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Create Linear Dimensions

May 20, 2011

Linear dimensions annotate linear distances or lengths and can be oriented horizontally, vertically, or aligned parallel to an existing entity or to the selected extension origin points. After you create a linear dimension, you can add a baseline dimension or a continued dimension. A linear baseline dimension inserts an additional dimension from a common first extension line origin of a previous linear dimension. A linear continued dimension continues a linear dimension from the second extension line of a previous linear dimension.

TIP To select precise ordinate points, use entity snaps.

Create Horizontal and Vertical Dimensions

As you create linear dimensions, the system automatically applies a horizontal or vertical dimension depending on the specified extension line origins or the location where you select an object. However, you can create a dimension by specifying it be horizontal or vertical.

In the following illustration, by default, a horizontal dimension is created unless you specify a vertical one.

To create a horizontal or vertical dimension

1. Choose Dimensions > Linear.

2. Press Enter, and then select the entity to dimension.

Or, you can insert the dimension by specifying the first and second extension line origins.

1. Specify the dimension line location.

Dimension toolbar

Command line DIMLINEAR

Create Aligned Dimensions

In the aligned dimensions, the dimension line is parallel to the line passing through the extension line origins. The aligned dimension is also parallel to the objects you specify. The following figure shows two examples of aligned dimension. Select the object (1), and then specify the location of the aligned dimension. The system creates the extension lines automatically.

To create an aligned dimension

1. Choose Dimensions > Aligned.

2. Press Enter, and then select the entity to dimension.

Or, you can insert the dimension by specifying the first and second extension line origins.

1. Specify the dimension line location.

Dimension toolbar

Command line DIMALIGNED

 To insert an aligned dimension by selecting the entity, select the entity (A) to dimension, and then select the dimension line location (B). Result

 To insert an aligned dimension by selecting the extension line origins, select the first extension origin (A), select the second extension origin (B), and then specify the dimension line location (C). Result

Create Baseline and Continued Dimensions

Both baseline and continued dimensions are multiple linear dimensions. Baseline dimensions are measured from the dame baseline and continued dimensions are placed end to end.

Before creating either baseline or continued dimension, you have to create a linear, aligned, or angular dimension. If no dimension in the current session, the system prompts for selecting linear, aligned, or angular dimension. If there are dimensions in the current session, you can create baseline or continued dimensions incrementally from the most recently created dimension. Unless you specify another point as the origin, both baseline and continued dimensions are always measured from the previous extension line.

The following illustration shows the baseline and continued dimensions.

To create a linear baseline dimension

NOTE Before you can use this procedure, you must first create a dimension.

1. Choose Dimensions > Baseline.

2. Select a dimension as baseline, press Enter.

3. Select the next extension line origin, and then press Enter to create next baseline dimension.

Dimension toolbar

Command line DIMBASELINE

The program automatically places the new baseline dimension above or below the previous dimension line. The distance between the two dimension lines is determined by the Baseline Spacing value in the New Dimension Style or Modify Dimension Style dialog box.

 To add a baseline dimension to an existing linear dimension, select the existing dimension (A), select the next extension line origin (B), and select as many additional points as you want (C).

Result

To create a linear continued dimension

NOTE Before you can use this procedure, you must first create a dimension.

1. Choose Dimensions > Continue.

2. To select a starting dimension, press Enter.

3. Select the next extension line origin, and then press Enter.

Or press Enter, and then select an existing dimension to continue.

1. To add continued dimensions, continue selecting extension line origins.

2. To end the command, press Enter twice.

Dimension toolbar

Command line DIMCONTINUE

 To add a continued dimension to an existing linear dimension, select the existing dimension (A), select the next extension line origin (B), and select another extension line origin (C).

Result.

Create Rotated Dimensions

You can create rotated dimensions at a rotated angle you specify using DIMLINNEAR Rotated option. An example of a rotated dimension is shown in the following illustration. In this illustration, the specified angle of the rotated dimension is equal to the angle of the slot.

Create Dimensions with Oblique Extension Lines

By default, the extension lines are perpendicular to the dimension line. However, if the extension lines conflict with other objects in a drawing, you can use Dimension-Oblique option to change their angle measured from the X axis of the current UCS to the extension line. This option is only applied to the existing dimensions, ignoring the dimensions to be created.

Commands Reference

DIMALIGNED: Creates an aligned linear dimension

DIMBASELINE: Creates a linear, angular, or ordinate dimension from the baseline of the previous dimension or a selected dimension

DIMCONTINUE: Creates a linear, angular, or ordinate dimension from the second extension line of the previous dimension or a selected dimension

DIMEDIT: Edits dimensions

DIMLINEAR: Creates linear dimensions

DIMSTYLE: Creates and modifies dimension styles

QDIM: Quickly creates a dimension

System Variables Reference

DIMDLI: Controls the spacing of the dimension lines in baseline dimensions

DIMEXO: Specifies how far extension lines are offset from origin points

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