Placing Detail Templates
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Placing Detail Templates

When you save details to your preferred scale, they're saved as blocks – not external references (Xrefs) – and stored into a detail file management system. You can access this library with the Detail Explorer. This will allow you to store all files within a single drawing instead of pulling data from outside sources.


When you place a block into the sheet via a Paper Space layout tab, each layout tab is recognized as an individual sheet with a unique number in the drawing set. In addition, each detail is automatically numbered accordingly.



Looking for information on customizing your Detail Templates, including your detail title blocks? See our Customizing Detail Templates documentation.

Detail Templates Overview

A Detail Template is much like a border around a detail with a title block. When you place a detail within one of our Detail Templates, the Template will allow the detail to scale to its necessary size when placed in a drawing.


You may have loaded one or more previously saved details with the intention of using them as a basis for the detail you plan to create. You might still need to use our Layer States tool to load in all the necessary layers for your detail. You may also need to use our Detail Builder Blocks tool to load in component pieces, or even entire prototypes, to help build your detail.


When working from one or more existing details, you'll already be working with a scale that was established when those details were created. If the details are all in one specific scale, you'll probably want to use that scale on your new detail. If your details have multiple scales, you'll need to create your new detail fresh from scale requirements until you put in a Detail Template to establish the scale of your detail(s). Items that require scale include:

  • Text
  • Hatch patterns
  • Dimensions (not for the length of the dimension, but the text size and arrow size of the dimension)

"Drafting" vs. "Annotation"

When working with details, it's important to become familiar with the terms "Draft" and "Annotate."


Draft: The first step in the detail production process. When you draft details, you visually communicate how something is to be constructed and is intended to function.


It's best practice to draw details to a full scale (1:1). That means, if a seat wall measures 18 inches across the top, it should be drafted to measure as 18 inches in AutoCAD. Later in this tutorial, you will learn how our software will automatically scale your details for sheet presentation.


Annotate: When you annotate details, you're including notes, dimensions, or any supplemental text data (explanations, notes, specifications, etc.) needed to describe how something functions or is to be constructed.


You can represent any unit of measurement in several ways. Check with your CAD operator for company standards if you're unsure.

Inserting a Detail Template

Once you've drafted your detail to the point where you're ready to develop its scope and scale, you can insert a Detail Template. Inserting a Detail Template will determine the boundary of the detail, based on what will "fit" into the detail module system, and what the detail's scale should be.



To insert a Detail Template, open the Detail Template tool:


F/X Details ribbon, Templates flyout


F/X Details ribbon, Templates flyout




Details toolbar


Details toolbar




Detail Templates toolbar


Detail Templates toolbar

F/X Details menu


F/X Details menu, Detail Template option




or type DetailSize in the Command line




The Detail Size and Scale dialog box will open.

We've discontinued the Layer States menu from this dialog box. To apply a Layer State (a saved set of layer properties) to your detail, use our Load Layer State tool before placing the Detail Template.

Detail Size and Scale dialog box, overview

1. Detail Size: The default Detail Template size is based on the basic Detail Module 1A. You can make details taller or wider as required for the specific detail. More information >


2. Select Imperial or Metric, depending on the measuring system you want to use for your detail.


3. Selecting different scales will result in different Detail Template sizes.


4. Units: Select the units you plan to apply to your detail. Depending on the Detail Scale you've selected, you can select between inches and feet (Imperial selected), or meters, centimeters, or millimeters (Metric selected.


5. Width Extension: If you want, select one of these options to add an extension of the detail width based on the 1A template size. The available extensions are 25%, 33%, or 50% of the basic 1A template size. You can also select None to keep the detail at its normal size.


The Width Extension option is primarily used when calling out the text in the detail with Bubble Callouts to provide an additional area for the Bubble Callout Schedule. It can also simply be a way to make a slightly wider detail when required without the need to make a full template extension.


6. Select a Preference Set to apply to your detail. A Preference Set is a saved version of settings you configure in the Preferences screens.


7. Window option, allowing you to snap to a specific detail template size. Need to create a detail in a weird size? First, figure out the size of your sheet compared with a 1A size detail template. Maybe even copy a set of rectangles from around a placed 1A-size detail and the whole sheet size.Copy those two rectangles over to your detail file. Then place a 1A-size detail in your detail file. Scale the two rectangles, keeping the aspect ratio between them. You now know the template size you need to snap to, and you can use the Window option to snap the template to that size.


Click OK to place the Detail Template in your drawing.



Detail Size

The basic Detail Template size is 1A. This size should be applicable to the vast majority of your details. As the unique needs of certain details dictate, you can select a different template size, such as:

  • 2A, 3A, 4A, or 5A for wider details
  • 1B, 1C, 1D for taller details
  • 2B, 3C, etc. for taller and wider details


Details rarely require a template size beyond the left four options – 1A, 2A, 1B, 2B – but unique requirements do occur.

We also offer keyboard commands for fine-tuning the size of your Detail Templates when placing them. More information >



As you change the size of your Detail Template in the Detail Size area, the corresponding boxes will be highlighted to show the basic shape of your template.



