Before you can edit something you have to select it. There are numerous ways to do this in DesignCAD.
1. Just move the cursor over an object and left click to select it. When selected the wireframe outline of the object will turn pink/purple (the default color - you can change this in the "Options/Options/Color" dialog).
2. Gravity snap to a point on an object. Gravity snap is one of DesignCAD's most powerful features. You can gravity snap by:
a. Moving the cursor near an object and pressing the comma (,) key - the cursor moves to the nearest point.
b. Moving the cursor near an object and pressing the period (.) key - the cursor moves to the nearest point and sets a point
c. Moving the cursor near an object and click the right mouse button - the cursor moves to the nearest point and sets a point
IF right click gravity snap is enabled.
Note: The default program behavior is for the right mouse button to open a pop-up menu of actions that are appropriate for the situation. The first option on this menu is "Use Right-Click For Gravity." Select this option to make right click gravity snap the cursor to the nearest point. You can also open "Options/Options/General" and disable "Enable right click popup menu."
When right click is enabled for gravity snap, holding down the CTRL key while right clicking will bring up the pop up menu.
If there are multiple objects where you click or gravity snap the object that you are interested in may not be selected. In this case just press the Enter key to select another object. Repeat until the correct object is selected.
3. You can move the cursor to one side of an object(s), press the left mouse button and drag a selection box around the objects, then release the left mouse button to select everything. All items that were completely enclosed
in the selection rectangle will be selected.
However, if you press the CTRL key before releasing the left mouse button all objects within the selection box or partially enclosed (touching the selection box) will be selected.
4. The "Edit/Select All" (CTRL A) function will select everything that is visible and on unlocked layers (see the Layers discussion thread).
5. The "Edit/Select Previous" (Shift P) function will reselect all of the previous selection. For example, suppose you want to add something to an existing group. Select the group and the new object, and explode the group with the "Tools/Group/Group Explode" function. After this nothing will be selected. Now use "Select Previous" to reselect all of the parts of the exploded group plus the new object. Now use "Tools/Groups/Group Define" to create a new group with all the parts of the old group plus the new part.
6. To deselect everything that is currently selected press the Escape key.
You can also just move the cursor to an empty part of the screen and left click. However, DesignCAD will search for anything near the cursor point - for this it must examine every point on every object in the drawing. In very large drawings this can take a long time - in the meantime the program is unresponsive (hey, you told it to look, and it's looking!). So it's best to use the Escape key.
OK, all of that was pretty straight forward. Now take a deep breath, let it out, and relax. How you select things can be a bit more complicated.2D Selection Mode
. In 2D drawings this is the only mode. The cursor moves on the plane of the drawing, so left click selects the nearest object and gravity snapping move to the nearest visible point.
But you can use "2D Selection Mode" in 3D drawings - in fact, this is the default selection mode. The program uses the screen image like a sheet of paper, and the cursor position is on the screen surface. When you left click or gravity snap the nearest visible object or point on the screen is selected. However, in 3D all objects are not at the same depth into the view. So you may select or snap to objects/points that appear close to the cursor on the screen
but are actually far from the screen in three dimensions (depth into the view). In other words, when clicking to select objects the depth into the view between the cursor and objects is ignored. This seems to be the most intuitive way to work and most users prefer to use it.3D Selection Mode
. In this mode the cursor position is not on the screen, but is at some depth into the drawing. When you left click or gravity snap the program looks for the closest object at the cursor's depth
. This may not be the object that appears to be the closest to the cursor on the screen.
"3D Selection Mode" allows you to restrict the select/snap operations to objects at or near to a specific depth in a drawing. In very crowded drawings with bazillions of objects and points everywhere, this may be the easiest way to steer through the drawing to select what you want. However, it is not very intuitive and takes a lot of getting used to.
