This section covers the basics of mechanical drawing, showing how to:

  • Draw basic 2D shapes, the foundation for 3D shapes.
  • Set sizes numerically
  • Navigate your drawing
  • Keep shapes closed
  • Draw text
  • Select lines
  • Leverage snap points
  • Divide lines where they cross
  • Group and ungroup lines
  • Resize and rotate lines
  • Copy lines
  • Remove lines
  • Round corners
  • Measure distances

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezmsCN7GrKw

Learning to Draw 

Mechanical drawing is not the same as artistic drawing – you can’t simply draw shapes by moving the mouse pointer as you would move a pencil. 
For example, to draw a rounded rectangle you can’t simply move the mouse in a rounded rectangle motion. 

To draw a rounded rectangle:

  1. Draw a rectangle with the mouse.
  2. Enter the desired size numerically.
  3. Use the corner-rounding command.
 

Making precise drawings is easy when you learn how to:

  • Use the mouse to create the approximate size and position of lines
  • Enter numeric values to specify sizes
  • Use assorted commands to combine and manipulate lines
  • Use the Intersect feature
  • Snap lines
  • Nudge lines

Common to other drawing programs you also need to know how to:

  • Select lines
  • Draw lines, circles, arcs, and rectangles
  • Group and ungroup lines
  • Resize and move lines
  • Rotate lines
  • Delete lines
  • Scroll the workspace
  • Zoom in and out

Drawing Lines

To design parts with eMachineShop you draw straight lines, 
rectangles, circles, arcs, splines, and text. 
https://youtu.be/Ism8vl_MZDo

straight.gif (136 bytes) To draw a straight line: 

  1. Click the above icon
  2. Click in the workspace at the starting point, click again at the end point.
  3. To restrict the angle of the line to be exactly horizontal or vertical or a multiple of the Rotation Snap Angle , hold down the CTRL key while drawing.

 To draw a rectangle: 

  1. Click the above icon.
  2. Click in the workspace at one corner.
  3. Click again at the opposite corner. 

 To draw a circle:

  1. Click the above icon.
  2. Click in the workspace at the center.
  3. Click again at the desired radius. 

 To draw an arc:

  1. Enable the arc button with Edit | Preferences | Customize | Arc Button.
  2. Click the Arc button (icon above.)
  3. Click in the workspace at the center.
  4. Click again at the counter-clockwise end of the arc.

 To draw a spline:

  1. Click the above icon
  2. Click in the workspace to specify starting point. 
  3. Move to the desired end point and click.
  4. Drag the two external handles to adjust the shape.

straight.gif (136 bytes) To draw a straight line: 

  1. Click the above icon
  2. Click in the workspace at the starting point, click again at the end point.
  3. To restrict the angle of the line to be exactly horizontal or vertical or a multiple of the Rotation Snap Angle , hold down the CTRL key while drawing.
 

To switch to the last used drawing tool, from the left toolbar press the SPACEBAR.

Instead of drawing an arc, it is often easier to draw a circle crossing other lines and then apply the Intersect command. The Arc button is not enabled by default as it is generally more convenient to use Line | Corner | Round or to create a circle and use the Intersect feature.

To edit individual point locations of a line, arc or spline, click  node.gif (141 bytes) and then drag the desired points.

 

Using Numeric Values 

Drawing mechanical parts is different from artistic sketching – drawings must be precise. To achieve this precision use the mouse to get the approximate size or shape and then enter values numerically on the numeric bar. For example, to draw a .500″ circle draw a small circle with the mouse and then enter .500 in the diameter edit box.

 To change the position or size of lines numerically:
  1. Draw or Select the line.
  2. To learn what each numeric value signifies on the numeric bar, point the mouse to the icon in the CAD application.
  3. On the numeric bar enter the desired numeric values. You can specify ” for inch (e.g. 1.23″) or mm (e.g. 1.23mm) for millimeter after a numeric value. You can also use / * + – operators to make appropriate arithmetic operations. For example you can enter 3/16 instead of .1875 or 1.25+.33 instead of 1.58.
  4. Press Enter to register each numeric value. The line will then change size or position.
 
