How to draw a straight line with precise length

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How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Mikar » Wed Jun 27, 2018 2:54 pm

Hi all,

what I can do is:

- hold down the 'shift'-key to draw a straight line locked to x or y axis

or

- type a number while pointing the line's end somewhere in oder to draw a specific length.

But I simply cannot get both features working together at the same time.

Is there a way?

Cheers
Mikar
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Wed Jun 27, 2018 3:39 pm

Yes. It can be done. Click and release to set the starting end. Drag the line out in the direction you want it to go without holding the mouse button. Let go of the mouse and type the desired length. Hit Enter.
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Philw » Fri Jun 29, 2018 5:42 pm

Nice to know,
But if I have a scrapbook Item and want to move it precisely (let’s say an 1” or 1/8”) can I do that?
When I type a dimension I get the invalid string message.
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Fri Jun 29, 2018 5:49 pm

Philw wrote:Nice to know,
But if I have a scrapbook Item and want to move it precisely (let’s say an 1” or 1/8”) can I do that?


Yes. Definitely.


Philw wrote:When I type a dimension I get the invalid string message.


What exactly are you typing?
move.gif

Click on the picture if it doesn't move.
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Philw » Sun Jul 01, 2018 5:18 pm

I tried both typing: 1/8" and typing :1/8", 1"
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Sun Jul 01, 2018 6:01 pm

Are you clicking in the Measurements box?
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Philw » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:06 pm

no,
I am taking it like in SketchUp, just typing and return.
I can see what i am typing show up it the box before i get the message once i hit return.
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Last edited by Philw on Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Philw 
 

Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:13 pm

That's good that you're just typing. What units have you got selected in Document Setup>Units? What is the Precision set to? What happens if you don't enter units?
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Philw » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:18 pm

units set to fractional
Precision 1/8"

"What happens if you don't enter units?"
Not sure what you mean?
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:20 pm

Philw wrote:"What happens if you don't enter units?"
Not sure what you mean?


Just type 1/8 or 1 or .125 and hit Enter.

Set precision higher, like 1/64" and see what happens.
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Philw » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:29 pm

That works, :enlight:
that has been a thorn in my side for a while. I wonder what else I am doing wrong :o

Thanks for all your help.
I need a doh! boook for Layout
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Philw » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:43 pm

I must be doing something wrong some of the time. I am old school cad. I keep wanting to pick it and start the move, then type the distant. I am just picking the object and typing the new length, this works some time and other times, not.

is this written down somewhere where i can read how this works or is it on the layout help sites?
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Philw 
 

Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:44 pm

Philw wrote:That works, :enlight:


Good. You should be able to type the units but as long as they are the default, you don't need it anyway.

Philw wrote:I wonder what else I am doing wrong :o


I might be able to give you some idea if I saw your LO file.

Philw wrote:Thanks for all your help.
I need a doh! boook for Layout


You're welcome.

A new book to publish. ;)
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:50 pm

Hang on and we'll look at it together. I have to finish an overseas call.
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Philw » Sun Jul 01, 2018 10:52 pm

[quote="I might be able to give you some idea if I saw your LO file.[/quote]

I'll try and send a file from work tomorrow..
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Sun Jul 01, 2018 11:07 pm

Do you want to try looking at LayOut with me using a screen share. I can set that up.
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Philw » Sun Jul 01, 2018 11:12 pm

that would be great
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Mikar » Tue Jul 03, 2018 7:55 am

Hi Dave,

thanks for your explenations!

Let me just skip back to my initial question. The problem I have is that I cannot type the desired lenght while holding down the shift key to keeop the axis locked. With 'straight line' I ment locked to x or y axis.

Any idea how to do that?

Cheers
Mikar
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Mikar 
 

Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby pbacot » Tue Jul 03, 2018 8:51 am

If you press shift and snap to x or y directions, move the cursor in the direction you want. then while holding shift you can hit a number key on the numerical key pad and return, that should work.
But it's not generally necessary to press shift. The line tool will show a red or green trace as it locks into the x or y axis. You can then hit any numbered key (or length e.g. 2'7 ) and return.

I think the problem is with heavier lines at closer zooms this indicator is not very visible if at all. That may also be worse on retina displays. The line direction definitely "snaps" though.
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Mikar » Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:00 am

Well, my numberpad doesn't accept any entries while I hold down the shift key (maybe it works on your Mac, but not on my MS).

However, I noticed that once the desired axis lights up (x in red, y in green) I can release the shift key and the line will stay on the desired axis, then I can enter the length.

Problem solved, thank you all!

Cheers
Mikar
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Mikar 
 

Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Dave R » Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:03 am

The Line tool will naturally snap to on-axis. You really shouldn't need to hold shift to draw a line on axis if you're going to type in its length anyway. The only time I would use Shift to lock a line on axis is if I'm using something else on the page for a reference for the end of the line. As in this GIF.

line.gif
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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby Charlie__V » Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:50 am

Tip:
Don’t be afraid to “overdraw” the length of the line before entering the desired length. (often helps to show RGB axis/or highlight when parallel/perpendicular in “crowded” drawing)

IE: Draw line in desired direction (RGB axis/parallel/perpendicular to exisiting) approximately 20’ and enter 1’-8”

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Re: How to draw a straight line with precise length

Postby pbacot » Tue Jul 03, 2018 4:36 pm

I find the references come anyway and are easy to snap without shift, In fact so many references--some of which I don't think I'll ever figure out, some arcane trig relationships I guess.
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