Main Window


Figure 1: The Dimension Main Window

Figure 1 shows the main window for Dimension. This window is always visible, even though other windows may be partially overlap it.

The Drawing Window -  In the center of the main window is the drawing window. This displays the current drawing plus any measurements, and annotations. In figure 1, the entire drawing is shown in the drawing window. You can zoom and scroll to see more detail.

Is your Drawing Window Blank?
It will be the first time you start Dimension. It means you don't have a current drawing. You can load a drawing in several ways:

Menus and Toolbars

At the top of the main window are the main menu and a variety of toolbars. Toolbars can be shown and hidden so your main window may not look exactly like figure 1.

The Main Menu -  The main menu contains many of the commands used by Dimension. Frequently used commands are found on the various toolbars. See Main Menu for information on the individual menu commands. The main menu is always visible.

The Main Toolbar -  The main toolbar contains a variety of buttons for commonly used operations. These include file operations, scrolling and zooming, document navigation and controlling the display of other toolbars and windows. Most of these commands are also available on the main menu but the main toolbar is more efficient. To show or hide the main toolbar, Use the Main Menu's View/Main Toolbar command. See Main Toolbar for information on the individual toolbar buttons.

The Project Toolbar -  The project toolbar displays the current project and drawing, and contains a variety of buttons for manipulating projects and drawings. To show or hide the project toolbar, Use the Main Menu's View/Project Toolbar command. See Project Toolbar for information on the individual toolbar buttons and controls.

The Measurement Toolbar -  The measurement toolbar is used to create measurements and change the characteristics of measurements. It also displays the quantity for the measurement you're working on, plus the scale for that measurement. Use the Main Toolbar's Measurement Toolbar button to show or hide the measurement toolbar. See Measurement Toolbar for information on the individual toolbar buttons and controls.

The Annotation Toolbar -  The annotation toolbar is used to create annotations and change the characteristics of annotations. Use the Main Toolbar's Annotation Toolbar button to show or hide the annotation toolbar. See Annotation Toolbar for information on the individual toolbar buttons and controls.

Cursors

Different cursors are displayed in the main window to indicate the current mouse mode (what will happen when you click or release the mouse).

Single Select -  The next mouse click will select the single measurement or annotation closest to the cursor.

Multiple Select -  The next mouse click will select the single measurement or annotation closest to the cursor and add it to any existing selections. If the mouse is pressed down and dragged, all measurements and annotations within the dragged rectangle will be added to any existing selections.

New Measurement -  The next mouse click will create the first point of a new measurement.

Add Point -  The next mouse click will add a point to the selected measurement or annotation.

Add Disconnected Point -  The next mouse click will add a new point to the selected measurement that is disconnected from the previous point.

Two Point Line -  Mouse clicks will add points. Each two points will create a disconnected line. For example, points 1 and 2 would be joined by a line. Point 3 would be disconnected from point 2. Points 3 and 4 would be joined by a line, etc.

Two Point Rectangle -  Mouse clicks will add points. Each two points will create a disconnected rectangle. For example, a rectangle would be created from points 1 and 2 (with the points at opposite corners). Point 3 would be disconnected from point 2. Points 3 and 4 would form a rectangle, etc.

Edit Points -  If the right mouse button is up, the next mouse down-click will select an existing point to be moved or deleted, or will create a new point between two existing points. If the button is down, releasing the mouse will move the existing point that was selected.

Edit Points, Insert -  In Edit Points mode, the cursor was pressed down between two existing points. When the mouse is released a new point will be inserted between the existing points.

Edit Points, Delete -  In Edit Points mode, the cursor was pressed down near an existing point. The cursor has now been dragged over to the preceding or following point. When the mouse is released the original selected point will be deleted.

Move Measurements and/or Annotations -  This mode is used after selecting one or more measurements or annotations. Press the Move Measurements and/or Annotations button in the Annotation or Takeoff toolbar. Then press the mouse down on one of the selected objects, drag them to the desired location and release. When the mouse is released the objects will be moved to the new position.

Copy Measurements and/or Annotations -  This mode is used after selecting one or more measurements or annotations. Press the Move Measurements and/or Annotations button in the Annotation or Takeoff toolbar. Then while holding the Ctrl key down, press the mouse down on one of the selected objects, drag them to the desired location for the COPIED objects and release. When the mouse is released all selected objects will be copied to the new position. Quantity Worksheet assignments will NOT be copied. But if Auto-assign is on in the Item Assignment Toolbar, new assignments will be created.

New Hyperlink Annotation -  The next mouse click will create the first point of a new hyperlink annotation.

New Line Annotation -  The next mouse click will add a point to a new line annotation.