For example, if you want a vertically short but wide detail, you can click area 5A, at the far right of the first line.



As a result, areas 1A, 2A, 3A, 4A, and 5A will all be highlighted.

Changing the Detail Template size



Placing a Detail Template around the detail you are creating also helps define the detail scale, where you may have to select different scales for a given template size – such as 1A – in order to allow the finished detail to "fit" adequately into the template area.



With some details, "scale" is unimportant. You may, for instance, physically use CAD to shrink or enlarge your detail component to fit into a selected template. If you have selected a specific scale but the drawing is not to scale – and scale is no issue – simply click the text of the scale indicated at the detail title and edit it to, for example, N.T.S. for "not to scale" (see images below).


Detail with a set scalt
Detail with scale set to NTS




Regardless of the physical size of a detail, as determined by its scale, the system will automatically reformat it to a 1:1 physical size when you place it into a Layout tab drawing sheet.

Our software allows you to customize your default Detail Template, including your detail title blocks. For more information, see our Customizing Detail Templates documentation.

Keyboard Commands for Placing a Detail Template

We've added some helpful keyboard commands that allow you to fine-tune the size of your Detail Templates when placing them.


When placing a Detail Template, you'll notice that you now have the option to type K to see the available keyboard commands. If you type K, you'll see a guide to all the commands you can use when placing your Detail Templates.




Keyboard commands for placing Detail Templates

Use the following keys on your keyboard to change the size of your Template:

  • W: Taller format
  • S: Shorter format
  • Q: Smaller scale
  • E: Larger scale
  • A: Narrower format
  • D: Wider format
  • Z: Less width extension
  • C: Larger width extension

Do not click the letter buttons in the Keyboard Commands dialog box; they are only meant as a guide to show you which keyboard commands you have available, and will not work. Instead, use the corresponding keys on your keyboard.


Here's how the keyboard commands affect your Detail Templates as you place them:






Pressing W for a taller format

W key for taller format




S key for shorter format








Pressing S for a shorter format




Pressing Q for a smaller scale.

You won't see a difference in the size of the Detail Template when you press Q. Instead, you'll see a smaller scale in the Command line each time you press Q.

Q key for smaller scale




E key for larger scale

Pressing E for a larger scale.


You won't see a difference in the size of the Detail Template when you press E. Instead, you'll see a larger scale in the Command line each time you press E.




Pressing A for a narrower template format:


A key for narrower template format



Pressing S for a shorter template format:


S key for shorter template format



Pressing Z for less width extension:


Z key for less width extension



Pressing C for more width extension:


C key for more width extension

Assigning a Sheet Number to a Layout Tab

You can place a detail into any Paper Space Layout tab, understanding that the Layout tab will have a specific sheet number within your drawing.



Our software offers two options for assigning a sheet number to a layout tab:



Option #1: Assigning a Sheet Number to the Layout Tab from within the Project Manager


Sheet Index in Project Manager, New button

Open the Project Manager for the current project.




Under Sheet Index, click New to create a new sheet.



The Sheet Information dialog box will open.




Type a sheet number in the Sheet # field and a title for the sheet in the Sheet Title field.

Sheet Information dialog box




Sheet Index, Assign button

This sheet will be created and placed into the Sheet Index.



To assign the sheet to a Layout Tab, highlight i in the Sheet Index and click Assign.




Select a Layout tab to assign to the detail, then click OK.

Selecting a Layout tab to assign to a detail




Sheet associated with selected Layout tab message
You'll see a message that the sheet is now associated with the Layout tab you selected.




You can always Edit or Delete a highlighted sheet by clicking one of these buttons. You can also click Assign again to assign the detail to another Layout Tab if you have made an error or changed your mind.




If you change a Layout Tab to another sheet, all detail callouts and references will reflect this change throughout the system.

Sheet Index, Edit, Delete, and Assign buttons




Option #2: Assigning a Sheet Number to the Layout Tab When Placing a Detail

If you place a detail into a Layout Tab and you haven't yet assigned a sheet number to that layout, the system will automatically ask for a sheet number. If you place a detail without a sheet number active, you'll see the Select Current Sheet dialog box.



Select Current Sheet dialog box, overview

1. A listing of the Sheet Index that appears in the current project's Project Manager. Here, you can view any sheets you've already created. You can assign the detail to a sheet you've already created at this point, or you can create a new sheet to associate with the detail.



2. Enter the Sheet number of the sheet for the Layout Tab that is currently active.



3. Enter the Sheet title of the sheet you want to assign to this Layout Tab.




The new Sheet Number and Title will be created and associated with this active Layout Tab, and will be listed in the Sheet Index field in the Project Manager.

Sheet listed in Sheet Index

Inserting a Sheet Template Grid into a Drawing

A Sheet Template grid is a convenient way to quickly divide the sheet area defined in your Layout Tab with a grid that conforms to your Detail Template size. You can use this feature to create a grid that will allow you to line up your details in an orderly, organized fashion.



This feature may not be necessary with your own sheet title block, as yours may already have a built-in grid layout for your Detail Template. You may often find yourself working with a title block other than your own – perhaps from a another consultant or from a client. In these cases, you may need to insert this sheet grid to help you organize your details.



