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Using layers to organize a drawing

From: AutoCAD 2011 Essential Training

Video: Using layers to organize a drawing

In this lesson, we are going to create a simple drawing and we will use the Layer Properties Manager to organize our geometry on to logical layers. On my screen I have got a mechanical example. This is a drawing of a restrictor plate and this drawing was created using several layers. What I would like to do is start a brand-new file and recreate this drawing and in doing so, I am going to use the Layer Properties Manager to sort the geometry on to logical layers. Let me make one correction. I am going to recreate everything except for the dimensions.

Using layers to organize a drawing

In this lesson, we are going to create a simple drawing and we will use the Layer Properties Manager to organize our geometry on to logical layers. On my screen I have got a mechanical example. This is a drawing of a restrictor plate and this drawing was created using several layers. What I would like to do is start a brand-new file and recreate this drawing and in doing so, I am going to use the Layer Properties Manager to sort the geometry on to logical layers. Let me make one correction. I am going to recreate everything except for the dimensions.

I am only concerned with the geometry in this lesson. To create a new drawing, I am going to move up and click the New icon. Then I will start my drawing using the default acad template, and I will select Open. At this point I have two drawings open in my interface. I would like to view them side by side. So I am going to select the View tab on the Ribbon. Then I will come down to the Windows Panel and I will click Tile Vertically. Now I just happened to be lucky enough that I have a really nice view over here.

If you don't, click inside this window to put the focus on this side and then you can pan and zoom to center your geometry on screen. Since mine looks good, I am going to click to put the focus on my blank drawing. Then I will select the Home tab and we will get started. The first thing I would like to do is create some layers. To do that, I will click the icon to bring up the Layer Properties Manager. I will grab the Title bar here and I will slide this over a little bit. I will click the New Layer icon and I am going to create a layer called part, and I will set the color of this layer to yellow.

Then I will create another New Layer. Notice that if you create a layer when there is a layer selected, AutoCAD will duplicate the settings of that selected layer. I am going to use this layer for the hidden lines. I will set its color to magenta. Then I will click the Linetype setting. I will select Load and then I will select the standard Hidden Linetype from the menu. I will click OK to load this into the drawing.

Then I will select it and click OK to assign it to the layer. I would like to create one more New Layer for my center lines. Let's set the color of this layer to green. Then I will click the Linetype setting, I will select Load, and I will select the Center Linetype. Then I will OK. I will then select this to assign it to my layer and I will click OK. The layers that I have created should match our example.

I would like to do one more thing. I would like to set the part layer current. I will do that by selecting it and clicking the green check. Rather than closing this manager, since I am going to be using it frequently, I am going to right-click on the Title bar. I will make sure that Allow Docking is selected and I will click Anchor Left. This will minimize the palette down to a single icon. Now when I need it, all I have to do is hover over it. I can access my settings and then I can move out and allow it to collapse.

I am going to start by drawing the outer boundary of this part. I will do that by using a rectangle. So I will launch the Rectangle command. I will pick a point on screen right here. Then I will right-click and select Dimensions, and this rectangle is 10X10 which is perfect, because the default is 10X10. I will just hit Enter to accept those values. Then I will click on screen to finish the rectangle. I will zoom in a little bit. We will center this on screen.

Now let's take care of the four holes. Before I create these notice that the center of each hole measures one unit away from the adjacent edges. So I am going to use this rectangle to my advantage. I am going to launch the Offset command. I will set my Distance to 1 and I will hit Enter, and I will offset my rectangle to the inside. The four corners of this shape represent the centers of those circles. Let's launch the Circle command. I will create my circle from the endpoint of this line.

This circle has a diameter. Let me right-click and select diameter of 1, and I will hit Enter. Next, I will launch my Copy command and I will select my circle and right-click and I will copy this circle to the remaining corners. Now I don't need the sketch geometry anymore, so I will launch the Erase command. I will select the line work and then I will right-click. Next let's take care of these rounded corners. I can see these have a Radius of 1. Once again, I am going to use the Polyline to my advantage.

I will launch the Fillet command and I will right-click. I will select Radius. These have a Radius of one 1. I will then right-click and select Polyline, and when I select my Polyline AutoCAD applies the radius to all of the corners. Now let's find the location of these centers of these two circles. To do that I will offset this bottom edge up 2.9 and 5 units. Now I am going to have to explode this shape. I will launch the Explode command, I will select the geometry and right-click.

Then I will launch my Offset command. My first distance will be 2.9. I will offset this bottom edge up. Then I will launch the Offset command again. My next distance is 5 units. I will offset the bottom edge up and then I will offset this left edge over and I will hit Escape. Alright, since my part layer is current and I have one more object left to draw on that layer, we will take care of this circle first. I will launch the Circle command and I will create my circle from the intersection of these two lines.

This circle has a diameter of 2.8. Now we will set the Hidden lines layer current. To do that I will hover over the palette and I will double-click on the layer name. Then I will move out and I will press the Spacebar to relaunch the Circle command. I will create this circle from the intersection right here and this circle has a diameter of 7 units. Now let's take care of the center lines. First, we will have to set that layer current.

I will go back to the palette. I will double-click on the layer name and I will move out and allow it to collapse. To create my center lines I am going to launch the Line command and I will create a Line from the quadrants here to the quadrants at the top. And I will hit Escape. Then I will go back into the Line command and I will create another line from the quadrant here to the quadrant here, and I will hit Escape.

Let's zoom in a little bit. Notice that the line work is too short to support the Linetype right now. That's okay. I will fix this by using the Scale command. I will launch Scale and then I will select these objects and right-click and I will scale them from the center of the circle and I will zoom out a little bit. We will pull these out until they are approximately the same size as we see in our example. Now I will launch the Copy command, and I will select my center lines and right-click and I will copy these from the center of this circle to the center of the remaining circles, and I will press Escape.

Now wouldn't it be nice since I already have the line work here that I could just take and move these lines onto another layer. Let me show you how we can do that. I am going to select this line work. Then I will go to my Property Changer and right here beneath the General heading I have a Layer Control. If I click in this field I can select the fly-out and I can select the layer that I would like to put this geometry on. I will select center lines and then I will hit Escape to deselect these entities. Finally, I will make the center lines look more like the example.

I will start by using the Scale command and I will select these two and right-click. I would like to scale them from the center of this circle. Let me pull this out until they are about the size as we see in the example, and I will click. Finally, I will take care of this last one by creating a new circle. I will create a circle at the center of this one. Then I will pull this circle out so that the radius represents the line and length that we see in our example. I will use the Trim command.

I will select my circle and right-click and I will trim off these ends. Then I will right-click and select eRase. I select my entity and I will right-click. When I am finished I will hit my Escape key. If we use the Layer Properties Manager to organize our geometry on to layers, we open up a whole new world of color and Linetype possibilities for our designs. And if we anchor the manager to our interface we give ourselves instant access to our Layer Management Tools.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for AutoCAD 2011 Essential Training
AutoCAD 2011 Essential Training

100 video lessons · 20282 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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