Block

There are a number of ways to begin the process of inserting blocks, such as the -INSERT command line version, tool palettes, Design Center, drag and drop, and probably others that don’t come to mind right now. But, far and away the best way to insert blocks is via the Blocks palette.

When you insert a block reference, you specify its location, scale, and rotation. Subsequent references to that block definition can be inserted in different locations, scales, and rotation angles. When a block is inserted into a drawing, it is scaled automatically according to the ratio of units defined in the drawing to the units defined in the block. For example, if the unit of measurement is meters in the destination drawing and centimeters in the block, the block is inserted at 1/100 scale.

Although a block reference is always inserted on the current layer, the block reference preserves the properties in the block definition. This means, for example, that blocks can have multiple colors even when they are inserted on a layer set to red or some other color.

Blocks Palette

The Blocks palette takes all the advantages of various block insertion methods and gives you a single place to access them. It really is a one-stop shop for all your block needs. From the palette, you can access the current blocks in your drawing, your most recently used – even if they’re from other drawing files – or you can specify a location or file to become a library from which to choose your block.

Ribbon Gallery

On the Home tab, Blocks panel, you can click Insert to display a gallery of block definitions in the current drawing. Use the gallery when you have a small number of blocks to insert quickly by clicking and placing them in your drawing.

Tool Palettes

The Tool Palettes window is designed for when you use a large variety of blocks. Many tabs are available and you can create custom tabs for sets of related blocks and specialized tools. You can insert blocks from tool palettes by dragging the block tool into the drawing or by clicking the block tool and then specifying an insertion point. You can access the Tool Palettes window with the TOOLPALETTES command.

DesignCenter

The DesignCenter window is designed for browsing and selecting a variety of definitions from existing drawings and drawing libraries. These definitions include blocks, layers, linetypes, and other content. DesignCenter offers a quick, visual way to drag and drop blocks within the current drawing or from another drawing. Double-click the block names to specify the precise location, rotation, and scale of the blocks. You can access the DesignCenter window with the ADCENTER command.

Drawings in Folders

Drawing files can be dragged and dropped into the current drawing from a file folder as blocks.

Try each of these tools to determine which of them is more appropriate to your environment. You can dock the palettes and DesignCenter; then turn on auto-hide for convenience and efficient use of the drawing area.

What are the Sources of Blocks?

You can insert blocks from these sources:

  • Blocks defined in the current drawing
  • Other drawing files inserted as blocks into the current drawing
  • Blocks defined in other drawing files, called block library drawings, which can be inserted into the current drawing
  • Blocks created by online vendors and services. These blocks are often associated with specific parts or products

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You can create blocks by associating objects and giving them a name or by creating a drawing to be used as a block. There’re several ways to create a block in AutoCAD. We’ll discuss three options in this section on how to create a block in AutoCAD.

Block Command

You can found in the ribbon as the Create icon in the Block panel of the Home tab, This is where you’ll name it, define its basepoint, specify what objects to use, and other behaviors and settings. If you’re using it in a script and don’t want the dialog use -BLOCK instead.

  1. Create the objects you want to use in the block definition.
  2. Click Insert tab, Block Definition panel, Create Block. 
  3. In the Block Definition dialog box, enter a block name in the Name box.
  4. Under Objects, select Convert to Block.Note: If Delete is selected, the original objects are erased from the drawing when the block is created. If necessary, you can use OOPS to restore them.
  5. Under Base Point and Objects, make sure Specify On-screen is not selected.
  6. Select Objects.
  7. Use your pointing device to select the objects to be included in the block definition. Press Enter to complete object selection.
  8. In the Block Definition dialog box under Base Point, specify the block insertion point using one of these methods.
    • Click Pick Point to specify a point using the pointing device.
    • Enter the X,Y,Z coordinate values of the point.
  9. In the Description box, enter a description for the block definition. This description is displayed in DesignCenter™ (ADCENTER).
  10. Click OK.The block is defined in the current drawing and can be inserted at any time.

Convert to Block

If you want to convert your objects into a block and keep them as an instance of your new block, make sure you have the Convert to Block option checked. Otherwise, you can choose to either delete the selected objects or to keep them. Either way, the new block information will be written to the block table.

