DREF Project-to-Drawing Association

August 15, 2022 Bryant Quinney

The ability to data reference AEC objects from one drawing to another is a highly valuable tool in the Civil 3D arsenal. However, there is a notable hurdle that users typically find themselves crossing: changing the current project when switching drawings.

This is where the command SHORTCUTASSOCIATEENABLE comes in. This facilitates the automatic project switching when opening a drawing from a different project. How cool is that!? Generally, a workflow can look like this:


     1. Work is being performed in DWG and project 'A',

     2. User closes the drawing 'A' and opens DWG 'B'.

     3. Project 'B' will automatically be loaded in the Prospector.


When using the command from the command line, you will not get any feedback, nor will you need to set anything, since it is not a variable. Very cool I think, but there are a couple of things to note:


     1. The drawing must be associated with a project.

     2. The SHORTCUTASSOCIATEENABLE command must be set for each drawing and then saved.

     3. Multiple drawings being open from different projects may prevent the automatic switching from occurring.


The command SHORTCUTASSOCIATEENABLE can be implemented within the acaddoc.lsp for automatic loading, so that is a good time (and headache) saver. 

About the Author

Bryant Quinney

Civil Solutions Applications Expert<br><br>Working with clients to implement various technologies and techniques within civil engineering disciplines. With my travels, I teach/train, troubleshoot, solve, configure, and implement solutions based on client needs. Drawing on many years of experience across various types of projects, I continue to enjoy doing this type of work.

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