Lines: panel-line.gif (1469 bytes)
Circles: panel-arc.gif (1317 bytes)
Arcs: panel-arc.gif (1208 bytes)
Splines: panel-spline.gif (1469 bytes)
Text: panel-text.gif (1454 bytes)
Groups:

panel-rect.gif (876 bytes)

Scrolling

Scrolling (panning) is moving the drawing up, down, left, or right in the screen workspace.

To scroll your drawing: 

  1. Double click on an empty area of the workspace. The cursor changes to a hand icon.
  2. In the workspace click and hold down the left mouse button.
  3. Drag the drawing to the desired position using your mouse.

Alternatively, you can Click Page Up or Page Down to scroll one screen (100% of workspace). 

You can also use the arrow keys with no lines selected to scroll.

Note: You can enable Edit | Preferences | Customize | Pan Button to add to the left toolbar a button for pan mode.

 

Zooming

Zooming a drawing allows you to increase or decrease the magnification. For example, you may need to zoom into a small section to check for precise details. Zooming does not change the dimensions of your part. Zooming will occur automatically if Edit | Preferences | Smart Zoom is enabled. If not you will want to periodically choose View | Zoom | To Fit Screen to be sure all parts of your drawing are in view.

zoom-to-fit-screen.gif (182 bytes) To fit a drawing to the screen:

1. Choose View | Zoom | To Fit Screen. 

zoom-actual-size.gif (82 bytes) To show a drawing approximately at actual size:

1. Choose View | Zoom | Actual Size.

zoom-to-selection.gif (188 bytes) To fit selected lines to the screen:

1. Choose View | Zoom | To Selection.  

 

 

zoom-in.gif (184 bytes) To enlarge a drawing:

  1. Choose View | Zoom | In.
  2. Left click in the workspace.

or

  1. Click on Zoom button on top toolbar.
  2. Left click in the workspace.

or 

1. Move the Mouse wheel up in the anti-clockwise direction.

 

zoom-out.gif (183 bytes) To shrink a drawing:

1. Choose View | Zoom | Out.

or

  1. Click on Zoom button on top toolbar.
  2. Click right mouse button in the workspace.

or

 

  1. Move the Mouse wheel down in the clockwise direction.
 

zoom-to-rectangle.gif (183 bytes) To enlarge a certain area of the drawing:

  1. Choose View | Zoom | To Region or click the Zoom button.

Alt Step 1: Click the Zoom Button.

2. Use the mouse to drag a rectangle around the area to be enlarged.

Closed Shapes 

The shapes you draw in eMachineShop must be closed. In the examples below only the first shape is valid. All the others are not valid and will lead to errors. Those marked “T” have T intersections. 

invalid_shapes

 Your shape might seem closed but is really open for a few reasons:

    1. The opening might be small. Try zooming in for a close view at several points along your shape.
    2. The opening might be obscured by an overlapping shape. Set the numeric bar nudge value to 0.1″ or so; click on one of your lines; use the keyboard arrow keys to nudge the line a small distance to see if it was overlapping another line; nudge back if not; and repeat for other lines until you find the opening.
    3. Some of the lines in your shape might be comment lines. Click on each one and check the status bar for the line type.
    4. Lines might be meeting in a T intersection which is not allowed. Create separate shapes instead.

 

Fixing Crossing Lines

Consider the eighth example to the right of a square with a line across it’s middle, or any closed shape with any type of line crossing it. The square is a closed shape but the center line, if drawing as a separate line, is an open shape which is not permitted. 

 To close the line: 
  1. Set the Nudge value to about 1″.
  2. Select the entire drawing. 
  3. Click the Repeat button to create a copy.
  4. Nudge the copy away from the original.
  5. Click the Intersect button.
  6. In the copy delete most of the line segments but leave enough lines to create a new closed shape that includes the line that was open.
  7. Select the lines of the new closed shape and click the Group button.
  8. Delete the open line on the original drawing.
  9. Select the new closed shape and nudge back into position on the original design.
  10. Set the Z value of the new closed shape as desired.
  11. Click the pyramid button to check the 3D view.
 

