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Insert a Drawing Into a Template

Have you ever wished to open a fresh AutoCAD design file and have all of your text styles, dimension styles, layers, units, and other drawing settings completely set up and ready to go? Some users have told us that they create a new design by opening an existing drawing, renaming it, and deleting the geometry. This takes time and may result in obsolete or broken standards.

Being organized in your work is crucial since AutoCAD tasks are quite intricate and demand precision. Imagine having to manage a dozen CAD design files that provide comprehensive information on a single element. Receivers won't have the information they need if you are not systematic in how you label each drawing for printing.

To plot (print) your drawings, especially in a production setting, you must include a Title Block in your AutoCAD drawing. The author, time, and artwork component are identified in a Title Block. In essence, it gives crucial information for printing the document.

Using a drawing template with established drawing parameters is a quick method to start a new drawing and may help your company enforce drawing standards.

Please keep in mind that the steps, graphics, and videos may alter significantly depending on your product version.

What Can a Template Save?

The majority of drawing parameters and named style information required when starting a new drawing may be stored in a template. It's fine if you don't utilize all of the linetypes or styles in the template for some drawings, but the drawing template should have the standards you need to get started.

Some drawing settings that cannot be saved in a drawing template are as follows:

  • Changes to user interface components such as the Quick Access toolbar or the ribbon
  • Personalized hatch designs
  • Auto LISP programmes, custom apps, action macros, scripts
  • Shape data

Using Pre-Existing Templates

Autodesk includes various templates with AutoCAD. These templates may be found in the Templates drop-down list under the Start tab.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

Note: Beginning with AutoCAD 2022, use the new drop-down menu to retrieve the templates that came with AutoCAD.

While these templates are a fantastic place to start, they are unlikely to include the options you want.

Note: The template storage location can be changed to a shared place so that all AutoCAD users in your organization have access to the same templates. If the template storage location changes, the list under Templates is updated.

Open and Save a Template

To make changes to a template, you must first open it. Opening a template is analogous to opening a sketch.

1. From the Quick Access Toolbar, select Open.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

Alternatively, at the Command prompt, type open.

2. Select Drawing Template (*.dwt) from the Files of type drop-down list.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

The templates should be visible if AutoCAD is installed.

3. Choose a template and press the Open button. We'll use acad.dwt for this task.

Changes to the template only influence new drawings; they have no effect on earlier drawings made with that template.

The name of the template displays on a drawing tab with a.dwt extension and is ready for alteration.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

A template saved and closed is similar to saving a sketch. To save the template and carry on working, select Save or Save As from the Quick Access Toolbar.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

4. I'll select Save As to create a new template for this exercise, give it the name My Template, and then click Save.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

5. Enter the template's description in the Template Options dialogue box, leave the other defaults alone, and click OK.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

Modifying the New Drawing's Default Template

Let's use the template that you've just prepared and saved. When you start a new drawing, AutoCAD automatically uses the template listed in the Default Template File Name for QNEW, in this example, acad.dwt, to produce the drawing. Change this parameter so that a fresh drawing may be started using the new template.

  1. Right-click in the drawing window and select Options. Or enter options at the Command prompt.
  2. Expand Template Settings > Default Template File Name for QNEW by clicking the Files tab.
  3. Select Browse after choosing the file path. You may also navigate by double-clicking the file path.
Insert a Drawing Into a Template

Note: For the Default Template File Name for QNEW, none is the default choice. The QNEW command behaves like the NEW command when it is set to None.

4. Select the template file you want AutoCAD to use as the default for a new drawing from the Select a file dialogue box, in this case My Template, and click Open.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

To exit the Options dialogue box, click OK.

AutoCAD will now utilize My Template when you begin a new drawing.

Test and Edit the Template

So far, we've covered how AutoCAD utilizes templates when you start a new drawing, where the templates are kept, and how to make a new template from one of the sample templates offered.

Let's start altering a template right now. It's similar to modifying a drawing to edit a template. To open My Template, adhere to the directions above.

Evaluate adding the drawing settings to My Template and consider what you would like to have already established when you start a new drawing.

The following drawing settings might be helpful:

  • Disabling the grid display
  • Changing the color of the drawing window
  • adding the usual layers
  • Text and dimension styles creation
  • being able to place a title block
  • unit-setting for drawings

These are all drawing parameters that may be put to a template so that they are all set the next time you create a new drawing.

Save the template first, then use the + button on the drawing tabs to start a fresh drawing to quickly test the modifications. The template may be changed relatively quickly by keeping it open for testing.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

Make sure the Default Template File Name for QNEW in the Options dialogue box is set to use MyTemplate if you are having trouble seeing the template changes in the new drawing.

Importing Layers and Styles from DesignCenter

A template can have layers, named styles, and blocks added using DesignCenter.

  1. Open MyTemplate.dwt for this exercise.
  2. Go to the View tab, the Palettes panel, and DesignCenter. Find or type adcenter at the Command prompt. The template should be updated with the layers, blocks, and styles from Landscaping.dwg.
  3. Navigate to Landscaping.dwg in DesignCenter and drag the drawing into the template's drawing area.
Insert a Drawing Into a Template

Note: Press Esc after the drag and drop if you only want the block definitions to be available for inserting from the Blocks palette. If not, the blocks will be added to the drawing window of the template.

Now, MyTemplate has access to the named styles, blocks, and drawing parameters described in Landscaping.dwg.

To test MyTemplate, make a new drawing, and check if the blocks are there in it.

Insert a Drawing Into a Template

Note: You may use PURGE to get rid of any data you don't want to be present in a template, including named styles, blocks, drawing settings, and more.

What if you have to go from a new template to an old drawing? Consider the scenario in which you wish to import some named styles, blocks, and drawing parameters from your upgraded corporate template. These styles weren't imported from the template; rather, they were added to it after you began designing.

We discussed incorporating named styles from an updated template into an existing drawing in a prior Have You Tried? You may find that information in the Import Multiple Styles section of Have You Tried: Import Styles.

When developing new designs, templates may save time and be a valuable tool for establishing standards in your organization. They are simple to set up and if office standards change, they can be simply produced, changed, and shared.

System variables and template commands

Here are the system variables and commands for templates that are most frequently used.

  • ADCENTER controls and inserts material, including blocks, xrefs, and hatch patterns.
  • NEW makes a fresh drawing.
  • PURGE removes from the drawing any elements that aren't being utilized, such layers and block definitions.
  • A new drawing is started using the QNEW command from a drawing template file that is given.
  • UNITS regulates the accuracy and display.
System Variable Description Default Value Saved In
AUNITS sets the angle units. 0 Drawing
AUPREC sets the angular units and coordinates display precision. 0 Drawing
LUNITS the format for linear units is set while constructing objects. 2 Drawing
LUPREC sets the coordinate and linear unit display precision 4 Drawing
MEASUREMENT determines whether the hatch pattern and linetype files for the current design are in imperial or metric units. 0 (imperial) or 1 (metric) Drawing

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