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We use hatch pattern in almost all of our drawings. But sometimes working with hatch can be very slow and annoying. Since many versions ago, Picking a point doesn’t always work. AutoCAD often fail to find the boundary automatically.
Let’s see some workaround we use to work with hatches faster.
1. Turn off HPQUICKPREVIEW
In newer version, AutoCAD has hatch quick preview. You can see live preview of hatched area before you click your mouse. In simple drawings, it is nice to have. But when we work with complex drawings, it can be annoying. It makes the cursor freeze and jumping around when AutoCAD is trying to find the boundary.
If you have that problem, you may want to turn off the preview. You can turn off the HPQUICKPREVIEW system variable.
Type HPQUICKPREVIEW in AutoCAD command line and press enter.Type OFF then enter again.
You may also want to try working with hatch preview but lower the HPQUICKPREVIEWTIMEOUT to 1.
2. Use object as boundary
AutoCAD can quickly create hatch if you select object, instead of picking a point. Sometimes it is faster to create a closed polyline as boundary than trying to find where is the gap and fix the drawing.
3. Create separation lines
If creating polylines seems tedious, we might want to try an alternative first. Sometimes AutoCAD fail to find boundary, even we know the area has no gap. It can be because the boundary has too many objects.
You can try to divide the area by creating lines on non-plot layer, to divide it to smaller areas. Then try to pick a point again. Remember, if you click in multiple areas before you end the hatch command it will be created as one instance.
4. Erase and OOPS!
This is my colleague favorite workaround. The idea is the same with no. 3: to make the boundary simpler. He will erase objects near the boundary and other objects that will not be calculated when creating hatch.
After the drawing has become simpler, he creates hatch. Then he restore the objects by using OOPS command.
OOPS will restore last deleted objects. But will not cancel objects you drew after erase command.
Remember, only last erased objects are restored. So you need to erase them in one go.