Dimension Styles: Drill Down In Dim Town

just as the display features of objects are controlled by layers dimension styles control the display features of dimensions dim styles also control various dimensions settings there are over 300 settings and system variables for dimensions we won’t touch all of them thank goodness but there are a lot that we will touch styles help you control and manage these dimensions let’s open up the dimension example file again
go to the Styles tab let’s write down here
several dimensions here are using different styles you can see that some of them have tick marks some of them have smaller arrowheads others are larger some text is large and red heather is our green there are no extension lines etc it’s easy to change the style of a dimension just select the dimension and open up the properties panel mine’s already open but you can press control 1 to toggle it on or off when you come here you can see a lot of the different properties of the dimension it tells you the dimension type this is a rotated dimension which is just one of your linear dimensions it gives you the general settings just like any other object your color your layer your line type etc the miscellaneous section here tells you if it’s annotated or not or if it’s of what particular dimension style or DIMM style pick in the box and you’ll see an arrow come up you can pick the arrow again to get a list of possible dimension styles that are in your file as you move across the list and highlight one without clicking you get a preview of your dimension of what it’s going to look like if you pick that style
watch over here on my right if we go to bold that’s what it looks like
civil which is the one we currently have set no extensions standard or tick you can tell that the civil is the one we have set because it shows the grips so find the one you want and select it and that’s how you change the style very simple very easy if the dimension has been exploded for example like this one here all it is is a bunch of lines piece of text
and in this case a block for the tick mark
style no longer has any effect on this whatsoever so I can’t update it not as easily as I can all of these see I can select multiple dimension objects and go to the dimension style and update all of them to bold
that’s why you use associative
dimensions that we talked about in the last section
once exploded it’s just a line I can’t do anything with it
if you go to the annotate tab on the ribbon you’ll see here you have all of your annotation tools texts dimensions liters tables markups and annotation scales
the dimension panel is very similar to the annotate panel except here it also has text in near dimensions your leaders etc you have more tools available to you here we’ll go over these in another section but here you can click and this will activate your dimension style right now we’re set to civil if we switch it to bold any dimension that we create now will be used or drawn
in the bold dimension style
so if we click here and activate the civil style and we dimension
you’ll see that your dimension
to mentioning the exact same line but the style looks different
we can change it again
and dimension it one more time
and it looks different yet again so that’s what styles will do for you now controlling them can be a bit tricky and a bit extensive so we’ll break it down and look at a few things here and there but the styles are changed and created in the dimension style manager which you can get to by clicking on this little arrow all of these annotation tools have this feature
this is the dimensions
manager here we have a list of the different dimension styles in our file and you get a little preview
select one you kind of see what it is has a description tells you a little bit about it why it’s different why it’s unique and here you can make some modifications to it create a new one etc you can set one two current here as well and it tells you right here what your current dimension style is it’s civil if we want to change any of these we click on the modify button once we’ve selected the style we want to change
you can see here there are several different tabs and each tab has a lot of different settings the nice thing is though you get a little preview of what it’s going to look like the Lyons tab controls the way our dimension lines are displayed or if they’re even displayed at all you can set it to a specific color and I suggest you use either by block or by layer same thing with the line type or the line weight these settings here will override anything that is controlled by your layer so if your layer is set to a color of green but you want it to be red regardless of the layer settings you can set it that way and it shows here
you can do the same thing with your line type you can make it hidden and you can change the line weight making it very thick or very thin
now you have baseline spacing which controls how far the dimension is away from the baseline I’m not gonna go in detail of every little setting here because you really don’t need to know everything right now but you can always go through these and play with the settings now you can suppress your baselines or your dimension line and it’s done in halves why I’m not really sure I’ve always had to draw all of it but there are times when you want to have a little dimension that looks like this and you don’t want to show the other side so that’s a special case when it’s okay to make a special case dimension style that’s why we have them now if we look at the text you’re going to find out that the lines symbols and arrows and text will be the three main tabs where you’ll make changes at now your text style works similarly to the lines you can pick your style of text and text objects will have styles just like the dimensions have styles and we’ll talk about text styles on another section but if you want you can change that you can set up a dimension text style so that your dimensions will be controlled by that text style you can set the color here by layer by block or you can make it
magenta if you’d like you can set up a fill color now the fill color puts a area behind the text as you can see here this makes it a little bit hard to read but you can also use a background on the background is kind of cool because what that does it just blends in the background color which is typically going to be like a white or a black when you print out your drawing it will match the background of the physical paper that you’re on how does it do that well it just doesn’t print anything in that area so that’s cool because if you have line work underneath your text in your dimension it will block out the line work and show only the text clearing it up and keeping you from having to trim lines or mess around with your
dimensions so you can see them so that’s something you may want to consider doing almost every time
you can set the text height or the text height can be controlled by the text style whatever you want to do you can put a frame around it or not you can align everything horizontally or with a dimension you can Center it you can put it over an extension line you can do a lot of different things you’ll just have to play with these settings until it comes out the way you want it to look and the other one you’re going to want to look at will be the primary units this is very important because your dimensions will show somebody how big or how large that your item is that you’re creating you have the same type of settings that you do in your unit settings for your file so these typically need to match but it’s up to you you can do it however you need to you can make them architectural and you can change your precision and how precise your dimensions are going to be you can change your fractional stacking you can add a prefix
initials you
they had a suffix and it will have for architectural you know a feet or inches or if you’re using decimal specifically you’re probably going to want to set this and if you’re measuring in feet or if you’re dimensioning in millimeters you want to set it to millimeters when you make changes to your dimension style and you’ve used that dimension style in your drawing
then those dimension styles will automatically be updated once you change their style now that’s pretty cool because then you can make quick changes to your entire drawing quickly
you can also use the match properties type an MA
and then pick the target
and those styles will be applied to those other dimensions

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