****Point Select Mode
This is an extremely powerful way to edit existing objects. Normally when you select an object the wireframe outline is highlighted. If you enable Point Select Mode all of the points in the selected object will be marked with small squares. Press the "CTRL 1" key combination to toggle Point Select on/off.Point editing
. Once Point Select Mode is on you can move and edit individual points in an object. For example, say you want to move a point in an existing object. Select the object and move the cursor over the point - the cursor changes to a "target" icon. Now left click and drag and the point will move with the cursor. You can use some of the cursor movement functions (another topic) to move the point precisely.
What if you want to move a bunch of points the same distance and direction - say to stretch an object? Press the left mouse button and drag a selection box around the desired set of points, and release the mouse button. The selected point boxes will become little black squares. Now move the cursor over any one of the selected points and click the left mouse button - this selects all of the highlighted points. When you move the selected point all the other highlighted points will follow, keeping their same orientation to the selected point. For example, you can select a cylinder, drag to select all of the points on one end, and then select a highlighted point and move it some distance to stretch the cylinder.
After you select a bunch of points you can add more points to the selection by pressing the Shift key and either clicking on individual points or dragging another selection box around several other points.Adding and Deleting Points
. When you move the cursor over a selected object in point select mode the cursor may change to show a "+" inside the arrow. This means you can left click to create a new point on the object. Suppose you have a line, curve or plane, and you want to add a point to it. Just move the cursor near the desired position (between other existing points) and when the "+" appears left click. This adds a new point to the object, and the point follows the cursor. Left click again (or use any of the cursor positioning tools) to place the point.
To delete an existing point hold down the Ctrl and Shift keys and move the cursor over the unwanted point. When the "-" appears in the cursor left click and the point will be removed.Cutting Objects
. If you press the Ctrl key the cursor turns into a scissors icon when you approach a part of a line or curve not near an existing point. If you left click the line or curve will be cut into two parts. Note: If this isn't what you intended immediately use "Edit/Undo" (Ctrl Z) to restore the drawing as it was before the cut.Moving The End Of A Line
. If you hold down just the Shift key while you move the cursor near the end of a selected line three small dots appear at the end of the cursor. Now if you press the left mouse button you can drag the end point of the line farther away from or closer to the nearest point - the point slides along the existing line. When you release the left mouse button the point stops where you dragged it.
Using Point Select mode in 2D drawings is "safe" in that it does not corrupt the drawing. However, in 3D drawings Point Select mode will allow you to corrupt a drawing so that it may no longer be useable.
DesignCAD creates planes and grids with all points in a geometrical plane. Each plane has one and only one "surface normal" (a perpendicular to the facet/plane) for the entire plane/facet surface. Point Select mode allows you to select a point of a facet/plane and move it out of the plane of the other points. This creates a plane/facet with more than one surface normal.
THIS IS GUARANTEED TO CAUSE PROBLEMS
These warped planes/facets will cause the solid Boolean functions (Solid Add, Solid Subtract, etc.) to do strange things and create improper solids. Warped planes/facets display with multiple tones creating a kaleidoscope effect, and they cast shadows in strange directions, causing shadow spots to appear where they should not be.
It is up to the user to ensure that planes/facets are not warped when using Point Select mode.
Suppose you want to select some or all objects with a particular characteristic such as color, entity type, layer, line type, etc. If you open "Edit/Selection Filter" (Shift F) the dialog allows you to enable the selection type by checking boxes in the lower left part of the dialog. For example, you might enable "Select by Color" and "Select by Entity Type."
Then click on the "Color" tab at the top of the dialog box. The window on the left will show all colors of all objects in the drawing. Just left click on a color tile and then click the "Add --->" button to move it to the right side window. Then click the "Entity Type" tab. The left window shows all entity types in the drawing. Select the type you want and click "Add --->" to move the type to the right window.
Now, with the Selection Filter dialog still open
, move the cursor to the drawing window and use any of the selection methods described above to select the desired object(s). You can use "Select All" to chose every object with the desired features, or drag a selection box around part of the drawing to select all objects with those features in an area of the drawing.When you close the Selection Filter dialog the filters are disabled and you go back to normal selection modes
. This can be confusing because some programs use selection filters that remain active after the dialog is closed, and you must reopen the dialog to cancel the filters.