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You can make a rectangle or square using lines, but we have this direct tool as well, which enables us to make rectangles very easily with fewer clicks. The rectangle command will help you make a four-sided rectangle or square. There are a few different ways of making a rectangle using the rectangle tool. We will first learn how to make a rectangle using coordinates and later, we will also see the method of making a rectangle using Dynamic Input.

Let’s begin by using coordinates to make our rectangle. To make a rectangle using coordinates, you need to deactivate the Dynamic Input option from the status bar. To turn it off, click on its icon in the status bar or press the F12 function key:. Here, I will make a rectangle that starts from the origin and has a length of 8 units and a width of 3 units:.

In this case, the first point was the lower-left point of the rectangle, shown as 1 in the following diagram, which is also the origin, and the second point was the upper-right vertex with coordinates 8,3 , shown as 2 in the diagram:. For point 2 , we added 8,3 , where 8 is the length as well as the X coordinate value and 3 is the height of the rectangle as well as the Y coordinate. In the previous example, the rectangle started from the origin; hence, the coordinates of point 2 also represented the length and width.

In this case, we have used the sign before the point 2 coordinates because the first point was chosen randomly from the drawing area and it was not on the origin. So, adding the sign makes point 1 the origin for this particular case and the values of point 2 will be measured with respect to the first point.

If you start the Rectangle command from any random point and add the second point as 8,3 , then the second point of the rectangle will end up on the absolute 8,3 point, with respect to the absolute coordinate system, and the length and width of the rectangle, in this case, won’t be 8 and 3 , respectively. Using Dynamic Input skips all these issues that we have with coordinates and lets you directly add the length and width of the rectangle, so you will have your rectangle with those dimensions.

Before we make a rectangle using the Dynamic Input status bar option, we need to first activate it:. The rectangle will be made with a length of 10 units and a width of 5 units. In this case, we used a positive value of X and Y that is, 10 and 5 , but you can use negative values as well to make the rectangle in different quadrants with respect to the first point. For example, the and 5 units will make the rectangle in the second quadrant, and -5 will make it in the third, and 10 and -5 will make the rectangle in the fourth quadrant.

The following illustration will clarify this point further:. The rectangle is a four-sided polygon but, in AutoCAD, you can make other polygons, such as a pentagon, hexagon, and heptagon as well. You can even make a polygon with tens or hundreds of sides. You can do all of this using the polygon command, which we will explore next. Polygons are closed geometries made with three or more sides. The smallest polygon is a triangle and the largest polygon is a circle, which is made up of an infinite number of sides.

The Polygon tool is in the Draw panel of the Home tab in the expanded rectangle flyout, as in the preceding screenshot. Before we start making a polygon, we need to learn about the two types of polygon options, namely inscribed, and circumscribed, in AutoCAD. When you use the polygon command, you are presented with the inscribed and circumscribed options, so before we dig deeper into the polygon tool, let’s understand what inscribed and circumscribed geometries are.

In the following diagram, the first polygon is inscribed in a circle with a radius equal to the length of the green line. In this case, the vertices of the polygon are touching the circumference of the circle. In the second case, the polygon is circumscribed about the circle, which has a radius equal to the length of the green line and in this case, the midpoints of the sides of the polygon are touching the circumference of the circle:.

When making polygons, AutoCAD will prompt you to specify the radius of the polygon, which is essentially the radius of the inscribed or circumscribed polygon. The type of polygon that you need to make depends on the dimensions provided in the drawing. So, now that you know what an inscribed and a circumscribed polygon are, we are ready to make our first polygon.

In this case, I will make a pentagon, which is a polygon with five sides, and I will use a polygon inscribed in a circle:. You will notice that an inscribed polygon with a radius of 5 units will be rendered. In this case, the radius of the polygon is the radius of the inscribed circle that this polygon is made in.

You can use a similar process to make a polygon that is circumscribed about the circle. Although these two options may seem like the only options for making a polygon in AutoCAD, its not always possible to have the radius of inscribed or circumscribed circles. If you only have the side length of the polygon, then you can use this next method to make a polygon using the side length.

A polygon with the required edge length will be made. In this case, you were not required to specify the inscribed or circumscribed circle as the reference. Now that we know about some of the basic draw tools that make a drawing, let’s move on to learning about a few of the basic modify tools. In this case, we will use the Move tool to move the circle from one of the vertices of the triangle shown in the previous diagram down to the other:.

To copy the circle on all three vertices, you can use the Copy tool from the Modify panel of the Home tab, or you can use its command, CO :. To end the command, press Enter again. The final drawing after copying the circles on all three vertices will look like this:. So, now that you know about the basic drawing modification tools, such as Move and Copy, let’s explore some other modification tools.

We will discuss the Rotate tool next. As the name suggests, the Rotate command can be used to rotate an object about a point. In this case, I will use a door symbol to explain the command, which is shown here:.

The Rotate command rotates the selected object from its base point and you can rotate the object from its original angle or also by using a reference angle.

