Join Scott Onstott for an in-depth discussion in this video Defining and nesting blocks, part of Designing Dynamic Blocks in AutoCAD.
- Before we dive into designing dynamic blocks let's back up and make sure that we all understand how to make static blocks. Dynamic blocks are based on static blocks, so in this video I'm going to go over the mechanics of creating a static block. Not only that, we will nest several blocks inside of a containing block to create a nested block structure. Open DeskSet01.dwg. This drawing contains no blocks, just objects, such as Arcs, Lines, and Splines.
Zoom in on these armchairs up here at the top. Type B for (BLOCK), and press enter. Every block must have a name, so let's type Armchair. Every block definition also has a base point, and you can specify that by clicking the Pick_point button, and then snapping to a point relative to the geometry. This arm chair could have an insertion base point right here on the edge of the seat right in the center. I'll click there, and the coordinates of that point are entered.
Over here we still need to select the Objects in this block, so I'm gonna click here, and then select all the objects. Enter. Note that now there's a preview image showing me that I have a selection of objects. Choose Delete in this first example. Make sure Open in block editor is not selected, and click OK. It disappears. What's happened is we've defined a block, and it goes in this invisible block table that is stored in this drawing file.
The next step is to Insert the Block as a block reference. The reference references the definition. Here's the Armchair. I'll insert it right here. The difference between these two armchairs is that the one on the left is a block, and the one on the right is composed of many individual entities. I'm going to delete the information on the right. Then I could insert another armchair, or just to save time I could just copy this one over.
There's nothing special about a copy. They're all the same. Down here we have a phone that we could make into a block. This time I'll preselect the objects that I'm interested in, and then type B enter for (BLOCK). This saves me a step. I already have a selection up here. You can see from the preview image. I'll type Phone for the name, and then I need to select a base point, that makes sense for this object, maybe right here in the lower left corner.
This time instead of deleting it, I'll save time by converting the information directly into a block. OK. It looks the same, but if you click on it you can see that there's just one grip. This should tell you that it's a block. You can also open the Properties palette and see that it's a Block Reference. Let's also define this chair down here, this task chair, as a block. Select it, B enter, type Task chair, pick its insertion point, in this case that will be right here.
Convert it to a block. By the way, if you were to choose Retain, it would retain the original objects instead of converting it directly into a block. The second option is probably the one you'll wanna use most of the time. OK. Now let's see what we have, a Block Reference. We optionally could create a block out of this computer, the keyboard, and the mouse, and the desk, but we don't have to. Instead I'm just going to create an overarching container for all of this information, as a block.
I'll select all of that, and that includes some blocks and some objects. Then I'll type B enter. This will be the Desk set. It will have a base point located right here in the lower left corner of the desk. Then I'll convert this to a block. All of that information is handled as a single object, which is known as a block reference.
- Defining and nesting blocks
- Inserting and redefining blocks
- Creating and applying constraints
- Designing dynamic blocks
- Sharing blocks on a local area network