Join Shaun Bryant for an in-depth discussion in this video Using Grid and Snap, part of AutoCAD 2017 Essential Training.
- [Voiceover] We're now in a new section of our AutoCAD 2017 Essentials course. We're going to be looking now, at drawing accurately within AutoCAD. Now you may have noticed in previous videos, I've utilized things such as Object snaps. Now those are all part of your Drafting settings within AutoCAD, and what they allow you to do is draft accurately and effectively by snapping to particular points on the AutoCAD objects themselves. Now there's lots of other Drafting settings that you can use, now these Drafting settings are all available down here, on the Status bar.
So you can see, there I've got things like Object Snap Tracking, Object Snaps. Over here to the left, I've got things like Snap and Grid. Now what we're going to look at first is the Snap and Grid, at the left-most end here of the Status bar. Now, you can see that we've got a new drawing open. What we're going to do is look at how Snap and Grid work. Now you will notice we are working in a very simplistic drawing. Now the reason I've done this is purely for clarity, rather than have an actual working drawing, where it can get quite busy. So the drawing we've been using previously, the building, for example, if we were looking at Object Snaps or switching on Grid and Snap, you would probably find that it gets a little bit busy.
So what I've done is, I've simplified it, cut it down, so it's nice and basic, so that we can go through all the tools that allow you to draw accurately within AutoCAD itself. So we're gonna look at Grid and Snap. Now before I switch on Grid and Snap, one thing I'm going to do is change the background color of the drawing area. So it's a case of right-clicking, and on the shortcut menu, you want to go to Options. Now typically, the menu's gone off the screen. So I'll just hit Escape there, and right-click up here. And you want Options, down here at the bottom. So let's have a look at that.
And the Options dialog, as you can see, nice and big, as usual, and doesn't fit on my screen very well, as usual, as I've said before, I'm recording at quite a low resolution for the video, so you will find that dialog boxes, things like this, go off the screen ever so slightly sometimes. So I'm gonna go there, to Colors in the Display tab in the Options, now the reason I'm changing this, you'll see why in a moment. Now I've gone to the Drawing Window Colors there, and you want to select 2D Model Space Context, and the Interface Element is the Uniform Background.
And you can see that it's 33, 40, 48. I'm gonna change that on the pull-down menu just to white, like that. You can see the little preview, Apply, and Close, click on OK, and now you can see those red objects much, much better. Now what we're going to do is go to the Home tab on the ribbon, go to Layers here, and make sure that you're using the New layer, like so, the green one, and there's only two layers in this drawing, as well, I've simplified it all down so that we can concentrate on the Grid and the Snap. So we need to switch on Grid and Snap, so we come down to the Status bar, there's Grid, just click on it, you'll see the Grid switch on.
And you can see now, because I've got that white background, the grid is very obvious. Now the icon next to it here, is Snap. If I switch Snap on, that means I can snap to that Grid, a bit like the Object snaps. Now we don't actually need Object snap tracking on. I can switch that off, and also Object snaps, I can switch that off. Now the reason I'm turning those off at the moment is I only want you to use Grid and Snap. Now we've got Grid and Snap switched on, if you click on this arrow here, you can see that you can go to Grid snap and Polar snap and you can also go to Snap settings.
So there's all your spacings, and as you can see, we're in the Drafting Settings dialog box. Snap is on, Grid is on, and the spacings for the X is 10 millimeters, and the spacing for the Grid is 10 millimeters, and it's all on X and Y, Grid Y, Grid X, it's all switched on. Now all of these settings, you want to use Grid snap and Rectangular snap in this case. We'll look at Isometric snap and Polar snap later on. What I'm going to do is, I'm going to click on OK now and what you'll notice is I can now work with this grid.
So I'm using the New layer, and what I'm going to do is go to the Home tab on the ribbon, go into the Draw panel, and select the Line command. And what I'm going to do is draw a line from here so I'll use the grid, hover over the grid, you can see I snap to it, and you see it sort of jumping around, line that up, click, bring that down to that grid, there. Can you see, you might need to zoom in a bit. And you'll notice the grid gets smaller and smaller. So be careful of that one, but you can see, you can line it in by eye, take it over to here, click there, and then press Enter to finish.
And if I zoom out a bit now, can you see I've drawn that accurately and neatly without any requirement for Object snaps whatsoever. And that's the benefit of these tools, is the Grid and the Snap allow you to draw regular shapes quickly and easily without the need for snapping to the objects. So if I now draw a circle, like so, click on the down-arrow there in the Draw panel, I'll just do Center Radius, I can go to the center of my rectangle, and I can see it there on the grid, so I click there like that, and just take that out to the next grid, to say, there, click, I've got a nice accurate circle.
Now this circle here, on the other hand, has been placed, can you see, intersecting some gridlines, so what I can do there, is I can draw a line from the edge of that circle using the Line command, and I can come off, and look, I can actually hover over that point and click, and you can see that I'm actually drawing accurately off of that quadrant of that circle. I'll just press Enter there, to finish the line. Now the benefits of all of this is it gives you an accurate methodology to use but without using Object snaps. Now, there is a train of thought that you should use Grid and Snap instead of Object snaps.
My suggestion is, no, don't do that. If you've got regular shapes like rectangles, and squares, and 45-degree angles, and things like that, sure, use the Grid and the Snap. Nice and easy. When you start moving into complex shapes such as splines, polylines, circles and so on, my suggestion is that you stick with your Object snaps and work with those instead. And as we work through this section, we'll look at Object snaps, we'll look at coordinates, and see how everything works together in the AutoCAD user interface.
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