In the following sections, we will discuss all the methods for using Rotate commands. Let’s start with the simple rotate feature.

Currently, the door is horizontal and we can rotate it to change its rotation angle with respect to its current angle, which is 0 degrees, as the door is horizontal:. The door will rotate to an angle of 30 degrees, with respect to the current angle of 0 degrees, and the final door should look like this:.

In a similar way, you can specify different base points and rotation angles to get different results. The Copy option, which shows up when you select the base point in the rotate command, will let you rotate a copy of the original drawing:.

To use the Copy option, type C when the command line appears as in the previous screenshot and press Enter. This will select the Copy subcommand from the command line. You can also click on the highlighted Copy text from the command line to select this option. Now, if you rotate the door, you will get a copy of the original door and the original door will also remain in its place.

After using the Copy option in the preceding example, and a rotation angle of 90 degrees, we ended up with two doors that look like this:. When an object is at any known angle, it is easy to rotate it to any other angle, but if your object is at an unknown angle and you still want to rotate the object to any known final angle, then you can use Rotate with the Reference option, which we will discuss next.

In the previous case, the door symbol was at an angle of 0 degrees perfectly horizontal and hence, its rotation angle can be specified pretty easily. It is inclined to an unknown angle and so, to rotate this to any specific angle, we will use the rotate with reference option:.

Here, the window symbol is inclined to a random angle with respect to the horizontal axis. Now, if you want to rotate this window symbol so that it becomes perfectly horizontal, then you need to use the Reference subcommand of the Rotate command. You will notice that the window will now become horizontal; that is, its angle will now be 0 degrees, as in the following diagram:.

In this case, by specifying the reference angle, you can make AutoCAD rotate the drawing to any specific angle with respect to the positive side of the X axis, even when the angle to which the object is inclined is unknown. The next modify command that we will discuss is Fillet and this command lets you add rounded corners. It may look like a tool that can make subtle changes to the drawing, but you will find it pretty useful as it not only makes rounded edges, but it also has other sets of useful features, which we will discuss in the next section.

The Fillet command can be used to add round corners to t he sharp edges of the drawing. For example, in this case, the fillets are added to the vertices of the A diagram, shown here, to make it look rounded in the corners, as shown in the B diagram:. To use the Fillet command, select it from the Modify panel in the Home tab, as in the following screenshot, or use its command, F :. This diagram has been made with the Line command:.

Using the following steps, we will add a fillet to the A vertex of this diagram:. You can also apply fillets on the open edges of the drawing. In the preceding example, the ED edge is open and we can close it with a rounded fillet or with a sharp vertex using the Fillet command:.

In this case, you can also use a radius value at the ED vertex and then, instead of merging at a point, a fillet with a specified radius will be made. While making the fillet, if you select the Polyline option from the command line, you can apply fillets on the multiple vertices of the drawing made with a polyline. As an example, if you want to apply a fillet on all four vertices of a rectangle with a length of 10 and a width of 5 units, then you can use this workflow:.

So, now you know about the features of the fillet tool and how it can be used to add not only rounded corners but also other modifications to a drawing. Let’s move on to the Modify command and explore one of the most frequently used modify tools, called Trim. This command lets you delete part of a drawing. We will explore its features in the next section.

Using the Trim command, you can remove parts of a drawing up to its intersection point or vertex. To explain this command properly, I will use the diagram shown here:. Here, we have three lines, A , B , and C , intersected by two arcs. We will trim the lines and arcs with respect to one another in the following examples:. In this case, if you click another line or arc, it will be trimmed up to the next available boundaries. This is the default way that the trim command works in the version of AutoCAD.

However, if you are using older versions of AutoCAD, then the workflow will be slightly different. Here is the trim command’s workflow for the older versions of AutoCAD:.

In this case, you have selected the green arc as the boundary. So, it will trim the line with respect to the selected boundary only. To include everything as a trimming boundary in older AutoCAD versions, select the T rim command again and press the Enter key directly, without making any specific selection from the drawing.

The select all option is selected in the angle bracket and hence, pressing the Enter key selects all the objects in the drawing as trimming boundaries, as shown here:. This will select everything in the drawing area as a trimming boundary because the select all option is selected in the angle bracket, as in figure 2. So, if you click on the A line somewhere near the A text, then the line will be trimmed up to the next boundary, which is the red arc, in this case.

Selecting the same line again will trim it to the next boundary, which is a green arc, and so on. The last segment of the line will not be trimmed as there is no further trimming boundary. Similar to the Trim tool, we have a tool that does the opposite of trim, that is, it will extend the object to the selected boundary.

The workflow of the Extend tool is also similar to the Trim tool and we will discuss that in the next section. The Extend command works in a completely opposite way. It extends the drawing up to the selected boundary. For more information, visit the Autodesk Knowledge Network. Autodesk trials offer the chance to explore full capabilities of the latest software for a limited term typically 30 days.

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