Finding inspiration in even the most mundane of tasks

The MText Question

In AutoCAD Architecture on January 16, 2010 at 10:44 am

Just a quick AutoCAD tip for the weekend.  A lot of companies that have used AutoCAD for more than a decade have customized their standard SHX font, especially to show symbols such as Diameter, Angle, Centerline, etc.  The common method for displaying these special characters is to use the ‘percent percent’ code (e.g. %%169).  This has worked fine for years, but in newer versions of AutoCAD, when using MText, for some reason some of the symbols display as question marks.

You could explode the MText object to single-line text to get the symbol to display, but I’m not too fond of that solution as I am a die hard fan of MText.  The solution I have used is to use the ‘ALT key code’, which works for most of the problematic symbols I’ve encountered.  The way to to this is to hold the ALT key while keying a 4-digit number on your keyboard’s number pad (make sure NumLock is on).  It can be a little tricky on a laptop, but it still works.  For example, %%169 would be ALT+0169, and %%43 would be ALT+0043 (the zero padding is applied to the front of the code).

If you have any other solutions feel free to comment.


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