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Buildings, factories, highways, and all manner of products were all designed and built using technical drawings as their guiding force and outline. Behind each of those drawings are the computer-assisted design (CAD) technicians who know how to create them. CAD technicians use software like AutoCAD and Revit to work with engineers and architects to construct accurate and useful technical drawings of their designs.

As a student in CAD technician training, you have an exciting career ahead of you. Here are three software tricks to help you produce top-notch technical drawings throughout your training and beyond.

1. During Your CAD Courses, Try Using AutoCAD’s Dimbreak Tool

While working with a CAD software program like AutoCAD during your computer-aided design training you may notice that when dimension lines in your drawings cross over each other they look muddled. In addition, when dimension lines cross they can become extremely hard to read if the person viewing the drawing doesn’t look closely. Traditionally, professionals using the program would solve this by adding a break to one of the lines using the “explode” command. This approach would completely separate the dimension’s associations while creating a break in the line.

However, a great trick to know is that if you have two dimension lines crossing in your drawing, you do not have to manually break them. You can instead use the Dimbreak tool in AutoCAD to make smart breaks or gaps. The Dimbreak tool creates clean and professional-looking breaks while maintaining the associated dimension’s integrity. Associative dimensions are important because they will automatically change and adjust when geometric objects that they measure change. If you use the traditional method and explode the line, then this feature is lost and the dimension will not adjust to any changes.

2. During CAD Courses, Try Using Autodesk’s Content Explorer

During your CAD courses, you will receive the in-depth training you need to complete intricate technical drawings. In some cases, finding something within the drawing or document you’re working on may be difficult because of the amount of detail included. That problem will be especially true if what you’re looking for is within a layer that is not visible on the surface of the drawing.

The content explorer in AutoCAD lets you type in any search word and then it will search for any instance of that word within your document. For example, perhaps you want to find a wall that has a certain label like “exterior wall”. You can search the name of the wall using the content explorer. The tool will search through the drawing’s layers and text. Then, once the content explorer finds it, it will direct you to where it is. This trick helps you efficiently review what you’ve done and make any changes if necessary.

3. During CAD Courses, Try Out the Greatly Unused Align Tool

When creating a drawing it can be tricky to get everything to line up perfectly. However, having perfect alignment is essential to ensuring the accuracy of the drawing for when it’s implemented in the real world. One trick to help keep your drawings clear and accurate for the end user is to use the align tool in AutoCAD. The align tool will help you align, tilt, and rotate specific objects within the drawing in the same command.

For example, say you are creating a drawing where you are attaching one piece of piping to another. The pipe needs to be placed at just the right angle in order to align with the other pipe. By using the align tool, you can rotate the object and align it perfectly to meet with the existing section of pipe. This feature will not only save you time but will also help ensure everything remains accurate.

Are you interested in enrolling in technical design programs?

Contact Digital School today to learn more!