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AutoCAD® 2009 For Dummies®

Book Description

AutoCAD 2009 provides all the tools you need to create presentable, usable, printable, and sharable drawings, but it's not always easy to figure out which hammer to pick up or which nail to bang on your first try. That's where AutoCAD 2009 For Dummies comes in. It gives you the clear, easy-to-follow guidance you need to take charge of this powerful drafting and design application — first time and every time.

People like you, who want to get the hang of AutoCAD quickly and without giving yourself a headache, have made previous editions of this book bestsellers! Here's a simple guide to creating complex technical drawings with this complicated program. Moving up from an earlier version? Look for the icons marking the cool new stuff! You'll discover how to:

  • Get going quickly while building proper AutoCAD techniques

  • Make the program work with you

  • Draw and edit objects

  • Zoom and pan for an accurate view

  • Apply text, dimensions, and hatching to clarify your design intent

  • Organize the objects you draw, including properties and files

  • Share work with other CAD users — in the office and over the Internet

  • Upgrade smoothly from previous AutoCAD editions

Complete with savvy tips on how to avoid AutoCAD errors, a concise list of the differences between AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT, and juicy tidbits on how to make the time you spend in AutoCAD more enjoyable, AutoCAD 2009 For Dummies will make you an AutoCAD expert in no time!

