The Spline tool in the Autocad 2D workspace is a very useful tool for creating organic, curved shapes like paths and contours. We explain how to use use it in our Autocad 2d training courses.
For a shape like a garden path or street like the one illustrated here, we first need to create the geometric structure underlying the curves. The size and direction of the path would, of course, be determined on the site plan. We could use the Construction Lines layer created earlier to draw out the rough geometry of the path using the Line or Polyline tool. This layer will not print so we can keep the construction lines – there’s no need to delete them after the splines have been added. In fact it’s useful to keep the original construction lines in case we need to check them later.
Next we switch to our general drawing layer, usually Layer 0. Then select the Fit Spline tool, the keyboard shortcut is SPL. By connecting the points on the geometry we create the curvature of the path or street. Note that you can move the blue grips to alter the shape of the path later.
Once one side of the path has been drawn we can then use the Offset tool to give the path width, for example 2000mm. Select the Offset tool, or use the keyboard shortcut of O > Enter. Then Autocad asks you for the offset value, in this case 2000. Now we select the spline and click to whichever side you wish to offset the path. Then hit Escape to exit the offsetting function.
Note that this offset path has many more control grips, or vertices. So if you need to change the path’s shape, it’s best to delete the offset path first. Then change the original path and perform the offset function again.
To add a hatch pattern representing the path’s material – paving or concrete, etc – we need to close the shape. Therefore use the Line tool to add lines at each end of the offset path – we can delete these later if necessary. We then select the Hatch tool, or type BH for Boundary Hatch into the Command line. Click inside the shape, whereupon the options for hatching will appear on the top Ribbon. Select a pattern from the list and adjust the scale to fit the pathway better. This hatch pattern can be edited at any future point.
More information on all features of the program can be found at the AutoDesk website. And see many examples of our clients’ work on our Facebook page.
Other related Autocad 2d Blog Posts:
- Autocad 2d basics
- Autocad 2d introduction
- Autocad 2d drawing
- Autocad 2d workspace
- Autocad 2d isometric