CADDManager on August 16th, 2010

AutoCAD 2011 and AutoCAD LT 2011 – No Experience Required published by Sybex under their Serious Skill efforts was written by Donnie Gladfelter.  This is a massive collection of information for those that are just starting and those that have years of use under their belts.  There are seventeen chapters dedicated to the basic of opening files, creating objects and navigating the interface to rendering and materials.  The breadth of topics covered is impressive.

Some of the basic stuff is very good for those that are uninitiated.  He even goes over where to click on objects for specific actions.  This is a learned skill, but Donnie does a good job of explaining the little things that cause frustrations and delays for new users.  He does not stop at the new user level – far from it.  He covers advanced topics with the same prowess that makes the entire book worth having.

He starts with the things that you would expect to cover in a book like this but does so with greater depth, going into dialog boxes, settings and selections that may confuse those just starting.  This basis of foundation builds as the book proceeds.  Sprinkled throughout the book are little pullout comments that help those that might notice errors, cautions and erratic behaviors in the program at the beginning.  Another nice touch is the pullout conversations about Standards and another on “What to do when you make a Mistake”.

One really good chapter to me is “Using Layers as an Organizing Tool”.   The author goes to great lengths to explain the entire perspective of how Layers can make a difference and what impact getting it right.  Colors, Linestyles, naming, etc – it is all covered.  He goes over what should be assigned to what Layer and why and also how to do it.

Scattered throughout the book are Warnings and Tips.  These are from the many years of using these tools that the author shares with the reader.

Blocks, Dynamic Blocks, Hatching and Dimensions are covered in depth.  Sharing procedures for creating them,using them and placing them.  All in the context of an ongoing Architectural drawing process. From creation of the first lines to the final Title Block and then setting up Layouts and plotting (even Sheet Set Manager).  Xrefs are addressed as well  as images and more.

The final chapters even get into 3D creation and use.  (I like the Right Hand Rule illustration).  Topped off with Rendering and Material gives the reader the full tour of the product from start to finish.  Add to that the final Glossary of terms will move the novice to avid user quickly.

This publication is well  worth the read and also to study.  The wealth of knowledge shared from the authors ample experience will assist everyone who buys and reads this book.

Buy the book at my online store

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