Text

text_2 You can add text to your drawings for comments to yourself, comments to the machinist or to cut or machine text or a logo into your part.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jnV8TwJ2Ak8

To add comment text

See video above

To machine text into your part 

  1. If you don’t already have an outer shape draw it (for example, a rectangle) and, on the numeric bar, set Z to a positive value.
  2. On the left toolbar click the “A” button.
  3. Click in the workspace.
  4. Type the desired text.
  5. From the numeric bar drop list choose Auto.
  6. On the numeric bar enter a font size.
  7. Select a True Type font:
    1. For 2D sheet designs (where text cuts fully thru) select font “eMachineShop 2D” and set Z to Air Inside (you might need to click in the work space to activate the Z control). You can use other fonts but most fonts have interior shapes that will fall out (e.g. the letter O) and hence will generate errors unless you modify the font to avoid the fall-outs. 
    2. For 3D designs use font “eMachineShop 3D” and enter a small negative Z value (typically -.01″ to -.05″) for the depth of the letters (you might need to click in the work space to activate the Z control). You can use other fonts or positive Z values but will need to modify the fonts to resolve errors.
  8. Choose Job | Price/Analyze and resolve any errors. For example you may need to convert text into primitive line shapes; round sharp corners; enlarge your text; etc. 

Note: You can resize and stretch text in the same way as other lines in your drawing. However when stretched along one axis, text is converted into splines and straights, preventing further editing. Therefore it is better to control text size via the numeric bar.

Selecting Lines

Choosing a line upon which you want to apply a command is called “selecting”. When you select a line it changes color so that it stands out from the other lines. 
When you select a line some symbols, called “handles”, are displayed to indicate what you can do with the line. 
You can select any line in your design. For example you might need to select a line to stretch it.

To select a line:

  1. In the left toolbar click the Select (arrow) button.
  2. In the workspace click on the desired line. The line will appear enclosed in a selection rectangle. The property bar will show the properties of the selected line. 

    selecting-single-line.gif (855 bytes)

To select all lines for a particular machine:

  1. Choose Edit | Find. A dialog appears.
  2. Select the desired machine in the list.
  3. Press OK.
 

To select all lines connected to a particular line:

  1. Select a line.
  2. Choose Edit | Select Connected Lines.

To select overlapping lines: 

When your design includes lines positioned exactly on top of each other and you need to select a line that lies at the bottom, select one of the lines, nudge it left or right, select the line you need, and later nudge the original line back into position.

 overlapping.gif (1128 bytes)

 

To select multiple lines:

  1. In the left toolbar click Select (arrow) button.
  2. Then:
  • Press and hold the CTRL key and click on the desired lines. (Click again to deselect.)
    or
  • In the workspace drag a rectangular area enclosing the desired lines.
    or
  • Press and hold the ALT key and drag a rectangular area crossing the desired lines.
    or
  • To select all lines in the current view press Ctrl+A.
    or
  • To select a series of connected lines hold the Shift key while clicking on one of the lines.
 

 

Snapping Lines

Line ends must usually meet precisely. For example you might need an end of a straight line to meet an end of an arc. Trying to make lines meet by careful mouse positioning is often difficult or impossible. You can conveniently make lines meet using the Snap features.

Additionally, when drawing a straight line towards an arc or circle the tangent point acts as a snap point. 

Snap2obj.gif (153 bytes) Snap to Lines is a feature that works like a magnet. You can move lines so that one of their snap points exactly meets the snap point of another line. Every line has several snap points. For example, straight lines have three snap points – the start, middle, and end.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Snap2grid.gif (134 bytes) Snap to Grid is a feature that forces points to align with a grid of equally spaced points. You can use Snap to Grid to easily align objects. For example, you might need to place several holes evenly spaced.

 

If you have a line created without snap-to-grid you may need to move the line onto the grid.

To use the snap to line feature:

  1. In the left toolbar click the Snap to Lines button (unless the button is already pushed in).
  2. Drag an existing line or create a new line so one of its snap points is near a snap point of another line. 
  3. You will see a small blue square to show that the line has snapped.

Generally it is advantageous to keep Snap to Lines on.

Here are the snap point locations for each type of line:

snapping-points.gif (2005 bytes)





To create new snap points:

  1. Draw a temporary line or rectangle.
  2. Snap to a point on the temporary line.
  3. Delete the temporary line.

 





To snap items to a grid:

  1. On the left toolbar push in Snap to Grid.
  2. Set Edit | Preferences to the desired grid spacing and visibility. 
  3. While drawing you will see that you can only position points at equal intervals vertically and horizontally.

