Select Page

There are a number of features in AutoCAD that act differently depending on whether you are in Paper Space or Model Space. The most visible of these features are line weights line types and dimensions In this section you’ll take a closer look at these features and you’ll see how to use them in conjunction with Paper Space.

Controlling and Viewing Line Weights in Paper Space

Line weights can greatIy improve the readability of technical drawings. You can make .important ‘features stand out with bold line weights while keeping the “noise” of smaller details from overpowering a drawing. In architectural floor plans, walls are traditionally drawn with heavier lines, so the outline of a plan can be easily read. Other features exist in a drawing for reference only so they are drawn in a lighter weight than normal.

In Chapter 7 you saw how to controillne weights in AutoCAD using plot style tables. You can apply either a named plot style table or a color plot style table to a drawing, If you already have a library of AutoCAD drawings, you might want to use color plot style tables for backward compatibility. AutoCAD 2000 also allows you to assign line weights directly to layers or objects and view the results of your line weight settings in Paper Space. !-ieris an exercise that demonstrates this feature.

1. Click the Layout 1 tab ‘then open the Layer Properties Manager dialog box.
2. Right-click the Layer list, then choose Select All.
3.Click the Lineweight column. The Lineweight dialog box appears.

4.’ Select 0.005″ (0.13mm) from the list then click OK. You’ve just assigned the 0.005″ (O.13mm)line weight to all layers.
5. Right-click again and select Clear All.
6. Ctrl+click the layers COMMON IWALL and Floorll WALL to select them.
7. Click the Lineweight column for either of the two selected layers. The Line weight dialog box opens again.
8. Select 0.016″(O.4mm)from the dialog box, then click OK. You’ve just assigned the 0.016″ (0.4mm) line weight to the two selected layers.
9. Click OK in the Layer Properties Manager dialog box.

While you set the line weights for the layers in the drawing, you need to make a few more changes to the file settings before they are visible in Paper Space.

1. Choose Format> Lineweights. The Lineweight Settings dialog box appears.

2. Click the Display Lineweight u; Model Space check box, then click OK.
3. Make sure you are in Paper Space, then zoom into the drawing so you have a view similar to the one shown in Figure 12.41.
4. Choose View >Regen All. You’ll see the lines representing the walls appear with thickness

FIGURE 12.41:

FIGURE 12.41:

With the ability to display line weights in Paper Space you have better control over your output. Instead of using a trial-and-error method to print your drawing, then checking your printout to see if the line weights are correct, AutoCAD 2000 lets you see the line weights right on your screen.

This exerciseshowed you how to set line weights so that they appear in Paper Space as they will when you plot your drawing. H you normally plot your drawings iri black, you can go one step further and set all of your layer colors to black to really see how your plots will look. But you’ll need to save your layer settings so you can restore the layers back to their original coloss. The Layer Manager tool in the Express pull-down menu can save layer settings for you, including color settings.See Chapter 19 for more on the Express tools. Another way to view your drawing in black and white without affecting your layer settings is to use the color plot style table described in Chapter 7.


When line weight display is turned on you’ll see line weights in Model Space a well as in Paper Space. Line weights can be distracting while you work on your drawing in Model Space but you can quickly turn them off by typing Lwdisplay.J O.J at the command prompt. Typing Lwdisplay.J 1.J turns the line w eight display back on.

The Lineweight Settings Dialog Box

There were a number of other settings in the lineweight Settings dialog box that you . didn’t use in the exercise. Here is a description of those settings for your reference

Units for Listing You can choose between millimeters and inches for the unit of measure for line weights. The default is millimeters.

Adjust Display Scale This setting lets you control just how thick line weights appear in the drawing. Move the slider to the right for thicker lines and to the left for thinner lines. This setting only affects the display en your monitor. As you move the slider, you can see a sample of the results in the Lineweights list box to the left of the dialog box.

