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A Beginners Guide to AutoCAD Software

By Yann, published on 15/08/2019 Blog > Academia > Information Technology > Learning More About AutoCAD software

“Companies in every industry need to assume that a software revolution is coming.” -Marc Andreessen 

It is quite evident that the previously stated quote was written years ago since we are currently living in an age of software systems; therefore, the software revolution is not coming; instead it has arrived.

The majority of the world’s most prominent companies and businesses continuously use software systems and do not even consider past methods. 

Employees are taught to be active and efficient; therefore, employers introduce software that makes life way more accessible in the workplace.

What are some of the most commonly used software systems utlilised in businesses? 

Software such as Dropbox, Microsoft Office, Google Drive, Skype for Business, and Slack are among the most popular used in modern-day offices. 

Nevertheless, in today’s article, Superprof is focusing on the revolutionary computer aided design software known as AutoCAD. We will discuss how to effectively set up an AutoCAD account to use the software, essential AutoCAD tools that need to be mastered in the beginning, and where to find AutoCAD software.

How to Effectively Set Up an AutoCAD Account

learning new software ways Setting an AutoCAD account can be done by following a few basic steps. (Source: Unsplash)

AutoCAD is a computer-aided drafting (CAD) software that was first released in December 1982 and is currently used by various professionals to complete distinct work tasks such as rendering, designing, sketching, or creating a 3D model of architectural or mechanical design. Now its 34th edition, the AutoCAD software is manufactured and developed by Autodesk Inc.

Many drafters in the professional fields of architecture, graphic design, and engineering frequently use software such as AutoCAD to create 2D or 3D blueprints and sketches for buildings, engineering parts, or computer chips. 

Nevertheless, before new users start to work with the AutoCAD program, an account needs to be effectively set up.

How is that done? 

Therefore, to help interested new ones getting familiarised with AutoCAD, Superprof has discovered the necessary steps to create an account with Autodesk Inc., AutoCAD’s distributor and developer, to start creating designs immediately.

As we previously stated, the distinct versions of AutoCAD have been developed by Autodesk for years; furthermore, to access AutoCAD software an Autodesk account needs to be created.

Therefore, without further delay, the following steps need to be applied effectively to create an Autodesk account:

  1. To create an account, first, visit http://www.autodesk.com,
  2. Next, click the sign in option on the right-hand side of the homepage. Before signing in, users have the option of creating an account by selecting one of the three options: subscription customers, Autodesk 360, or Need an education account?
  3. The new user selects one of the options available that best suits their needs. Nevertheless, it is essential to state that if clients wish to start using AutoCAD immediately, the first option known as subscription customers must be selected. After selecting this option, users are given instructions that need to be followed to create an account and subscribe to the AutoCAD software.

Are those the only three steps required? Is it that easy? Not so fast; it is essential to mention that once an Autodesk account is created an AutoCAD subscription needs to be chosen.

Therefore, the following steps are indispensable and need to be followed in sequential order to select a subscription that is best suited for the client’s professional needs:

  1. On the homepage of the UK-based Autodesk site, three distinct AutoCAD products can be chosen: AutoCAD LT (the cheapest and most basic option), AutoCAD (the complete software), and 3DS MAX (a specific and more advanced software). To discover essential information about each product, select the learn more tab.
  2. After getting a general overview of each AutoCAD product and its various advantages, there is the option to subscribe to one of the three AutoCAD options near the end of the webpage.
  3. After successfully selecting one of the AutoCAD options available for subscription, new users are directed to a new webpage where they may choose between a monthly, yearly, or three-year plan to add to their basket for purchase.
  4. After selecting the basket to proceed to checkout, the client’s credit card information is entered, and a summary of all the charges issued to the credit card can be observed.
  5. When Autodesk has successfully approved the order, the AutoCAD software can be downloaded on your PC or Mac and is authorised by your Autodesk account.
  6. The last step is the best part; after the software has been downloaded it is ready to be used, and AutoCAD can be enjoyed without limits!

Successful creation of an Autodesk account to use AutoCAD can be done if all of the previous steps are carefully followed.

Also, it is essential to mention that for those who are not quite ready to commit to a subscription of AutoCAD, a free-trial is issued to first-time users and 30-day money back guarantee available on all yearly subscriptions; which mean that commitment phobics can try a free CAD software without binding themselves for life!

Before concluding this section, it is essential to state that once new ones start using the AutoCAD software for work, they will never return to their previous methods!

How to Use Basic AutoCAD Tools

drawing methods: new and old With the AutoCAD software, older methods of drafting or drawing have become obsolete. (Source: Unsplash)

It is not a secret that the AutoCAD software is challenging to use; nevertheless, it is essential to state that many experts, developers, and long-time users have provided helpful tips and tricks for beginners on websites, on blogs, and many books.

Many experienced professionals suggest that beginners should fight the fear of using the AutoCAD software by spending a whole day messing around with the software getting used to all its functions before starting an intense work assignment. 

Rememeber, practice makes perfect! 

