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Trace PDFs with Polylines
Tip# 4059 By Perry Pattiz On 28-Jan-2013
Rated By 0 users
Categories : Other, File Reference, Data Use
Software type : AutoCAD 2013
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Here's a way to get drawing data from a PDF file into your AutoCAD drawing.

Tipster Perry Pattiz shares a tip on how to get other drawing data from a PDF file into your AutoCAD drawing.

"I frequently have to rely on PDF drawings of equipment to use in my AutoCAD drawings. Many people may not know that you can easily trace these drawings with lines and arcs to snap on the osnap locations on an embedded PDF file. If you use polylines, you can easily switch back and forth between lines and arcs by simply pressing the A key and then the L key to switch without leaving the polyline command. Afterward, you can grab the endpoint or midpoint grips on the arcs and lines to quickly move the polyline to exactly match the PDF drawing. This is not as handy as getting the AutoCAD drawing from someone, but it sure beats starting from scratch to duplicate other people's drawings."  

Notes from Cadalyst Tip Reviewer Brian Benton: Back in the olden times, we had people who were known as tracers. They would trace our pencil drawings to make new ones or to draw them in ink. We don't do that much anymore, but there are many times when we need to trace other drawings in AutoCAD; a PDF file is one example. If the PDF was created through AutoCAD (printed to PDF), then the PDF file should retain some object data, making the linework snappable. An alternative would be to make sure the PDF (or a DWF) has layer data in it. If so, then you can turn layers on or off and you won't have to trace any linework.


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User comments
Posted on 2013-01-31 12:16:29
You can buy a program that will do the same for more complicated pdf drawings.