SimpleCAD

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SimpleCAD is an easy, simple to learn 2D Computer Aided Design program (CAD) made to meet all of your basic design needs.

SimpleCAD is more than just a vector paint program, because you could move, copy, edit, scale, rotate and offset… objects.

Main Functions of the application:

– Basic draw items: including freehand lines, line, polyline, orthogonal line, tangent line, parallel line, rectangle, polygon, circle, arc (NOTE: native ellipse is not supported, only support ellipse created by polyline object). Text box, callout box, picture box (imported from image file), measure items…

– Modify functions: move, erase, copy, mirror, offset, rotate, scale, stretch items’ vertices, lengthen, trim, extend, break, chamfer, fillet and explode polyline, array, polar array.

– Auto Snap point setting: Snap to grid, end points of objects, on entity, center of arc – line – circle, middle point of arc – line, intersections, snap to top, left, right, bottom edges of a circle, arc

– Multi layers: you could create new layer to draw more items. Layers could be shown, hidden independently.

– Add image: You could add any image file (support file type: gif, jpeg, png, bmp, pict, tiff) to display as an item inside the application.
Image file could be shown in following modes: Stretch / Fit inside bound / Fit outside bound.
The application also allows to DRAG/DROP many image files directly from Finder (or press Cmd-V to paste image from current Clipboard) to current editing window to add them to the diagram.

– Add items (block) to Block Template list:
Right click on selected items then select “Add to template list” to save the block to template list so that you can reuse it later

– Customizable background:
Background color, total size of the diagram could be changed during editing.
Background color also can be set to transparent.

– Open/Save to “*.AAD” file:
AAD (*.aad) is the new file type created only for this application.
Press “⌘S” to save current diagram to an AAD file so that you could load it later for editing.

– Capture to clipboard:
Press “⌘9” or click on Capture button to export current diagram image to clipboard, then you could paste that image to another application.
Example: Open [Preview] application, press “⌘N” to paste above captured image to view or to save to an image file.
Of course, you could paste that image to Excel, Word application too.

Other functions:
– Supports Metric or English units (you could change it in the Preferences dialog)
– Unlimited Undo/Redo (shortcut key: Cmd-Z / Shift-Cmd-Z)
– Copy / Paste (shortcut key: Cmd-C / Cmd-V)
– Group / Ungroup Items (shortcut key: Cmd-G / Shift-Cmd-G)
– Lock/Unlock items position (shortcut key: Cmd-L / Shift-Cmd-L)
– Change display order
– Export to png, jpeg, tiff, pdf image file (shortcut key: Cmd-E)
– Print supported (shortcut key: Cmd-P)

 

 

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HOW TO USE THE APPLICATION

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(A) How to add objects

There is a floating window named “Add objects” that allow you to add objects into the view. In “Add objects” window, click on an item that you want to add to the drawing view, then base on instruction from the “Command text box” (text box in the bottom of the drawing window) to start creating new item.

(I)    Basic draw items:
Freehand lines: after selecting the object from “Add object” window, click and drag mouse on drawing view to draw the object. To finish, press ENTER or SPACE button or double click mouse. To cancel press ESC button. To undo previous input point, input “U” into the command text box then press ENTER.


Single line: select this tool to draw a single line from 2 points. You can set exact position by entering into the command text box: “1, 1” then press ENTER will set point in x=1, y=1 position; “@1, 1” then press ENTER will set point in relative position  to the last select point.


Polyline: select this tool to draw polyline from multi-points. To finish, press ENTER or SPACE button or double click mouse, to cancel press ESC button. To undo previous input point, input “U” into the command text box then press ENTER.  You can set the exact position by entering position information into the command text box (example: “1,1” or “@1,1” for relative position)


Parallel line: select this tool to draw a parallel line to another line.  First select a base line (use mouse to click on a line or click-then-drag-a-rectangle to select a line), after that use mouse to click position of parallel line; Or you can input distance value into command text box, press ENTER – then use mouse to select parallel line direction.  To undo to previous state, input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.


Tangent line to a circle: select this tool to draw a tangent line to another circle or arc.  First select a base circle or arc (use mouse to click on a circle-arc or click-then-drag-a-rectangle to select a circle-arc), after that use mouse to set second position of tangent line – then use mouse to select tangent line direction.  To undo to previous state, input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.


