Join Shaun Bryant for an in-depth discussion in this video Using layer properties for layer management, part of AutoCAD: Tips & Tricks.
- [Instructor] So here we are again with another AutoCAD Tip and Trick. What we're going to be looking at is working with layers in AutoCAD. More importantly, the Layer Properties and what benefits they give us when we're working in one of our AutoCAD drawings. Now we've got a new drawing open. It's 07_UsingLAYERPROPERTIES.dwg. As usual, if you want to download that, you can, to follow along with the video. Now, we're gonna look at the Layer Properties within this particular 2D drawing while we're working in the Model tab of the drawing.
So, just jump into the Layers panel here. Again, my panels are a little bit squished based on the resolution I record the videos, so I'm sure you can see all of that Layers panel on your ribbon in your version of AutoCAD. I'm gonna click on Layer Properties and there's the Layer Properties Manager, listing all of the layers in the AutoCAD drawing. Now I'm just gonna click on the title bar there. Just drag that up a little bit so I can see more of the drawing. I'm then gonna zoom in the drawing a little bit and just make sure that I can see some doors, like that. Now, you'll notice these doors are Blocks and can you see there? If I hover over that Block Reference, the color is ByLayer and the layer is A-Internal-Doors.
Now that ByLayer is a layer property that is very, very useful. So if I scroll down here now and find my A-Internal-Doors layer in the Layer Properties Manager, there is it there. Now currently, the color is red. Now, that ByLayer setting means that will adapt whatever color the layer is. So I don't have to go and change every single door. I can just click there, change the color to say, a pinky magenta type color. As soon as I do that, all of my doors change color.
Now that's great, isn't it? If I've got 600 doors to change, I can do them all at once as long as they've got that particular ByLayer property. So if I change that color back to red, I'm not too keen on that purple one. Let's change everything back to red and there, they're all red again. Now, let me show you something. I'm gonna bring the Layer Properties Manager over here a tad just so I can select one single door. So I'm gonna select that door there, for example. So there's a door there. Now you'll notice if I hover over that, it is a Block Reference on the Layer A-Internal-Doors and it's got that Linetype ByLayer as well and the color is ByLayer.
So if I go to my Properties here, like that, can you see the color is also ByLayer there? So if I select that like so and change that to a different color, say, magenta, you'll notice when I hit Escape that it hasn't changed color. Now that's because it's a Block. Now because it's a Block, it's adapting all of that color for all of that Block and that kind of happens. If I Explode that block though, let's Explode that back to its original objects, like that.
So that is now an original group of lines and arcs. If I just quickly just do a crossing selection on those and then I change that to a different color, like so, you'll notice now when I hit Escape, they're all that magenta color because they've been exploded back to their original objects. That's just kind of the way that Blocks work in AutoCAD. Now obviously when you're just using regular AutoCAD objects instead of Blocks, you can change those colors at any time. So, what I'm gonna do, I'm just gonna quickly undo, just undo a couple of steps there to make sure that that Explode is undone, like so, and can you see there? It says, "Explode Group" down near the command line, so I know that I've undone that Explode.
Now, what I'm also going to do is look at the properties now of one of the fireplaces. I'm gonna close the Layer Properties Manager and there's a nice little fireplace just there on the right-hand side of the building. I'm gonna zoom in nice and tight and get that to there like so. Now all of these is just drawn with lines. So if I now select the line, like that, what I can do is go to Properties here, like so, and again, it's ByLayer, and it's on the object color. So I'm gonna change that to red, like that. So now it's got its own individual color.
If I hit Escape a couple of times, just to cancel any commands and hover over that, it's a Line, the color is Red, but it's on the layer A-Internal-Fireplace. So if I go back here now to my Layer Properties and look for A-Internal-Fireplace, can you see that A-Internal-Fireplace is that sort of orangey, sort of, wanna go sandy type color. I'll just drag this over here like that. So can you see? That's the original color and that's what the layer color is. So all of these is adapting ByLayer.
This one here has its own individual color. Now what I can do here is start using a wonderful tool called Match Properties. So if I go up to the Properties here again and use Match Properties, and I now select my source object, the red one that I changed, what I can do now is if I jump in here that all of these start to go red because I'm adapting the properties of that object I selected. When I press Enter, if I hover one of these lines now, you can see it's red, but it's still on the layer A-Internal-Fireplace, which has that color 40.
So if I want all of these objects now to go back to color 40 and adapt the layer color, what I do is I just click, drag a little crossing selection over the ones I've changed, go back to Properties to manage my layer properties, click here, go ByLayer, and I move away, hit Escape to deselect the objects and lo and behold, they're all back to the ByLayer setting, which means they adapt this color 40 for the A-Internal-Fireplace layer.
So I'll close the Layer Properties Manager now. Just do the standard CAD practice, double-click on the world to zoom extents and obviously if I want it to save that drawing, I then would as well.
Skill Level Intermediate
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