Mastering AutoCAD 2018 and AutoCAD LT 2018

George Omura with Brian C. Benton

Acquisitions Editor: Jody Lefevere
Development Editor: Gary Schwartz
Technical Editor: Richard Hawley
Production Editor: Rebecca Anderson
Copy Editor: Judy Flynn
Editorial Manager: Mary Beth Wakefield
Production Manager: Kathleen Wisor
Executive Editor: Jim Minatel
Book Designers: Maureen Forys, Happenstance Type-O-Rama; Judy Fung
Proofreader: Kim Wimpsett
Indexer: Ted Laux
Project Coordinator, Cover: Brent Savage
Cover Designer: Wiley
Cover Image: ©Wilfried Krecichwost/Getty Images

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Book Details
 3.50 USD
 1838 p
 File Size
 43,935 KB
 File Type
 PDF format
 978-1-119-41420-9 (ebk.)
 978-1-119-41425-4 (ebk.)
 2017 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc  

About the Author
George Omura is a licensed architect, Autodesk Authorized Author, and CAD
specialist with more than 28 years of experience in AutoCAD and over 35 years
of experience in architecture. He has worked on design projects ranging from
resort hotels to metropolitan transit systems. George has written numerous other
AutoCAD books for Sybex, including Mastering AutoCAD 2017 and AutoCAD LT 2017.

Brian C. Benton is a CAD manager, CAD service provider, technical writer,
and blogger. He has over 20 years of experience in various design fields
(mechanical, structural, civil, survey, marine, environmental) and is well versed
in many design software packages (CAD, GIS, and graphics). He has been
Cadalyst magazine’s Tip Patroller, AUGI HotNews production manager, and
Infinite Skills’ AutoCAD training video author.

Many talented and hardworking people gave their best effort to produce
Mastering AutoCAD 2018 and AutoCAD LT 2018. I offer my sincerest gratitude
to those individuals who helped bring this book to you.
Heartfelt thanks go out to the editorial and production teams at Sybex for their
efforts. Mary Beth Wakefield managed the project and helped us make all the
right connections. Jody Lefevere made sure things got off to a great start and
provided support from beginning to end. Gary Schwartz skillfully managed the
development process. Richard Hawley did an excellent technical editing job and
offered many great suggestions. On the production side, Rebecca Anderson kept
the production end of things running smoothly, and Judy Flynn made sure that I
wasn’t trying out new uses of the English language.
Thanks also go to Denis Cadu, who has always given his support to our efforts
over many projects. Jim Quanci always gives his generous and thoughtful
assistance to us author types. Thanks to Elinor Actipis for providing help with
general Autodesk matters. Finally, thanks go to Alison Keller, Daniel Kuhman,
and KB Lee of the AutoCAD Customer Counsel and the AutoCAD team for
generously allowing us to have a look at the prerelease software.
And a great big thank you to my family and friends, who have been there for me
through thick and thin.

