Join Shaun Bryant for an in-depth discussion in this video Selecting objects, part of AutoCAD 2017 Essential Training.
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- [Voiceover] We're now in a new section of our AutoCAD 2017 Essentials course. We're going to be looking at modifying objects that already exist in an AutoCAD drawing. Now you'll notice we have a new drawing. It's 05_ModifyingObjects.dwg, you can see that at the top of the screen there. And you can download that from your Lynda.com exercise files as usual. Now you'll notice it's a similar drawing to what we've been using. You've got the grid lines, you've got the building, but you'll notice there's some extra bits in the middle there.
We have some furniture, and that furniture is a group of AutoCAD blocks that I've deliberately brought in. There are sample blocks that you get with every installed version of AutoCAD. So they're not proprietary, they're not any particular type of furniture, they're just standard default blocks representing some objects. So we're gonna look at selecting objects. Now, as usual, in this particular drawing I've set up a named model view. So go over to the View Control here, click on where it says Top like before.
If you go to Custom Model Views you can see that we have a view called Furniture. Click on it and that will zoom you in nice and neatly into that central area, allowing you to see the furniture. Now we're looking at Selecting Objects. Now before we go any further, there is a particular way that you can select objects in AutoCAD, it's called Noun/Verb Selection. If I just right-click in the drawing area, and open up the Options dialog box, you'll notice the Options dialog box is huge, but if I go to the actual selection tab on the ribbon, can you see that Noun/Verb Selection is ticked? And it is normally ticked by default.
Now the reason for that is it allows you to select the objects first before you select the command, and it's a really useful function cause it kind of works the same way that your brain works. You look at the object and then decide what you're going to do with it. So make sure that that is on in your Options first of all; sometimes people switch it off which can be a little bit annoying. So I'll just Okay that to lose the dialog box. So what it means is, is I can select an object like this table here, see it highlights and you can see the grip there, but I can now go and select a command, let's say the Move command.
And you'll see that the Move command kicks in, asking for the base point. I don't have to select the objects first. Let me demonstrate that by hitting Escape to cancel the command and deselecting that table. If I just use the Move command on the Modify panel on the Home tab on the ribbon there, click on Move, it prompts me to select the objects to move first, but I can select the objects and then click on the command. The object being the noun, the command being the verb. Noun/Verb selection, this is very, very useful, saves on a lot of mouse clicks.
The other really neat tool with Selection is I can select an object, I can then just right-click and the commands are available to me on the shortcut menu. Now you'll notice, because of that the shortcut menu's gone off the top of the screen there. I'll just hit Escape a couple of times, select the table again, come down to the bottom of the screen, and if I right-click now can you see, look, there's all these editing and modifying tools here: Erase, Move, Copy, Scale, Rotate, and so on. So you see there's lots of different tools available to me in the contextual shortcut menu.
So if I select an object and right-click, I get a very different menu on the shortcut menu. I'll just hit Escape again a couple of times. Now there's other ways of selecting objects as well. You'll notice I can just hover the crosshair over one and click, if I hover over another one and click, and you'll see it forms what is called a Cumulative Selection Set. So I'm selecting objects on a one-by-one basis and working through. Now I can also select using what what is called Selection Windows. There are two types of Selection Windows in AutoCAD and the quickest and easiest ones are the Window and the Crossing selection methods.
There is also a weird thing called a Lasso. Now the Lasso is new to AutoCAD, it came out in AutoCAD 2016, so in the previous version. And if I just click and drag like that, you'll see that I can kind of just drag that Crossing selection over and it selects that whole table. What I can also do is I can click like this and there's the Lasso, so if I click and hold down the left-hand mouse button, it creates this weird and wonderful kind of lasso shape and I release and it selects it. It's a little bit abstract, and I have to be honest, I'm still getting used to it.
It's a little bit weird and wonderful but you can just click, drag, take the Lasso through, and because that's a Crossing Window, it selects it like that because it's cross the object. Let's go back now to the settings whereby what we can do is we can obviously utilize the tools where we've got the Window selection and the Crossing selection. So I'm going to zoom in a little bit closer on the piano and the table there. Now if I come over here and place my crosshair over here and click once, releasing the mouse button and dragging, that does the Window selection instead of the Lasso selection.
Now you'll notice it's a blue window from left to right, so it's a Window selection. And you'll notice that the object will only highlight when I get the window around all of the object, that's why it's a Window selection, and you'll notice there it selects the piano nicely. Now if I do that the other way, hit Escape there to obviously deselect that, and then if I come this way, go from right to left, if I click there and drag from from right to left, it's green and dashed. That's a Crossing selection, and as soon as I cross an object, I can also CAD block, can you see that's highlighting, like so.
So I don't need to take the window all the way around the object, I just cross the object. But also if an object is within a Crossing window, it also gets selected. So that's the difference between a Window selection and a Crossing selection. Now there are other methods of selection as well. You'll notice them on the command line down there, they flashed up, there's a fence, a Window polygon, and a Crossing polygon. Now I will try and cover those later on in the course rather than obviously going into too much detail here, but they're just other methods of selection.
What you can also do, though, is you can type your selection method. So if I went to, say, the Erase command here on the Modify panel, it prompts me to select objects. So what I could do now is type something like All. If I select All, this is very dangerous, by the way, with the Erase command, and press Enter, it selects every single object in the drawing, every visible object. If I now press Enter again to confirm that everything disappears. Luckily that's what Undo was made for, so I click on Undo and it brings everything back.
So you can see there, there's lots of different ways of selecting your objects and working with them, but most importantly, remember to go to your Options and make sure that you've got that Noun/Verb selection switched on so that you can then select an object and then go to the Modify command that you want to use with that particular AutoCAD object.
Autodesk Certified Instructor Shaun Bryant reviews the user interface and leads you step-by-step through all of AutoCAD's tools, menus, and features. Learn how to create and modify geometry, layers, blocks, dimensions, and layouts. Find out how to draw more accurately with AutoCAD's snapping and coordinate model, and add text and annotations that help others understand your drawings. Ready to share your work with others? Discover how to output your drawings in a variety of formats. Even experienced AutoCAD pros can find something new to learn.
- Exploring the AutoCAD interface
- Converting drawing units
- Using DWT template files
- Zooming and panning around drawings
- Drawing simple geometry and objects
- Moving, scaling, and rotating
- Using Fillet and Chamfer
- Drawing with snapping and coordinates
- Adding hatching and gradients
- Adding text to drawings
- Working with dimensions
- Grouping objects
- Creating reusable blocks
- Designing tables
- Working with XREFs
- Creating layouts
- Adding annotations
- Outputting drawings