CAD For Beginners 1
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CAD For Beginners 1

Mar 12, 2021
Video Length:  57:57
Presented By:  Jake Lott

Are you new to AutoCAD and want to hit the ground running? Looking for some pointers on how CAD works, or just need a refresher? In part 1 of our 3-part journey through CAD, you'll gain some basic familiarity with the software interface so you can jump right into drafting. We'll take you from the ground up, from opening the software to working with file types and using some of the essential drafting tools you see around the screen. Tune in to pick up some best practices to establish good CAD habits.

Links to parts 2 & 3 of this series:

  • CAD for Beginners 2: In part 2, we show you how to customize your CAD environment for your personal workflow. We’ll take you from stock CAD to a finely tuned workspace by demonstrating a variety of tips, from setting up your tool palettes to customizing your keyboard shortcuts, that will help you work faster and more efficiently.
  • CAD for Beginners 3: Take a deeper dive into the fundamentals of blocks, as well as other drawing-defined items such as layers, MLeaders, and Dimension Styles (DimStyles). We’ll get into some native CAD capabilities to help you understand the basics. Then we’ll show off how Land F/X takes all this functionality to the next level.


Webinar Contents:

Note: The following catalog of content covered in this webinar is time stamped to allow you to follow along or skip to sections of the video that are relevant to your questions. You can also search for content on this page using the FIND command in your browser (CTRL + F in Windows, Command + F in Mac OS.)


  • Intro/TOC
  • Terminology
  • Navigation
  • Basics of Scale and Sheet Setup
  • Drafting

0:00 – 3:00: Intro/TOC

3:01 – 18:35: Terminology

  • Workspace & Model Space(3:01)
    • The mouse: selecting and deselecting (5:38)
    • The mouse: Pan/zoom (9:23)
  • Units and scale (12:25)
  • Paper Space (layout) (13:45)
  • Viewport (14:56)
  • Layers (15:23):
    • Keep everything visually/physically organized
    • Control how things are plotted
    • Easier to make edits
  • Linework (polyline, line arc, etc.) (16:11):
    • Vertices remain joined even after grip editing.
    • Move and copy polyline as a unit.
    • Easily create rectangles and polygons as single objects.
    • Ability to "close" and generate areas.

18:36 – 29:50: Navigation

Model and Paper Space (19:00)


Panels (19:10):

  • Layer Properties Manager
  • Properties Manager


Command line (19:45)


The ribbon (25:28)


Bottom toolbar (status bar) (26:26)

28:10 – 39:19: Basics of Scale and Sheet Setup

The importance of zooming to extents when you first open a drawing (28:10)

Setting the drawing units (30:20)


Beginning to draft and typing drafting commands (examples: Polyline, Circle) (31:20)


Layers (34:33)


Setting the layer color to set line thickness (lineweight) when plotting (36:31)


Linetypes (solid, dashed, etc.) (37:13)

39:20 – end: Drafting

Basic workflow of using the Command line while drafting (39:20)


Paper Space (41:25)


Paper sizes and the Page Setup Manager (42:00)


Making a viewport from Paper Space to Model Space (44:25)


Why zooming to extents is important (45:10)


Double-clicking options (activating sheets, clicking out of sheets, etc.) (45:55)


Setting a viewport scale using our Scale tool (46:55)


The dashed outside rectangle on a layout sheet shows the extent of how far your plot can go to the edge of the page, according to the plot driver. Make sure your title block, model, and viewport do not extend beyond this line. (49:01)


Cleaning unneeded items out of your drawing file (50:30)


Activating a viewport and correcting its scale (51:00)


Locking a viewport to retain the correct scale (51:50)


Right-click menu options (53:40)


Moving between Model and Paper and avoiding being locked out of a viewport (53:53)


Minimizing and maximizing a viewport (55:13)

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