Tangent line to 2 circle: select this tool to draw a tangent line to 2 circles or arcs.  Select 2 circles or arcs (use mouse to click on a circle-arc or click-then-drag-a-rectangle to select a circle-arc), after that use mouse to select tangent line direction.  To undo to previous state, input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.

 

Orthogonal line: select this object to draw a orthogonal line to another line.  First select a base line (use mouse to click on a line or click-then-drag-a-rectangle to select a line), after that use mouse to click position of orthogonal line. To undo to previous state, input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.


Rectangle from 2 corners: select this tool to draw rectangle from 2 corners of rectangle (example: from top-left to bottom-right or from top-right to bottom-left).


Rectangle from center to corner points: select this tool to draw rectangle: first select center point then select a corner of the rectangle.


Rectangle from top-mid to mid-right points: select this tool to draw rectangle: first select top-mid point then select mid-right (or mid-left) point of the rectangle.


Rectangle from top-mid, bottom-right, bottom-left points: select this tool to draw rectangle: first select top-mid point, second select bottom-right point, finally select bottom-left direction of the rectangle. To undo to previous state, input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.


Closed-shape from multi-points: select this tool to draw a closed-shape polyline object from multi-points. To finish, press ENTER or SPACE button or double click mouse, to cancel press ESC button. To undo previous input point, input “U” into the command text box then press ENTER.  You can set exact position by input position information into the command text box (example: “1,1” or “@1,1” for relative position)

 

Polygon from center to corner point: select this tool to draw a polygon object. do the following:
– input number of polygon sides into command text box then press ENTER (side number must be between 3 and 50)
– input or use mouse to select center point
– input or use mouse to select a corner point (You can set exact position by input position information into the command text box (example: “1,1” or “@1,1” for relative position)
To undo to previous state, please input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.

Polygon from center to center of a side line: select this object to draw a polygon object. Please do as following:
– input number of polygon sides into command text box then press ENTER (side number must be between 3 and 50)
– input or use mouse to select center point
– input or use mouse to select a center point of a side line (You could set exact position by input position information into the command text box (example: “1,1” or “@1,1” for relative position)
To undo to previous state, please input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.

Polygon from 2 corner points: select this tool to draw a polygon object. do the following:
– input number of polygon sides into command text box then press ENTER (side number must be between 3 and 50)
– input or use mouse to select first and second points of a corner – to make a side line
– input or use mouse to select polygon direction (base on previous side line)

Circle from center: select this tool to draw a closed circle object. First select center point then select a point on the circle – Or input radius value into command text box then press ENTER.


Circle from 2 points (diameter line): select this tool to draw a closed circle object.  Select 2 points of the circle to form a diameter line.


Circle from 3 points
: select this tool to draw a closed circle object. Select 3 points that the circle will cross over.


Circle from tangent – center point: select this tool to draw a closed circle object. Do the following:
– First select a base circle or arc or line (use mouse to click on a circle-arc or click-then-drag-a-rectangle to select a circle-arc) of the new tangent circle
– input or use mouse to select center point of the new tangent circle

Circle from tangent – tangent – radius: select this tool to draw a closed circle object. do the following:
– First select the first base circle or arc or line (use mouse to click on a circle-arc or click-then-drag-a-rectangle to select a circle-arc) of the new tangent circle
– Second please select the second base circle or arc or line
– In the command text box, please input radius value of the circle
– Because there are more than 1 possible result, please use mouse to select direction of the result circle
To undo to previous state, please input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.

Arc from center and 2 points (counterclockwise): select this tool to draw an arc object.  First select center point of the arc, then select 2 vertices of the arc (in counterclockwise order). To undo to previous state, input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.

Arc from 3 points: select this tool to draw an arc object.  First select vertex point of the arc, then select point that is inside the arc, finally select the last vertex of the arc. To undo to previous state, input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER.


Closed Polyline to form ellipse: The application do not support native ellipse but you can create a near ellipse shape by using this item, that is made from close polyline parts.

(II)    Addition items (text, picture…)
Text box: First select 2 corners of text box rectangle (example: from top-left to bottom-right or from top-right to bottom-left). After setting text box position, an “Edit text content” dialog will be shown to allow user to input text content. (You can change it later by double-click on the text box object).