Table of Contents
Part 1 • The Basics
Chapter 1 • Exploring the Interface
Taking a Guided Tour
Launching AutoCAD
The AutoCAD Window
Using the Application Menu
Using the Ribbon
Picking Points in the Drawing Area
Using the UCS Icon
Working in the Command Window
Working with AutoCAD
Opening an Existing File
Getting a Closer Look
Saving a File as You Work
Making Changes
Working with Multiple Files
Adding a Predrawn Symbol with the Tool Palettes
The Bottom Line
Chapter 2 • Creating Your First Drawing
Getting to Know the Home Tab’s Draw and Modify Panels
Starting Your First Drawing
Specifying Exact Distances with Coordinates
Specifying Polar Coordinates
Specifying Relative Cartesian Coordinates
Interpreting the Cursor Modes and Understanding Prompts
Understanding Cursor Modes
Choosing Command Options
Selecting Objects
Selecting Objects in AutoCAD
Providing Base Points
Using Noun/Verb Selection
Editing with Grips
Stretching Lines by Using Grips
Moving and Rotating with Grips
Understanding Dynamic Input
Displaying Data in a Text Window
Displaying the Properties of an Object
Getting Help
Using the InfoCenter
Finding Additional Sources of Help
The Bottom Line
Chapter 3 • Setting Up and Using the Drafting Tools
Setting Up a Work Area
Specifying Units
Fine-Tuning the Measurement System
Setting Up the Drawing Limits
Looking at an Alternative to Limits
Understanding Scale Factors
Using Polar Tracking
Setting the Polar Tracking Angle
Exploring the Drawing Process
Locating an Object in Reference to Others
Getting a Closer Look
Modifying an Object
Planning and Laying Out a Drawing
Making a Preliminary Sketch
Using the Layout
Erasing the Layout Lines
Putting on the Finishing Touches
Aligning Objects by Using Object Snap Tracking
Using the AutoCAD Modes as Drafting Tools
Using Grid Mode as a Background Grid
Using Snap Modes
The Bottom Line
Chapter 4 • Organizing Objects with Blocks and Groups
Creating and Using a Symbol
Understanding the Block Definition Dialog Box
Inserting a Symbol
Scaling and Rotating Blocks
Using an Existing Drawing as a Symbol
Modifying a Block
Unblocking and Redefining a Block
Saving a Block as a Drawing File
Replacing Existing Files with Blocks
Understanding the Write Block Dialog Box Options
Other Uses for Blocks
Understanding the Annotation Scale
Grouping Objects
Modifying Members of a Group
Ungrouping, Adding, and Subtracting from a Group
Working with the Object Grouping Dialog Box
Working with the AutoCAD LT Group Manager
The Bottom Line
Chapter 5 • Keeping Track of Layers and Blocks
Organizing Information with Layers
Creating and Assigning Layers
Working on Layers
Controlling Layer Visibility
Finding the Layers You Want
Taming an Unwieldy List of Layers
Assigning Linetypes to Layers
Adding a Linetype to a Drawing
Controlling Lineweights
Keeping Track of Blocks and Layers
Getting a Text File List of Layers or Blocks
The Bottom Line
Part 2 • Mastering Intermediate Skills
Chapter 6 • Editing and Reusing Data to Work Efficiently
Creating and Using Templates
Creating a Template
Using a Template
Copying an Object Multiple Times
Making Circular Copies
Making Row and Column Copies
Fine-Tuning Your View
Finishing the Kitchenette
Array Along a Path
Making Changes to an Associative Array
Developing Your Drawing
Importing Settings
Using Osnap Tracking to Place Objects
Finding an Exact Distance Along a Curve
Changing the Length of Objects
Creating a New Drawing by Using Parts from Another Drawing
Eliminating Unused Blocks, Layers, Linetypes, Shapes, Styles,
and More
The Bottom Line
Chapter 7 • Mastering Viewing Tools, Hatches, and External
Assembling the Parts
Taking Control of the AutoCAD Display
Understanding Regeneration and Redrawing
Saving Views
Understanding the Frozen Layer Option
Using Hatch Patterns in Your Drawings
Placing a Hatch Pattern in a Specific Area
Adding Predefined Hatch Patterns
Positioning Hatch Patterns Accurately
Updating a Block from an External File
Changing the Hatch Area
Modifying a Hatch Pattern
Understanding the Boundary Hatch Options
Controlling Boundaries with the Boundaries Panel
Fine-Tuning the Boundary Behavior
Controlling Hatch Behavior with the Options Panel
Controlling Hatch Default Layer, Layout Scale, and ISO Line
Using Additional Hatch Features
Using Gradient Shading
Tips for Using Hatch
Space Planning and Hatch Patterns
Using External References
Attaching a Drawing as an External Reference
Other Differences Between External References and Blocks
Other External Reference Options
Clipping Xref Views and Improving Performance
Editing Xrefs in Place
Using the External Reference Tab
Adding and Removing Objects from Blocks and Xrefs
Understanding the Reference Edit Dialog Box Options
The Bottom Line
Chapter 8 • Introducing Printing, Plotting, and Layouts
Plotting the Plan
Understanding the Plotter Settings
Paper Size
Drawing Orientation
Plot Area
Plot Scale
Shaded Viewport Options
Plot Offset
Plot Options
Exit Options
Plotting Using Layout Views
Setting Plot Scale in the Layout Viewports
Adding an Output Device
Editing a Plotter Configuration
Storing a Page Setup
Using Electronic Plots
Exporting to PDF Through the Plot Dialog Box
Exporting to PDF Through the Export To DWF/PDF Ribbon
Exporting Autodesk DWF and DWFx Files
The Bottom Line
Chapter 9 • Adding Text to Drawings
Preparing a Drawing for Text
Organizing Text by Styles
Getting Familiar with the Text and Annotation Scale Control
Setting the Annotation Scale and Adding Text
Inserting Text
Exploring Text and Scale
Understanding the Text Style Dialog Box Options
Set Current/New/Delete
Exploring Text Formatting in AutoCAD
Adjusting the Text Height and Font
Understanding the Text Editor Tab
Adding Symbols and Special Characters
Setting Indents and Tabs
What Do the Fonts Look Like?
