Rotating your UCS

Thanks to LIZ for this tip. Hope it helps…

If you’ve had a drawing that isn’t completely based around 90 degree angles, this tip will halp you from tilting your head and straining you neck…

The drawing shown above has about 1/3 of the plan in an angle other than the 90 degree angle that makes drafting easier. This drawing was done before I knew how to rotate the UCS and match the view of the screen. So this drawing may look nice but is not correct. This could have been avoided if would have done what this tutorial is going to teach… So lesson learned…

Why is this helpful?
When you have the UCS rotated and the view to match, you are able to turn on ortho and draw correct lines that match the needed angle without having to set various polar angles and having to process over think perpendicular walls to that angle.

  • How do you do this?
    First set the UCS (User Coordinate System)
    UCS <enter>
  • 1st click specifies the new axis location for the UCS
  • 2nd click specifies the new angle of the X axis (as seen below)

The 3rd click specifies which side of the new X axis will the Y axis be facing. The cursor (cross-hairs) should now be aligned with the new specified angle (as seen below)

  • You can work this way and Ortho will draw lines accurately lined up with this new angle, but you may start to tilt your neck or got sick of the way it looks. To rotate the view to match the new UCS angle:
  • PLAN <enter>

in the command line you will see options and one should say <Current> just hit <enter> to accept this option and your plan-view will now rotate to match the “current” UCS.

To switch back to your normal UCS and rotate you view to match:

UCS <enter>

P <enter> (for previous)

PLAN <enter>

<enter> to accept <Current>

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About AutoCAD Tips

As weird as it sounds, AutoCAD is a hobby for me. But I am fortunate enough to have a career doing my hobby. I work for a large engineering firm supporting CAD users in various disciplines. My dream job would be to work for a company like Autodesk or Disney's Imagineering where inspiring others and using innovative approaches and software are adding value to projects and bringing design in all areas up to a new level. This blog serves as a repository or knowledge base for myself so that I can reference tips & tricks that I have learned and also refer others to it as well. I hope that this blog helps you learn at least one tip to make your drafting experience better.
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24 Responses to Rotating your UCS

  1. unmesh says:

    thanks a ton for this!!!!

  2. cam says:

    or you could use the UCSFOLLOW command, set to be on by setting it to “1”. That way when you set a new UCS the view will automatically change to match the chosen UCS. I like to use the OBject setting most – it’s the most instantly gratifying.

    • Correct, definitely the best option (UCSFOLLOW=1). I have keyboard macros assigned (cheating with Autohook I’m afraid) and CTRL+0 rotates my UCS to any object I select, along with the view, so I never crane my neck. If the view is rotated wrong? Simples! CTRL+9 rotates it all clockwise in 90deg increments…

      Another command that may be of interest with rotated views is the TORIENT (found somewhere in your Express Tools). It allows you to orient text (batches of it) to align with your chose View.

  3. Autocad Newbie says:

    I know this may sound noobish but is there a way to change where to views are facing while on 3d? I’m trying to edit the front face of a cube but it leads me to a left view setting and vice versa.. It is interchanged… Can you help me set it back to standard or correct view?
    Thanks much.
    -Autocad Newbie

    • AutoCAD Tips says:

      You can reset the UCS and your view by entering in the command line: UCS PLAN

      What this does is reset the UCS to the “World” location and then the PLAN command will make your view be perpendicular to the newly adjusted UCS.

      Hope this helps
      ~Greg

  4. laud8 says:

    Dear Greg,

    I have a question and hope you can help me :)
    I am using 2013 LT. I change UCS in Layout but when i come back to Model i see that the UCS of the model changes too. Beforeusing 2013 LT version, i was using 2012 Full and never faced this problem before in 2012. Do you know how can i fix it?

    Thanks for your enlightments :)

  5. jay tamakuwala says:

    thnks a lot was in search for this for long time

  6. Maria says:

    This plan-view-ucs match is exactly what I was looking for, thank you!

  7. WilFel says:

    SO SO SO SO SO SO GREAT! and well explained. i almost gave up searching, was really getting desperate….! THANK YOU!

  8. waqas says:

    how to rotate only north west east south wheel
    and i am trying this the top view doesnt change what can i do plz help

    • AutoCAD Tips says:

      After you set the UCS use in the command line:
      PLAN
      C

      This will align your view to the newly adjusted UCS.

      When you are done with that view and want to return to the “World” UCS, use:
      UCS
      PLAN

  9. samiullah says:

    sir i need to produce coordinates with leader.
    please show me how…

  10. Laura says:

    Helpful tutorial, thanks!

    I’m working in 2015 LT, and when I change the UCS cursor angle, the lines I try to draw aren’t showing up. (It’s not a layer issue…) Any clue on what’s going on?

    • AutoCAD Tips says:

      I haven’t used LT for about 5 years now – after you change the UCS, Use PLAN [enter][enter] to align the new UCS with your screen. I am wondering if that may help. Also, since you are adjusting the UCS, I wonder if you are even able to adjust the Z value of the UCS with AutoCAD LT. If so, maybe this is why you aren’t able to see the lines.
      I’m sorry I dont have more to suggest or to try without having LT to to try for myself.
      I dont know if LT has the AUDIT command, if so maybe there is an error in your drawing.
      ~Greg

    • AutoCAD Tips says:

      one more idea. if you are drawing lines from an existing drawing, is the drawing a 3D drawing?
      if so, it could be that you are snapping to a 3D element and since lines can vary in 3D (different z values) from one end point to the next, maybe you are making a 3D line and LT is not letting you see this element.

  11. Durai Pandian.A.K. says:

    Thank you so much
    It works

  12. Roberta says:

    Hello, this worked for me perfectly before. But now when I do it, text and dimensions, look like if they have been mirrored. Any suggestion?

  13. Luis Pastrana says:

    Hi Greg,
    Would you please help me with the following?
    I just opened a base cad file in 2013 version. I noticed that the model view has been rotated.
    How can I un rotate the model view to its original model view. I mean showing the truth north?
    Thanks in advanced for your help.
    Luis Pastrana

    • AutoCAD Tips says:

      If the VIEW has been been rotated, you get back to the un-rotated home view by entering
      UCS [enter] [enter]
      PLAN [enter] [enter]

      If the objects have been rotated, you might be out of luck if you don’t know what the original rotation angle was. If this is the case, look for an object (or objects) that have the rotation angle and use this link that describes how to rotate objects and use other objects as a reference: http://autocadtips.wordpress.com/2011/04/16/rotate-with-the-reference-option-to-align/

      ~Greg

    • AutoCAD Tips says:

      One more thing to check since this is a reference…
      We recently had a drawing and one of the references was off and not aligned correctly. It was because that reference’s BASE had been moved. If you open the problem drawing and enter BASE in the command line, make sure that it is set to 0,0,0

  14. Luis Pastrana says:

    Thank you for your quick response and tips.

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