Table of Contents

  1. Copyright
  2. About the Author
  3. Author's Acknowledgments
  4. Publisher's Acknowledgments
  5. Introduction
    1. What's Not (And What Is) in This Book
    2. Who Do I Think You Are?
    3. How This Book Is Organized
      1. Part I: AutoCAD 101
      2. Part II: Let There Be Lines
      3. Part III: If Drawings Could Talk
      4. Part IV: Extending AutoCAD
      5. Part V: The Part of Tens
    4. Icons Used in This Book
    5. A Few Conventions — Just in Case
      1. Commanding from the keyboard
      2. Tying things up with the Ribbon
      3. Classic is always in style
    6. Where to Go from Here
  6. I. AutoCAD 101
    1. 1. Introducing AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT
      1. 1.1. Why AutoCAD?
      2. 1.2. The Importance of Being DWG
      3. 1.3. Seeing the LT
      4. 1.4. Right on Time for 2009
    2. 2. Le Tour de AutoCAD 2009
      1. 2.1. AutoCAD Does Windows (And Office)
      2. 2.2. And They're Off: AutoCAD's Opening Screens
        1. 2.2.1. Running with Ribbons
          1. 2.2.1.1. A hierarchy of title bars
          2. 2.2.1.2. Making choices from the Menu Browser
          3. 2.2.1.3. Browsing under the Big Red A
          4. 2.2.1.4. Unraveling the Ribbon
        2. 2.2.2. Going for that classic look
          1. 2.2.2.1. Changing spaces
          2. 2.2.2.2. Cruising the classic toolbars
      3. 2.3. Getting with the Program
        1. 2.3.1. Looking for Mr. Status Bar
        2. 2.3.2. Let your fingers do the talking: The command window
        3. 2.3.3. The key (board) to AutoCAD success
        4. 2.3.4. Keeping tabs on palettes
        5. 2.3.5. Down the main stretch: The drawing area
          1. 2.3.5.1. Model space and paper space layouts
          2. 2.3.5.2. Drawing on the drawing area
      4. 2.4. Fun with F1
    3. 3. A Lap around the CAD Track
      1. 3.1. A Simple Setup
      2. 3.2. Drawing a (Base) Plate
        1. 3.2.1. Drawing rectangles on the right layers
        2. 3.2.2. Circling your plate
        3. 3.2.3. Placing your polygon
      3. 3.3. Getting a Closer Look with Zoom and Pan
      4. 3.4. Modifying to Make It Merrier
        1. 3.4.1. Hooray for array
        2. 3.4.2. Stretching out
        3. 3.4.3. Crossing your hatches
      5. 3.5. Following the Plot
    4. 4. Setup for Success
      1. 4.1. A Setup Roadmap
        1. 4.1.1. Choosing your units
        2. 4.1.2. Weighing up your scales
          1. 4.1.2.1. The scale factor factor
        3. 4.1.3. Thinking annotatively
        4. 4.1.4. Thinking about paper
        5. 4.1.5. Defending your border
      2. 4.2. A Template for Success
      3. 4.3. Making the Most of Model Space
        1. 4.3.1. Setting your units
        2. 4.3.2. Telling your drawing its limits
        3. 4.3.3. Making the drawing area snap-py (and grid-dy)
        4. 4.3.4. Entering drawing properties
      4. 4.4. Making Templates Your Own
    5. 5. Planning for Paper
      1. 5.1. Setting Up a Layout in Paper Space
        1. 5.1.1. Will that be tabs or buttons?
          1. 5.1.1.1. View Layouts Quick(view)ly
        2. 5.1.2. Creating a layout
        3. 5.1.3. Copying and changing layouts
        4. 5.1.4. Lost in paper space
          1. 5.1.4.1. What space am I in?
        5. 5.1.5. A view(port) for drawing in
        6. 5.1.6. About paper space layouts and plotting
  7. II. Let There Be Lines
    1. 6. Manage Your Properties
      1. 6.1. Managing Your Properties
        1. 6.1.1. Putting it on a layer
        2. 6.1.2. Accumulating properties
        3. 6.1.3. Creating new layers
        4. 6.1.4. Manipulating layers
          1. 6.1.4.1. The state of your layers
      2. 6.2. Using Named Symbols
        1. 6.2.1. Using AutoCAD DesignCenter
        2. 6.2.2. Copying layers between drawings
    2. 7. Preciseliness Is Next to CADliness
      1. 7.1. Controlling Your Precision
        1. 7.1.1. Keyboard capers: Coordinate input
        2. 7.1.2. Grab an object and make it snappy
          1. 7.1.2.1. Grabbing points with object snap overrides
          2. 7.1.2.2. Running with object snaps
        3. 7.1.3. Other practical precision procedures
    3. 8. Down the Straightaway
      1. 8.1. Introducing the AutoCAD Drawing Commands
      2. 8.2. The Straight and Narrow: Lines, Polylines, and Polygons
        1. 8.2.1. Toeing the line
        2. 8.2.2. Connecting the lines with polyline
