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Advanced Hatch Plotting Settings

Advanced Hatch Plotting Settings

My company works on large highways projects, and for all of our plan sets we mostly print in B&W, due to cost and to be conscientious to the workflows on site. To ensure legibility, we hatch in different patterns, but when there comes a limit to usable differentiable sets, we are "forced" to identify areas by color.


Given the push for paperless offices and construction, I believe that preparing plans in color would be optimal. However, in this transition where many clients still need B&W prints, we are left with this conundrum of how to present - and we default to B&W patterns over color. 


In AutoCAD, there is the option to set up plots styles - we use the custom function to allow us to convert colored lines to black lines of varying weight (thereby making it far easier for the designers to work with on the computer, but also legible at B&W). When we want to print in color, we can use a different plot setting which will retain the line color.


I propose a further plot setting: allow for the conversion of Hatches. Imagine, for example, being able to hatch 3 areas in red, yellow and blue in CAD. When printed in color it would retain its original properties, but if changed to B&W, these would be automatically converted to a predefined pairing of left and right diagonals and dots.


This could also be accomplished in something like the layer manager - where you can define how a line displays and plots independently - the Hatch Manager. 


Currently only way I see to complete such an action would be to hatch everything on 2 different layers - a color layer, and a B&W layer, and you would have to switch between these. But you would have to draw it twice, and it is quite cumbersome. 


Hatching is a very important tool within AutoCAD, so I believe that such an option would be revolutionary!

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