Grid and Grid Snap

    The grid is a rectangular pattern comprised of dots that extends over the area you specify as the grid limits. Displaying grids and using grids snap improve the performance of regenerating.

    Using the grid is like placing a sheet of coordinate paper under a drawing. The grid is not plotted. If you scale drawing, you may need to adjust grid spacing to be more appropriate for the new magnification.

    When you turn Snap mode on, the cursor adheres or snaps to the invisible grids. Therefore, you can specify precise points with the arrow keys or mouse or other pointing device.

    Grid and snap settings are effective tools to use in your drawing to ensure accuracy.

    Although many users find it convenient to match grid points to snap settings, they are independent of each other and should not be confused. Grid points are for visual reference only; they do not affect your drawing and they do not print. Snap points are, by themselves, not visible; however, when set, they constrain the creation of new entities.

    In addition, the cursor can be restricted to move orthogonally only or guides can display on the screen automatically at specified polar angle increments.

Change Grid and Snap Spacing

     You can turn Grid and Snap on and off and specify their spacing on the Snap and Grid tab at the Draft Settings dialog box. Grid spacing does not have to match snap spacing. A wide grid spacing can be used as a reference while a closer grid spacing helps you specify points accurately.

Change the Snap Angle and Base Point

    If you need to draw along a specific alignment or angle, you can specify the desired snap angle. The rotation realigns the crosshairs on the screen to match the new angle. After specifying the snap angle, the grid rotation also changes.

    In the following example, the snap angle is adjusted to match the angle of the anchor bracket.


    The snap base point is the offset from a specific X, Y value on the current UCS. The default snap base point is 0, 0, but you can change it to any X, Y coordinate value to adjust snap points. Changing snap base point does not affect grids.

To change the snap angle and base point

  1. Choose Tools > Drafting Settings.

  2. Click the Snap and Grid tab.

  3. Click the Snap on box.

  4. In the X base field, type the x coordinate of the new snap origin.

  5. In the Y base field, type the y coordinate of the new snap origin.

  6. In the Angle field, type the grid rotation angle.

  7. Click OK.


Setting a reference grid

     A reference grid displays as a pattern of regularly spaced dots. You can turn the display on and off, and you can specify how far apart the dots are spaced.

    The reference grid extends only to the limits of the drawing, helping you to visualize the boundary of your drawing and to align entities and visualize distances between entities. You can turn the grid on and off as needed. You can also change the spacing of the grid at any time.

To turn the grid on and set the grid spacing

  1. Choose Tools > Drafting Settings.

  2. Click the Snap and Grid tab.

  3. Click the Grid on box.

  4. Under Grid, in the Grid X Spacing field, choose the horizontal grid spacing.

  5. Under Grid, in the Grid Y Spacing field, choose the vertical grid spacing.

  6. Click OK.

Status bar right-click on the Snap tab on Status bar, choose settings

TIP To toggle the grid display on and off at any time, left click the GRID setting on the status bar, or press F7.

Setting snap spacing

     Another way to ensure drawing accuracy is to turn on and set snap spacing. When snap is turned on, the program restricts the selection points to predetermined snap intervals. Although it is often helpful for snapping by means of matching the snap spacing with grid spacing, the setting is not required.

To turn snap settings on and set snap spacing

  1. Choose Tools > Drafting Settings.

  2. Click the Snap and Grid tab.

  3. Click the Snap on box.

  4. Under Grid tab, input value in the Grid X Spacing field and Grid Y Spacing field separately.

  5. Click OK.

Status bar right-click on the Snap tab on Status bar, choose settings

TIP To toggle snap settings on and off at any time, click on the SNAP button on the status bar, or press F9.

In addition to setting the snap spacing, you can change the snap and grid orientation. You can also rotate the alignment of the grid or set it to create isometric drawings.

Using isometric snap

     You can use the Isometric Snap option to create two dimensional isometric drawings. With the isometric option, you are simply drawing a simulated three dimensional view on a 2D plane, much the same as you might draw on a piece of paper. Do not confuse isometric drawings with three dimensional drawings. You create three dimensional drawings in three dimensional space.

     The isometric option always uses three preset planes, which are denoted as left, right, and top.

    You cannot alter the arrangement of these planes. If the snap angle is 0, the three isometric axes are 30 degrees, 90 degrees, and 150 degrees.

    When you check the Isometric Snap option and select an isometric plane, the snap intervals, grid, and crosshairs align with the current plane. The grid is always shown as isometric and uses y coordinates to calculate the grid spacing. If you click the Draw Orthogonal check box, the program restricts the drawing of entities to the current isometric plane.

TIP To toggle between isometric planes, press F5.

To turn the Isometric Snap And Grid option on

  1. Choose Tools > Drafting Settings.

  2. Click the Snap and Grid tab.

  3. In snap t ype & style tab, select the Isometric Snap check box.

  4. Under Isometric Crosshairs, click the option for the isometric plane you want (Top, Left,or Right).

  5. Click OK.


Commands Reference

SETTINGS: Specifies settings for Snap mode, grid, and polar and object snap tracking

GRID: Displays a dot grid in the current viewport

LIMITS: Sets and controls the limits of the grid display in the current Model or layout tab

SNAP: Restricts cursor movement to specified intervals

UNITS: Controls coordinate and angle display formats and precision

System Variables Reference

ANGBASE: Sets the base angle to 0 with respect to the current UCS

ANGDIR: Sets the direction of positive angles

AUNITS: Sets units for angles

AUPREC: Sets the number of decimal places for all read-only angular units displayed on the status line, and for all editable angular units whose precision is less than or equal to the current AUPREC value

GRIDMODE: Specifies whether the grid is turned on or off

GRIDUNIT: Specifies the grid spacing (X and Y) for the current viewport

LIMCHECK: Controls the creation of objects outside the drawing limits

LIMMAX: Stores the upper-right drawing limits for the current space, expressed as a world coordinate

LIMMIN: Stores the lower-left drawing limits for the current space, expressed as a world coordinate

SNAPANG: Sets the snap and grid rotation angle for the current viewport

SNAPBASE: Sets the snap and grid origin point for the current viewport relative to the current UCS

SNAPMODE: Turns the Snap mode on and off

SNAPTYPE: Sets the snap style for the current viewpo

SNAPUNIT: Sets the snap spacing for the current viewport


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