CAD For Beginners 3
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CAD For Beginners 3

Oct 15, 2021
Video Length:  1:05:24
Presented By:  Jake Lott

To finish up our 3-part CAD for Beginners series, we’ll 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.

Links to parts 1 & 2 of this series:

  • CAD for Beginners 1: 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.
  • 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.


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
  • Named Objects Defined Into Drawings
    • Layers
    • Blocks
    • Text/Multiline Text (MText)
    • Multileader (MLeader)
    • Dimension Style (DimStyle)
  • Importance of PURGE
    • Table Styles
  • Demonstration of These Techniques in an Actual Drawing File

0:00 – 4:55: Intro/TOC

Recap of Parts 1 and 2 (2:36)

CAD for Beginners Part 1:

  • Navigation
  • Basics of scale and sheet setup
  • Drafting: Tools and terminology


CAD for Beginners Part 2:

  • Customizing the Options dialog box
  • Tool and palette setup
  • Keyboard shortcuts

4:56 – 24:10: Named Objects Defined Into Drawings

  • Layers provide a way to organize and assign colors, linetypes, and other settings for your given objects.
  • A block is a collection of objects combined into a single named object.
  • Text consists of a single line of characters expressing a single font, and spacing.
  • Multiline text (MText) is a multiline entity that supports multiple fonts, heights, spaces, and other paragraph formatting options such as numbering and bullets.
  • A Multileader (MLeader) combines the entire callout (leader, arrow, and text) into a single and contiguous entity.
  • Dimensions display measurements of items within CAD.
  • Tables are compound objects that are arranged in rows and columns, where cell styles can be adjusted to different formatting.


Why use named objects? (8:43)


Definition of "defined"/"definition" for our purposes (9:42):

When a named object exists in a drawing, whether you see it or not.


Why definition matters (10:21)


Named object managers (where to find/adjust defined named objects (11:52)

  • Layers: Layer Properties Manager (Command: LA or Layer)
  • Blocks: Block Editor (Command: BE or BEDIT)
  • Text/MText: Text Styles Manager (Command: ST or STYLE)
  • MLeaders: Multileader Style Manager (Command: MLS or MLEADERSTYLE)
  • Dimensions: Dimension Style Manager (DST or DIMSTYLE)
  • Tables: Table Style (TS or TABLESTYLE)


Introduction to the PURGE command (13:05)

The Find Non-Purgeable Items feature can be especially helpful in locating objects in your drawing that you are unable to remove even with the PURGE command.


Layers (14:45)

Saving and applying layer properties (Layer States) in your drawing using our Save Layers and Load Layers tools (15:13)


Blocks (17:04)

Running the BLOCK EDIT command or the INSERT / CLASSIC INSERTcommand to locate blocks in your drawing (17:22)


Text/Multiline Text (MText) (18:29)

Using the ST command to locate text styles (18:29)


In F/X CAD, all these managers are easily available in the Manage tab. (18:45)


Using our Text Manager to manage and add to the text styles in your Preference Set (19:58)


Multileader (MLeader) (23:26)


Dimension Style (DimStyle) (23:58)

24:11 – 30:12: Importance of PURGE

Why our PRG command, which automatically runs the PURGE command 4 times, is so useful (24:11)


Purging unused objects from the drawing (25:13)


Checking whether a layer, style, or other object is active, then deactivating it to allow it to purge (25:55)


Zooming to Extents to ensure the drawing doesn't contain any unnecessary objects outside the intended design site (27:35)


Using the Find Non-Purgeable Items feature to locate objects that may or may not need to be removed but are currently unpurgeable for some reason (27:50)


Table Styles (29:21)

30:13 – end: Demonstration of These Techniques in an Actual Drawing File

Opening the Properties dialog box and selecting an object to see what type of object it actually is (30:22)


The importance of changing the style that applies to a particular object you want to change, rather than changing that object manually, to maintain consistency (32:28)


Modifying Dimension Styles (DimStyles) (34:16)


Configuring MLeader styles (37:12)


Purging out a defined object (41:14)


Working with text styles (42:20)


Using our Redefine All Text Styles (REAT) tool to set the correct text styles in the drawing (43:57)


Using our BatchMan tool to update styles in several drawing files (45:05)


Working with blocks (45:38)

Our block libraries and tools (45:52)


New feature: The Open File button in our dialog boxes for editing generic blocks, which allows you to open and edit the source file for a selected block from within CAD (47:09)


How blocks are defined in a drawing (48:03)


Using the Block Editor to edit a block's definition in a particular drawing vs. editing and customizing that block's source file to edit all definitions of that block (52:33)


Using our Redefine Block tool to redefine all instances of a block in a drawing (55:29)


Using the MSLIDE command to make a new thumbnail preview slide of an edited block (57:20)


Quick overview of Linetype Scale (LTSCALE) and using the Reload All Linetypes (REAL) command to regenerate the proper linetypes in your drawing (59:18)


Why you should be using our tools and the accompanying keyboard commands to place plants and other blocks instead of the native AutoCAD Insert command (1:02:19)

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