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AutoCAD Essentials is a multi-part series that takes a more modular approach to this massive program, used for everything from 2D and 3D CAD design, drafting, and modeling to architectural drawing and engineering projects. In this installment, author Jeff Bartels concentrates on the particulars of creating basic geometry in AutoCAD, including assigning imperial or metric units of measurement, using object snaps to control accuracy, and drawing and transforming basic lines and shapes. The last chapter in the course tests your newfound skills in a short project.
Probably the most fundamental editing tools we have in AutoCAD are Move and Copy. In this lesson, we'll explore the workflow behind both of these commands. On my screen, I have some abstract geometry. I have a circle whose center is currently located at the upper-left corner of this rectangle. Let's say I'd like to move this circle such that its center falls at the upper-right corner of the rectangle. To do that, I'll launch the Move command. Move is considered a Modify tool, so we can find it in the Modify panel. The icon is right here. After launching the command, I will select the object I'd like to move and press Enter. Now Specified base point, where do I want to pick it up from? I'm going to use a Running Object Snap and I'll pick it up from the center of the object.
Finally, Specify second point, where do I want to put it down? I'm going to use another Running Objects Snap. I'll place it to the endpoint at the upper-right corner of the rectangle. Let's move it one more time. Maybe I'd like to position it such that its center falls at the midpoint of this upper-line. Once again, I'll launch Move, I will select the object or objects I'd like to move, and press Enter. I'll pick it up from the center, and I'll place it to the midpoint of this line. Once again, I'm using a Running Object Snap. I'm going to zoom out. I'll pan the drawing down a little. It's important to note that we don't always have to use an object snap as the destination point of our move; we can also move our objects using measurements. As an example, I'll launch the Move command.
I'll select my circle and press Enter. I'd like to pick it up from the center. Let's say I'd like to move it ten inches straight up, moving away from this rectangle. I'm going to lock my ortho first. I will then pull in the direction I want to move and type ten inches. This is an architectural example. Then I'll press Enter. Now, let's take a look at Copy. You'll find that the workflow for Copy is identical to Move, except that we get to keep our original object. The Copy command is found right beneath the Move command.
After launching the command I will select the object I want to copy and press Enter. I would like to pick this up from the center of the circle. Let's turn the ortho back off. And I'd like to create a copy at the upper-left corner of the rectangle. Note that Copy defaults to a multiple option. Meaning, I could create another copy at the upper-right corner, the lower-right, and the lower-left. When I'm finished creating copies, I can press Enter or the Escape key. Now that we understand the workflow behind these two commands, let's try and use Move and Copy in a practical example. I'm going to zoom out. I'll pan the drawing over.
Over here I have an example of a floor plan. I'm going to zoom in on the south side. I'm currently working on these restrooms. Both of these rooms have the same measurements, by the way. Let's zoom in a little bit closer. I'd like to start by moving this toilet symbol such that the right edge is ten inches away from the wall. To do that, I'm going to create an object snap from my destination point. I'll launch the Circle command and I'll create a circle from the corner of the room with a radius of ten inches. I will then move the toilet symbol. Enter. I'll move it from the upper-right corner to the intersection. I'll Shift+Right-Click to bring up the Object Snap menu, and I'll place this to the intersection of the circle and the wall. When I'm finished, I'll select my circle and I'll press Delete. At this point, you may be wondering, could we have also used temporary tracking to find that same point? Yes, we could have. Now that I have the configuration of these fixtures the way I like them, I'd like to copy them into the other room, so I'll launch the Copy command. I will then create a window selection around these objects, and press Enter. Now where do I want to pick them up from? Well, it's not going to do me much good to pick a point on the objects themselves.
Instead, I'm going to pick them up from the upper-left corner of the room. This point is common to both rooms. So I can place them to the upper-left corner of the other room. When I'm finished, I'll press Escape. Remember that you don't always have to pick an object up from the object itself. Using points that are common between two locations can be the most powerful way to use Move and Copy.
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