Join Shaun Bryant for an in-depth discussion in this video Using DIMREASSOCIATE to maintain dimension accuracy, part of AutoCAD: Tips & Tricks.
- [Instructor] So we're back again in AutoCAD for another tip and trick and what we're going to look at now is a bit more of annotation now, where we work with some dimensions and we can re-associate our associative dimensions. Now, saying that is a lot lot more difficult than actually what happens in AutoCAD itself. So we got a new drawing open, it's 9_UsingDIMREASSOCIATE.dwg and that's the command we are going to use, DIMREASSOCIATE.
And what it allows us to do, it allows us to re-associate our dimensions if the geometry of our objects changes. So let's have a little play around with the geometry of the object first. What we've got, we've got a hatch pattern that is associative to the boundary, which is this polyline here on the object layer. So we've got some nice little dimensions set up as well. Now yes, the dimensions are annotative, but you don't need to worry about annotation scales or anything like that cause we're staying in the model tab for this particular exercise.
So let's have a look now at what we're doing. What we're going to do is, we're going to select this polyline. Now you'll notice all the grips kick in. Now there's a lovely tool in AutoCAD that you may or may not know about. If you hold down Shift, you can select more than one grip. So if I click on that grip there, and then that grip there, like that, can you see it highlights both grips in red? So I've now got two hot grips. So if I click on one of them and use my Polar Tracking to drag all the way over here, let's say, to the right.
Now, I'm not worried about the distance, as such, but maybe I should be. What I'll do is I'll type in an actual distance, to say 200 like that. Direct distance entry, press Enter, makes it 200 units longer. Now if I hit Escape there, you'll notice that the 100 dimension here has not updated. Now, we will look at that with DIMREASSOCIATE in a moment. Just going to pan upward slightly now, do the same again, select a polyline, just click on the edge of it, hold down Shift, and I'm going to select these two grips here.
This one, and this one. Then I'm going to release Shift, click on one of the grips, just drag it vertically down using Polar Tracking again, and I'll take that down by 50 this time. Just type in 50. Now if I zoom out, you'll notice that the dimensions are not associated with the geometry anymore. So this is now where we have to type in the DIMREASSOCIATE command. So I'll just hit Escape there to deselect the polyline and I type in, D-I-M-R-E, dim re, and the good thing is, the suggestion menu saves me having to type it all, so I select DIMREASSOCIATE.
Now I select the object that I want to re-associate. Can you see that down near the command line? Select dimension to re-associate. So I'm now going to select the 100 dimension right here. And then I'm going to right-click or Enter to confirm, if you right-click you will need to click on Enter in the shortcut menu. Now, can you see there, it's asking you to specify your first extension line origin. Now you'll notice with that 100 dimension, that is actually in the right place.
So let's zoom in. So the first extension line origin is still there on the endpoint snap. However, the second extension line origin, with a little blue cross there, is in the wrong place. I need to select that corner right there. So I click there, it re-associates the dimension in the right plane and it's done. How quick and easy is that? That DIMREASSOCIATE command is absolutely wonderful, I love it to bits. Now let's go to the Annotate tab up on the ribbon here, and have a look at what commands we have on the Dimensions panel.
So if we look here, what have I got there? I've got Inspect, I've also got Update dimension objects with the current dimension style, but you'll notice there, I've got DIMREASSOCIATE as well, so I don't have to keep typing it, which is a real blessing. So that's in the Dimensions panel on the Annotate tab on the ribbon. So I'll just pan upwards now, so we can see the bottom of the object, and what we'll do is we'll re-associate this 300 dimension with this corner here. So make sure you can see everything and snap to everything. Go to the Dimensions panel, click on re-associate or DIMREASSOCIATE as that actual command is called, select the object to re-associate.
So that's the 300 here. And again, we Enter, or right-click and Enter, remember it's Enter on the shortcut menu. First extension line origin will be that endpoint there, I'll just pan up a little bit, second extension line origin will be that endpoint there, and as you can see, it quite happily re-associates all of my dimensions for me. Now it's a lovely lovely tool, because you don't have to delete your dimensions when you're redoing the geometry of an object.
Literally switch off, maybe, your dimensions layer, and then, update the geometry, bring the dimensions layer back, you'll see your dimensions aren't re-associated anymore and what you've got to do there, is DIMREASSOCIATE, set them all up, put them all back in place, job done. As you can see, it's a massive time-saver because you don't have to delete the original dimensions. You just use DIMREASSOCIATE to re-associate the dimensions in your AutoCAD drawing.
Skill Level Intermediate
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