Default Drop-Down list This drop-down list lets you select the default line weight that you see in the Layer Properties Manager dialog box. It is set to 0.01 inch (0.2Smm) by default. You may want to lower the default line weight to .005 inch (.13mm) just as a matter of course since most printers these days can print lines to that size and even smaller.

Line-Type Scales and Paper Space

As you have seen from previous exercises, drawing scales have to be carefully controlled when creating viewports. Fortunately this is easily done through the Properties dialog box. While Paper Space offers the flexibility of combining different scale images in one display it also adds to the complexity of your t ask in controlling that display. Your drawing’s line-type scale in particular needs careful attention.

In Chapter 4 you saw that you had to set the line-typescale to the scale factor of the drawing in order to make the line type visible. If you intend to plot that same drawing from Paper Space you will have to set the line-type scale back to 1 to get the line types to appear correctly. This is because AutoCAD.faithfully scales line types to the current unit system Remember that Paper Space units differ from Model Space units. So when you scale a Model Space image down to fit within the smaller Paper Space area, the line types remain scaled to the increased line-type scale settings. In the case of that Chapter-s example, line types are scaled up by a factor of 48. This causes noncontinuous lines to appear as continuous in Paper Space because you only see a small portion of a greatly enlarged noncontinuous line type.

The Psltscale system variable allows you to determine how line-type scales are applied to Paper Space views. You can set Psltscale so that the line types will appear the same regardless of whether you view them directly in tiled Mod el Space orthrough a viewport in Paper Space. By default, this system variable is set to 1. This causes AutoCAD to scale all the line types uniformly across all the viewports in Paper Space. You can Set Psltscale to 0 to force the viewports to display line types exactly as they appear in Model Space.

This setting can also be controlled in the Linetype Manager dialog box, accessed by choosing Format >Linetype. When you click the Show Details b utton you seea setting called Use Paper Space Units for Scaling in the lower-rig ht comer. When this is checked Psltscale is set to 1. When it is unchecked Psltscale is set to O.

Dimensioning in Paper Space

At times, you may find it more convenient to add dimensions to your drawing in Paper Space rather than directly on your objects in Model Space. There are several dimension settings you will want to know about that will enable you to do this.

To have your dimensions produce the appropriate values in Paper Space you need to have AutoCAD adjust the dimension text to the scale of the viewport from which you are dimensioning. You can have AutoCAD scale dimension values so they correspond to a viewport zoom-scale factor. The following steps’ Show you how this setting is made.

1. Open the Dimension Style Manager dialog box.
2. Select the dimension style you want to edit and click Modify.
3. Click the Primary Units tab.
4. In the Measurement Scale button group, enter the scale factor of the viewpert you intend to dimension in the Scale Factor input box. For example the viewport is scaled to a 1/2″=1′-0″ scale, enter 24.
5. Click the Apply to Layout Dimensions Only check box 50 that a chck appears there.
6. Click OK, and then click Close in the Dimension Style Manager dialog l’0x. You are ready to dimension in Paper Space .

Remember that you can snap to objects in a floating Viewport so you can .add dimensions as younormally would in Model Space.


While AutoCAD offers the capability of adding dimensions in Paper Space, you m~ want to refrain from doing so until you have truly mastered AutoCAD. Paper Space dimensions aren’t visible in Model Space, it is easy to  forget to  dimensions when your drawing changes. Dimensioning in Paper Space ca.n also create confusion for others editing your drawing at a later date

Other Uses for Paper Space

The exercises presented in this section should give you a sense of how you work in Paper Space. We’ve given examples that reflect the more common uses of Paper Space. Remember that Paper Space is like a page-layout portion o f AutoCADseparate yet connected to Model Space through viewports.

You needn’t limit your applications to floor plans. Interior and exterior elevation 3D models and detail sheets can all take advantage of Paper Space. When used in conjunction with AutoCAD raster import capabilities, Paper Space can be a powerful tool for creating large-format presentations.

Share This