Picture box: First select 2 corners of picture box rectangle (example: from top-left to bottom-right or from top-right to bottom-left). After setting picture box position, an “Image Browsing” dialog will be shown to allow user to select image file from local folder (support image type: jpeg, gif, png….). You can change the way image is shown (example: fit image in bound – or stretch image in bound….) later by double-click on the object.

 

Fill: Create this object to fill a closed area with any color. When you click on this icon, a Color Select window will be show for you to select color, then click mouse on an closed area (made of lines, circles, arcs) to create fill object. You can later change the color by using Color control box in the top toolbar named “Fill”.

 

Callout box: First select tip point that the callout box points to, then select center position of the text box. After setting text box position, an “Edit text content” dialog will be shown to allow user to input text content. (You can change it later by double-click on the text box object).

 


(
III)    Measure items:
Linear dimension between 2 points: create this object to show measure length between 2 points. You can set exact position by input into the command text box: “1, 1” then press ENTER will set point in x=1, y=1 position; “@1, 1” then press ENTER will set point in relative position  to the last select point.  You also can set point using snap setting that can be selected by using snap buttons in the bottom of the editing window. After creating, in select mode (by pressing “mouse arrow button” on the left of the view) you can change position of the measure text by click-drag the text re-size box of the measure item (small white box near the text)


Linear dimension between orthogonal line: First select a base line (use mouse to click on a line or click-then-drag-a-rectangle to select a line), after that use mouse to click second position of orthogonal measure line.


Aligned Dimension: create this in the same way as “Linear dimension between 2 points” but it is needed to select the distance point (to show text) from base line


Horizontal Dimension, Vertical Dimension: these measure objects will show length between 2 points but only in horizontal dimension or vertical dimension.

Radial Dimension: these measure objects will show radius or diameter measure of a circle or an arc. First select a base circle or arc (use mouse to click on a circle-arc or click-then-drag-a-rectangle to select a circle-arc), after that use mouse to set second position of measure object.  To undo to previous state, input “U” or “UNDO” into the command text box then press ENTER. After creating, in select mode (by pressing “mouse arrow button” on the left of the view) you can change position of the measure text by click-drag the text re-size box of the measure item (small white box near the text)

 

 

(B) Modifying objects

In the left of the editing window, there is a vertical toolbar that includes modifying buttons. You can click on one of these buttons to start to modify current objects in the active layer. When modifying, base on instruction from the “Command text box” (text box in the bottom of the drawing window).

 

(I) Selection mode (arrow icon):

Select this mode when you want to stop creating new items, or when you want to select one or many objects.
Select multi-objects is like in other CAD applications, do the following:
– Drag mouse from left to right to select all object that lie totally inside the selected drag rectangle area.
– Drag mouse from right to left to select all object that is inside or cross the select rectangle area
NOTE: in select mode you can also Stretching items with Grips: To stretch an object using grips, simply select the object by clicking on it. The object becomes highlighted and small square grips appear at each vertex and various snap points, depending upon the object type. Click a grip to activate it and click again to reposition it.
 

 

(II) Move objects:

The Move command works in a similar way to the COPY command except that no copy is made, the selected object(s) is simply moved from one location to another . To move objects please do as following:

– Using mouse to select items to be moved then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)

– Specify base point

– Specify second point to indicate moving offset

You could set exact position by input position information into the command text box (example: “1,1” or “@1,1” for relative position)

 

 

(III) Erase objects:

The Erase command is one of the simplest commands and is one of the most used. The command erases (deletes) any selected object(s) from the drawing. Remember you can always get deleted objects back by typing “U to undo. To erase objects please do as following: Using mouse to select items to be erased then press ENTER .

If there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored, and the selected items will be deleted immediately after Erase button is pressed.

 

(IV) Copy objects:

The Copy command can be used to create one or more duplicates of any drawing object or objects which you have previously created. Copy is a very useful and time-saving command because you can create very complex drawing elements and then simply copy them as many times as you like. To copy/clone objects please do as following:

– Using mouse to select items to be copied then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)

– Specify base point

– Specify second point to indicate copying offset position

You could set exact position by input position information into the command text box (example: “1,1” or “@1,1” for relative position)

 

{Multiple options}

(You could press “M” then ENTER for multiple copy option). The multiple options allow you to create additional copies of the selected object(s) by picking as many new points as you like. To end a multiple copy just hit the ENTER or ESC or SPACE key.

