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ArchiCAD Basic Training – Module 5
5-2. Layer Selection and Management; Placing Text and Dimensions

ArchiCAD Training –  (Quick Start Course – 5-2)

This 23 minute lesson starts the exploration of layer assignment for elements and layer management to create different drawings. After certain layers are hidden to create a less cluttered working view, the placement and editing of text and dimension elements is demonstrated.

Thank you for visiting the Best Practices Course website. The video lessons are available for members only. If you are an active member and would like to watch the ArchiCAD training video on this page, please login to the website. If you are not currently a member, please visit the following pages for more information and to sign up for the Best Practices Course, the QuickStart Course or for the Best Practices ArchiCAD Coaching Program. Eric Bobrow, Creator of the Best Practices Course

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ArchiCAD Training: Layer Selection and Management; Placing Text and Dimensions

Let us know how you feel... (26 comments so far)

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  1. SeanTaylor
    1 year ago

    Hi Eric.

    Quick question on dimensions.

    1) I have set up my dimension accuracy settings in Project Preferences > Dimensions and named my set up “MTA Dimensions” – with accuracy set to 1/8″ tolerance.

    2) I have set up a view for the first floor plan with “MTA Dimensions” setting.

    3) As a test, if I draw a line 5′ – 0 1/16″ long and dimension it, in the view the dimension shows up as expected (5′-0″).

    4) When I place the view into a layout, that dimension reverts to 5′-0 1/16″.

    I have been using Archicad for about 18 years and have never ran across this – and just cannot figure out why the layout is not showing the view settings. I am on ArchiCAD 18 if that matters.

    Thanks,
    Sean


    • Eric Bobrow
      1 year ago

      Sean –
      While it’s possible there is a bug, usually it’s a user error when I see things like this.
      Try right-clicking on the drawing on the layout and choose Open Source View. When that comes up, see if the View that is highlighted in the View Map is the same as the one you thought it was (perhaps it’s a similar view, but one with different settings). Or, if it is the same View as you thought, double-check the View Settings to make sure that the correct dimension preference is associated with the View. Finally, if this all checks out, but the dimension strings read inappropriately, check the Dimension Settings to see that the one you chose (MTA Dimensions) actually has the setting you expect; sometimes the problem is that you didn’t actually save the Dimension Settings properly. Let us know if this helps you resolve the issue, or not.
      Eric


  2. JohnVerdon
    3 years ago

    Hi Eric ,

    I just completed the Quick Start 5.2 Layers & Dimensioning module. Thank you it was ver helpful. I am still have difficulty setting interior dimensions.
    After clicking two points and right clicking to “OK” the points, in addition to the hammer icon I receive a circle with a crosshair icon. When attempting to set the dimension placement (next click) all the previous points disappear and I need to start over again. I have noticed the two times I was successful, a ghosted dimension followed the hammer icon until placed (clicked). Again this was only twice out of multiple attempts. I have turn off several layers thinking that the dimension is attempts to associate to a unwanted object.
    Do yo have any suggestions.
    Thanks in advance

    Jack Verdon


    • Eric Bobrow
      3 years ago

      John –

      Glad you liked the QuickStart lesson on layers and dimensioning.

      Re your question on interior dimensions, be aware that after you click on the points you’d like to dimension and then right-click OK, you’ll be given the opportunity to choose the orientation of the dimension string; if you look carefully you’ll see a ghosted circle that indicates the various orientation options; move your mouse around the screen and you’ll see the darker part of the circle change to indicate which orientation you are referring to; click when it shows the desired orientation, then click to place the hammer which will drop in the dimension string.

      A typical problem (like you describe) will come up when you enter two points that are vertically aligned on screen, then choose the horizontal orientation; the selected points may have a 0 offset horizontally, so the dimension string is discarded; in this case, you need to be careful you choose the vertical orientation by moving your mouse to the side of the area; this will be accepted, allowing you to then proceed with nailing down the dimension string.

