Dimension is an important part in CAD drawing that is used to mark the size, tolerance, attributes and so on. Creating dimension is very easy, but what’s more important is to create standard dimension that suits drawings, so learning to set up the dimension style is very important.

Dimension style is more complex than text style, that’s because that there are many dimensions like Angular Dimension, Linear Dimension, Aligned Dimension, etc. And every dimension has many elements and may include setup of Text style. Through Dimension Style, users can customize arrow, text, unit, precision, tolerance, scale, etc. Having said much about Dimension Style and you may think that Dimension Style is too difficult for you? Not really, just because there are many parameters in Dimension Style doesn’t make it hard to learn.

Similar to Text Style, Dimension Style also contains dimension template. Every dimension in the drawing has its corresponding dimension style and one dimension style controls the displaying effect of many dimensions.

Before drawing, we can define multiple dimension style for later use. For example, we can create a commonly used dimension style, a dimension style with tolerance, an extreme dimension style, etc, and we can switch between different dimension styles when needed.

  1. Enter D, then press Enter and the Dimension Style Manager will pop up, as shown in the following picture.

The command for Dimension Style is DIMSTYLE and the shortcut key is D, which says pretty much how frequently it’s used.

We can see that there is list of dimension styles on the left of the popped up Dimension Style Manager; a preview of the dimension in the middle; function buttons on the right that can customize dimension style, create dimension style, modify dimension style, etc.

The style in blue on the left is the current dimension style, as shown in the above picture. Our newly created dimension will use this style. The Dimension Style Manager doesn’t show the dimension parameter, which make it simpler.

2. Click “New” button  and the “Create New Dimension Style” would pop up, as shown in the following picture.

The system would automatically gives a name for the new style, we can choose to change it or not. Many parameters of dimension are similar, so the system allows us to select one as a basis for the new one when creating new dimension styles. For the new style, you change only the properties that differ from the properties you start with.

3. Click “Continue” to the next popped up dialog box, the dialog box may be different depending on what style you’ve chosen, as shown in the following picture.

This newly popped up dialog box has many parameters and what we see from the above picture is only one tab, there are more tabs like Symbols and Arrows, Text, Adjust, Primary Units, Alternative Units, etc. Maybe you think this is too much for a beginner, but only a few of them need to be changed and since we can preview the displaying effect to know how each parameter works, it’s actually easy to learn.

You may get different popped up dialog box, but the parameters of them are the same.

4. We usually change two tabs in the Lines tab: Extend beyond dim lines and Offset from origin, as shown in the following picture.

5. Click “Symbols and Arrows” tab, we can choose the arrow style and set up arrow size, except for regular setup for arrows, it also has center marks, arc symbol, etc. If you need to change any of these, don’t forget this tab.

6. Click “Text” tab, usually we’ll need to change the Text style, Text height, Text color, Offset from dim line, we can see how they affect dimension on the left preview area

For regular dimension, three tab of Lines, Symbols and Arrows and Text would be enough, but for mechanical dimension, we may sometimes need tolerance parameter, as shown in the following picture.

As for the Adjust, Primary Units and Alternate Units, you may use them in terms of setup of unit and scale, but we better save that for advance level.

7. Click “OK” to go back to the Dimension Style Manager , click “close” to exit the Dimension Style Manager. If we want to use certain dimension style after the exit, we can right click this dimension style and then select “set current”, as shown int the following picture, and then exit.

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