually be doing. You see the explode command is used to convert compound objects back into their individual components. Let's take a look. On my screen I have some simple shapes. I created this geometry using the rectangular command. I created this hexagon using the polygon command, and I have also created a circle with some hatch. If I select this geometry, notice that AutoCAD treats this as a single object.

Exploding elements

In this lesson we are going to learn how to explode our geometry. Now the word explode sounds a little more exciting than what we will actually be doing. You see the explode command is used to convert compound objects back into their individual components. Let's take a look. On my screen I have some simple shapes. I created this geometry using the rectangular command. I created this hexagon using the polygon command, and I have also created a circle with some hatch. If I select this geometry, notice that AutoCAD treats this as a single object.

If I open up the property changer we can see the AutoCAD views this object as a ployline or a multisegmented line. The same is true for this hexagon. If I select this we can see that AutoCAD views this as a polyline. Finally, let's take a look at the hatch pattern. Even though it looks like we have a lot of line work here, if I select this, we can see that AutoCAD views this hatch as a single object. I am going to deselect this and let's start by exploding this geometry.

To do that, I will use the explode command, explode is located in the Modify panel of the Ribbon. After I launch the command I'll select the objects I would like to explode and then I'll right-click. And when I do, notice that these and these have been converted back into their individual components. These and these are now simple line segments. Let's deselect these and we'll explode this hatch. Once again I will launch the explode command, I'll select my hatch and I'll right-click.

Let me mention that you never want to explode your hatch. Because if you do, it reverts to individual segments and you will always have more control over your hatch if it is still considered a hatch or an object. Now you may be wondering when you'd ever want to explode your geometry. Well, let's take a look at a practical example. I am going to pan the drawing over. On my screen I have a drawing of a standard receptacle cover. Let's see if we can reproduce this geometry. I am going to start by launching the rectangle command and I will click right here and then I will right-click and select dimensions, and the rectangle I am creating has a length of 2.7 and a width of 4.5.

Finally, I will click on screen to finish the rectangle. Next, I would like to create the center line. To do that I will launch the line command, and I will create my line from the mid point of this top edge and I will draw to the mid point of the bottom edge and I will hit Esc. Next, I would locate the center of this circle. To do that I will offset the top edge down, 2.25. Now here's my problem. I can't offset this edge down, because AutoCAD is viewing this as a single polyline.

So I am going to deselect my3:01, I'll launch the explode command, I will select the polyline and right-click. Now I can launch the offset command, we'll give this a distance of 2.25 and I can easily offset this single edge down. When I am finished, I will press my Esc key. Let's launch the circle command and I will create a circle at the intersection of these two lines and the circle has a radius of .13. Next, I like to find the center of these shapes.

To do that I'll offset my line up and down, a distance of .73. So let's re-launch the offset command. I'll enter my distance and I'll offset this line up and down, and I'll hit Esc. Then I will launch the circle command and I'll create a circle at the intersection right here. The circle has a radius of .68. I'll press my spacebar to go back into the circle command. I'll create a circle at the intersection right here and then I will hit Enter to accept the previous radius.

Now, at this point my drawing is getting a little bit cluttered with sketch geometry, so I am going to launch the Erase command. I will only erase my center line and I will erase these horizontal lines. Finally, I would like to create these straight edges. Once again I will use the offset command. I will use a distance of 1 and since I exploded this rectangle, it's very easy to offset this top edge down and this bottom edge up. I will hit Esc and then the spacebar to go back into offset and my next distance is going to be 1.05, I'll offset this edge up and this one down and I will press Esc.

Finally, we can clean this drawing up using the Trim command. I'll launch trim and then I will select all of these annuities as cutting objects and I'll right-click and I like to trim this top edge and this bottom one. I would like to trim all of these edges and all of these. Let's zoom in a little bit, I would like to trim this arc and this one, this one and this one, and it looks like I have a couple extra objects I need to get rid of.

No matter if I right-click, notice that the trim command also contains an erase sub-option. If I select this, I can select the annuities I would like to erase and right-click. When I am finished, I will hit Esc. If the time comes when you would like to convert an object back into its individual parts, use the Explode command. Even though the command itself sounds destructive, it's one of the fastest ways to build geometry from your existing line-work.