Adding Simple Single-Line Text Objects
Justifying Single-Line Text Objects
Using Special Characters with Single-Line Text Objects
Using the Check Spelling Feature
How Check Spelling Works
Choosing a Dictionary
Substituting Fonts
Finding and Replacing Text
The Bottom Line
Chapter 10 • Using Fields and Tables
Using Fields to Associate Text with Drawing Properties
Adding Tables to Your Drawing
Creating a Table
Adding Cell Text
Adjusting Table Text Orientation and Location
Editing the Table Line Work
Adding Formulas to Cells
Using Formulas Directly in Cells
Using Other Math Operations
Importing and Exporting Tables
Importing a Table
Exporting Tables
Creating Table Styles
Adding or Modifying a Table Style
The Table Style Options
The Bottom Line
Chapter 11 • Using Dimensions
Understanding the Components of a Dimension
Creating a Dimension Style
Setting Up the Primary Unit Style
Setting the Height for Dimension Text
Setting the Location and Orientation of Dimension Text
Choosing an Arrow Style and Setting the Dimension Scale
Setting Up Alternate Units
Setting the Current Dimension Style
Modifying a Dimension Style
Drawing Linear Dimensions
Understanding the Dimensions Panel
Placing Horizontal and Vertical Dimensions
Continuing a Dimension
Drawing Dimensions from a Common Base Extension Line
Adjusting the Distance Between Dimensions
Editing Dimensions
Appending Data to Dimension Text
Using Grips to Make Minor Adjustments to Dimensions
Changing Style Settings of Individual Dimensions
Editing Dimensions and Other Objects Together
Associating Dimensions with Objects
Adding a String of Dimensions with a Single Operation
Adding or Removing the Alternate Dimensions
Dimensioning Nonorthogonal Objects
Dimensioning Nonorthogonal Linear Distances
Dimensioning Radii, Diameters, and Arcs
Skewing Dimension Lines
Using the Dimension Tool
Adding a Note with a Leader Arrow
Creating Multileader Styles
Editing Multileader Notes
Breaking a Dimension Line for a Leader
Applying Ordinate Dimensions
Adding Tolerance Notation
Inserting Tolerance and Datum Values
Adding Inspection Dimensions
The Bottom Line
Part 3 • Mastering Advanced Skills
Chapter 12 • Using Attributes
Creating Attributes
Adding Attributes to Blocks
Copying and Editing Attribute Definitions
Turning the Attribute Definitions into a Block
Inserting Blocks Containing Attributes
Editing Attributes
Editing Attribute Values One at a Time
Editing Attribute Text Formats and Properties
Making Global Changes to Attribute Values
Making Invisible Attributes Visible
Making Global Format and Property Changes to Attributes
Other Block Attribute Manager Options
Redefining Blocks Containing Attributes
Extracting and Exporting Attribute Information
Performing the Extraction
Extracting Attribute Data to an AutoCAD Table
The Bottom Line
Chapter 13 • Copying Existing Drawings from Other Sources
Methods for Converting Paper Drawings to AutoCAD Files
Importing a Raster Image
Working with a Raster Image
Scaling a Raster Image
Controlling Object Visibility and Overlap with Raster Images
Adjusting Brightness, Contrast, and Fade
Clipping a Raster Image
Turning Off the Frame, Adjusting Overall Quality, and
Controlling Transparency
Working with PDF Files
Importing a PDF
Scaling and Osnaps with PDFs
Controlling the PDF Display
Importing a PDF as an AutoCAD Drawing
Reconstructing Imported AutoCAD SHX Fonts
Coordinating Geographic Locations
Making Adjustments to the Map
Finding Measurements and Distances
The Bottom Line
Chapter 14 • Advanced Editing and Organizing
Using External References
Preparing Existing Drawings for External Referencing
Assembling Xrefs to Build a Drawing
Updating Blocks in Xrefs
Importing Named Elements from Xrefs
Controlling the Xref Search Path
Managing Layers
Saving and Recalling Layer Settings
Other Tools for Managing Layers
