Dynamic Blocks in AutoCAD 2006

Part 1 of 3: Dynamic Block Overview and Quick-Start Tutorial. In AutoCAD … DYNAMIC BLOCKS IN AUTOCAD 2006: PART 1 OF 3 (Overview and Quick-Start Tutorial) …

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Dynamic Blocks in AutoCAD 2006 AutoCAD  2006 Dynamic Blocks in AutoCAD 2006 Part 1 of 3: Dynamic Block Overview and Quick-Start Tutorial In AutoCAD  2006 software, you can now create blocks that are intelligent and flexible. This exciting new feature, called dynamic blocks, enables you to modify blocks within specific constraints. A block library might have dozens of windows (if architectural) or bolts (if mechanical). With dynamic blocks, you can create one block that takes the place of all these related blocks and be confident that modifications match the dimensions of their real-world objects. As a result, the process of finding the right block is much more efficient. Inserting and editing the block is practically error-free. Furthermore, you can individually modify components of blocks. For example, within a desk set, you could move the chair, change the type of telephone, change the desk size, and specify the size of the computer’s monitor. Thereby, you can work with one block that contains multiple editable components in place of several blocks. Facilities management was never so easy! This first of three articles explains the basic concepts of dynamic blocks and ends with a quick-start tutorial. Part two provides detailed documentation of the feature. Part three introduces some of the advanced uses for dynamic blocks. How you can use dynamic blocks Once you create a dynamic block and specify its features and constraints, you modify the block after you insert it, using special grips. As you click or drag the grips, the block adjusts according to its allowable flexibility. In other cases, you can choose options from a drop-down list to specify how to modify the block. Here are some possible scenarios for using dynamic blocks: A door that can be stretched to increase its width without increasing its thickness A bolt that can be lengthened without increasing its thickness A bed that can be changed from twin to queen to king, adjusting the number of pillows appropriately A picket fence that allows for specific various post heights and then automatically arrays those posts as the fence is stretched A rectangular metal plate with a centered hole that stays centered as the plate is stretched A piece of equipment (such as a phone or a computer monitor) that can take one of several forms that is chosen from a drop-down list You can make any existing block dynamic by adding dynamic features to it. The office set in the figure includes a desk, three chairs, a computer, and a phone. This block is constructed so you can stretch the 6-foot desk to 7 feet or 8 feet. As you drag, the chair behind the desk and the computer both move, always remaining centered between the two sides of the desk. The right chair in front of the desk moves to remain aligned with the right side of the desk. Without dynamic blocks, you would have to manually adjust all the separate components when you stretched the desk. 1 DYNAMIC BLOCKS IN AUTOCAD 2006: PART 1 OF 3 (Overview and Quick-Start Tutorial) 2 Editing a dynamic block in a drawing. The computer and chair move as the desk stretches, but only half the distance, so they stay centered in relation to the desk. The desk stretches. Constraints limit the desk length to 6 , 7 , or 8 . This chair moves along wthe right side of the desk ith . A multi-component block, such as the one above, can feature as much complexity as you want. For example, the type of phone, the type of monitor (CRT or LCD), the size of the monitor, or the type of computer (desktop or laptop) are all easily changed. How to create a dynamic block A dynamic block is created (authored) in the new Block Editor by starting from an existing block or individual objects. When a block is opened in the Block Editor, you can select and edit the individual objects that make up the block; you don t have to explode it first. After saving your changes in the Block Editor, you can insert your new dynamic block and test it out! To start authoring a dynamic block based on existing blocks, open the drawing that contains the block. Then open the Block Editor using one of the following methods:  Click Block Editor on the Standard toolbar  Enter bedit on the command line or in the dynamic input tooltip  Choose Tools > Block Editor from the drop-down menu After the Edit Block Definition dialog box appears, you can choose any block in the drawing. If you want to turn all of the objects into a dynamic block, choose to work with the entire drawing. You ll then be able to insert the entire drawing as a dynamic block. DYNAMIC BLOCKS IN AUTOCAD 2006: PART 1 OF 3 (Overview and Quick-Start Tutorial) 3 Note: If you want to use the Design Center to insert the dynamic block (which you would do for a block library drawing with more than one dynamic block), choose the block you want to edit. If the block is dynamic, it shows the dynamic symbol. The Edit Block Definition dialog box. Click OK, and you re in the Block Editor. The Block Editor is a special window for editing dynamic blocks. The Block Editor has its own toolbar that provides commands for working with dynamic blocks. At the same time, the Block Authoring Palettes window opens. The palette has three tabs that are used for turning ordinary blocks or objects into dynamic blocks. DYNAMIC BLOCKS IN AUTOCAD 2006: PART 1 OF 3 (Overview and Quick-Start Tutorial) 4 A dynamic block in the Block Editor Adding parameters and actions Compared to a regular block, a dynamic block generally has two additional items a parameter and an action. Of course, you can add more than one of each. A parameter defines the features of the geometry of the objects you want to change. An action defines the modification that acts on the parameter. Each action is attached to a parameter. One exception is the alignment parameter, which doe

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