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Place a dimension on any type of curve in a drawing.

Feature Toolbar with Dimensions Icon Highlighted

When defining dimensions for a drawing, you will notice that orange snap points appear when you hover over a line or point. There are 5 types of snap points:

  • Square snap points indicate end points
  • Triangle snap points indicate midpoints
  • Diamond snap points on a quad point of a circle or arc indicate one of the quadrants of the circle
  • Circle snap points indicate an arc or circle's center; once a dimension snap point exists on a circle or arc's center, you can click and drag the point to a quadrant point.

Circle snap points indicating an arc or circle's center Example of clicking and dragging the circle snap point to a quadrant point

Midpoints and quad points are disabled during dimensioning for ease of selecting appropriate dimension points. However, after a dimension has been placed, editing the dimension provides access to these midpoints and quad points.
Use keyboard shortcut Shift-q to quickly toggle on midpoints and quad points for the current command. Shift-q again to toggle them off.

Once the snap point is visible, the point has been snapped to and you can click. There is no need to click directly on the point once it is visible. While moving the mouse to place the dimension, you'll notice thin, dashed lines as the cursor passes near other entities. These are inferencing lines that you can align the dimension to; simply click when you see the line appear to align the dimension to that line.

Dimension Inference Example

You can dimension to hidden lines (after using the command “Show hidden lines”).

Editing the value of a dimension causes it to be converted to an Overridden dimension. See Troubleshooting dimensions.

Once a dimension is created, hover over it to see which entities are involved in the dimension. The entities turn blue upon hover:

example of hovering over a dimension to see which entities are involved with the dimension example of hovering over a dimension to see which entities are involved with the dimension example of hovering over a dimension to see which entities are involved with the dimension

You can edit grip points of an existing dimension, if necessary. Click and drag any grip point to another edge, point, arc, circle, or circle center. Associations are maintained on other grip points. For example, in the illustrations below, the right grip point of the dimension is dragged from the point to the edge:

example of editing grip points of an existing dimension by clicking and dragging any grip point to another edge, point, arc, circle, or circle center example of editing grip points of an existing dimension by clicking and dragging any grip point to another edge, point, arc, circle, or circle center

You can drag the dimension text simply by clicking and dragging. There is no need for a grip point on the text.

When an edge is selected, click again (even in the middle of dimensioning) to deselect it and select a different edge.

You can change the way intersecting dimension lines are displayed: as broken where they intersect or as unbroken where they intersect:

Broken

Unbroken

Right-click on the dimension and select Break dimension or Unbreak dimension from the context menu. Only one of the intersecting lines may be broken.

Flipping dimension arrowsCopy link

Change the position of dimension arrows. Use on any dimensions that display arrows or ticks.

When you select dimensions, a node displays near dimension arrows or ticks. Clicking a node flips the arrows of the dimension.

To flip dimension arrows:

  1. In the graphics area, select the dimension to change.
  2. Drag the value to the new position (the arrows change accordingly).

Dimension context menu

Use the right-mouse click to open a context menu on any dimension to access a list of command options for that dimension. These command options are listed below. Not all the commands listed here are available for every type of dimension.

  • Edit - Opens the dimension palette to edit the dimension.

  • Paste - Pastes the dimensions along with the view into the current location.

  • Clear selection - Deselects the selected dimension(s).

  • Zoom to fit - Zooms the entire Drawing into view.

  • Delete - Deletes the selected dimension(s).

Troubleshooting dimensionsCopy link

At times, you may run across issues that you need to resolve, some of these may include:

  • Dangling dimensions - A dimension with broken associativity, displayed in red. Drag the dimension snap point to re-associate to geometry. See Dangling entities for more info.
  • Overridden dimension - A dimension with the text value converted into a non-associative annotation. The text of an overridden dimension is always underlined. Editing the dimension value of a dimension causes it to be converted into an overridden dimension, as such:
    • When a dimension is overridden, you cannot edit any of the other fields in the dimension panel; these fields become frozen and their contents are not shown on the dimension. Only the center and parenthesis commands are available.
    • You have the ability to restore an overridden dimension back to an associative dimension by deleting the characters in the dimension value field and exiting the panel.
    • Underlined dimension values on an engineering drawing indicate the value is not to scale.