New Oval Annotation -  The next mouse click will add a point to a new oval annotation.

New Rectangle Annotation -  The next mouse click will add a point to a new rectangle annotation.

New Text Annotation -  The next mouse click will set the upper-left corner for a new text annotation.

New Freehand Annotation -  The next mouse click will add a line to a new freehand annotation.

New Hyperlink Annotation -  The next mouse click will add a point to a new hyperlink annotation.

New Cloud Annotation -  The next mouse click will add a point to a new cloud annotation.

New Dimension Annotation -  The next mouse click will add a point to a new dimension annotation.

New Polyline Annotation -  The next mouse click will add a point to a new polyline annotation.

Quick Takeoff -  This indicates you are doing Quick Takeoff from the Measurement List.

Keyboard Shortcuts and Context Menu Options

Keyboard Shortcuts

Backspace or Ctrl/Z -  Pressing the Backspace key has the same effect as pressing the Undo button on the Measurement Toolbar or the Annotation Toolbar . It reverses the last editing step.

Delete -  Pressing the Delete key (while the Shift key is up) deletes the selected measurements and annotations. If nothing is selected, it will delete the current drawing from the project. Before deleting, you will be asked if you're sure you wish to delete the measurements and annotations or the drawing.

Shift/Delete -  Pressing the Delete key while the Shift key is down deletes the selected measurements and annotations. If nothing is selected, it will delete the current drawing from the project.
Warning: With the Shift key down, the delete will take place immediately. You will not be asked if you are sure.

Enter -  Pressing the Enter key has the same effect as pressing the Select Measurement or Annotation button on the Measurement Toolbar or the Annotation Toolbar. You can then click on a measurement or annotation to select it.

Escape -  Pressing the Escape key has the same effect as pressing the Cancel button on the Measurement Toolbar or the Annotation Toolbar . It cancels all changes made to the measurements or annotations you're working on.

Page Down -  Pressing the Page Down key displays the next drawing for the project. It behaves the same way as displaying the Drawing List in the Project Toolbar then selecting the drawing after the current drawing.

Page Up -  Pressing the Page Up key displays the previous drawing for the project. It behaves the same way as displaying the Drawing List in the Project Toolbar then selecting the drawing before the current drawing.

Down Arrow -  Pressing the Down Arrow key causes the drawing to scroll down one screen. In multi-page drawing files, if the bottom of the current page is already displayed, or if the Shift key is down when the Down Arrow key is pressed, the next page of the drawing will be displayed.

Up Arrow -  Pressing the Up Arrow key causes the drawing to scroll up one screen. In multi-page drawing files, if the top of the current page is already displayed, or if the Shift key is down when the Up Arrow key is pressed, the previous page of the drawing will be displayed.

Left Arrow -  Pressing the Left Arrow key displays the previously viewed drawing within the current project. It behaves the same way as pressing the Previous button in the Main Toolbar.

Right Arrow -  After you use the Left Arrow key or the Previous button to go back one or more steps, you can go forward again by pressing this key. Navigating by any other method eliminates the "forward" history and the key will have no effect. It behaves the same way as pressing the Next button in the Main Toolbar.

Ctrl -  When adding or moving points for measurements, line annotations or cloud annotations, you can hold down the "Ctrl" key while clicking or dragging to toggle Polar Mode.

Shift -  When adding or points for measurements, you can hold down the "Shift" key while clicking to make the point "Uncounted". Uncounted points are only supported in the Premier viewer.

A -  Pressing the "A" key has the same effect as pressing the Add Points to Measurement button on the Measurement Toolbar. In this mode, each time you click on the drawing, the point is added to the current measurement.

C -  Pressing the "C" key has the same effect as selecting "Create Arc" from the Context Menu. The last three points will be converted into an arc as described in Taking off Arcs and Circles.

D -  Pressing the "D" key has the same effect as selecting "Edit Description..." from the Context Menu. The Description Edit Window will be displayed, allowing you to set the description for the selected measurements and/or annotations.

E -  Pressing the "E" key has the same effect as pressing the Edit Points button on the Measurement Toolbar or the Annotation Toolbar. In this mode, you can move points, insert points or delete points.

F -  Pressing the "F" key has the same effect as selecting "Drawing/Zoom Full Size" from the Main Menu or pressing the "Zoom Full Size" button on the Main Toolbar. The entire drawing is displayed in the main window.

G -  Pressing the "G" key has the same effect as pressing the Add Disconnected Point button on the Measurement Toolbar. The next time you click on the drawing, a disconnected point is added to the current measurement.

H -  Pressing the "H" key toggles the crosshair display on/off. The crosshair settings are defined in the User Preferences Window under the "Drawing" tab.

