I've never had a guest writer on my blog - but one of my favorite coworkers - Dieter Schlaepfer , who is a Principal Learning Content Developer for Autodesk, and an excellent writer - kindly volunteered! Dieter is an enthusiastic fan of the Isodraft command, so here is his take on this awesome new addition to AutoCAD 2015.
2D Isometric Drawing in AutoCAD 2015 by Dieter Schlaepfer
With the addition of the new ISODRAFT command in AutoCAD and LT 2015, creating 2D isometric drawings became a whole lot easier and faster. While I’m a total enthusiast for 3D solid modeling, I do have to admit that it makes sense to use isometric drawing when all you need is some simple isometric views for design concepts, presentations, catalogs, illustrations, and assembly instructions.
The Isodraft command supersedes the Isoplane command. The primary advantage of Isodraft is that when it is turned is turned on or off, all the related settings are automatically changed as well, so they line up with the isometric axes and corresponding isoplanes and their cursors, Left, Right, and Top.
Click the Isodraft icon on the status bar to turn on isometric drawing. When you’re done, click it again to return to orthographic drawing.
Everyone has their favorite methods and preferences for drawing with AutoCAD, and I’m no exception. But before I show you how I would create the bracket illustrated above, let’s take an inventory of the features and tools that I use the most for isometric drawing.
- Polar tracking – Guides your cursor along the isometric angles. I use Ortho in crowded areas.
- Direct distance entry – Why use anything else when you know the dimensions?
- Object snap tracking – Super useful for locating points offset from other points along isometric angles. I leave the MID object snap turned on so I can easily locate centers of rectangular areas. If I run into any difficulties, I create construction geometry using another color, and, when I’m not too lazy, on a separate reference layer.
- Lineweight – Lets you add emphasis.
Commands and Keys
- Isodraft – Access this command quickly from the status bar. To cycle through the isoplanes, make the F5 key your friend. Incidentally, sometimes F12, dynamic input, can be helpful depending on the circumstances. Sometimes I use it, and sometimes I turn it off.
- Ellipse/Isocircle – This lets you create the appearance of circles and arcs in the current isoplane orientation. Don’t forget to choose the Isocircle option. If you create a lot of isocircles, you might want to consider creating a macro, or perhaps even a button.
- Line, Move, Copy, Trim, Extend, Erase, Fillet (radius = 0) – These are the primary commands that you’ll use the most. I use Offset all the time in orthographic drawing, but not in isometric drawing.
To be continued...tune in tomorrow for directions on how to draw the bracket.
(I know the suspense is killing you)...