Wblock

While we might only think of it as the tool to write blocks or objects to a new drawing file, the resultant block in your drawing will be named the same as you specify in the path/name field. Only this option will create a block, the Retain and Delete options don’t.

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By default, double-clicking on the block opens either the Properties dialog box or the Block Editor.

Edit Block In-Place

To edit a block in-place, do any of the following:

  • Right-click on the block and select Edit Block In-Place.
  • Use the command REFEDIT to open the in-place block editor for a selected block. After editing, use the REFCLOSE command to close it. 
  • To change the double-click function to the In-Place Block Editor, follow these steps:
  1. At the command prompt, enter CUI.
  2. In the Customize User Interface dialog box, click the Customize tab.
  3. On the Customize tab, under Customizations in All CUI Files, expand the Main CUI File > Double-Click Actions > Block.
  4. Click on the Block – Double Click action.
  5. In the Properties section, substitute the existing Macro entry with the following:

$M=$(if,$(and,$(>,$(getvar,blockeditlock),0)),^C^C_refedit,^C^C_bedit)

  1. Click OK.
  2. Set the BLOCKEDITLOCK variable to 1.

Note: If the BLOCKEDITLOCK system variable is set to 0, double-clicking on a block will open the Block Editor.

Block Editor

The Block Editor provides an easy way to define and edit blocks and to add dynamic behaviors to block definitions.

In the Block Editor, you can

  • Define a block
  • Add an action parameter
  • Add a geometric or dimensional constraint (not available in AutoCAD LT)
  • Define attributes
  • Manage visibility states
  • Test and save the block definition

Note: If you are working with dynamic blocks, keep the Command window displayed in the Block Editor, as it displays many prompts for many aspects of creating dynamic behaviors.

Modify a Block Definition

There are several methods for redefining a block definition. The method you choose depends on whether you want to make changes in the current drawing only or in a source drawing also.

  • Modify the block definition in the current drawing.The Block Editor provides the easiest way to modify a block in the current drawing. The changes you make and save in the Block Editor replace the existing block definition, and all references to that block in the drawing are immediately updated.An alternative way to modify a block definition is to create a new block definition, but enter the name of the existing block definition. You can insert and explode an instance of the original block and then use the resulting objects in creating the new block definition.
  • Modify the block definition in the source drawing and reinsert it into the current drawing.Updating a block that was created in another drawing and then inserted into the current drawing does not trigger an automatic update (unlike inserting xrefs). To update a block that has been updated in another drawing, you must reinsert it.
  • Update a block definition that originated from an inserted drawing file.Block definitions created in your current drawing by inserting a drawing file are not updated automatically when the original drawing is modified. You must insert the drawing again to update a block definition from the drawing file.
  • Update a block definition that originated in a library drawing (advanced).Inserting a block using DesignCenter does not overwrite an existing block definition. To insert a block definition that has been updated in a block library, for example, use WBLOCK to save the block as a separate drawing. Then, insert the drawing to overwrite the outdated block definition.Note: Block descriptions are stripped off when using INSERT. Use the Clipboard to copy and paste a block description displayed in the Block Definition dialog box from one block definition to another.

Remove a Block Definition

The block definition remains in the drawing, even when all references to that block are erased. In order to remove the block definition, you need to purge it.

Modify the Data in Block Attributes

You can edit the values of attributes that are attached to a block and inserted in a drawing.

You can use any of the following methods to edit the values of attributes attached to a block:

  • Double-click the block to display the Enhanced Attribute Editor
  • Press Ctrl and double-click the attribute to display the in-place editor(If you press Ctrl and double-click an attribute that includes a hyperlink, the hyperlink opens the web page. To edit the attribute, use one of the other methods listed.)
  • Open the Properties palette and select the block

You can also change the location of attributes in a block using grips. With multiple-line attributes, you can also move grips to resize the width of the text.