Also, the great minds at Autodesk have developed a guide to aid beginners with AutoCAD’s tools in an orderly fashion. The following guide contains a list of the necessary steps and their chronological order that is included in the Autodesk’s Hitchhiker’s Guide to the AutoCAD Basics.

In today’s article, Superprof will also discuss some essential tools that should be mastered while drawing and modifying in the AutoCAD software.

Basic Drawing Tools

Drawing is an essential aspect of the AutoCAD software for drafters and designers; therefore, mastering specific tools is of the utmost importance. The following are some of the most basic drawing tools along with their definitions:

  • Point: used by drafters to create a symbol on the drawing that is tied to another specific spot or location on the draft. In the AutoCAD software, points are defined by the coordinates (x,y,z).
  • Polygon: multisided shapes such as pentagons or hexagons can be frequently used on the AutoCAD software by all users. To create the desired polygon wanted by the user the software asks the user number of sides and final shape. “Closed polygons” can be edited using the command PEDIT.
  • Spline: a word that is not commonly heard in everyday conversations, a spline is a curve that is defined by specific mathematical equations. The user can decide how many verticles they wish and the AutoCAD system will release a spline curve that incorporates all of these points. The program shortcut to create a spline is “spl.”
  • Hatch: commonly known as space fillers, they can be made of a solid colour or a more specific pattern that was previously designed by the user.

The previously mentioned drawing tools are some of the most basic. Other tools such as polyline, arc, circle, ellipse, and text all need to be correctly understood at the beginning to use the AutoCAD software without any delays effectively.

For visual learners wanting to become more familiar with drawing tools, many Youtube tutorials greatly aid first-time users through the beginning stages.

Basic Modifying Tools

After drawing or drafting a lengthy blueprint or sketch, modification needs to be done to complete the task at hand before the engineering, electrical, or high fashion item can be produced or manufactured.

Therefore, without further ado, the following are the necessary modifying tools to learn from the get-go:

  • Erase: everyone needs to erase mistakes once and awhile. Therefore, the erase tool saves the day for many drafters who make constant mistakes and want the final product to come out ideally. Users select the item they wish to eliminate and press the erase tool.
  • Copy: to move a selected object from one place to another, the copy tool is used. To successfully copy an item, the user selects two points, and the object is copied using two positions at base point. The shortcut for this modifying tool is “cp/co.”
  • Array: there are two types of arrays used: polar and grid. To make a polar grid the AutoCAD system asks the user how many copies they wish to include in their draft. To create a grid array the user is requested by the software how many columns and rows are needed to complete the task at hand.

Like drawing tools, many Youtube tutorials can be watched to help beginners grasp the concepts of using modifying tools.

Where to Find AutoCAD Software

the best software sites On certain UK-based sites, there are sometimes sales on AutoCAD software. (Source: Unsplash)

Used to make striking drawing or drafts in 2D or 3D design, the AutoCAD software is quite pricey but highly recommended, and since it is prevalent among individuals working in technical fields, it can be purchased and downloaded off many websites.

It is important to state that AutoCAD has helped professionals complete complex work tasks in a fraction of the time that was previously required. 

Therefore, to prevent aspiring users from aimlessly searching the internet or the aisles of the nearest electronic conglomerate, the following are two highly recommended sites where the AutoCAD software can be purchased and downloaded on any PC or Mac:

  • Autodesk: when buying a new software it is indispensable to consider the options offered by the developer. Therefore, as the developer and official distributor of AutoCAD, Autodesk is the best company to purchase and download the distinct types of AutoCAD software. On the Autodesk site created for a UK audience, many different versions of the AutoCAD system are available for purchase. For example, the top-selling and most reasonably priced option, AutoCAD LT, starts at £426.00 per year, and the traditional AutoCAD system that is highly recommended is priced at £1,800 per year. For more information about the products, visit the Autodesk site or contact a sales representative in the UK at +44 (0)808 164 9409.
  • TCS CAD & BIM Solutions Limited: also known as TSC or CAD services, this well-renowned company established in 1994 and based out of Stockton on Tees is a leading supplier of some of the most popular software systems currently available on the market from the developers at Autodesk, Vectorworks, and Sketchup software across the UK and Ireland. Some of the most popular products available at TCS CAD are the distinct AutoCAD software. On the website, many of the AutoCAD systems are currently on sale during May and, for example, the AutoCAD LT software is presently priced at £345.00 per year on Windows which is almost £100 cheaper than on the Autodesk site! To use and have access to the software systems featured on the site, customers can create their account and call customer service at 0800 458 0947 throughout the UK at a time most convenient for them.

It is essential to state that while the previously mentioned online resources are the most highly recommended at Superprof, after consulting with an experienced user, individuals looking to buy the AutoCAD software may find other websites that are worthy of consideration.

At Superprof we make it our goal to help people grasp essential information from a variety of topics; therefore, we hope that our article about AutoCAD has personally helped you better understand this software system, how to create an Autodesk account, and where to purchase and download AutoCAD.

Experienced users of AutoCAD design software know the benefits and if you are on edge, don’t hesitate, do it; you won’t regret it after realising how efficiently this CAD software works!

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