Access the Insert Sheet Template tool:



F/X Details ribbon, Sheet Template flyout


F/X Details ribbon, Sheet Template flyout




Details toolbar


Details toolbar



Detail Templates toolbar


Detail Templates toolbar

F/X Details menu


F/X Details menu, Sheet Template option




or type DetailSheetTemplate in the Command line




The Command line will prompt: Upper left window



Click the upper left corner of the location where you want the grid to start. It will automatically snap to the end of a line or an intersection, which may be a border line of the sheet.



Once you select the upper left corner, the CAD Command line will prompt: Lower right corner



As you move your mouse down and to the right, a grid will appear, spanning between where you started and the current location of your crosshairs. The lines of this grid will be equal to or larger than your basic Detail Template size – never smaller.




The Detail Template grid will be drawn as a block on a non-plot layer.


If you want, you can erase the grid and re-draw it (if you got it wrong the first time), or turn off the layer if you don’t want it visible.


The image to the right shows an example of a Sheet Template grid inserted into a Layout Tab sheet border area.

Detail Template grid drawn as a block on non-plot layer

When you place details within a Layout Tab sheet border area, the detail insertion point (the lower left corner of the detail) will "snap" to an intersection. If you have a Sheet Template inserted, this intersection will serve as the lower left corner of a detail grid location.

Placing a Detail on a Sheet Layout Tab

Details are placed into a Paper Space Layout Tab because a Layout Tab is intended to represent a sheet you plan to plot. As a sheet, it can have a specific sheet number in your drawing set. As a result, the placed details "know" where they are on the sheet, as well as which sheet they're on. Thus, they can have a reference of a detail number on a certain sheet number, such as 12/L102 for detail 12 on sheet L102



When you're ready to place a detail, open the Paper Space Layout tab where you want to place it. This Layout tab should be set up correctly and have the title block and other typical sheet requirements. You may have placed a Sheet Template grid in your drawing and have the detail grid embedded within the title block (if you want a grid).



Go to the project’s Detail Manager to view the details you've added to your project. Highlight the detail you want to place, then click Place.


DSelecting and placing a detail from the Detail Manager


1.List of the details that have been added to the project but haven't been placed in your drawing.



2. Placed Details: List of details that have been placed into the drawing set. The numbers to the left of each detail (example: 2/1) are the Detail Number / Sheet Number of that detail's location in this project’s drawing set.



3. A preview of the highlighted detail.



4. Highlight the detail you want to place, then click Place to insert in in your drawing.




Placing the Detail

When you place your detail, a preview of the size of the detail will appear, with the lower left corner of the detail originating at the cursor crosshairs.


Preview of detail size appears in sheet




Click an intersection of lines to "snap" the detail to that intersection. If you have a detail grid in your drawing, you'll most likely snap to the intersection of lines that define the lower left corner of each detail.



When you click to place the detail, the detail will be placed as a block that's scaled for the proper Paper Space scale. The Detail Manager will then open again, and you can either place another detail or close out of it.

Related Webinars

  • Details for Beginners: Take a full tour of our detail system, where you’ll learn how to navigate our detail library, find the details you need, and use them in your drawing set. (1 hr 1 min)
  • Working With Scale: In this webinar, we do some scale troubleshooting and show you when and how to use scaling techniques such as splitting your drawing into different scales, scaling details, and changing the scale of your entire drawing. We also cover the available scaling options in our Detail Templates tool. (1 hr 4 min)
  • Design F/X Setup: Join us for a complete demonstration on how our software helps you manage and use construction details. We’ll provide an overview of our entire system, from creating your detail drawings to compiling your detail library. (53 min)
  • Creating a Detail from Scratch: Land F/X provides all the tools you need to draft your own details quickly and efficiently. Learn how our details tools will help turn you into a detail virtuoso. You’ll also pick up some recommended techniques for drawing up a detail from the ground up. (1 hr)
  • Getting Started with the Detail Tools: We'll show you the basic tools you need to familiarize yourself with on the F/X Details ribbon, including setting your Details Preferences. (58 min)
  • Detail Tips And Tricks: Learn some advanced techniques and best practices to create details that communicate your design intent clearly, including how to load a layer state, save a custom detail block, and place a detail template. (59 min)
  • Details and Specifications: Tyson Carroll of Urban Tree Foundation queried industry leaders in the creation of landscape architectural details and specifications that satisfy the best possible construction documentation standards. Join us for an exciting look at his project. (46 min)


Issue: When you insert a Detail Template, the red line below the detail title extends beyond the detail boundary


Issue: Error: Bad argument type vla-object collection, vla-object when trying to place a detail in your drawing


Issue: You want to add (save) a PDF as a detail in our detail system


Issue: "No valid detail title block found" message when attempting to save a detail


Issue: When placed in a drawing, a Detail Template is coming in with no title, and only the non-plot template border is visible


Issue: When you place a Detail Template, it's coming in with its insertion point offf the tick mark

Last modified on Friday, 06 October 2023 11:51

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