Using Advanced Tools: Filter and Quick Select
Filtering Selections
Using Quick Select
Using the QuickCalc Calculator
Adding Foot and Inch Lengths and Finding the Sum of Angles
Converting Units with QuickCalc
Using QuickCalc to Find Points
Finding Fractional Distances between Two Points
Using QuickCalc While in the Middle of a Command
Storing Expressions and Values
Guidelines for Working with QuickCalc
The Bottom Line
Chapter 15 • Laying Out Your Printer Output
Understanding Model Space and Paper Space
Switching from Model Space to Paper Space
Setting the Size of a Paper Space Layout
Creating New Paper Space Viewports
Reaching Inside Viewports
Working with Paper Space Viewports
Scaling Views in Paper Space
Setting Layers in Individual Viewports
Creating and Using Multiple Paper Space Layouts
Creating Odd-Shaped Viewports
Understanding Lineweights, Linetypes, and Dimensions in Paper
Controlling and Viewing Lineweights in Paper Space
The Lineweight Settings Dialog Box
Linetype Scales and Paper Space
Dimensioning in Paper Space Layouts
Other Uses for Paper Space
The Bottom Line
Chapter 16 • Making “Smart” Drawings with Parametric Tools
Why Use Parametric Drawing Tools?
Connecting Objects with Geometric Constraints
Using AutoConstrain to Add Constraints Automatically
Editing a Drawing Containing Constraints
Using Other Geometric Constraints
Using Constraints in the Drawing Process
Controlling Sizes with Dimensional Constraints
Adding a Dimensional Constraint
Editing a Dimensional Constraint
Using Formulas to Control and Link Dimensions
Adding a Formula Parameter
Testing the Formula
Using Other Formulas
Editing the Constraint Options
Putting Constraints to Use
The Bottom Line
Chapter 17 • Using Dynamic Blocks
Exploring the Block Editor
Opening the Block Editor
Editing a Block and Creating New Blocks
Creating a Dynamic Block
Adding a Parameter
Adding an Action
Adding an Increment Value
Editing Parameters and Actions
Keeping an Object Centered
Using Constraints in Dynamic Blocks
Adding a List of Predefined Options
Creating Multiple Shapes in One Block
Rotating Objects in Unison
Filling in a Space Automatically with Objects
Including Block Information with Data Extraction
The Bottom Line
Chapter 18 • Drawing Curves
Introducing Polylines
Drawing a Polyline
Setting Polyline Options
Editing Polylines
Setting Pedit Options
Smoothing Polylines
Editing Vertices
Creating a Polyline Spline Curve
Using True Spline Curves
Drawing a True Spline
Understanding the Spline Options
Fine-Tuning Spline Curves
Marking Divisions on Curves
Dividing Objects into Segments of Equal Length
Dividing Objects into Specified Lengths
The Bottom Line
Chapter 19 • Getting and Exchanging Data from Drawings
Finding the Area of Closed Boundaries
Finding the Area of an Object
Using Hatch Patterns to Find Areas
Adding and Subtracting Areas with the Area Command
Getting General Information
Determining the Drawing’s Status
Keeping Track of Time
Getting Information from System Variables
Keeping a Log of Your Activity
Capturing and Saving Text Data from the AutoCAD Text
Understanding the Command Window Context Menu
Storing Searchable Information in AutoCAD Files
Searching for AutoCAD Files
Recovering Corrupted Files
Using the DXF File Format to Exchange CAD Data with Other
Exporting DXF Files
Opening or Importing DXF Files
Using AutoCAD Drawings in Page Layout Programs
Exporting Raster Files
Exporting Vector Files
Using OLE to Import Data
Editing OLE Links
Importing Worksheets as AutoCAD Tables
Understanding Options for Embedding Data
Using the Clipboard to Export AutoCAD Drawings
The Bottom Line
Part 4 • 3D Modeling and Imaging
Chapter 20 • Creating 3D Drawings
Getting to Know the 3D Modeling Workspace
Drawing in 3D Using Solids
Adjusting Appearances
Creating a 3D Box
Editing 3D Solids with Grips
