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Printing drawings - Customizing print options

Using print styles

progeCAD uses print styles to change the appearance of your printed drawing without modifying the actual entities in your drawing. Assigning print styles allows you to customize the color, pen width, linetype, and lineweight that are used to print your drawing.

Print styles help you control what your drawing looks like when it is printed. Rather than describe what an entity looks like on your screen, print styles describe what an entity will look like when you print it. For example, you can map all yellow entities in your drawing to print in blue without modifying the actual entities. You could also map all yellow entities to print with whatever lineweight, linetype, or pen width that you specify.

Because print styles are saved in print style tables, which are files located on your computer, disk, or server, you can reuse them to help eliminate the need to reconfigure your print settings each time you print a drawing. For example, you may have multiple clients who have their own printing preferences. You can save print styles in a named file for each of your clients. You can even share the file with co-workers, or store the files on a network to ensure that everyone in your office uses the same standards.

Understanding print style tables
  1. A print style table is a collection of print styles that allows you to change the appearance of your printed drawing without modifying the actual entities in your drawing. Each print style table is saved in a file that can be located on your computer, disk, or server.
  2. A drawing can use one type of print style table at a time. There are two types of print style tables:
  3. Color-dependent print style tables (CTB) contain a collection of print styles based on each of the 255 index colors available in a drawing. True colors and color books are not applicable to color-dependent print style tables.
Named print style tables (STB) contain a collection of print styles that you define. They can vary regardless of color.
  1. With color-dependent print style tables, you cannot assign print styles to individual entities or layers. To use these print styles, you assign a specific color to an entity or layer. When you specify a color-dependent print style table at printing time, the entity colors and layer colors map to color-based print styles in the print style table that you specify.
  2. With named print style tables, you can assign named print styles to individual entities and layers. Entities and layers assigned print styles are printed according to the print style table that you specify at printing time. If you specify a print style for a specific entity, that print style overrides any print style assigned to the layer on which the entity resides.
  3. Sometimes a named print style assigned to an entity or layer is not located in the print style table that is assigned to a layout or drawing. This can happen if the print style has been deleted from the named print style table or if you assign a different named print style table to the drawing that does not contain the named print style. In this case, the entity is printed using its default properties, which is similar to assigning the Normal print style to an entity or layer. If you plan on interchanging named print style tables within the same drawing, it's a good idea to coordinate the tables to use the same print style names.
  4. If a new drawing is based on a template, the new drawing uses the same type of print style table as the template. If a new drawing is created without a template, the type of print style table is specified in the New Drawing Wizard; by default, the new drawing uses the print style table type specified in Tools > Options on the Printing tab. Every drawing is designed to use print style tables, but you decide whether to implement them.
  5. Comparison of print style table types

     

    Color-dependent print
    style table (CTB)

    Named print style table (STB)

    Description

    Contains pre-defined print styles according to color; there is one print style for each of the 255 index colors available in the drawing. Entities with the same color are printed the same way.

    Contains unique print styles that you create. Entities with the same color can have different print settings.

    Example

    All blue entities print with a .5 millimeter lineweight.

    One entity prints with a .7 millimeter lineweight; a second blue prints with a .5 millimeter lineweight.

    Number of print styles

    255 (fixed).

    At least one (varies).

    Print style names

    Print style names range from "Color_1" to "Color_255". You cannot rename print styles.

    You define new print style names. You can rename all print styles except the Normal print style.

    Add, delete, and modify print styles

    You can modify the existing print styles, but you cannot add or delete print styles.

    You can add and delete print styles. You can modify all print styles except the Normal print style, which uses the default characteristics of the entity.

    Create additional tables

    Yes.

    Yes.

    Assignment

    Current print style: New entities always assigned BYCOLOR.

     

    Print styles: Assigned to colors in the print style table.

     

    Print style tables: Assigned to a Layout tab or the Model tab.

    Current print style: Assigned to new entities.

     

    Print styles: Assigned to entities and layers.

     

    Print style tables: Assigned to a Layout tab or the Model tab.

    Legacy file support

    You can import existing printer configuration files (PCP) files into the print style table. CTB files are similar to PCP files primarily used in previous versions of progeCAD.

    Not applicable.