      Eric


  3. PamelaGoode
    5 years ago

    Eric,
    How do you remove or trim an extension line that passes over text or a symbol? I noticed in this segment some of the door symbols are over doors, etc. Could you cover how to clean up drawings when the automatic location of dimension lines or symbols is not where you want them?
    Thanks,
    pam

  4. GordonStone
    GordonStone
    5 years ago

    Eric, I just wanted to let you know that I, like others ,cant download your Videos. Your series up to Module 5 downloads with no problems at all, and I have tried a different Browser also with no affect. All I get is the Text explaining about the Video, the the Yellow box welcome message then your Transcript and audio version, nothing more than that. On previous Modules your video come in between these. I have even signed out and back in to see if it was maybe a glinch, but also your further modules do the same, not appear, got to say enjoying this greatly apart from the above 🙂


    • Eric Bobrow
      5 years ago

      Gordon –

      The reason you cannot access the other course materials is that you only have the FastTrack! Course, which includes Weeks 13, 14 and 15 of the Best Practices Course materials.

      You also have access to the first 5 weeks of the Best Practices Course, since I make those available as a bonus to people who enroll in QuickStart or one of the new Specialty Courses (FastTrack!, RoofDesign or SiteModel).

      To get full access to the rest of the Best Practices Course materials, as well as the live ArchiCAD Coaching Program, you may sign up for the full course. I will send you a personal email to discuss this with you and possibly make arrangements so that you may continue your journey towards ArchiCAD mastery!

      Best regards,
      Eric


      • Gordon
        5 years ago

        Thanks Eric, fully understand about that now, just got use to downloading to see what’s next


  5. JonathanTse
    5 years ago

    Hi Eric,

    Does Archicad support foreign language input like Chinese? It allows me to type the chinese but when I click away from it, it disappears. I am assuming it doesn’t because there is nothing wrong with the english. Is there a language plugin out there somewhere? It would be nice to do everything in Archicad including text and layouts which needs text.

    Jonathan Tse


    • Eric Bobrow
      5 years ago

      Jonathan –

      ArchiCAD is sold in China, so I know it can handle Chinese characters.

      I know that you are a student so you may not be able to ask Graphisoft tech support for help, but you can definitely get an answer from members of the ArchiCAD-Talk Forum (http://archicad-talk.graphisoft.com). There are hundreds of veteran users there, and it is likely that someone will know the answer.

      You may also find info relevant to this topic on the ArchiCAD Wiki (http://www.archicadwiki.com).

      Eric


  6. ChristineDe Clercq
    5 years ago

    Hi Eric,

    I am moving a project from Revit to ArchiCAD. I used your tutorial on tracing 2D DWG’s to get the basic walls in. The problem I am encountering however, is with the dimension and alignment of certain walls. Because the original Revit file was created with the incorrect wall types, I am now running into fractional dimensions. How can I quickly edit walls to be a nice, whole measurement? I’ve flipped through a number of videos but have been unable to find what I am looking for. I hope you might be able to point me in the right direction. I would like to have correct dimensions before I proceed with entering objects such as plumbing fixtures or cabinets, or designing roofs. Thank you so much for your help.

    Christine


    • ChristineDe Clercq
      5 years ago

      I might add that most of the video’s seem to be concentrated on having the correct dimensions from the get-go. With my workflow, I often sketch in my walls, cleaning up dimensions at a later point. Is this workflow still possible in ArchiCAD?


  7. MaureenBoh
    6 years ago

    Hi Eric

    I’ve really enjoyed all your lessons. Each morning I wake up feeling so excited to start a new lesson. I am an Interior Design student and have had a semister of ArchiCAD (1 of 5 subjects) but did my major kitchen project using manual drafting as I was struggling with ArchiCAD. I hope to do the next major project using ArchiCAD during the forthcoming semister startiing 20 Feb. Thank you so much, Eric.

    Maureen


  8. JohnCassel
    6 years ago

    Aloha Eric,
    One question/problem that I have is when dimensioning the corner of two walls. Invariably the dimension point selects the end of the wall that is perpendicular to the dimension leader. The problem happens when I adjust the location of the wall that is parallel to the dimension leader.
    Is there a way that I can get the dimensions to click to the end of the wall that is parallel to the dimension leader?