I -  Pressing the "I" key has the same effect as selecting "Create an Issue..." from the Context Menu. It creates a new issue for the selected measurements and annotations.

K -  Pressing the "K" key has the same effect as selecting "Crawl the line to the last point" from the Context Menu. A line crawl will be done from the next to last point to the last point as described in Line Crawl.

Shift/K -  Pressing the "K" key while holding down the "Shift" key has the same effect as selecting "Crawl the line to the last point and back" from the Context Menu. A line crawl will be done from the next to last point to the last point, htem back to the first point in the group as described in Line Crawl.

L -  Pressing the "L" key has the same effect as pressing the Select Layer button on the Annotation Toolbar The Layer Selection Window will appear allowing you to pick a layer for the selected annotations.

Ctrl/L -  Pressing the "L" key while holding the Ctrl key down has the same effect as selecting Options/Edit Layers from the Main Menu. The Layer List Window will be displayed.

M -  Pressing the "M" key has the same effect as pressing the Move/Copy Measurements and Annotations button on the Measurement Toolbar or the Annotation Toolbar. In this mode, you can move or copy the selected measurements and annotations by clicking down and dragging.

N -  Pressing the "N" key has the same effect as pressing the New Measurement button on the Measurement Toolbar It starts a new measurement.

O -  Pressing the "O" key rotates the drawing 90 degrees clockwise from its current rotation

Shift/O -  Pressing the "O" key while holding down the Shift key rotates the drawing 90 degrees counter-clockwise from its current rotation

P -  Pressing the "P" key has the same effect as pressing the Polar Mode button on the Measurement Toolbar . When adding points in polar mode, the point is forced to fall on a line that is a multiple of 90 degrees from the previous point. This is most commonly used to create horizontal or vertical lines. It can also works for lines of various angles.

Q -  Pressing the "Q" key has the same effect as selecting "File/Batch Print/Add Current Drawing to Queue" from the Main Menu. The drawing currently displayed in the main window is added to the print queue. An "Exclamation" sound will be played to indicate that the drawing has been queued.

S -  Pressing the "S" key has the same effect as pressing the Select Measurement or Annotation button on the Measurement Toolbar or the Annotation Toolbar. You can then click on a measurement or annotation to select it.

T -  Pressing the "T" key has the same effect as selecting "Select Trace..." from the Context Menu. Either the Trace Selection Window or the Standard Trace Tree Window will be displayed depending on the "Organize Traces in a Tree" setting in the "General" tab of the User Preferences Window. This will allow you to set the trace for the selected measurements.

Shift/T -  Pressing the "T" key while holding down the Shift key has the same effect as selecting "Edit Trace..." from the Context Menu. if a single measurement is selected, the Trace Editing Window will be displayed allowing you to set the trace for the selected measurement. If multiple measurements are selected, the Trace Properties List Window will be displayed allowing you to change individual properties across multiple measurements.

W -  Pressing the "W" key has the same effect as pressing the One-time Assignment button on the Item Assignment Toolbar It assigns the selected measurements and annotations to the item currently selected in the assignment toolbar.

X -  Pressing the "X" key has the same effect as selecting "Edit Extension..." from the Context Menu. The Extension Measurement Values Window will be displayed, allowing you to set the extension values for the selected measurement.

Z -  Pressing the "Z" key has the same effect as selecting "Easy Trace Creation/Edit..." from the Context Menu. it displays the Easy Trace Creation/Edit Window. This window is used to easily edit a subset of the properties of a measurement trace and (optionally) create a matching standard trace.

2 -  Pressing the "2" key has the same effect as pressing the Add 2 Point Lines button on the Measurement Toolbar. As you click on the drawing, each two points will be added to the measurement as a disconnected line.

4 -  Pressing the "4" key has the same effect as pressing the Add 2 Point Rectangles button on the Measurement Toolbar. As you click on the drawing, each two points will be added to the measurement as a disconnected rectangle defined using the points as opposite corners.

F2 -  Pressing the "F2" key has the same effect as selecting "Drawing/Rename Drawing/Page.." from the Main Menu. If the drawing is part of a single-page file, the drawing description will be changed (not the filename). If the drawing is part of a multi-page file, the description for the current page will be changed. For more information see The Drawing/Page Rename Window.

Context Menu

The Context Menu is displayed when you click the right button on the mouse. It is displayed where the mouse cursor is positioned on the screen. If you are in single select mode, pressing the right mouse button selects the measurement or annotation under the mouse cursor before displaying the context menu. If you have already selected the desired measurement or annotation, you must right-click on that measurement. In other modes, it doesn't matter where you right-click.

The actual menu options displayed and which are enabled will depend on what you're doing. Here are the possibilities: