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Michael BeallFrom: AutoCAD Productivity Articles #142
Originally published: October 2015

Possible Solutions to the Disappearing Drawing

by Michael Beall

Purge dialog boxMany of my customers encounter a situation where the drawing disappears when they change the view or use Zoom Extents. Here are a few of my suggestions that I'm beginning to include in all my training sessions:

  1. Purge and Audit a drawing you inherit or haven't worked on in a while. In the Purge command, if the two boxes under Unnamed Objects are ‘live’, check them both.

  2. Save the current layer condition as a layer state, then turn On and Thaw all layers. Objects that are on layers that are Off are still ‘seen’ when you Zoom Extents. Saving the layer state will give a fallback position, just in case.

  3. Set the QTEXT (Quick Text) feature to ON, then Regen the drawing. Turning on Qtext will replace all text objects with boxes and may make the dots around the perimeter of the screen easier to see. This feature was used extensively in the early days of pen plotters when it just took too long — albeit very entertaining over a lunch hour — to plot drawings with a lot of text. Instead of pppllloootttiiinnnggg out each letter, it just drew a quick 4-sided bounding box around the text. (Set QTEXT back to OFF when you're finished.)

  4. Set PDMODE to 35 to display Points in the Circle-X format. All my furniture/facilities customers have drawings with Point objects on the insertion points and other vital locations on their furniture. Setting the PDMODE — Point Display Mode — to 35 makes any floating Point object visible. (Set PDMODE back to 0 to go back to the default condition of dots.)

After all's said and done, hopefully you will see the misbehaving object that's keeping your drawing from displaying as you expected. At that point, you can either move those objects back among their peers… or simply delete 'em. That's your call, but at least now you know what that problem was!

See all the articles published in October 2015

See this article in the October 2015 Corner

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