Some of these may be familiar to you, but it never hurts to revisit ways to improve your CAD experience.
1. Shortcuts Are Your Friend
Even without the familiar Command Line from AutoCAD, you can still rely on the typed shortcuts you already know. As you type each letter there will be no indication until the shortcut is complete and the cursor changes to prompt your next click to begin the action you selected.
For a comprehensive list of AutoCAD WS shortcuts, look here. These are a few that we use regularly.
- F8 – Ortho Mode. You can easily toggle Ortho mode on and off with one key to make sure your lines are always at a right angle. Alternative shortcut: ortho
- ma – Match Properties. Like Format Painter or any other similar function, Match Properties captures the defining properties of one object and allows you to copy them to another selected object. Alternative shortcut: matchprop
- t – Insert Text. Define the size and placement of your text box and start typing. Alternative shortcuts: dt, dtext, text, mt
2. Contextual Toolbar
Whenever you click on an object or block a toolbar will appear with a number of context sensitive options ranging from Move and Rotate to Mirror, Offset and Explode. Contextual toolbar is great for newcomers to AutoCAD…
3. Pan and Zoom by Mouse
You can scroll the mouse wheel to zoom in and out of your drawing. Click and hold the mouse wheel to switch the cursor to the hand symbol and pan by moving the mouse. You can achieve the same effect by holding down the Space bar to switch the cursor and then hold down the left-click and move the mouse to pan.
4. Sharing Multiple Drawings
Sometimes you want to share multiple drawings from the same project or send multiple files to a colleague. Instead of sharing each individual file, you can create a folder for all the files you want to share and then simply share the entire folder.
When you share a folder it’s like using an FTP destination. You can add more drawings to the folder and they will be automatically shared according to the sharing permissions you decided.
5. Right-Click for Convenience
Your trusty right-click can help you reach a number of useful commands such as repeat or undo the last action and zoom and pan.