Modify Attribute Definitions With the Block Attribute Manager

You can modify attributes in block definitions with the Block Attribute Manager. For example, you can do the following:

  • Modify tags, prompts, and default values. These changes do not affect the values entered when existing block references were inserted. For example, if you change an attribute tag from “Cost” to “Unit Cost,” a value entered at the prompt (such as 19.99) is unaffected.
  • Reset the attribute modes. Modes control tag visibility, whether the value is a constant or a variable, the use of multiple-line text, the verification requirement, and position locking.
  • Change the attribute text display. You can modify alignment, style, height, rotation, width (for multiple-line text), and whether it uses annotative scaling.
  • Set properties that define the layer, color, lineweight, and linetype of the attribute.
  • Change the order of display for attribute prompts. The order in which you select the attributes when you define a block determines the order in which you are prompted for attribute values when you insert the block reference. You can change the order of prompts that request attribute values.
  • Identify duplicate tag names. Because duplicate tag names can lead to unpredictable results, you can set the Block Attribute Manager to highlight duplicate tags so that you can change them.
  • Remove attributes. You can remove attributes from block definitions and from all existing block references in the current drawing. You cannot remove all attributes from a block; at least one attribute must remain. If you need to remove all attributes, redefine the block.

If constant attributes or nested attributed blocks are affected by your changes, use REGEN to update the display of those blocks in the drawing area.

Modify a Block Reference

You can modify the position, scale, rotation, and other properties of a block reference in the Properties palette. These changes affect only that instance of the block reference, not the block definition.

Explode a Block Reference

If you need to modify one or more objects within a block separately, you can disassemble, or explode, the block reference into its component objects.

After the block is exploded, you can

  • Create a new block definition
  • Redefine the existing block definition
  • Leave the component objects uncombined for other uses

The exploded block reference is disassembled into its component objects; however, the original block definition still exists in the drawing for insertion later.

Note: You can automatically explode block references as you insert them by selecting the Explode option in the Insert dialog box.

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  1. Launch AutoCAD: Open your AutoCAD application and load the project file containing the block you want to delete.
  2. Find and Select the block: Click on the block to select it. If the block is part of a group, you may need to use the ‘Ungroup’ function first.
  3. Delete the block: Press the ‘Delete’ key on your keyboard. Alternatively, right-click on the block and choose ‘Erase’ from the context menu.

If you would like to delete one block from the drawing, following are more information that you need know.

  • The block definition remains in the drawing, even when all references to that block are erased. In order to remove the block definition, you need to purge it.
  • Common issues when deleting a block include locked blocks, blocks part of a group, or blocks part of an external reference (xref).
  • Always ensure to keep regular backups of your work to recover from accidental deletions or software crashes.

How to Delete a Block Definition in AutoCAD?

  1. Open the Block Editor
  2. Select the block definition: From the list of block definitions, select the one you wish to delete.
  3. Delete the block definition: Right-click on the selected block definition and choose ‘Delete’ from the context menu. Confirm the deletion in the dialog box that appears.

Why can’t I delete a block in AutoCAD?

One possibility is that the block is locked. In this case, you would need to unlock the block before you can delete it. To unlock a block, select it, right-click, and choose the ‘Unlock’ option.

Another possibility is that the block is part of a group. In AutoCAD, you cannot delete a block that is part of a group unless you first ungroup it. To ungroup a block, select the group, right-click, and choose the ‘Ungroup’ option.

Finally, if the block is part of an external reference (xref), you won’t be able to delete it directly. Instead, you would need to detach the xref before you can delete the block.

The process of deleting a block in AutoCAD might be more complex than initially thought due to its nuanced handling of blocks and block definitions. 

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Block Statistics is a valuable tool used in various design fields such as architecture, engineering, interior design, landscaping, civil engineering, and product design. It streamlines the process of counting blocks, enhances design analysis, aids in project planning, and simplifies block management for quotations and objects.

Key Features:

  • Block count in one time: User can choose the entire drawing or a specific part of the drawing to calculate the quantity of blocks.
  • Automated Counting: Automates the process of counting blocks within a drawing.
  • Accurate Quantity Determination: It provides accurate and reliable information about the quantity of blocks used in a design.
  • Comprehensive Documentation and Reporting: Designers can generate detailed reports or tables of blocks with just a click.
  • Effortless and Time-Saving: The process of block counting with table saves time and effort without affecting the drawing.

How to Use Block Statistics Table in DWGSee CAD?

  • Click Menu “Tools/Block Statistics/Blocks”
  • Check the block type/block name that you need count, and also enter the table text height.
  • Specify the insert point of the statics table.
  • The Block Statics Table will be inserted it into the drawing, displaying the counts of the selected blocks.
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