Tipster Eric Lawson sent us a tip to reduce time spent searching for AutoCAD blocks that are similar.
"Instead of having to make a number of blocks that differ only slightly — e.g., weld symbols — make just one block that contains all the required items. Once it's inserted, explode and erase all the unwanted items. I find this method saves time, because I don't have to search though lists. This principle may be applied to any blocks that require tweaking."
Notes from Cadalyst Tip Patrol: This method works; insert once and be done. It can also be taken one step further if you create a dynamic block. Dynamic blocks were introduced in AutoCAD 2006. They are not static, but can be grip-edited and altered on the fly. The example of a weld symbol could be a simple visibility state–controlled dynamic block. AutoCAD 2012 comes with a weld symbol block that is dynamic; look for it in the Mechanical tab of the tool palette.