Constraining Motion with the Gizmo
Rotating Objects in 3D Using Dynamic UCS
Drawing on a 3D Object’s Surface
Pushing and Pulling Shapes from a Solid
Making Changes to Your Solid
Creating 3D Forms from 2D Shapes
Isolating Coordinates with Point Filters
Moving Around Your Model
Finding Isometric and Orthogonal Views
Rotating Freely Around Your Model
Changing Your View Direction
Using SteeringWheels
Changing Where You Are Looking
Flying through Your View
Changing from Perspective to Parallel Projection
Getting a Visual Effect
Using Visual Styles
Creating a Sketched Look with Visual Styles
In-Canvas Viewport Controls
Turning a 3D View into a 2D AutoCAD Drawing
Using the Point Cloud Feature
The Bottom Line
Chapter 21 • Using Advanced 3D Features
Setting Up AutoCAD for this Chapter
Mastering the User Coordinate System
Defining a UCS
Saving a UCS
Working in a UCS
Building 3D Parts in Separate Files
Understanding the UCS Options
UCS Based on Object Orientation
UCS Based on Offset Orientation
UCS Rotated Around an Axis
Orienting a UCS in the View Plane
Manipulating the UCS Icon
Saving a UCS with a View
Using Viewports to Aid in 3D Drawing
Using the Array Tools
Making Changes to an Associative Array
Creating Complex 3D Surfaces
Laying Out a 3D Form
Spherical and Cylindrical Coordinate Formats
Using a 3D Polyline
Creating a Curved 3D Surface
Converting the Surface into a Solid
Shaping the Solid
Finding the Interference between Two Solids
Creating Tubes with the Sweep Tool
Using Sweep to Create Complex Forms
Creating Spiral Forms
Creating Surface Models
Slicing a Solid with a Surface
Finding the Volume of a Cut
Understanding the Loft Command
Moving Objects in 3D Space
Aligning Objects in 3D Space
Moving an Object in 3D
Rotating an Object in 3D
The Bottom Line
Chapter 22 • Editing and Visualizing 3D Solids
Understanding Solid Modeling
Creating Solid Forms
Joining Primitives
Cutting Portions Out of a Solid
Creating Complex Solids
Tapering an Extrusion
Sweeping a Shape on a Curved Path
Revolving a Polyline
Editing Solids
Splitting a Solid into Two Pieces
Rounding Corners with the Fillet Tool
Chamfering Corners with the Chamfer Tool
Using the Solid-Editing Tools
Streamlining the 2D Drawing Process
Drawing Standard Top, Front, and Right-Side Views
Creating 2D Drawings with the Base View Command
Adding Dimensions and Notes in a Layout
Using Visual Styles with a Viewport
Visualizing Solids
The Bottom Line
Chapter 23 • Exploring 3D Mesh and Surface Modeling
Creating a Simple 3D Mesh
Creating a Mesh Primitive
Understanding the Parts of a Mesh
Smoothing a Mesh
Editing Faces and Edges
Stretching Faces
Moving an Edge
Adding More Faces
Rotating an Edge
Adding a Crease
Splitting and Extruding a Mesh Face
Creating Mesh Surfaces
Revolved Surface
Edge Surface
Ruled Surface
Tabulated Surface
Converting Meshes to Solids
Understanding 3D Surfaces
Editing Surfaces
Using Extrude, Surface Trim, and Surface Fillet
Using Surface Blend, Patch, and Offset
Understanding Associativity
Editing with Control Vertices
Editing with the CV Edit Bar
Making Holes in a Surface with the Project Geometry Panel
Visualizing Curvature: Understanding the Analysis Panel
The Bottom Line
Part 5 • Customization and Integration
Chapter 24 • Customizing Toolbars, Menus, Linetypes, and Hatch
Using Workspaces
Customizing the User Interface
Taking a Quick Customization Tour
Understanding the Customizations In All Files Panel
Getting the Overall View
Finding Commands in the Command List
Opening Preview, Button Image, and Shortcuts
Getting to the Core of Customization in the Properties Group
Creating Your Own Ribbon Panels and Menus
Customizing Ribbon Panel Tools
Creating Macros in Tools and Menus
Pausing for User Input
Opening an Expanded Text Box for the Macro Option
Editing Keyboard Shortcuts
