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Properly managing a drawing is essential to being productive in AutoCAD. In this course, author Jeff Bartels concentrates on the Autodesk AutoCAD tools and features dedicated to organizing and editing geometry. The course covers making selections, creating and adjusting layers, identifying objects with hatch patterns, and scaling, exploding, and joining elements. It also includes lessons on creating fillets and chamfers, copying existing objects into rectangular or circular patterns, and accessing specialized tools that make measurements and calculations a lot easier.
In the same way we can break objects apart using Explode, we can put them back together again using the Join command. In this lesson we'll glue some entities together using Join. On my screen I have some abstract geometry. We are going to start with this line segment on the left. I'll move up and launch the Copy command and I'm going to select this line and I'll copy it from the left endpoint, to the right endpoint. This gives me two line segments that are co-linear. I'd like to join these entities together.
To do that, I'll use the Join command. Join can be found in the Modify panel of the Ribbon. We just have to click the arrow to expand the panel, so we get access to the icon. After launching the command, I will simply select my line segments and press Enter. And you can see that AutoCAD has joined these entities into a single line. We can use this same workflow when dealing with co-linear arcs as well. Over here to the right, I have a pair of co-linear arcs. I'm going to move up and launch the Join command, and I'll select these entities and press Enter.
And you can see when working with arcs, not only can you join them into a single arc, you can also close them and complete a finished circle. Let's do that in this case. I am going to select Yes and create a circle. Now what if the objects are not co-linear, or maybe they're made up of different types of objects? Over here to the right, I have a series of lines and arcs. So long as the geometry meets end to end, you can join it together using the Join command. I am going to move up and launch Join, I'll select the entities and press Enter, and you can see that AutoCad has converted these entities into a Polyline.
I'm sure you will agree that joining these entities together makes them much easier to select, which in turn makes them easier to work with. Especially if you have to move, rotate, or offset them. Now that we understand how the Join command works, let's use it in a practical example. I am going to zoom out; I'll pan the drawing over. On my screen I have a civil engineering example; this is a drawing of a proposed parking lot. I am going to zoom in on the middle portion of the lot, and let's take a look at the geometry on the ends of these stalls.
This line work represents the edge of pavement. I'd like to offset this geometry to create the line work that represents my curb and gutter. I'm sure you'll agree if I offset these entities now, that's going to be a little tedious, because they're all individual components. Instead, since they all meet end-to-end, I'm going to join them together first. We will launch the Join command, I'll select the entities on the left, and as long as I'm at it, I'll select these entities on the right as well. When I'm finished I'll press Enter. And you can see the AutoCAD has converted this geometry into two Polylines.
Now I'll launch the Offset command, I'll enter my first distance, that will be 1, which represents 1', and I'll offset each of these entities to the inside. I will then launch Offset again, I'll use a distance of .5. This will create the back of curb, and I will offset my initial offsets to the inside as well. When I'm finished, I'll press Escape. This same workflow was used to create all of the curb and gutter in this drawing.
I'm sure you'll agree that using the Join command is one of the fastest ways to create customized Polylines. Using Join to glue objects together will make those objects easier to select, which in turn makes them easier to modify when necessary.
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