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Re: "Read Only" AutoCad files

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I believe that the line weight shoulds be correct in Adobe Acrobat.  I
will not that I have never exported a CAD file (either MicroStation or
AutoCAD) to an Acrobat format, but considering the "mechanism(s)" used to
create the Acrobat file, I would believe that the line weights would be
included.  Basically, there are two ways to "create" Acrobat files,
assuming that the Adobe Acrobat software is being used (there are
freeware/shareware programs that can create PDF files).  The first method
is to use the Acrobat "print driver" and the second is to use Distiller
(part of the Acrobat package).  I will speak to using Distiller, since I
know the "full mechanism".

To create a PDF using Distiller (and many of those freeware/shareware
programs), one first must "print/save" to a PostScript file using a
PostScript printer driver.  This would include many (if not most) of the
laser printer drivers that most companies will use (ie many of the
LaserJets out there are PostScript printers).  The PostScript file is then
"run" through Distiller to create the PDF (Distiller converts PostScript
to PDF).  Therefore, IF your office has a PostScript printer that you use
for "quick" plots (8 1/2x11 or 11x17) and you already have a pen table
setup for that laserprinter (and some plotters can do fact
most of the smaller office type plotters, including the DesignJet series
from HP, can do PostScript), then creating your PDFs in this method will
provide the correct line weights (after all if the laser printer has a
correct pen table, then the quick plot will have the correct line

I would believe that the PDFWriter (the PDF print driver) would product
the same result...because I believe that PDFWriter internally does the
step of make a PostScript version then converting to a PDF.  I am sure
others can comment. (Dennis?)

Hope that helps,


On Mon, 18 Dec 2000, Gerard Madden wrote:

> Peeran S, 
> It wasn't my problem actually, but I'm sure everyon appreciates your input.
> The problem with the method you described is that it prohibits the use of lineweights when printing. The problem establishing the cad file as a bitmap, tiff, etc... is that it will give you the image as it appears on the monitor (Colors, lines, and fonts) but it will not plot like a regular plot in autocad where the thickness of the line is based upon the color of the line. This may also be true using the Adobe Acrobat as well. If the client wants to plot just like he/she was standing in your office, the lineweights will likely be wrong using image files unless they are scanned from a printed out sheet. 
> Maybe this works in ACAD 2000 where the lineweights can be by entity instead of by color. My impression of the use of this method is that it is very difficult to discern between two linetypes of a close thickness on screen. Is anyone using this feature in ACAD 2000 other than Architects. It would also seemed to render any standard cad files developed in ACAD 14 or earlier useless since all of the lineweight properties are no longer valid. 
> Gerard Madden, P.E.
> Civil Engineer
> Middlebrook + Louie, Structural Engineers
> 71 Stevenson Street, Suite 2100
> San Francisco, CA 94105
> Tel: 415.546.4900
> Fax: 415.974.3680
> Email: gmadden(--nospam--at)