 

 

(V) Mirror objects:

The Mirror command allows you to mirror selected objects in your drawing by picking them and then defining the position of an imaginary mirror line using two points. To mirror selected objects please do as following:

– Using mouse to select items to be mirrored then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)

– Specify base point

– Specify second point to indicate mirror offset position

You could set exact position by input position information into the command text box (example: “1,1” or “@1,1” for relative position)

 

 

(VI) Offset one object:

The Offset command creates a new object parallel to or concentric with a selected object. The new object is drawn at a user defined distance (the offset) from the original and in a direction chosen by the user with a pick point. You can offset lines, arcs, circles. To offset selected object please do as following:

– Using mouse to select 1 item to be offset then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)

– Specify offset distance

– Specify point on side to offset

 

 

(VII) Rotate objects:

The Rotate command allows an object or objects to be rotated about a point selected by the user. The application prompts for a second rotation point or an angle which can be typed at the keyboard. To rotate selected objects please do as following:

– Using mouse to select items then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)

– Specify base point

– Specify second point to indicate angle for rotation (base on horizontal X axis) (or you could input exact angle value here)

 

 

(VIII) Scale objects:

The Scale command can be used to change the size of an object or group of objects. You are prompted for a pick point about which the selection set will be scaled. Scaling can then be completed by picking a second point (not easy because it can sometimes be difficult to precisely control the scaling) or by entering a scale factor at the keyboard.

To scale (re-size) selected objects please do as following:

– Using mouse to select items then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)

– Specify base point

– Specify second point to indicate scale ratio (or you could input exact scale ratio value: >1: to enlarge; <1 to shrink)

 

 

(IX) Stretch vertices of objects:

The Stretch command can be used to move one or more vertices of an object while leaving the rest of the object unchanged. To stretch vertices of selected objects please do as following:

– Using mouse to select vertices of items then press ENTER

– Specify base point

– Specify second point to indicate offset position

You could set exact position by input position information into the command text box (example: “1,1” or “@1,1” for relative position)

 


(X) Lengthen line or arc:

The Lengthen command can often be used instead of either the TRIM or EXTEND commands. Indeed the end result is exactly the same. The Lengthen command can be used to either lengthen or shorten Lines, Arcs or open polyline without the use of cutting or boundary edges. To lengthen an object, please do as following:

– Use mouse to select a single item to lengthen then press ENTER

– If selected item is a line object: use mouse to lengthen or input new length (allow minus)

– If selected item is an arc object: Use mouse to lengthen or input new angle value

 

 

(XI) Trim items:

The Trim command can be used to trim a part of an object. In order to trim an object you must draw a second object which forms the “cutting edge”. Cutting edges can be lines, polyline, circles, arcs. The Trim command, unlike most other modify commands requires that two separate object selections are made. The cutting edges are selected first (there can be NONE or ONE or more) and then the objects to be trimmed are selected. To trim objects, please do as following:

– Use mouse to select base “cutting edge” objects then press ENTER. NOTE: you could select nothing then press ENTER so that the application will trim base on intersections of all items in the active layer.

– Click on item to trim base on above “cutting edge”

 

 

(XII) Extend items:

This command extends a line, polyline or arc to meet another drawing object (known as the boundary edge). This command works in a similar way to the Trim command, described above. Two selections are made, one for the boundary edge and one for the object to extend. Lines and other objects can be extended in one of two directions. You can tell the application in which direction to extend by picking a point to the right or left of the midpoint respectively. The application does not intuitively know where the boundary edge lies so you must explicitly indicate the direction of extension by picking either one side or other of the midpoint. To extend objects, please do as following:

– Use mouse to select base “boundary edge” objects then press ENTER

– Click on item to extend base on above “boundary edge”

 

{Edge mode}

If the line you are trying to extend does not intersect with the boundary line, you can use the “Edge” or “ED” option to toggle Edgemode to “Extend” (the default is “No Extend”). When the Extend command is set to Extend Mode, the objects being extended will extend to an imaginary line through the boundary edge, irrespective of whether the extended object actually intersects with the boundary edge. This is particularly useful and can save lots of time

 

 

(XIII) Break items:

The Break command enables you to break (remove part of) an object by defining two break points. The Break command can be used with lines, polyline, circles and arcs. When you break an object, you can either select the object using the first break point or then pick the second break point, or you can select the object and then pick the two break points. To break an object, please do as following:

– Use mouse to select the object then press ENTER (single click – no drag – to select first break point). If there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored.