Saving, Loading, and Unloading Your Customizations
Understanding the DIESEL Macro Language
Using DIESEL at the Command Line
Using DIESEL in a Custom Menu Macro
Using DIESEL as a Menu Bar Option Label
Using DIESEL and Fields to Generate Text
Creating Custom Linetypes
Viewing Available Linetypes
Creating a New Linetype
Understanding the Linetype Code
Creating Complex Linetypes
Creating Hatch Patterns
The Bottom Line
Chapter 25 • Managing and Sharing Your Drawings
Sharing Drawings Online
Sharing Project Files with eTransmit
Protecting AutoCAD Drawing Files
Publishing Your Drawings
Exchanging Drawing Sets
Exploring Other Publish Options
Creating a PDF or DWF File by Using the Plot Dialog Box
Sharing Files with A360 Drive
Getting Started with A360 Drive
Viewing Files and Adding Comments
Sharing Files
Opening and Saving Files Directly to A360 Drive
Collaborating with Others Using Design Feed
Adding Hyperlinks to Drawings
Creating Hyperlinks
Editing and Deleting Hyperlinks
Taking a Closer Look at the Hyperlink Options
Managing Your Drawings with DesignCenter and the Tool Palettes
Getting Familiar with DesignCenter
Opening and Inserting Files with DesignCenter
Finding and Extracting the Contents of a Drawing
Exchanging Data between Open Files
Loading Specific Files into DesignCenter
Customizing the Tool Palettes with DesignCenter
Establishing Office Standards
Establishing Layering and Text Conventions
Checking Office Standards
Converting Multiple Layer Settings
Exploring Other Layer Translator Options
The Bottom Line
Part 6 • Appendixes
Appendix A • The Bottom Line
Chapter 1: Exploring the Interface
Chapter 2: Creating Your First Drawing
Chapter 3: Setting Up and Using the Drafting Tools
Chapter 4: Organizing Objects with Blocks and Groups
Chapter 5: Keeping Track of Layers and Blocks
Chapter 6: Editing and Reusing Data to Work Efficiently
Chapter 7: Mastering Viewing Tools, Hatches, and External
Chapter 8: Introducing Printing, Plotting, and Layouts
Chapter 9: Adding Text to Drawings
Chapter 10: Using Fields and Tables
Chapter 11: Using Dimensions
Chapter 12: Using Attributes
Chapter 13: Copying Existing Drawings from Other Sources
Chapter 14: Advanced Editing and Organizing
Chapter 15: Laying Out Your Printer Output
Chapter 16: Making “Smart” Drawings with Parametric Tools
Chapter 17: Using Dynamic Blocks
Chapter 18: Drawing Curves
Chapter 19: Getting and Exchanging Data from Drawings
Chapter 20: Creating 3D Drawings
Chapter 21: Using Advanced 3D Features
Chapter 22: Editing and Visualizing 3D Solids
Chapter 23: Exploring 3D Mesh and Surface Modeling
Chapter 24: Customizing Toolbars, Menus, Linetypes, and Hatch
Chapter 25: Managing and Sharing Your Drawings
Appendix B • Installing and Setting Up AutoCAD
Before Installing AutoCAD
Proceeding with the Installation
Configuring AutoCAD
The Files Tab
The Display Tab
The Open And Save Tab
The Plot and Publish Tab
The System Tab
The User Preferences Tab
The Drafting Tab
The 3D Modeling Tab
The Selection Tab
The Profiles Tab
The Online Tab
Configuring the Tablet Menu Area
Turning On the Noun/Verb Selection Method
Turning on the Grips Feature
Setting Up the Tracking Vector Feature
Adjusting the AutoCAD 3D Graphics System
Finding Folders That Contain AutoCAD Files
Setting Up AutoCAD with a White Background
Appendix C • The Autodesk AutoCAD 2018 Certification

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Welcome to Mastering AutoCAD 2018 and AutoCAD LT 2018. As many readers
have already discovered, this book is a unique blend of tutorial and reference,
which includes everything that you need to get started and stay ahead with
Autodesk® AutoCAD® software. With this edition, you get coverage of the latest
features of both AutoCAD 2018 and AutoCAD LT® 2018 software along with
detailed information on existing features.