To move an existing line onto the snap grid:

  1. On the left toolbar push in Snap to Grid and Line Edit
  2. Drag each and every point of the line so it snaps to the grid. 

 

Intersecting

Note: The newer Eraser tool is usually easier and faster than the intersect method. 
Intersecting lines are lines that cross each other. You can split lines where they intersect via the Intersect button. 
 
To split multiple intersecting lines
  1.  Select two or more lines to be intersected.
  2. Choose Line | Intersect.
  3. Select and delete any unwanted line segments to achieve the desired shape.

To split one line that crosses another shape:

  1. Select the line you want to divide into segments.
  2. Choose Line | Intersect.
  3. Delete any unwanted line segments to achieve the desired shape.
 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BmSiI3sUpdY

Making Shapes with the Eraser Tool

The Eraser button on the left toolbar is a key tool for making shapes beyond circles or rectangles. 

 

To draw almost any shape 

  1. Create overlapping rectangles, circles and/or straight lines as needed. 
  2. On the left toolbar push the Eraser button in.
  3. Click on the line segments you want to remove to leave the desired shape. 
 

To create a “D” shape draw a vertical line through a circle and erase the superfluous segments.

d2.gif (1009 bytes)d1.gif (1119 bytes)

To draw a Popsicle stick shape draw a rectangle with two circles and erase the superfluous segments.

popsicle2.gif (790 bytes)popsicle1.gif (698 bytes)

To draw a simple cross draw two intersecting rectangles and erase the superfluous segments.

cross1.gif (1067 bytes)cross2.gif (1044 bytes)

To draw a flower shape draw a large circle and several small circles and erase the superfluous segments.

flower2.gif (1549 bytes)flower1.gif (1143 bytes)

To draw a heart draw two circles tangent to each other and the tangent straight lines and then erase the superfluous segments.

heart2.gif (1280 bytes)heart1.gif (1187 bytes)

Group and Ungroup Lines

A group of lines is a set of lines which become selected when one line is selected. You can group any combination of lines. For example you might want to group together a set of lines that create a panel hole for an electrical D connector. The CAD software will automatically group connected lines prior to checking the 3D view.

 To group lines:

  1. Select all the lines to be included in the group. (To quickly select a set of connected lines hold the SHIFT key and click on one of the lines.)
  2. Choose Line | Group.

ungroup.gif (160 bytes) To ungroup lines:

  1. Select a group.
  2. Choose Line | Ungroup.
 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMUWT8MV9Pg

Moving & Nudging

You can move a line or group of lines to another position. For example you might need to move a hole in your part 1″ to the left.

Nudging is moving a line a fixed distance each time you press an arrow key on the keyboard. You can nudge lines in your design and you can set the nudge distance. For example, you might want to nudge lines 1/10″ for each key press.

To move a line:

  1. To constrain the movement to vertical or horizontal, hold the CTRL key while moving.
  2. Drag the line or group of lines to the new position.

To nudge a line or group of lines:

  1. Select the line or group of lines.
  2. Press an arrow key to move the line in the corresponding direction.
  3. Note: Holding down the Alt key while nudging will move a line 5 times the normal nudge distance.

line-moving.gif (1512 bytes)

To set the nudge distance:
  1. Enter the desired value in Nudge Step on the right of numeric bar.
  2. Press ENTER.
 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvFv8WnUw2Q

Resizing

You can change the size of any line or group of lines in your drawing, resizing horizontally, vertically or both. For example you might need to enlarge your entire drawing.

To resize a line or group of lines:

  1. Select line or group of lines.
  2. Drag the appropriate selection handle to the desired location or choose Line | Transform | Scale and enter a numerical percent. Holding the CTRL key while resizing provides for exact resizing to double size, triple size, etc. Holding the SHIFT key resizes from the center point.

Note: Resizing arcs or circles using the middle handles will convert those lines into splines, generating a warning. It is generally more cost effective to avoid splines.

resizing.gif (1638 bytes)

 

Rotating

You can change the size of any line or group of lines in your drawing, resizing horizontally, vertically or both. For example you might need to enlarge your entire drawing.