Implementing print style tables
  1. Every drawing is designed to use print style tables, but you decide whether to implement them. Even if you use one of the default print style tables available with progeCAD, using print style tables requires planning ahead of time to ensure that your drawing prints as planned.
  2. For example, a single drawing of a floor plan might require the printing of the following drawing sheets:
  3. Main Floor Plan Walls print with thick, black lines.
  4. Electrical Plan Walls print with normal gray lines, indicating that they are not the focus.
  5. HVAC Plan Walls print with normal gray lines, indicating that they are not the focus.
Roof Plan Walls print with thin, gray lines and a hidden linetype, indicating that they are hidden under the roof in a plan view.
  1. In this example, you can create four named print style tables, each containing a print style named "WallPstyle". Each print style table contains its own settings for
    "WallPstyle" to control how the walls print. Assign WallPstyle to either the wall entities or to a wall layer. Then, assign a different named print style table each time you print, or create four layouts and assign a different print style table to each layout.
  2. The following table describes, in order, the steps to get you started using both color-dependent and named print style tables.
  3.  
  4. Getting started using print style tables

    Color-dependent

    Named

    Task

    Command

    Where to get details

    X

    X

    Create a new drawing. Select a drawing template that uses the desired print style table type or choose it in the New Drawing Wizard.

    File > New

    See Creating a new drawing.

    X

    X

    (Optional) Create a new print style table.

    File > Print Styles Manager

    See Creating new print style tables.

    X

     

    Assign colors to entities and layers that correspond with print style table settings.

    Modify > Properties

    Tools > progeCAD Explorer

    See Setting the current entity color.; See Modifying the properties of entities.; See Setting the layer color.

     

    X

    Set the current print style assigned to new entities.

    Tools > Drawing Settings > Entity Creation tab; status bar; printstyle

    See Setting the current print style.

     

    X

    Assign print styles to entities.

    Modify > Properties; Entity Properties toolbar; printstyle

    See Modifying the properties of entities.

     

    X

    Use progeCAD Explorer to assign print styles to layers.

    Tools > progeCAD Explorer

    See Setting a layer's print style.

    X

    X

    Assign a print style table to the Model tab, a layout, or to all layouts in the drawing.

    File > Plot > Advanced tab

    See Assigning print style tables.

    X

    X

    (Optional) Make changes to the assigned print style table.

    File > Print Styles Manager

    File > Plot > Advanced tab

    See Modifying print style tables.

    X

    X

    Print the drawing.

    File > Plot

    See Printing or plotting your drawing.

  5. The following table describes how to further customize how print styles work within your drawings.
  6. Further customizing print style tables

    Task

    Command

    Where to get details

    Copy, rename, or delete print style tables.

    File > Print Styles Manager

    See Copy, rename, or delete print style tables.

    Change a drawing to use another type of print style table, for example, change a drawing that uses color-dependent print style tables to one that uses named print style tables.

    convertpstyles

    See Changing a drawing's print style table type.

    Convert a color-dependent print style table to a named print style table.

    convertctb

    See Converting print style tables.

    Change the default location where print style tables are stored.

    Tools > Options > Paths/Files tab

    See Changing the options on the Paths/Files tab.

    Customize how print styles work with new drawings that you create and older drawings that you open.

    Tools > Options > Printing tab

    See Changing the options on the Printing tab.

