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Mastering the basics of AutoCAD

AutoCAD has been used by design professionals for over 30 years. It is a form of computer software that assists engineers, designers, project managers and other associated professionals with regards to creating, modifying and analysing designs.

Originally a two dimensional format, CAD can now be converted to offer three dimensional capabilities by the use of 3D CAD translation software that allows users to view their designs in 3D.

There are a number of aspects that need to be considered when using AutoCAD and inexperienced users should first understand the basics before attempting more complex design projects.

Mastering AutoCAD

Mastering AutoCAD

Simple tips to improve your AutoCAD abilities 

Like all unfamiliar software, it is important to master the basics. By building a solid base of knowledge and familiarity, users can ensure that they develop efficient work practices in the future.

Below are some key aspects to consider when using AutoCAD for the first time.

  • Understand the interface: the first stage of navigating any new software involves understanding the interface. The interface contains all of the options and tools needed to use AutoCAD to its full potential. 
  • Explore drawings and designs: users should open a file and attempt to explore the drawing or design. Zoom and pan tools are useful for this process and can improve the detail whilst allowing users to view the drawing from different angles. 
  • Utilise the AutoCAD wizard: while most of the drawing tools are labelled to ensure that new users understand what they do, the wizard provides step-by-step instructions to help with the actual drawing process. 
  • Improve precision: AutoCAD is renowned for its preciseness and attention to detail. After mastering the basic drawing tools, users should attempt creating designs to a much more precise specification. 
  • Modification and object selection: there are a number of built-in tools used to modify designs. Hold the cursor above each tool to get a description of what it does – selecting a single object is simple but the majority of designs involve multiple objects so it is wise to explore the object selection tool in detail. 
  • Managing your designs: it is important that your drawings or designs can be modified quickly and efficiently. In many cases, unforeseen additions may need to be made or perhaps a client has requested a modification to the current design. 

AutoCAD is an extremely useful but complex piece of software. By understanding the basics above, new or inexperienced users can build a solid foundation of knowledge that will allow them to take their abilities to the next stage.

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