To rotate a line or group of lines by dragging:

  1. Select the line or group. 
  2. Click on the line again or choose Line | Rotate by dragging. The selection handles of the line change to rotation handles and the center of rotation appears.
  3. If desired, drag the center of rotation to the desired location. (To return the center of rotation to the default position, double click on it.)
  4. Drag the rotation handles to rotate the line. The current angle of rotation is shown on the status bar. Holding the CTRL key while rotating allows you to rotate in fixed steps such as 15 degrees as set in the numeric bar Rotation Snap Angle.

To rotate a line or group of lines by fixed angle steps:

  1. Set the numeric bar Rotation Snap Angle to the desired angle.
  2. Select the line or group.
  3. Choose Line | Nudge | Rotate Right or Rotate Left or press “R” or “L” on the keyboard.

You can also rotate by a specific numerical angle without changing the nudge angle setting.

 

Copying

You can change the size of any line or group of lines in your drawing, resizing horizontally, vertically or both. For example you might need to enlarge your entire drawing.

To copy a line in the current view:

  1. Select the line.
  2. Click the top toolbar Repeat button. 
  3. Drag or nudge the copied line to the desired location.

To copy a line to another view:

  1. Select the line.
  2. Choose Edit | Copy.
  3. Select the target view or open another file.
  4. Choose Edit | Paste
  5. Drag or nudge the copied line to the desired location.

You can also rotate by a specific numerical angle without changing the nudge angle setting.

 

Deleting 

You can easily delete lines in your drawing. For example you might need to remove a hole that you decide is not essential.

To delete a line or group:

  1. Select the desired line(s).
  2. Choose Edit | Delete or press the keyboard Delete key.

Rounding Corners

Rounding adds a smoothly fitted arc between two lines meeting at a sharp corner. For example, you might round inside corners of a pocket to obtain an oblong shape.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IsdGN_skbQU

To round a sharp corner:

  1. If needed ungroup the shape first using Line | Ungroup.
  2. Select lines that meet. 
  3. Choose Line | Corner | Round and enter a desired arc radius. (If you are unsure of the radius, try any value – you can apply the Edit | Undo command to try again.)
  4. Click OK.

Round2.gif (1296 bytes)

To chamfer a corner:

  1. Select the lines that form the corner.
  2. Choose Line | Corner | Chamfer and enter a desired chamfer distance. (If you are unsure of the distance, try any value – you can apply the Edit | Undo command to try again.)
  3. Click OK.

Chamfer2.gif (1102 bytes)

To modify all corners in a shape:

  1. Select a set of lines forming a single or several shapes.
  2. Follow steps 2-4 above.

    Round.gif (1140 bytes)

    Chamfer.gif (1076 bytes)

To change the radius of rounded corners:

  1. Select a closed group of lines having rounded corners.
  2. Follow steps 2-4 above.
 

Measuring

If you need to make a drawing based on some physical object you might need to know various sizes, positions, etc. Many tools are available for this purpose:

 

  • A simple household ruler may suffice in many instances (~$1 to $5)
  • A precision scientific steel ruler will allow for more accurate measurements (~$2 – $10)
  • A 6″ digital caliper (~$20 to $100)
  • A height gauge (~$50 to $300)
  • A micrometer (~$10 to $50)
To measure the distance between two points:
  1. On the left toolbar push in Snap-to-Lines.
  2. Push in the Ruler button. 
  3. Draw a line between the two points
To measure the horizontal distance between two points at different vertical positions:
  1. Draw a rectangle between the points.
  2. View the horizontal size of the rectangle on the numeric bar.
  3. Delete the rectangle.
To create an accurate guideline to position a hole or other feature:’
  1. Push in the ruler button.
  2. Draw a straight line from a snap point.
  3. Set the length of the line on the numeric bar.
  4. Snap the item to be positioned to the end of the ruler line. 
 

Freehand Tool

The Freehand drawing tool located on the left toolbar allows you to draw non-critical shapes for artistic, decorative and other creative uses to create an informal look. In addition to drawing using a mouse, for even greater control consider a USB drawing tablet. 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BU6ntxz9t6Y