Assigning print style tables
  1. Select a print style table before printing if you want to change how your drawing appears when you print it. Print style tables can modify how colors, pen widths, linetypes, and lineweights look when they are printed.
  2. You can assign print style tables globally for all layouts (including the Model tab), or individually for the Model tab or a Layout tab. Assigning a print style table to an individual layout allows you to further customize the layouts you use to print a drawing.
  3. However, assigning different named print style tables to various layouts may result in mismatched print style names; a named print style assigned to an entity or layer may not be located in the assigned print style table at print time. In this case, entities are printed using their default properties, which is similar to assigning the Normal print style to an entity or layer.
To assign print style tables
  1. If necessary, click the desired Layout tab, or click the Model tab.
  2. Do one of the following:
  3. Choose File > Plot.
  4. On the Standard toolbar, click the Plot tool (
  5. ).
  • Type print and then press Enter.
  • Click the Advanced tab.
  • Under Print Style Table (Pen Assignments), select a print style table that you created or one of the following:
  • None - Applies no print style table. Entities print according to their own properties.
  • Icad - Uses the default print style table and its color assignments.
  • Monochrome - Prints all colors as black.
  • At the prompt, choose Yes to assign the print style table to all layouts in the drawing, including the Model tab, or choose No to assign the print style table only to the individual layout listed in Layout Name on the Print dialog box.
  • Select Save Changes to Layout, and then click Apply to save your changes.
  • NOTE When your drawing was first created it was set up to use either color-dependent or named print style tables. For details on converting a drawing to use a different type of print style table, See Understanding print style tables.
Creating new print style tables
  1. progeCAD offers several print style tables to help you get started. If you want to customize your print output further, you can create your own print style table. You can create a new print style table entirely from scratch, based on progeCAD registry settings, or by importing a printer configuration file (PCP file).
To create new print style tables
  1. Do one of the following:
  2. Choose File > Print Styles Manager.
  3. Type stylesmanager and then press Enter.
  4. Double-click Create a Print Style Table.
  5. Complete the setup wizard.

On the last wizard page, you can click Print Style Table Editor to set up the print styles for the table. For more details about the Print Style Table Editor options, see the next section.

Modifying print style tables
  1. When your drawing was created, it was set up to use color-dependent or named print style tables.
  2. Color-dependent print style tables (.ctb files) You can modify individual print styles within the table, but you cannot add, rename, or delete print styles. Color-dependent print style tables always have 255 print styles, each named for a specific color. Your changes affect all entities and layers assigned that color.
  3. Named print style tables (.stb files) You can add, modify, rename, and delete individual print styles within the table. However, you cannot modify, rename, or delete the Normal print style. Your changes affect all entities and layers that are assigned that print style name.
  4. TIP If you can't remember what type of print style table is assigned to your drawing, use the PSTYLEMODE system variable to determine the print style table type.
  1. Each print style within a print style table specifies a color, pen numbers, linetype, and lineweight. progeCAD recognizes additional characteristics for compatibility with AutoCAD only, including: dither, grayscale, screening, adaptive, line end style, line join style, and fill style.
  2. When specifying print style characteristics, be sure to consider the limitations of your output device.
  3. Note It is recommended that you only modify print style tables that you have created. If you modify a default print style table that came with progeCAD, you overwrite the original information which is then lost.
To modify print style tables
  1. Do one of the following:
  2. Choose File > Print Styles Manager.
  3. Type stylesmanager and then press Enter.
  4. Double-click the print style table you want to modify.
  5. Click the General tab, and then do any of the following:
  6. Enter a new table description.
  7. Select Apply Global Scale Factor to Non-ISO Linetypes to apply the scale factor to non-ISO linetypes used for any print style in the current print style table. This also applies to fill patterns, which are not used in progeCAD, but are recognized for compatibility with AutoCAD.
  8. Enter a scale factor to apply to non-ISO linetypes used for any print style in the current print style table.
  9. Click the Properties tab, and then do any of the following:
  10. Make format changes to a print style by selecting it in the Print Styles list, then make color, pen map, linetype, or lineweight changes for the print style. Your changes are saved automatically for the selected print style.
  11. Add a new print style by clicking Add Style. Enter a new name, and then click OK. Select the options for the print style. (Available for named print styles only.)
  12. Rename a print style by selecting it in the Print Styles list. Single-click the print style again, and then enter a new name. (Available for named print styles only.)
  13. Delete a print style by selecting it in the Print Styles list. Click Delete Style. (Available for named print styles only.)
  14. Click OK.
  15.  
  16.  
    1. Select a print style to modify it.
    2. Enter a description for the selected print style.
    3. Click to create a new print style. (Named print style tables only.)
    4. Click to delete the selected print style. (Named print style tables only.)
    5. Click to modify the list of available lineweights for the current print style table.
    6. Click to save the print style table with a new name or in a new location.
    1. Choose a lineweight for the selected print style.
    2. Choose a linetype for the selected print style.
    3. Type or scroll to the width of the virtual pen for the selected print style (for printers that don't have physical pens, such as laser or inkjet printers).
    4. Type or scroll to the width of the physical pen for the selected print style.
    5. Choose a color for the selected print style.
Copy, rename, or delete print style tables
  1. Copy, rename, or delete a print style table just as you would any other file on your computer. Regardless of which print style table type your drawing uses, you can use the Print Style Manager to manage both color-dependent and named print style tables.
To copy, rename, or delete print style tables
  1. Do one of the following:
  2. Choose File > Print Styles Manager.
  3. Type stylesmanager and then press Enter.
  4. Select a print style table.
    Color-dependent print style tables are .ctb files and named print style tables are .stb files.
  5. Copy, rename, or delete the print style table just as you would any other file on your computer.
Changing a drawing's print style table type
  1. When your drawing was created, it was set up to use color-dependent print style tables (.ctb files) or named print style tables (.stb files). A drawing can use one type of print style table at a time. If necessary, after a drawing is created you can convert the drawing to use the other type of print style table.
  2. If you can't remember what type of print style table is assigned to your drawing, use the PSTYLEMODE system variable to determine the print style table type.
To change a drawing to use named print style tables
  1. If you want to reuse any of the existing print style information, convert your color-dependent print style tables to named print style tables. For details, See To convert a color-dependent print style table to a named print style table.
  2. Open the drawing that uses color-dependent print style tables (.ctb files).
  3. Type convertpstyles, and then press Enter.
  4. If you have already converted your individual color-dependent print style tables to named tables, click OK in the prompt that displays.

