Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Setting Up AutoCAD Architecture or AutoCAD MEP

The class I taught at AU and training I have done has shown me that there are plenty of users out there who have either AutoCAD Architecture or AutoCAD MEP that use it as AutoCAD and not just as AutoCAD, but probably an old version of AutoCAD.

Besides learning new features of AutoCAD and small steps you can use to begin using the software, users often don't know where to begin in setting up either program.

  1. Try as many out-of-the-box (OOTB) settings as you can for the pilot project. After the pilot project is complete you can lay the plotted set of plans on the table next to an old set and see what you absolutely can't live with. Be open-minded about this!
  2. Start with a template specific to the product you are using. The OOTB templates that begin with AEC are for AutoCAD Architecture and the templates beginning with ABS are for AutoCAD MEP. See this post.
  3. Define Styles and for MEP define System Definitions. For MEP also create MEP Preferences.
  4. Set Layer Key Style.
  5. Set Tool Palettes.
There are 5 easy steps to get you started.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Content Browser

One of the advantages that AutoCAD Architecture and AutoCAD MEP has is the Content Browser.

Content Browser has the same information as can be found in Style Manager going to Content, but is in a visual form.

The Content Browser files are located by default under Documents and Settings... They can be installed in other locations during installation.

When they are installed under the default location, each user logged in has his or her own "My Tool Catalog". This is where you can store custom content. You can store this on the network and share it between users.

From the home page of Content Browser, you can find additional content. For HVAC tags, you would choose the MEP Documentation Tool Catalog because tags are considered documentation items.

Under Documentation you will see headings for each discipline. HVAC lists Schedules and Tags. Choosing Tags will give you another four categories.

All tags provide the same information, but simply have different appearances.

These are Text Tags.

You can hold your cursor over the "i" and it will change to an i-dropper. You can then drag a tag into a drawing to use or to your Tool Palette.