How to Use This Book
Rather than just showing you how each command works, this book shows you
AutoCAD 2018 in the context of a meaningful activity. You’ll learn how to use
commands while working on an actual project and progressing toward a goal.
This book also provides a foundation on which you can build your own methods
for using AutoCAD and become an AutoCAD expert. For this reason, we
haven’t covered every single command or every permutation of a command
response. You should think of this book as a way to get a detailed look at
AutoCAD as it’s used on a real project. As you follow the exercises, we also
encourage you to explore AutoCAD on your own, applying the techniques that
you learn to your own work.
Both experienced and beginning AutoCAD users will find this book useful. If
you aren’t an experienced user, the way to get the most out of this book is to
approach it as a tutorial—chapter by chapter—at least for the first two parts of
the book. You’ll find that each chapter builds on the skills and information that
you learned in the previous one. To help you navigate, the exercises are shown
in numbered steps. To address the needs of all readers worldwide, the exercises
provide both Imperial (feet/inches) and metric measurements. Some exercises
use generic units of measurement, and if the focus of the exercise is not
dependent on the measurement system, Imperial is used.
After you’ve mastered the material in Part 1 and Part 2, you can follow your
interests and explore other parts of the book in whatever order you choose. Part
3 takes you to a more advanced skill level. There you’ll learn more about storing
and sharing drawing data and how to create more complex drawings. If you’re
interested in 3D, check out Part 4. If you want to start customizing right away,
go to Part 5. You can check out Chapter 25 at any time because it gives you
general information about sharing AutoCAD files with your co-workers and
consultants. You can also use this book as a ready reference for your day-to-day
problems and questions about commands. “The Bottom Line” section at the end
of each chapter will help you review and look at different ways to apply the
information that you’ve learned. Experienced users will also find this book a
handy reference tool.
Finally, you can learn more about AutoCAD through the author-supplied bonus
chapters found at For example, if you run into
problems using AutoCAD, see the section “When Things Go Wrong” in Bonus
Chapter 3, “Hardware and Software Tips.” To delve into the details of printers
and plotting, check out Bonus Chapter 5, “Understanding Plot Styles.”

AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT 2018
Autodesk has released AutoCAD 2018 and AutoCAD LT 2018 simultaneously.
Not surprisingly, they’re nearly identical in the way they look and work. You
can share files between the two programs with complete confidence that you
won’t lose data or corrupt files. The main differences are that AutoCAD LT
doesn’t support all of the 3D functions of AutoCAD 2018, nor does it support
the customization tools of AutoLISP® or the .NET Framework. But AutoCAD
LT still has plenty to offer in both the productivity and customization areas.
Because they’re so similar, we can present material for both programs with only
minor adjustments.
When a feature is discussed that is available only in AutoCAD 2018, you’ll see
the AutoCAD Only icon. For the purposes of this publication, the “ACAD only”
icon means that the relevant (or adjacent) content applies only to AutoCAD
software and not to AutoCAD LT software.
You’ll also see warning messages when tutorials vary between AutoCAD 2018
and AutoCAD LT. If only minor differences occur, you’ll see either a warning
message or directions embedded in the exercise indicating the differences
between the two programs.
We’ve also provided workaround instructions wherever possible when
AutoCAD LT doesn’t offer a feature found in AutoCAD 2018.
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