Track to Points on Objects (Object Snap Tracking)

You can draw objects at specific angles or in specific relationship to other objects along specified directions called alignment paths.

AutoTrack helps you draw objects at specific angles or in specific relationships to other objects. When you turn on AutoTrack, temporary alignment paths help you create objects at precise positions and angles. AutoTrack includes two tracking options: polar tracking and object snap tracking.

You can toggle AutoTrack on and off with the Polar and Otrack buttons on the status bar. Use temporary override keys to turn object snap tracking on and off or to turn off all snapping and tracking. See the keyboard illustration in Override Object Snap Settings.

Object snap tracking works in conjunction with object snaps. You must set an object snap before you can track from an object's snap point.

Object Snap Tracking

Use object snap tracking to track along alignment paths that are based on object snap points. Acquired points display a small plus sign (+), and you can acquire up to seven tracking points at a time. After you acquire a point, horizontal, vertical, or polar alignment paths relative to the point are displayed as you move the cursor over their drawing paths. For example, you can select a point along a path based on an object endpoint or midpoint or an intersection between objects.

In the following illustration, the Endpoint object snap is on. You start a line by clicking its start point (1), move the cursor over another line's endpoint (2) to acquire it, and then move the cursor along the horizontal alignment path to locate the endpoint you want for the line you are drawing (3).

Change Object Snap Tracking Settings

By default, object snap tracking is set to orthogonal. Alignment paths are displayed at 0, 90, 180, and 270 degrees from acquired object points. However, you can use polar tracking angles instead.

For object snap tracking, object points are automatically acquired. However, you can choose to acquire points only when you press SHIFT.

Change Alignment Path Display

You can change how AutoTrack displays alignment paths, and you can change how object points are acquired for object snap tracking. By default, alignment paths stretch to the end of the drawing window. You can change their display to abbreviated lengths, or no length.

Tips for Using Object Snap Tracking

As you use AutoTrack (polar tracking and object snap tracking), you will discover techniques that make specific design tasks easier. Here are a few you might try.