Course Content
AutoCAD Advanced Techniques
About Lesson

In this lesson I will show you how to use groups. They allow you to manipulate a large number of different objects in a very simple way, just as if it were a single element.

I have already opened the appropriate example so I can zoom in on the part that represents the dining room. As you can see, the object representing the chair consists of several completely independent arc and line segments. I’m sure you agree that it would be much better if it were a single whole, so to that end I will select all the elements that make up the chair in one go and click on the icon called Group.

It may seem strange to you that I first made a selection and only then selected the desired function. I did this with the intention of proving to you that in some cases the order in which a certain task is performed is completely irrelevant. To prove it to you, I will undo the last step by selecting the Undo icon and separate the elements that make up the chair. After that I can run the Group function and select everything I need to create a new group. Finally, I just need to press Enter and complete this operation.

Regardless of the fact that information related to individual segments still appears on the screen, the entire chair will be treated as a single object in the future, which means that only one press of the left mouse button is sufficient for its selection. I will take this opportunity and use the Copy function to place another identical object. After that, I can apply the Mirror function and complete this dining set in two steps. At the same time, I must emphasize that each new chair still represents a unique element, which I can easily move or adapt in some other way to my needs.

If there is a need to subsequently change some detail, you can temporarily separate the elements that make up a group. To that end, it is enough to activate the Pickstyle function with one click on this icon and thereby change the way all groups are treated. After that, you will be able to reselect any of the existing elements and make the desired changes. I will use the opportunity to change the shape of the back of one of the chairs without affecting the other elements. After that I can click on the icon that represents the Pick Style function and form unique groups again.

You’ve just seen how the elements that belong to a group change, and now I want to show you how you can add new details to them. In this case it will be two handles – one on each side. To that end, I can first run the Rectangle command and use the Fillet option to define the degree of curvature. This parameter should be relatively small, so I will click on points that are at a small distance. After that I can draw a new element and place it in the appropriate position. I will draw the second handrail using the Mirror command, where the line representing the bisector should be placed exactly in the middle of the seat.

In the end, all I have to do is insert the new elements into the existing group. This can be achieved using the Group Edit function, which is also located on this palette. It is enough to click on the corresponding icon, select the group and select the Add objects option from the screen. In the end, I just need to select the objects that I want to insert into the existing group and complete this operation with Enter.

Now you must be wondering if it is possible to remove the excess that subsequently appeared on the drawing. This will not be a problem in this case because at any moment I can change the parameter related to working with groups by selecting the Pick Style function and using the Trim command to remove redundant elements. To return to normal working mode, I need to click on this icon again and thus form normal groups.

If for any reason you decide to disband one of the existing groups, you can do so in a very simple way. It is enough to start the Ungroup function by selecting this icon and clicking on the appropriate object. From that moment, all the elements that made up this group will become independent again.

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