Tipster Mary E. Kipp sends us a time-saving tip for using the Offset command in AutoCAD.
"One of my all-time favorite commands is Offset. Many people don't realize the time that can be saved by offsetting an object by layer. While creating subdivision roadways from the centerline alignment, for example, you simply set the layer you want to offset to current, then offset the centerline to sidewalk, curb, setback, etc. As long as you have your layers set up, you are ready to rock."
Notes from Cadalyst Tip Patrol: The Offset command in AutoCAD saves a lot of time, especially when you're creating parallel lines or concentric circles. The out-of-the-box settings for the Offset command will create the newly offset objects on the same layer as the original object. You can change this setting so that the new object will be placed on the current layer. Depending on what you want to do, this can help you out tremendously. Start the Offset command, type in L for the Layer option, then type either C for the current layer or S for the source layer (the layer of the object selected to be offset). Use the setting that best suits your needs.
If you want to get really fancy, create a custom Offset command in the CUI that changes the layer settings automatically for you. Make one for the source layer and one for the current layer. This customization will save you a ton of time if you need to switch back and forth between the two.