        3. 8.2.3. Squaring off with rectangles
        4. 8.2.4. Choosing your sides with polygon
    4. 9. Dangerous Curves Ahead
      1. 9.1. (Throwing) Curves
        1. 9.1.1. Going full circle
        2. 9.1.2. Arc-y-ology
        3. 9.1.3. Solar ellipses
        4. 9.1.4. Splines: The sketchy, sinuous curves
        5. 9.1.5. Donuts: The circles with a difference
        6. 9.1.6. Revision clouds on the horizon
      2. 9.2. Scoring Points
    5. 10. Get a Grip on Object Selection
      1. 10.1. Commanding and Selecting
        1. 10.1.1. Command-first editing
        2. 10.1.2. Selection-first editing
        3. 10.1.3. Direct object manipulation
        4. 10.1.4. Choosing an editing style
      2. 10.2. Grab It
        1. 10.2.1. One-by-one selection
        2. 10.2.2. Selection boxes left and right
      3. 10.3. Perfecting Selecting
      4. 10.4. Get a Grip
        1. 10.4.1. About grips
        2. 10.4.2. A gripping example
        3. 10.4.3. Move it!
        4. 10.4.4. Copy, or a kinder, gentler Move
        5. 10.4.5. A warm-up Stretch
    6. 11. Edit for Credit
      1. 11.1. Your AutoCAD Tool Kit
      2. 11.2. The Big Three: Move, Copy, and Stretch
        1. 11.2.1. Base points and displacements
        2. 11.2.2. Move
        3. 11.2.3. Copy
        4. 11.2.4. Copy between drawings
        5. 11.2.5. Stretch
      3. 11.3. More Manipulations
        1. 11.3.1. Rotate
        2. 11.3.2. Scale
        3. 11.3.3. Array
        4. 11.3.4. Offset
      4. 11.4. Slicing, Dicing, and Splicing
        1. 11.4.1. Trim and Extend
        2. 11.4.2. Break
        3. 11.4.3. Fillet and chamfer
        4. 11.4.4. Join
    7. 12. A Zoom with a View
      1. 12.1. Zoom and Pan with Glass and Hand
        1. 12.1.1. Time to zoom
        2. 12.1.2. Steering a new course
      2. 12.2. A View by Any Other Name ...
      3. 12.3. Looking Around in Layout Land
      4. 12.4. Degenerating and Regenerating
  8. III. If Drawings Could Talk
    1. 13. Text with Character
      1. 13.1. Getting Ready to Write
        1. 13.1.1. Simply stylish text
          1. 13.1.1.1. Font follies
          2. 13.1.1.2. Get in style
        2. 13.1.2. Taking your text to new heights
          1. 13.1.2.1. Plotted text height
          2. 13.1.2.2. Calculating non-annotative AutoCAD text height
        3. 13.1.3. One line or two?
        4. 13.1.4. Your text will be justified
      2. 13.2. Using the Same Old Line
      3. 13.3. Turning On Your Annotative Objects
      4. 13.4. Saying More in Multiline Text
        1. 13.4.1. Making it with Mtext
        2. 13.4.2. It slices, it dices . . .
          1. 13.4.2.1. Mtext dons a mask
          2. 13.4.2.2. Mtext plays the field
        3. 13.4.3. Doing a number on your Mtext lists
        4. 13.4.4. Line up in columns — Now!
        5. 13.4.5. Modifying Mtext
      5. 13.5. Gather Round the Tables
        1. 13.5.1. Tables have style, too
        2. 13.5.2. Creating and editing tables
      6. 13.6. Bring Out Your Inner Leader
        1. 13.6.1. Electing a leader
        2. 13.6.2. Multi options for multileaders
    2. 14. Entering New Dimensions
      1. 14.1. Discovering New Dimensions
        1. 14.1.1. Anatomy of a dimension
        2. 14.1.2. A field guide to dimensions
        3. 14.1.3. Dimension associativity
        4. 14.1.4. Finding your dimension tools
      2. 14.2. Doing Dimensions with Style(s)
        1. 14.2.1. Borrowing existing dimension styles
        2. 14.2.2. Creating and managing dimension styles
        3. 14.2.3. Adjusting style settings
          1. 14.2.3.1. Following lines and arrows
          2. 14.2.3.2. Tabbing to text
          3. 14.2.3.3. Getting fit
          4. 14.2.3.4. Using primary units
          5. 14.2.3.5. Other style settings
      3. 14.3. Drawing Dimensions
        1. 14.3.1. Lining up some linear dimensions
        2. 14.3.2. Making dimensions annotative
        3. 14.3.3. Drawing other kinds of dimensions
      4. 14.4. Editing Dimensions
        1. 14.4.1. Editing dimension geometry
          1. 14.4.1.1. More fine tweaking
        2. 14.4.2. Editing dimension text
        3. 14.4.3. Controlling and editing dimension associativity
    3. 15. Down the Hatch
      1. 15.1. Hatch . . . Hatch . . . Hatchoo
      2. 15.2. Pushing the Boundary (of) Hatch
        1. 15.2.1. Hatch from scratch
