Keeping your drawings clean and tidy doesn’t just make them more visually appealing, it can also keep the file size smaller and help you avoid mistakes.
AutoCAD has cleanup tools such as PURGE and OVERKILL that remove unused or duplicate items from a drawing and help keep your drawing file clean from clutter.
What is Purge?
Purge removes unused items or named objects, such as block definitions and layers, from the drawing.
Purge is the term used to describe removing a definition of a non-graphical object rather than erasing a graphical object. For example, you might erase all the graphical objects in your drawing that use a dashed linetype, but that still leaves the linetype definition in the drawing. Similarly, erasing all block references of a fixture still leaves the block definition for that fixture block in the drawing.
Purging Unused Items
Let’s try purging unused items. You may already have a drawing with purgeable items, but if not, you can easily create some unused layers.
- Click Home tab > Layers panel > Layer Properties.
- In the Layer Properties manager, click New Layer several times to create a few new layers. Since these layers don’t have any objects on them, they are unused and can be purged.
Note: You can also create unused block definitions by inserting blocks into the drawing and then deleting them.
Purge Nested Items
Removes unused named objects from the drawing even if they are contained within or referenced by other unused named objects.
Purge Unnamed Objects
- Zero-length geometry. Deletes geometry of zero length, including lines, arcs, circles, and polylines.
- Empty text objects. Deletes text objects that are blank or contain only spaces without any text.
- Orphaned data. Performs a drawing scan and removes obsolete DGN linestyle data when you open the Purge dialog box.
Note: The PURGE command won’t remove unnamed objects from blocks or locked layers.
What is Overkill?
When drafting in AutoCAD, it’s quite easy to inadvertently create overlapping, duplicate objects in your drawing. These duplicate objects aren’t just visually unappealing. They can increase file size, cause trouble when trying to select or modify objects, or might cause errors when exporting a drawing. Overlapping lines can even cause manufacturing machines to create improper cuts.
OVERKILL removes duplicate or overlapping lines, arcs, and polylines, and also combines those that are partially overlapping or contiguous.
The following changes can be made to geometric objects in a drawing:
- Duplicate copies of objects are deleted
- Arcs drawn over portions of circles are deleted
- Lines at the same angle that partially overlap are combined into a single line
- Duplicate line or arc segments are deleted
- Overlapping and zero-length polyline segments are deleted