Tuesday, May 31, 2005


John Rodriguez, a new co-worker of mine, pointed out that it is now VERY necessary to notice what the INSUNITS value is set to for any drawing that you wish to INSERT or XREF. This only mattered in previous version if you dragged-and-dropped via the DesignCenter.

If INSUNITS does not match what the current (destination) drawing is set to, a scale factor will be applied. This has left some users baffled as to why their drawings with the same base and coordinate location do not land in the same area when inserted or xref'ed.

The INSBASE value and the factor that will be applied now appear in the INSERT and XREF dialog boxes in the lower right hand corner. Be aware of what they report.

The change can be explained with a quick look into how INSUNITS is defined in HELP.

In 2005 it said:
INSUNITS - Specifies a drawing-units value for automatic scaling of blocks or images dragged from DesignCenter and inserted into a drawing.

In 2006 it says:
INSUNITS - Specifies a drawing-units value for automatic scaling of blocks, images, or xrefs inserted or attached to a drawing.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Fixed, Floating or Free?

I have always had a little bit of difficulty remembering quickly what the terms Fixed, Floating, and Free mean as they apply to alignments. Here is a quick tip.

Fixed - I pick both end points. It is fixed by me.
Floating - Object floats from one object (it is tangent). I specify other endpoint.
Free - Object is tangent to two objects. I did not specify any endpoints.

Monday, May 23, 2005

A Couple of Interesting Facts

Two bloggers pointed out a couple of things that I found interesting.

Lynn Allen mentioned the undocumented FILTERS command. This command brings up a dialog box (with no help button) that allows you to pick which layer filters you wish to keep or delete.

Ralph Grabowski pointed out that if an onject is on a locked layer will display the icon of a lock when you attempt to select it.

Ralph also mentioned that if you hold the shift key while doing a fillet or chamfer the software will do a radius 0 corner. I like that very much.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

I've Been Away

Wow, what a week. I've been away providing a tremendous amount of training. It may be coincidental but it feels as though the new Civil 3D 2006 has put some, conscious or subconscious, pressure on the larger engineering companies to look at the way they are doing things and perhaps readjust.

Let me explain. Some of the larger engineering firms will not be easily able to convert over to Civil 3D. The smallest companies CAN do so easily, because it is a matter of training only a handful of users. Because the smaller companies are increasing their efficiency and productivity with Civil 3D and also because the larger firms can not hire enough qualified individuals the larger firms must be able to do more with their existing staffs.

This means they are turning to training to provide a solution. This is a good scenario for everyone involved.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Drawing Recovery Manager

I had recently been away from the office. Today, when I launched Civil 3D 2006 the "Drawing Recovery" dialog box appeared. It states...

In your previous work session, the program unexpectedly failed.
Information has been gathered from the drawing files that were open
at that time.

The Backup Files list displays the backup files that are available.
Double-click the files on the list to open and compare their contents.

Once you determine which file contains the best backup data, use
Save As to specify the correct folder location and rename the file.

There is a checkable box to.... "Don't show me this again" and lastly there is an OK button.

In the Drawing Recovery palette and files related to the file that requires recovery would be listed. These may include the .DWG file, the .BAK file, and the .SV$ file (the autosave file). The user can then see details of the file(s), and also a preview. As the message above indicates double-clinking on one will open it. Once the appropriate file is saved that file and it's related files are removed from the drawing recovery palette.

Clearly, this allows the recovering process to be done with greater confidence.

Oh, I almost forgot. You can open the Drawing Recovery palette at any time with the DRAWINGRECOVERY command.