– Select first break point on the selected object

– Select second break point on the selected object

 

 

(XIV) Chamfer:

The Chamfer command enables you to create a chamfer between any two non-parallel lines or any two adjacent polyline segments. Usually, the Chamfer command is used to set the chamfer distances before drawing the chamfer. To chamfer 2 lines, please do as following:

– Select first line then press ENTER.

– Select second line then press ENTER.

 

{Distance}

The Distance option allows you to specify the two chamfer distances

To change distance setting please input “d” or “dist” then press ENTER, after that please input distance value.

 

{Trim}

Trim is used to control whether the original lines are trimmed to the chamfer or remain as they are:

To change trim mode setting please input “t” or “trim” then press ENTER, after that please input trim setting (“yes” or “y”, “no” or “n”).

  

 

(XV) Fillet:

The Fillet command is a very useful tool which allows you to draw an arc between two intersecting lines or adjacent polyline segments. To fillet 2 lines, please do as following:

– Select first line then press ENTER.

– Select second line then press ENTER.

 

{Radius}

The Radius option allows you to specify the fillet radius.

To change radius setting please input “r” or “rad” then press ENTER, after that please input radius value.

 

{Trim}

Trim is used to control whether the original lines are trimmed to the fillet or remain as they are:

To change trim mode setting please input “t” or “trim” then press ENTER, after that please input trim setting (“yes” or “y”, “no” or “n”).

 

(XVI) Explode object:

The Explode command is used to “explode” polyline, polygon, rectangle… objects back to their individual component parts. The change has no visible effect. To explode objects, please do as following:

– Using mouse to select items then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)

 

(XVII) Rectangular Array:

The Array command makes multiple copies of selected objects in a rectangular matrix (columns and rows) pattern. It has a dialogue box driven with the option to see a preview of the array before it is created. You can also now create rectangular arrays at a user specified angle angle. When creating rectangular arrays it is important to remember that new rows are created above the original object and new columns are created to the right of the original object. The resulting array is, therefore, always created with the original object in the bottom left hand position with respect to the current co-ordinate system. To make rectangular array, please do as following:
– Using mouse to select items then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)
– An array setting dialog will be shown to let you change setting of new creating array 
– When  you change array setting in this dialog, in the drawing window, sample preview of new objects also is displayed in red line color. To finish please press OK button.

(XVIII) Polar Array:

The Polar Array command makes multiple copies of selected objects in a polar (circular) pattern. It has a dialogue box driven with the option to see a preview of the array before it is created. The polar array works in a similar way to the rectangular array. The main difference is that rather than specifying the number and offset for rows and columns, you must specify a center point and the total number of objects in the array (including the original object). To make polar array, please do as following:
– Using mouse to select items then press ENTER (if there is any already selected item before this command is called, this step will be ignored)
– Using mouse to select center point of the polar array
– A Polar Array setting dialog will be shown to let you change setting of new creating array 
– When  you change array setting in this dialog, in the drawing window, sample preview of new objects also is displayed in red line color. To finish please press OK button.

 

 

(C) Tips & Tricks

  • Always look at the command line for guidance when you are creating new object or modify current objects. The command line will prompt you for information and this is the easiest way to find out how a command works. This is especially true for the more complicated commands like Trim and Extend.

 

  • When creating object or modify object, please avoid using mouse to set position. Snap setting (you could access via menu or by pressing on snap buttons on the bottom of the drawing window) allow to select exact point base on current object position

 

  • You could set exact position by input it into the command text box. Example: “1, 1” then press ENTER will set point in x=1, y=1 position; “@1, 1” then press ENTER will set point in relative position to the last select point.

 

  • Select multi objects is like in other CAD applications, please do as following:

              -> Drag mouse from left to right to select all object that lie totally inside the selected drag rectangle area. 

              -> Drag mouse from right to left to select all object that is inside or cross the select rectangle area 

2 Responses to SimpleCAD

  1. Peter Rigby says:

    Excellent 2D package – many thanks. One question, is is possible to add a feature to save that file in .dwg format?

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