If you have not converted the tables, click Cancel. First use convertctb to convert your color-dependent print style tables to named tables. If you do not, all of the print style information you specified in your drawing will be lost.

  1. Select a named print style table (.stb file) that you want to use with the drawing.
  2. Click Open.
  3. NOTE If you have not converted a color-dependent print style table to a named print style table, you will be warned that the table you have selected does not contain color mapping and the drawing cannot be converted.
To change a drawing to use color-dependent print style tables
  1. Open the drawing that uses named print style tables (.stb files).
  2. Type convertpstyles, and then press Enter.
  3. If you are sure you want to convert the drawing and lose all print style assignments, click OK in the prompt that displays.

If you do not want to lose the print style assignments, click Cancel.

  1. NOTE Converting a drawing to use color-dependent print style tables will remove all of the named print style information from entities and layers. However, the named print style tables are not deleted from your computer.
Converting print style tables
  1. You can convert a color-dependent print style table to a named print style table. You cannot convert a named print style table to a color-dependent print style table because color-dependent tables contain only print styles that are named after the 255 colors to which they map.
  2. Converting a color-dependent print style table to a named print style table can be helpful in the following situations:
  3. You don't want to create a named print style table from scratch.
  4. You want to create a named print style table that has the same settings as a color-dependent print style table, but with some new print styles or other custom settings.
You want to convert a drawing to use named print style tables and you want to reuse most of print styles already defined in a color-dependent print style table.
To convert a color-dependent print style table to a named print style table
  1. Type convertctb, and then press Enter.
  2. Select the color-dependent print style table (.ctb file) that you want to convert.
  3. Click Open.
  4. Enter a name for the new named print style table (.stb file).
  5. Click Save.
  6. The print styles in the new table are named Style 1, Style 2, and so on. If want to use different print style names, rename the print styles before you assign them to entities and layers in your drawing. If you rename the print styles after assigning them, they will not match when you print your drawing. For information about renaming print styles, See Modifying print style tables.
Turning off print style tables
  1. When you turn off print style tables, entities print according to their own properties. However, all of the print style information is saved so you can easily turn on print styles again. Actual print style table files are not deleted, and for drawings that use named print style tables, entities and layers retain their assigned print styles.
To turn off print style tables
  1. If necessary, click the desired Layout tab, or click the Model tab.
  2. Do one of the following:
  3. Choose File > Plot.
  4. On the Standard toolbar, click the Plot tool (
  5. ).
  • Type print and then press Enter.
  • Click the Advanced tab.
  • Under Print Style Table (Pen Assignments), select None.
  • At the prompt, choose Yes to turn off print style tables for all layouts in the drawing, including the Model tab, or choose No to turn off print style tables only for the individual layout listed in Layout Name on the Print dialog box.
  • Select Save Changes to Layout, and then click Apply to save your changes.