    • JohnCassel
      6 years ago

      Just figured out that the TAB button works to select exactly the wall I want the dimension to reference.


      • Eric Bobrow
        6 years ago

        John –
        I’m glad you figured it out! Yes, the TAB key will cycle among potential references for the dimension tool, just as it does for potential selection items with the Arrow tool.
        Eric

  9. MariyaLilith
    MariyaLilith
    6 years ago

    Thanks for explaining how to add a dimension point to an already placed dimension line.

    Mariya


  10. LivinusAkoh
    6 years ago

    I couldn’ t download the video on this particular lesson . Thanks —– livinus akoh


    • Eric
      6 years ago

      Livinus –
      I am able to download it OK – right-click on the “download” button and choose Save Target As or Save Linked File As. Perhaps it was just a temporary problem with your internet connection – please try it again.
      Eric


  11. LeandroPaganelli
    6 years ago

    This lesson was very useful, the shortcuts to add and remove points from the dimensions lines and the difference between the square and round points made my day today.

    I have some questions though, I don’t know if it’ll be mentioned later:
    Is it possible to anchor dimensions on the center line (axis) of walls that were not drew with the center line method?
    And is there a way to change on the fly the elements witch the dimension points are linked to?


    • Eric
      6 years ago

      Leandro –

      Thanks for your feedback about how useful this lesson was for you.

      With regards to your questions:
      1) No, in general a wall will only have a hotspot or snappable, dimensionable point at the end-point of its axis if it is drawn with the center line method. It is possible, however, to switch a wall drawn with one method to another one (for example, to switch it from right or left side to centerline) by selecting it and changing the construction method in the Info Box. This will move the wall sideways, so you’d have to move it back into the original position manually. However, then you’ll be able to dimension to the axis end-point.

      You may also use the Design menu > Modify Wall > Reference Line command to offset the reference line without moving the wall.

      2) When you are first placing dimensions, as you hover over a point that you’d like to reference, you will see an element highlight. If there are other overlapping elements at that point, you may hit the TAB key to switch between them. When you see the one you want highlighted, you may click and the dimension will be linked to that element.

      After placement, you cannot change which element a dimension point is linked to; to change it, you’d have to delete that point and place a new one using the command or control-click method.

      Eric


  12. RAJAGOPALA HATHWAR
    6 years ago

    Great solution, thank you Erric, I made attempt got excellent answer.
    RAJAGOPALA HATHWAR


  13. RajagopalaHathwar
    6 years ago

    Hello Erric,
    When drawn walls of option 1 layer combination over the place of option 2 layer combination ( hide position) I found cut marks where it intersect with the walls (op2 hide).That looks ugly.
    What is the best solution?


    • Eric
      6 years ago

      Rajagopala –

      The cut out occurs because when you hide the other layer, it is still on the same “layer intersection priority” as the visible layers. To correct this, make sure you’ve got your layer combination active (perhaps by double-clicking on your View), then open the Layer Settings dialog, and change the number for the hidden layer (you’ll see the number next to the eyeball used to show or hide the layer) to a different value. After you make that change, click the Update button at the bottom left of the dialog to update the layer combination.

      When you return to the plan, you’ll see the cut marks disappear, since ArchiCAD is no longer trying to “intersect” the hidden elements on that layer with your visible elements.

      When you switch to the other option, you’ll need to do the same thing: open the layer settings, change the priority number for the hidden layer, and update the active layer combination.

      Eric


  14. PaulMORGAN
    6 years ago

    Great little course. Even though I use these tools regularly I still learned a few things. I like the length of quick start modules. Not too daunting a time commitment.
    BTW, v12 does have the newer dimension tool.
    Thank you!


    • Eric
      6 years ago

      Thanks Paul – I’m glad to hear that you’re picking up some useful things as you review the basics! I try to add in little tips wherever I can to make sure you’re still listening…
      Eric