editing blocks

N/A
Here's the scenario:
i create and save a block in the block library.
i use the block in a drawing.
in another drawing I edit the master block and it gets saved in the library with the same name.
in the first drawing i try to replace all the block occurances with the new block version.

This is where i struggle.
the new block graphics show correctly in the block preview pane, but if I try and drag the block from the library to the model I always get the old version.
I can't use "replace" because I can't access the new version.
Is there a way of updating old block occurances with new block versions.

I can find three work arounds, all of which are cumbersome.
1. delete all occurance's of the old block version and then go through and place occurances of the new version
2. save the new block version with a different name and use replace, but I find I can't go back to the old name later on because that brings back the old version of the block.
3. re- edit the block again in the drawing with the old versions, but i hate the idea of doubling up on work.

I think it's pretty clear that I don't completely understand how the block library works, but even after reading the help files many times I am none the wiser.

Cheers
Pete
8 REPLIES

Re: editing blocks

Community Manager Community Manager
Community Manager
Are you sure that the updated block has been saved to the library properly?
What is the workflow that you are using to ensure that the block in the library is updated?
Your best bet is to open the library file and use replace on the block.
It sounds like the original block in the library has not been updated.

Regards,
Rick B.

Re: editing blocks

N/A
Hi Rick
I spent a bit of time trying lots of different ways this afternoon, but I still can't get it to work.
My original workflow was
1.create a block
2. drag to the library
3. rename
4. drag from library to model ( do this on two drawings open simultaneously )
5. right click on a block occurance in the model and click open, select the block and unblock, edit, close block.
Now I was under the impression that this would also update the master block in the library. But is the master block local to a drawing?
But if I drag the block from the library to the model I get the old version.
I tried opening the block from the block selection pane and editing, but this method gave the same results as the first.
I then tried the method you suggested in you reply as follows.
1. Double click a block in the library, it now opens.
2. select the block and unblock it.
3. make the changes and re-block it.
4. save by clicking the save icon adjacent the application button.
Now if I click the block in the library, the new graphics are displayed in the preview pane.
5. next select the old version of the block in the model, right click and click replace.
6. choose the block to replace from the list, and browse to choose the block in the library, click open, then click OK.
Nothing happens.

Re: editing blocks

Community Manager Community Manager
Community Manager
As you are finding blocks are not associative between files. A blocked placed in a file from a library is a copy of the block in the Active File. Making changes to the original library will not change any files where that block is used.
I believe you are close. Here is what I tried and it worked for me.
First of all you want to modify the original block in the library from which the blocks are derived or copied.
Open the block library file. By the way, Is your library file a Draft(.dft) file?
You do not have to unblock to do this. Simply Right Mouse Click on the block in the list and click on Open.
Make your changes and then click the Close Block button. This changes the original block. Save and Close the file.
Open the file where you have placed a copy of the block from the library.
Click on the Library tab in EdgeBar and you will see a list of the blocks in the Active Document. This is NOT a list of the blocks in the library.
Right Mouse Click on the block in the Active Document list that you want to replace and click on Replace.
In the file list above the block list, click on the file that is the block library file.
You will see two lists in the block list. There will be the Active Document list followid be the list of blocks in the file you clicked.
Right Mouse Click on the block that you want to replace in the Active Document list and click on Replace.
This will display the Replace Block dialog. You will again see two sequential lists (Active Document and Library selected).
Click on the block in the library list that you want to use to replace the block you selected in the active document list.
You will see a preview of the modified block in the dialog.
Click on OK in the dialog.
You will get a warning asking you to confirm replacing the existing block.
Click on OK. The display of all occurrences of that block should change.
Let me know if this does not work.
Regards,
Rick B.

Re: editing blocks

N/A
Hi Ricky
thanks for your time.
All my blocks are individual .dft files rather than a collection of blocks in one file. I believe this is the root cause of my problems. I will explain later.
When I follow your steps I get some different things happening.
1. Right clicking a block in the library does not give the option to open. Right clicking the library block in the block preview pane only gives the option to sort and place block. The open option is greyed out. But a double click of the file in the library will open the file for editing. Save and close works and the new geometry displays correctly in the block preview pane. When I edit this way I find I still need to unblock and I don't get the close block button.
2. The rest of the steps worked as you said.

