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Even More Benefits of Polylines
Tip# 4206 By Danny Korem On 21-Oct-2013
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Categories : Polylines
Software type : AutoCAD 2014
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Polylines provide advantages that lines and arcs do not.

In Cadalyst CAD Tip No. 4183, Danny Korem explained why he prefers to use polylines in AutoCAD, as opposed to lines and arcs. Here, he gives us twelve more reasons:

  1. Since it is a 2D form, the first point of the first segment will set the z values for all the segments and vertices.
  2. Vertices are coincident by nature — that's not the case with lines and arcs.
  3. Any polyline containing more than one segment has a built-in area property.
  4. Editing geometry is easier when polylines substitute for lines and arcs. A vertex can be added or removed, linear segments can be replaced by arc segments, and arc segments' direction can be altered.
  5. Polylines have the "closed" property, which can be executed (yes/no values) as many times as you need.
  6. Polylines may be simplified using Overkill to minimize the number of vertices without affecting geometry.
  7. A drawing containing polylines is lighter than the same geometry executed by using lines and arcs. A 2D polyline, no matter how many segments and vertices it has, has only one value for the z values of the entire geometry (elevation).
  8. A polyline-based drawing is easier to manipulate (flatten, for instance) than one based on lines and arcs.
  9. Polylines and polyline segments can have width in different options.
  10. Polylines can be created from scratch or from existing geometry in a variety of ways. Users can turn a line or an arc into a polyline and use the Join option to add segments to it, or you can click and detect a polyline and/or respective islands. You can use Fillet to connect another polyline (or line or arc) to an existing polyline.
  11. If a uniform radius is needed to fillet all angles altogether, fillet, state a radius, then opt for polyline to apply to all vertices. Furthermore, if a specific corner needs a radius of 0, you can still execute it on a radius filleted polyline.
  12. Polylines are much easier to offset than lines and arcs.

Notes from Cadalyst tip reviewer Brian Benton: Lines and arcs have their places in a drawing file. However, polylines do have many more options that allow for more chances to manipulate them than lines and arcs. Polylines have become even more powerful in the past four or five AutoCAD releases.


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