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CCAD's AutoCAD Tutorial

Attaching an Image File to an AutoCAD Drawing

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Video Tutorial Transcript

Welcome. I'm Cindy Dunn, President of CCAD inc. In this tutorial I'll show you how to import an image file of a floor plan and scale it to size.

First I searched online for image files of a suitable floor plan. Once I found one, I saved it to my computer in a specific folder.

Next I launch AutoCAD and start a new drawing. My new drawing is based on a template with architectural layers, dimension styles and text styles.

The ATTACH command lets me attach or link image files, pdfs and other AutoCAD drawings to the current drawing. These are called references. Before attaching the image file, I save the current or host drawing. I'll explain why in a minute.

After I select the image file I can choose when to specify the insertion point, scale factor and rotation angle. I do need to scale the image, but I won't know how much until after it is actually placed in the drawing. I clear all the specify on-screen boxes to attach the image at 0,0 a scale factor of 1 and rotation angle of 0.

An attached file doesn't become part of the current drawing. It is linked to the current drawing, which I call the host drawing. The filename, position, scale and rotation of the attached file is saved in the host drawing. Nothing else. Each time the host drawing is opened, AutoCAD looks for the attached file. It is very important that the host drawing can find the attached file as specified when first attached. The best way to insure that the attached file is found is to designate the path from the host drawing to the attached file as relative. Using a relative path means that AutoCAD saves the location relationship between the host and attached file, not the full path. Moving the files from one computer to another or to different folder is challenging if the path if specified as full.

Now that I've selected all my options I can click OK.

The next step is to scale the floor plan to size. I selected this floor plan in part because most of the room sizes are shown. This is important since I want to scale the plan to the exact size to place fixtures and furniture and measure for flooring and finishes.

To scale the plan to size I choose the image and the SCALE command. I zoom in very close and select a base point at the end of the longest dimension provided. Choosing the longest known dimension improves the odds that the scaled plan will be closer to the proper size. Since I don't actually know the scale factor I will use the reference option. The reference option lets me select a known length, like the living room wall and then input the desired length.

The plan is now very close to actual size. In next month's tutorial I will demonstrate how to trace the attached image using AutoCAD objects.

Thank you for watching this video on attaching an image file to an AutoCAD drawing. Please visit these links for more AutoCAD Tutorials and our schedule of in-person and virtual AutoCAD training.