Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Tip Bits on layers and blocks.

LayerMerge: I hate extra layers and I only work in one file (ok perhaps a survey x-ref). I hated (when working in the PN) finding multiple useless layers in every drawing I didn't want but couldn't get rid of. These are coded into obscure styles in the OOTB templates. In 2009 & before ACA has a Layer Merge command found under the Format-Layer Tools menu or typing "_laymrg" at the command line. This command was in 2006 & prior (under Express Tools) but didn't work if the layer was hardcoded in a style definition. For 2009 this tool will now rid you of unwanted layers even if coded into an aec style. Try it on a template with a few start up layers like G-Anno-Nplt etc before you draw anything else. I generally draw a line on layer 0, then a line on each layer I want to remove and then run the command. Now there is a point where it will not work (in a full drawing) and I don't know why. Perhaps a layer in a nested block?  It seems to stop and not work at all. But at least I can get rid of those layers in the templates I don't want without trawling through the display system to find them. When you are using PN to stack quite a number of drawings together it can be a pain to deal with 6 unwanted layers per drawing.

p.s. I haven't a clue where it is in 2010! It possibly hidden somewhere in the robbing! Is it 'managing' or something to do with the 'view'?......oh I don't know - let me know if you find it and I will add it here.

SETNESTEDOBJECTSBYBLOCK: I've alias'd this one to FB because I was using a lisp FixBlock. This will set all colours, linetypes, layers, lineweights AND plot styles to ByBlock, removing any trace of an unwanted plotting or layering scheme from a block in one hit. Very sweet. Not sure when this one came in. I'm happy with ByBlock as it gives you that extra bit of flexiility and now that I am using .stb's this saves me an enormous amount of time and frutration. Tpe FB, one click and move on.

Large companies might want to restrict practise to ByLayer to ensure that a block always follows the layer it's inserted on. Anybody know if there is an equivilent command? Help is unhelpful on this one.

My biggest tip by far is to use alias commands for as much as possible. It's been interesting moving to 2009 from 6. I added a couple of extra alias's for commonly used commands and the disruption was minimal. I just largely ignored the robbing. Realise that it won't stop at the ribbing. Once they have that all sorted and dusted, they will come up with another new idea and it will all start again. Did you have anyone who had spent time customising their 'dashboard' only to have it all dumped after only 2 years! And it takes that long to learn these interfaces! Learn to use the old pgp file and it's very easy to bring your shortcuts along to the new version, dump it in and keep working! and ADesk can waste resource changing the interface again and again and your disruption will be minimal.



Anonymous said...

You make a good comment about the ever-changing interface. Just because MS came up with 'the ribbon' Adesk have followed. When MS change again (and they will) will Adesk follow again?

Do you remember numbering of versions? acad10, 11, 12 etc Windows 3, 3.11 but then they went to years, windows 95, 98, 2000, so Adesk followed like a trained puppy acad 2000, 2004 etc. Now MS changed back with windows 7, will Adesk follow?

Nathan Ellery said...

At least with numbering it doesn't affect your productivity too much although I much preferred ADT over ACA which is just too bland.

David Koch said...

LAYDEL is on the ribbon. Home tab > Layers panel; click on the Layers title bar to expand the panel. LAYDEL is the rightmost tool on the fourth row (first row in expanded area). The icon is a white parallelogram with a red "X".

(PS: At the top of the Application Menu (click on the red "A" in the upper left corner)is a search box. Type a command name into the box, and you will get a list of places where the command can be accessed.)

Nathan Ellery said...

Thanks David, yes! tested - LAYDEL does delete a layer regardless of whether it's hardcoded in ACA somewhere but also regardless if any information is on the layer which is probably why I hav'nt chosen the remember that command. I'd rather the data be shifted to layer 0 and retained. But I can use it on a bare template file knowing it will wipe the layer completely so that's a useful tip thanks.