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This video is part of

Image for AutoCAD 2011 Essential Training
AutoCAD 2011 Essential Training

100 video lessons · 20428 viewers

Jeff Bartels
Author

 
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  1. 2m 8s
    1. Welcome
      1m 29s
    2. Using the exercise files
      39s
  2. 23m 33s
    1. Understanding model space
      3m 44s
    2. Accessing AutoCAD's tools
      3m 2s
    3. Leveraging dockable palettes
      3m 1s
    4. Monitoring the Status bar
      1m 28s
    5. Understanding the anatomy of a command
      2m 14s
    6. Customizing AutoCAD's preferences
      3m 13s
    7. Accessing help
      3m 38s
    8. Saving a workspace
      3m 13s
  3. 19m 42s
    1. Opening an AutoCAD drawing
      3m 2s
    2. Understanding mouse functions
      2m 44s
    3. Zooming, panning, and regenning
      4m 24s
    4. Working in a multiple-document environment
      2m 39s
    5. Saving your work
      2m 29s
    6. Saving time with templates
      4m 24s
  4. 14m 35s
    1. Constructing lines
      2m 20s
    2. Locking angles with the Ortho and Polar modes
      4m 49s
    3. Drawing circles
      4m 10s
    4. Activating the Heads-Up Display
      3m 16s
  5. 14m 48s
    1. Defining a unit of measure
      6m 28s
    2. Constructing geometry using architectural measurements
      4m 6s
    3. Working with metric units
      4m 14s
  6. 23m 45s
    1. Understanding the Cartesian coordinate system
      4m 53s
    2. Locking to geometry using object snaps
      7m 42s
    3. Automating object snap selection
      7m 26s
    4. Using temporary tracking to find points in space
      3m 44s
  7. 19m 30s
    1. Drawing rectangles
      4m 56s
    2. Drawing polygons
      3m 4s
    3. Creating an ellipse
      5m 9s
    4. Organizing with hatch patterns
      6m 21s
  8. 29m 46s
    1. Making geometric changes using the property changer
      3m 38s
    2. Moving and copying elements
      4m 28s
    3. Rotating elements
      3m 48s
    4. Trimming and extending geometry
      5m 10s
    5. Creating offsets
      6m 16s
    6. Erasing elements
      2m 46s
    7. Undoing and redoing actions
      3m 40s
  9. 11m 52s
    1. Selecting objects using windows
      3m 46s
    2. Adding and removing from selections
      3m 43s
    3. Using keyboard shortcuts
      4m 23s
  10. 51m 12s
    1. Creating fillets
      3m 52s
    2. Creating chamfers
      3m 51s
    3. Copying objects into a rotated pattern
      4m 20s
    4. Copying objects into a rectangular pattern
      4m 58s
    5. Stretching elements
      4m 4s
    6. Creating mirrored copies
      2m 12s
    7. Scaling elements
      5m 0s
    8. Leveraging grips
      7m 20s
    9. Exploding elements
      5m 47s
    10. Joining elements together
      3m 44s
    11. Editing hatch patterns
      6m 4s
  11. 32m 19s
    1. Understanding layers
      2m 43s
    2. Creating and adjusting layers
      7m 20s
    3. Using layers to organize a drawing
      9m 17s
    4. Changing popular settings using the layer control
      3m 30s
    5. Understanding the BYLAYER property
      3m 37s
    6. Restoring previous layer states
      3m 42s
    7. Using existing geometry to set the current layer
      2m 10s
  12. 37m 43s
    1. Creating single-line text
      3m 11s
    2. Justifying text
      5m 18s
    3. Controlling appearance using text styles
      6m 10s
    4. Annotating with multi-line text
      5m 10s
    5. Editing text
      4m 32s
    6. Creating bulleted and numbered lists
      3m 29s
    7. Incorporating symbols
      5m 28s
    8. Correcting spelling errors
      4m 25s
  13. 28m 37s
    1. Creating general dimensions
      4m 13s
    2. Creating continuous and baseline dimensions
      2m 13s
    3. Controlling appearance using dimension styles
      4m 57s
    4. Modifying dimensions
      6m 6s
    5. Creating multileaders
      2m 53s
    6. Controlling appearance using multileader styles
      3m 23s
    7. Modifying multileaders
      4m 52s
  14. 25m 19s
    1. Inserting blocks
      4m 34s
    2. Creating blocks
      6m 41s
    3. Leveraging blocks
      5m 39s
    4. Redefining blocks
      3m 1s
    5. Building a block library
      5m 24s
  15. 13m 50s
    1. Querying a drawing using rollover tooltips
      2m 9s
    2. Taking measurements using the Distance command
      3m 2s
    3. Modifying properties using the Quick Properties tool
      4m 25s
    4. Automating calculations using the Quick Calculator feature
      4m 14s
  16. 36m 6s
    1. Creating quick plots
      6m 4s
    2. Selecting a pen table
      5m 48s
    3. Choosing line weights
      4m 32s
    4. Creating a layout, pt. 1: Choosing a paper size
      2m 42s
    5. Creating a layout, pt. 2: Inserting a title block
      2m 29s
    6. Creating a layout, pt. 3: Cutting viewports
      6m 9s
    7. Reusing layouts
      4m 3s
    8. Organizing layouts
      4m 19s
  17. 16m 49s
    1. Using the Annotative property to automatically size text
      4m 13s
    2. Using the Annotative property to automatically size dimensions
      4m 34s
    3. Using the Annotative property to automatically size multileaders
      3m 58s
    4. Changing the scale assigned to annotations
      4m 4s
  18. 6m 56s
    1. Saving drawings to other formats
      2m 27s
    2. Plotting to the Design Web format
      2m 15s
    3. Plotting to PDF
      1m 20s
    4. Sending drawings via email
      54s
  19. 22s
    1. Goodbye
      22s

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