Now the interesting part:
All the above works perfectly and I can now replace blocks the way I want, BUT only if I collect my blocks into one .dft file.
If I leave my blocks as individual .dft files then the method you outlined does not work. All the steps go through as we discussed but the blocks are not replaced.
So now I will experiment around with storing my blocks as collections rather than individual files.
I think I should be able to replace blocks irrespective of how they are arranged in the library, but at least now I have a work around.
Thanks for your help, I learned a lot about block preview pane which is great.
Cheers
Pete

Re: editing blocks

Community Manager Community Manager
Community Manager
Here is what I believe is happening. What you call a library is only a collection of draft files in some folder that you are calling a library. Correct?
A draft file can be inserted into another draft file as a block. It basically copies the geometry on the active sheet and creates a block from that geometry.
In your original file that you are using to place a block from, do you have any blocks at all? Or is there only geometry on the sheet?
If this the case then there is nothing in the original file that can be selected to do a replace. Replace is looking for blocks.

Regards,
Rick B.

Re: editing blocks

N/A
Hi Rick
My " library" is a collection of draft files in some folder, as you suggest, but each draft file contains one block.
I call them blocks because at some stage I used the block command to create a block of some frequently used geometry. I dragged the newly created blocks to the "block library Pane" The were named symbol1 at this point and I renamed them. I assumed that this was a block library. Is this assumption incorrect?
To place my blocks I would drag them from the block library pane to a .dft model
If I then use "select" and choose one of my blocks in the model I get the "block option" dialog window opening so I never thought anything was wrong.
I always create my blocks in a temp .dft file on the default layer, use the block command, drag to library and delete the temp file. I do this to avoid the blocks bringing lots of layers with them to new drawings. ( i like to keep my layers tidy Smiley Happy )
If you are thinking that I draw a shape in a .dft file and save it to a folder, and just call it a block, then that is not what I do. I always use block command and sometimes block label as needed to create my blocks.
Cheers
Pete

Re: editing blocks

Community Manager Community Manager
Community Manager
Pete,
OK. I am finally understanding your workflow. When you click on the 'Library' tab in edge bar, you will see three windows. The top window is the file system that you can navigate through. This window has nothing directly to do with blocks and/or block libraries. All it is doing is displaying and giving you access to files such as Draft files (.dft). The second window is specifically used for blocks. It will display a list of blocks in the active draft file and will also display a list of any blocks that are contained in a draft file that you select in the top window. Click on a draft file in the top window and look at the second window.

When you drag geometry onto the explorer window in EdgeBar when the Library tab is pressed, you are simply creating a draft file that contains the selected geometry. This can be any geometry. It does not have to be a block. We use 'symbol#' ad a default name. Again, this has noting to do with blocks because it can be any beometry. Draw a bunch of lines and drag them into this window. You will see a new 'symbol#' draft file created with the selected lines. If you include a block with the geometry you drag into this window, it will create a block in the file along with the selected lines. The lines will not be added to the block. Again, all you are doing is creating a draft file with the selected geometry.

Now that you have a draft file 'symbol#' on disk, let's discuss how to access a block in the file. You cannot simply drag the 'symbol#.dft' file back onto your sheet and extract a block out of the file. What dragging the file onto a sheet does is to create a new block from all the geometry within the draft file. There does not have to be a block in the file. In the case I explained before where you can have a block and extra geometry (lines), when you drag this draft file onto a sheet you will extract the geometry, block and lines, and create a block in the file that contains this geometry. In this case you will have a nested block. If there is only a block in the file you will still have a nested block. It creates a block from the selected file in which there is a block.

What you need to do is to use the second window. Click on the 'symbol#' file in the top window. You will see the file in the second window along with all the blocks contained in the file. Click and drag a block that is in the file onto the sheet. This extracts the block and creates a copy of it on the sheet. It does not copy all the other geometry like dragging the file onto the sheet does.

You cannot modify a block in one file and drag that block into the explorer window and expect it to update a block contained in a file in the explorer window. You must open the file that contains the block to make that change. You can modify a block in the active file and save the file. Open the file that contains the original block. Click on the file in edge bar that has the modified block so that you can see the list of blocks in that file. Replace the original block with the updated one using the Replace command.

I know that this is a lot to comprehend, but try to follow through it. The main thing to remember is that the Library tab is just a window into the file system. It is not a block Library.

Regards,
Rick B.

Re: editing blocks

N/A
Thanks Rick
That explains everything perfectly. The nested block comments also explain a couple of other questions I had.
Awsum
Cheers
Pete