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Topics covered in this Lesson: Printing via layouts (aka Paper Space)

In Level 1 you printed out your project using 'model space'. This lesson will show you the preferred way of plotting your drawings. In AutoCAD there are two different workspaces: model space and Layout / Paper Space. For now think of model space where you make your model, or draw. Think of the Layout Tabs as where you print your drawing from, or layout the final drawing complete with dimensions, notes, title block, etc. Look at the images below to see a visual explanation of the concept. Note about the terminology in this Lesson: After AutoCAD R14, the term "Paper Space" was replaced by "Layout". These terms are interchangeable. The release of AutoCAD 2000 brought other enhancements to this functionality. You can now have multiple layouts, you can name them, you can re-sequence them and more. I'm going to use the term paper space as I feel it explains the process better. And I'm old. What is a Layout? A layout is a page that allows you to set up a plot or printout of your drawing. Below is a sample of what a layout looks like (a really simple one).

The floor plan and dimensions (above) were created in MODEL SPACE at a 1:1 scale. The walls were drawn to be 30' or more long. The title block and viewport were created in a LAYOUT TAB / PAPER SPACE at a 1:1 scale. The title block is 8-1/2 x 11 inches. The viewport is a window into "model space". In the image below, the the viewport is the black rectangle and the contents of the viewport are displayed inside it. The contents of the viewport are scaled to either fit the viewport or (preferably) to conform to a specific drafting scale (ie: 1"=1') Below is a visual representation of a layout for a print to be plotted from a Layout tab.

This conceptual image shows the relationship between model space and a Layout. Think of paper space as being 'above' model space. To see through 'into' model space, you have to create a viewport (Make Viewport MV command). Think of a viewport as a window.

As soon as you create the viewport, the window is closed and the extents of your drawing are displayed. You can see through it, but you can not 'touch' anything in model space. To have access to your objects in model space from paper space, you have to enter the viewport by typing MS <ENTER>. This 'opens the window' for access. Type in PS <ENTER> to 'close the window'. You may be wondering why you shouldn't just plot from model space. You can and many people do, but the advantage of plotting from paper space is that you can have many layouts from one drawing. You can even add detail views without having to copy and scale your geometry. This feature was radically changed in AutoCAD 2000 and is much more versatile. You now have multiple tabs to organize your plots (or 'sheets'). As a rule, unless you're working for a behindthe-times company with a confused CAD Manager, use Layouts. To toggle between the two spaces, you can pick on one of the layout tabs and back to the Model tab. You can also enter the command TILEMODE and set it to 0 for paper space and 1 for model space. When you do this, you will notice that the UCS icon in the bottom left corner changed to a triangular icon. This new icon confirms that you are paper space.

Model Space (UCS) >>

Layout Tab (Paper Space) >>

When you are in paper space you can draw or insert a title block. In paper space you are still drawing at a 1:1 scale.
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