Autocad 3D blocks

by Design Workshop Sydney

Autocad 3D blocks operate in the same way that blocks are used in 2D drafting – for repeated elements that you don’t want to recreate each time, eg. nuts, bolts, doors, windows, fasteners, components. And you may want to use these elements in later drawings. So to save time, the AutoCAD 3D modeler can create these elements as blocks, and simply insert them into the model. This is one of the sophisticated features of the program we explore in our Autocad 3D courses.autocad-3d-block
Once created a block may be inserted into a model multiple times, and each time it’s inserted a different point, scaling and rotation can be specified. Any part of a model can be made into a 3D block, and this is saved within the drawing file itself. Blocks can also be dismantled with the Explode tool to become objects made up of the primitive elements again, which we can then edit and resave.
Making a Block: When creating a block, first make sure that you’re on Layer 0 with Colour and Linetype assigned By Layer. This will give the inserted block the colour and linetype of the active layer. But if you want the block always to be a certain colour, then change the colour in the drop-down list at the time of creation.
Once you have created the object you wish to become a Block, select the Make Block button on the Draw toolbar, or from the dropdown menus select Draw > Block > Make, or type BLOCK into the Command line. A dialog box will appear. Name it, then click Base Point: Pick Point button and click at a desired point of the shape. This sets the point for inserting the Block into a model. The dialog box will open again: click the Objects: Select Objects button, and select the shape. Press Enter and OK. Save the drawing; the Block is now saved within this drawing.
Inserting a Block: To insert a Block into a drawing, simply go to the Insert dropdown list and choose Block, or click the Insert Block button on the Draw toolbar. Click the Browse button on the dialog box and navigate to the drawing where the Block is saved. To edit the Block use the Explode button. There are thousands of 3D blocks uploaded onto the Internet by individual Autocad users and companies, many of which can be downloaded and used for free.
Another method of inserting blocks is to drag & drop from the Autocad Design Centre: type DC to open the Design Centre and browse through the file tree to find where the block is located.
See many examples of our Autocad 3D clients’ work on our Facebook page.
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