AutoCAD Tip of the Day – Hatch Boundary Selection Optimization
How many times have you almost lost your religion over hatching? In today’s AutoCAD Tips, we are going to addresses a few of the problems associated with selecting a hatch boundary.
Tell me if this sounds familiar. You are working towards a deadline, you are almost finished, and all you need to do is hatch one last area and then plot. You select a point inside the boundary and wait. And wait, and wait. You start sweating as you think “when was the last time I saved?” You start praying, “Please don’t freeze up!” After what seems like an eternity, if you are luck, the boundary finally selects and disaster if avoided. This time…
Cause 1: When you select a point AutoCAD starts analyzing the objects around it to create the hatch boundary. Having an X-ref on the screen significantly slows down the selection process and may even lead to AutoCAD freezing up.
Solution 1: Temporarily unload the X-ref (or zoom to the point where it’s not visible on the screen) and re-pick your point. If necessary, draw a pline around the area you need on the X-ref if it’s required to complete the boundary before unloading.
Cause 2: There may be several blocks it’s trying to analyze that are part of an X-ref.
Solution 2: Turn the layer containing the blocks off before picking the point for the hatch boundary. As a general rule of thumb, the more objects you can turn off that you do not want in the hatch boundary, the better.
Cause 3: The boundary is not closed.
Solution 3: You can set your Gap Tolerance through the system variable HPGAPTOL to a distance that is big enough to close in the gaps, but this sometime yields inconsistent result and make boundary selection even more troublesome in some cases. The best solution is to make sure boundary is completely closed and then select the hatch boundary.
Cause 4: Not all items you’ve selected for the hatch boundary are on the same plane. Something has a different “Z” value (it’s in 3D space). But you may be saying, “I don’t draw in 3D”. Trust me; this has a habit of happening sometimes.
Solution 4: Make sure all the items in the hatch boundary have the same “Z” value.
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