Using AutoCAD Architecture AEC Dimensions, Part 3Author: Antonio Fontenele, Arqlogis
Date Published: May 27, 2010
Inserting an Automatic AEC Dimension
You can use the following procedure to insert an automatic AEC Dimension whose parameters are controlled by an AEC Dimension Style. This automatic AEC Dimension will use logical points from the selected objects. The dimensions will be updated automatically when any object is modified.
Inserting a Manual AEC Dimension
You can use the following procedure to insert a Manual AEC Dimension whose parameters are controlled by an AEC Dimension Style. This Manual AEC Dimension will use points selected with the traditional Objects Snaps like ENDPOINT, MIDPOINT, etc.
Editing AEC Dimensions with Grip Points
Use this procedure to reposition individual dimension texts, extension lines, and dimension chains on an AEC Dimension.
The length of extension lines and the distance between dimension chains are set in the AEC Dimension style, and are identical for all chains and all extension lines in the dimension. In some cases, you need to override those settings, and display varying extension lines or chain distances. Also, you might need to move individual dimension texts to a different location. AEC dimensions offer you the ability to change the display of a dimension with direct editing via grips.
Overriding Dimension Values and Hiding Dimension Segments
The dimension values in an AEC dimension are the real-life calculated values taken from the objects that are dimensioned. When the dimensioned object is updated, the dimension value is updated accordingly. In some cases you might want to override that value and exchange it for a manually inserted value.
In other cases, you might want to retain the original value, but supplement it with a prefix or suffix.
Sometimes, you need to hide a dimension text or a whole dimension segment.
Hiding the Overline of Overridden Dimension Values
Overridden dimension values can be marked in different ways. Use this procedure to hide the overline of overridden dimension values.
When you create an override for a dimension value-entering a different value, hiding a text or a segment, adding a prefix/suffix-the override is marked by a small overline above the changed value. The overline is useful for seeing at a glance which values have been overridden. It is also useful when you have hidden texts and segments, to select the hidden segment.
In some cases, however, you might want to hide the overline. The overline is placed on the DEFPOINTS layer, and by default is not plotted. If you want to hide it in the AutoCAD Architecture session as well, you need to hide the DEFPOINTS layer.
Note: Alternatively, you can hide the DEFPOINTS layer in the Layer Manager.
When you manually override a dimension value, the correct automatic value still exists. You can remove the override, and restore the correct value again.
Overriding Dimension Values
Use this procedure to exchange an automatic dimension value for a manually inserted one, to add prefixes and suffixes to dimension values, and to hide dimension texts and segments.
Removing Overrides from Dimension Values
Use this procedure to remove overrides from dimension values. The result of removing overrides is as follows:
Additional Editing Options
Flipping an AEC Dimension Text
This is a new feature in AutoCAD Architecture 2010. You can flip an AEC Dimension Text by just clicking on the desired AEC Dimension, then clicking on the blue arrow highlighted as shown in the following example:
Adding Points to an AEC Dimension
You can add points to an AEC dimension in the following ways:
These points are not connected to objects and are therefore not associative. To change their position, you need to move the location grips generated on the dimension.
When you attach an object for which dimension points have been specified in the AEC dimension style, the points are dimensioned and added to the appropriate dimension chains. For example, if you add a wall to an AEC dimension that has style settings for wall components in 2 chains, component dimensions are added to these 2 chains.
If an object is not specified in the AEC dimension style, you can either dimension the base point of the object or pick any of its OSNAP points as dimension points. These dimension points can be manually offset while retaining the associativity to the object. For example, you can dimension the base point of a multi-view block and offset the dimension from the base point. If the multi-view block is moved or rotated, the dimension moves and rotates with it while observing the offset.
To add non-associative dimension points in a drawing, you specify points, which are added as location grips, and are dimensioned on the selected dimension chain. When the location grip is moved, the dimension point is updated accordingly. Non-associative dimension points can be useful if you want to dimension a component not represented by an AEC object, like a property line, or AutoCAD objects, like blocks.
Adding Associative Dimensions to Objects Defined in the AEC Dimension Style
Use this procedure to add associative dimensions by attaching an object for which dimension points have been defined in the AEC Dimension Style.
You can also attach AEC objects for which dimension points are not specified in the AEC dimension style, in which case, the base point of the selected object is added as a dimension point.
Adding Associative Dimensions from Picked Points to an AEC Dimension
Use this procedure to add associative dimensions to an AEC dimension by picking OSNAP points on an AEC object.
Adding Non-Associative Dimensions from Picked Points to an AEC Dimension
Use this procedure to add non-associative points picked in the drawing to an AEC dimension.
Detaching Objects from an AEC Dimension
Use this procedure to detach objects from an AEC dimension. When you detach the object, all style-specified dimension points for the object are removed from the dimension.
Removing Object Points Set in the AEC Dimension Style
Use this procedure to remove object points set in the AEC Dimension Style from an AEC Dimension. Removing these dimension points creates an override to the AEC Dimension Style.
Important: Removing points from an object dimension is not identical to detaching an object from an AEC Dimension. Even if you remove all extension lines pointing to dimensioned points on an object, the object is still invisibly attached to the dimension through the AEC Dimension Style. If you turn on the display component Removed Points Marker in the AEC Dimension Style, you can see that the object points still exist and can be restored.
If you want to detach an object from an AEC Dimension completely, use the procedure in Detaching Objects from an AEC Dimension.
Note: If the deleted points are still visible as a crossed circle, then the display component Removed Points Marker is turned on. If you do not want the removed points marker to appear, turn off the component.
When you remove multiple points, some removed points may reappear. This can happen when you have selected the option Update Added/Removed Points Immediately, and the entity display component Removed Points Marker is turned off. The reason for this behavior is that during your current removal operation, you accidentally selected an invisible removed point marker for a dimension point that was already removed. Removing an already removed point restores it. To avoid this effect, turn on the Removed Points Marker component in the entity display.
Restoring Object Points Set in the AEC Dimension Style
Use this procedure to restore dimension points that have been removed from an AEC Dimension and that are set in the AEC Dimension Style. Because the object points are set in the AEC Dimension Style, information about the type and position of the removed point is still present in the AEC Dimension Style.
Removing Non-Style Defined Dimension Points
Use this procedure to remove dimension points that are not set in the AEC Dimension Style from an AEC Dimension. These can be points that are generated by picking object OSNAP points or by picking non-object associated points in the drawing. Unlike style-defined dimension points, they cannot be restored once they are deleted; however, you can recreate them if desired.
More Help for Editing AEC Dimensions
To find more information about advanced AEC Dimension editing:
Part 3 – Summing Up
In Part 3, you learned how to insert AEC Dimensions into your drawing and how to edit the grip points of AEC Dimensions.
"Simplicity is the Ultimate Sophistication"