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Autodesk Inventor 2016 Training Lesson - The In-Canvas Display

Autodesk Developer Network
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Now you’re going to learn about the In-Canvas Display. You’ll learn more about the Mini-Toolbar, and you’ll learn a few methods of organizing and using Dynamic Input.

We’ll start by deleting Extrusion-1 without deleting Sketch-1. Right click on Extrusion-1 and then select Delete. This opens the Delete Features dialog box, which gives you the option of deleting sketches consumed by the feature or leaving them intact. We want to keep the sketch, so uncheck the box.

I also want to point out that controlling the location of dialog boxes helps reduce eye strain. If you know where a dialog box is going to appear you don’t have to search for it with your eyes, and you’ll really appreciate this after drafting for several hours. So its good practice to pick a location for dialog boxes. I always put dialog boxes in the upper left corner of the Inventor window because they use less of the graphics area when they’re here. So when you open a dialog box for the first time, move it to the upper left corner. In most cases, this is where it will appear the next time you use it.

Click Ok, and then open the Extrude command. Notice that the dialog box opened in the same location as the last time we used it. Some of the feature commands, like the Extrude command, allow you to use the In-Canvas Display to dynamically control the geometry. When you use this method the dialog box is usually collapsed. So go ahead and collapse it. Even if you decide to always use the In-Canvas Display, having the dialog box in the upper left corner keeps it out of the way. So hopefully by the time you finish the courses you’ll have moved all your dialog boxes to the corner.

Now let’s talk about the In-Canvas Display. The In-Canvas Display is the Mini-Toolbar and the arrow and sphere. The arrow and sphere are called Manipulators, and they’re used to dynamically adjust geometry. You can drag the arrow to adjust the length of the extrusion, and notice that the Mini-Toolbar moves along with the geometry.

The purpose of this type of interface is to keep your focus on the feature while you adjust it, and your eyes don’t have to travel very far when you enter values in the toolbar.

While you drag the arrow the values in the toolbar snap to increments of 1/16 of an inch. I’ll show you how to set this setting in the next lesson. You can also drag the sphere to change the draft angle. This adjustment snaps every 5 degrees by default. Anytime you’re dragging a manipulator you can stop dragging it and type a value to precisely set it. So the fastest way to use these features is to start the drag, and then type the value. You can also type the tab key to toggle between the linear dimension and the angular dimension.

Now would be a good time to practice using the manipulators and toggling between the draft angle and the length of the extrusion, and then in the next lesson I’ll show you how to customize the toolbar.