MInsert and other things about blocks



MInsert command Inserts multiple instances of a block in a rectangular array. It is a very powerful command allowing quick modification of several objects (blocks) combined in array.

Watch Video (click on image):



MInsert is kind of dynamic blocks' predecessor, available in AutoCAD versions prior to AutoCAD2006. Any time the number of rows and columns, distances and rotation angle can be (dynamically) changed using Properties palette.



This command may be used for adding holes and bolts; regularly spaced grid lines and columns on plan, rails pickets, R.C.bars etc. The only disadvantage of this command: Blocks inserted using MINSERT cannot be exploded without using special programming (you can find AutoLISP solutions on the Internet).


Block clone

Often new block is created from existing block. Normal procedure: explode inserted block, perform block (or –block) command, assign name of block, select objects and specify ins. Point. Not always safe way: you may miss to select some objects; important for blocks with attributes sequence of selected attributes can be disturbed and insertion point at wrong location.

Quick workaround:



Command BEDIT



Select block from the list and press OK.


In opened Block Editor click on Save Block As button, specify new name, edit and Close Block Editor





You may read in command prompt after trying to explode selected block


Command: x EXPLODE 1 found

1 could not be exploded


Yes, you can [explode any block]:



Command BLOCK


Select block from combo box and check Allow exploding


Press OK



Change Base Point on the fly


Not well known option of Insert command: Basepoint helps to quickly select appropriate base point.



 How it works:



Bad practices with blocks



Wrong units setting (command Units)



Feet (Units to scale inserted contents) - No! InchesYes!



 Different X-Y scales (Non-uniform scale) of block when you insert block or edit its properties  can destroy dynamic block and disable REFEDIT of selected block


Good Block commands to remember



BATTMAN – global edit blocks with attributes


BCOUNT - count blocks (relevant link Count items)


BURST – explode block with attributes (entered values of attributes will be saved)


NCOPY – copy Block’s or XRef’s entity without exploding


 XLIST – get list of block’s properties


Alex Borodulin 03/16/10