          1. 15.2.1.1. Pick a pattern, any pattern: Predefined hatch patterns
          2. 15.2.1.2. It's up to you: User-defined hatches
        2. 15.2.2. Getting it right: Hatch angle and scale
        3. 15.2.3. Hatching for the 21st century
        4. 15.2.4. Do fence me in: Defining hatch boundaries
        5. 15.2.5. Have palette, will hatch
      3. 15.3. Editing Hatch Objects
    4. 16. The Plot Thickens
      1. 16.1. You Say Printing, I Say Plotting
        1. 16.1.1. Get with the system
        2. 16.1.2. Configure it out
      2. 16.2. A Simple Plot
        1. 16.2.1. Plotting success in 16 steps
        2. 16.2.2. Preview one, two
        3. 16.2.3. Instead of fit, scale it
      3. 16.3. Plotting the Layout of the Land
        1. 16.3.1. The path to paper space layout plotting success
      4. 16.4. Plotting Lineweights and Colors
        1. 16.4.1. Plotting with style
          1. 16.4.1.1. Using plot styles
          2. 16.4.1.2. Creating plot styles
        2. 16.4.2. Plotting through thick and thin
          1. 16.4.2.1. Controlling plotted lineweights with object lineweights
          2. 16.4.2.2. Controlling plotted lineweights with screen colors
        3. 16.4.3. Plotting in color
      5. 16.5. It's a (Page) Setup!
      6. 16.6. Continuing the Plot Dialog
      7. 16.7. Troubles with Plotting
  9. IV. Extending AutoCAD
    1. 17. The ABCs of Blocks
      1. 17.1. Rocking with Blocks
        1. 17.1.1. Creating block definitions
        2. 17.1.2. Inserting blocks
        3. 17.1.3. Attributes: Fill-in-the-blank blocks
          1. 17.1.3.1. Attribute definitions
          2. 17.1.3.2. Block definition containing attribute definitions
          3. 17.1.3.3. Insert a block containing attribute definitions
          4. 17.1.3.4. Edit attribute values
          5. 17.1.3.5. Extracting Data
        4. 17.1.4. Exploding blocks
        5. 17.1.5. Purging unused block definitions
    2. 18. Going Dynamic and External
      1. 18.1. Theme and Variations: Dynamic Blocks
        1. 18.1.1. Now you see it . . .
        2. 18.1.2. Lights! Parameters!! Actions!!!
        3. 18.1.3. Manipulating dynamic blocks
      2. 18.2. Going External
        1. 18.2.1. Becoming attached to your xrefs
        2. 18.2.2. Layer-palooza
        3. 18.2.3. Creating and editing an external reference file
        4. 18.2.4. Forging an xref path
        5. 18.2.5. Managing xrefs
      3. 18.3. Blocks, Xrefs, and Drawing Organization
      4. 18.4. Mastering the Raster
        1. 18.4.1. Attaching an image
        2. 18.4.2. Maintaining your image
      5. 18.5. A DWF Is Just a DWF
    3. 19. Drawing on the Internet
      1. 19.1. The Internet and AutoCAD: An Overview
      2. 19.2. Sending Strategies
        1. 19.2.1. Send it with ETRANSMIT
        2. 19.2.2. Rapid eTransmit
        3. 19.2.3. FTP for you and me
        4. 19.2.4. Bad reception?
        5. 19.2.5. Help from the Reference Manager
      3. 19.3. Design Web Format — Not Just for the Web
        1. 19.3.1. All about DWF and DWFx
        2. 19.3.2. ePlot, not replot
        3. 19.3.3. Making DWFs with ePlot
        4. 19.3.4. Making DWFs (or plots) with PUBLISH
        5. 19.3.5. Hand-y objects
        6. 19.3.6. Autodesk Design Review
      4. 19.4. The Drawing Protection Racket
  10. V. The Part of Tens
    1. 20. Ten Great AutoCAD Resources
      1. 20.1. Autodesk's My Feedback
      2. 20.2. Autodesk's Discussion Groups
      3. 20.3. Autodesk's Own Bloggers
      4. 20.4. The World Wide (CAD) Web
      5. 20.5. Autodesk University
      6. 20.6. Your Local ATC
      7. 20.7. Your Local User Group
      8. 20.8. AUGI
      9. 20.9. Books
      10. 20.10. Magazines
    2. 21. Ten Differences Between AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT
      1. 21.1. Price
      2. 21.2. 3D Abilities
      3. 21.3. Customization Options
      4. 21.4. Express Tools
      5. 21.5. Sheet Sets
      6. 21.6. Standards Checking
      7. 21.7. External References
      8. 21.8. Data Extraction
      9. 21.9. MLINE versus DLINE
      10. 21.10. Reference Manager
    3. 22. Ten System Variables to Make Your Life Easier
      1. 22.1. APERTURE
      2. 22.2. ATTDIA
      3. 22.3. DIMASSOC
      4. 22.4. MENUBAR
      5. 22.5. MIRRTEXT
      6. 22.6. PICKBOX
      7. 22.7. REMEMBERFOLDERS
      8. 22.8. ROLLOVERTIPS
      9. 22.9. TOOLTIPS
      10. 22.10. VISRETAIN