Dimension FAQs

When I try to use Auto Dimension, I get an error message that says, “SoftPlan was unable to Auto Dimension this case.”

SoftPlan looks at the building perimeter for walls and beams that are bearing. If it cannot find a complete enclosure that is bearing, it will not Auto Dimension the floor plan. 1) Make sure that the walls you have on the floor plan are bearing walls. 2) Make sure that the walls join properly at the corners.

Why does a box sometimes appear in place of my small dimension numbers?

A small box symbol will replace a dimension number if the number overlaps other items on the screen. To display the number, use the Move command to move the number to an area with more room. To prevent this from happening again, go to File > System/Drawing Options > Dimension Options and select the option for ‘Offset Small Dimensions’. This will offset the dimension number outside of the space allotted for the dimension in order to display it. 

Is there anyway to bypass a wall when stringing dimensions?

Yes.  Use the Dimension Point command.

How do I change the size of text being used for Opening Dimensions?

This can be changed in the Drawing Options for an individual drawing or in the System Options to make the change for new drawings. Select File > System/Drawing Options > Character Setup. Here you may change the value located under Opening Sizes. 

Is there a difference between Enlarge Dimension Numbers and changing the size in Character Setup?

Yes. The Enlarge Dimension Numbers toggle (found under the Options menu or by selecting Ctrl+Q) is a visual display only. When the drawing is printed, the size listed in the Drawing Options > Character Setup is what will be used on the print.

Dimension changes are not being accepted. How do I correct this?

In order to use the keypad to enter dimensions, the Num Lock must be turned on.

When I attempt to dimension between walls, the dimension line continues to pick up lines?

When any of the Dimension/Extension functions are selected, the default setting in the Status Bar located just above the icons, will have ‘Shape Dimension’ checked. To bypass any shapes when dimensioning, which would include lines, simply take the check off of the ‘Shape Dimension’ function prior to running your dimension string.

How do I pull dimensions from the corner of the building outline to the property when they are not parallel?

Use a Dimension Point that is available in Site Mode. Select Dimension > Dimension Point and click on the starting point of the dimension. The dimension line will run perpendicular to the object selected. Click to end the dimension line.

Why are my 1/8″ increment fractions not displaying or not displaying correctly on screen or when printed?

 File > System Options > Character Setup. In the section for Fractional Characters, select 'Expand'. 

How do I pull an extension 90 degrees to screen from a corner that is 45 degrees to screen?

In this case you will want to draw in a line to represent the extension line. To draw a line select Draw > Shape > Line.

How do I pull extensions from a wall to show the length of each panelized section?

Using the Erase > Part Erase, break the wall into multiple sections. Then Group Extension and Dimension each section of wall individually.

How do I get extensions to pull from the outside of a stud?

To ensure a precise extension location, set up extension options for specific walls using the Wall Definition menu: File > System/Drawing Options > Define Wall > Edit. Use the drop-down menu in the Extension column to specify ‘Outside’ for the Stud material. The placement of the extension will override other dimension options.

How do I display Opening sizes, Rough Opening sizes and Product codes?

Go to File > Drawing Options > Dimension Options. Check the items you want to display. This will apply to any new openings that you draw. To display any of these items for selective or existing openings select Edit > Edit Item and select the opening. Select the Display tab, and under Opening Text check the items you want to display. To display these items on additional openings, select Edit > Repeat Edit (Box) or Repeat Edit (Polygon) and draw a box or polygon around additional openings to turn on the display.

Note: In order to turn on the Product code for openings, you must have Product code checked under the Plan tab as well as the Display tab (Edit > Edit item check Product code under the Plan tab and Display tab).

How do I have dimensions round up to 1/8″ accuracy?

SoftPlan will display dimensions exactly as they measure out. If a dimensioned distance is such that a fraction is involved, then that fraction will be displayed up to 1/32nd of an inch. Use the Edit Item feature to edit dimensions accordingly.

How do I move an Opening Dimension?

From the Move menu, select Move. Then select Misc > Locate Type > Opening Dimension. You can now proceed to select the dimension and move it.

Note: The steps of Misc > Locate Type can be toggled from the keyboard by selecting CTRL+L and selecting Opening Dimension.

How do I turn off Opening Dimensions?

To turn off all Opening Dimensions, select File > System/ Drawing Options > Dimension Options. Uncheck the Option for Opening size. This will be set for any new openings drawn. To change any existing Openings, select Edit> Edit Item and select one of the openings. In the Display Tab, uncheck the option for Opening size. Press OK. Then immediately select the command for Edit > Repeat Edit Box, or Poly in order to select the other Openings on the drawing. All selected Openings will update to not show the Opening size text. 

How do I turn off Opening sizes, Rough Opening sizes and Product codes?

To collectively turn off any of the Opening Dimensions, Product codes and / or Rough Opening Sizes select File > Drawing Options > Dimension Options. Uncheck these items in the menu. This will apply to any new openings that you draw. If you need to turn off selective or existing openings, select Edit > Edit Item and select the opening. Select the Display tab, and uncheck the Product Code and / or Size field(s) under Opening Text. Select Edit > Repeat edit (Box) or Repeat Edit (Polygon) and draw a box around additional openings to turn off. 

I am trying to draw a dimension to a symbol, but the dimension is not registering the symbol. Is it possible to dimension to a symbol?

With the Dimension command selected, check the "Symbol Dimension" option in the status bar prior to drawing the dimension line.

What if my intermediate dimensions do not add up to what my overall dimension is?

Select Edit > Edit Item and edit the walls from which the extensions/dimension are pulling from. It is possible that the walls were not drawn in with the lock on, which would allow the wall to be a single degree or so off. To avoid drawing a wall without lock, be sure that the Snap feature is not enabled. The snap can be enabled/disabled by either selecting the icon or the menu Tools > Snap or F11.

How to move my dimension number off the dimension line?

With the Move command selected, turn off the cursor lock using Ctrl + A or F12 after selecting the dimension number.

How do I select a dimension number to move to another place on the dimension string?

After selecting Move, select Misc > Locate Type > Dimension > Dimension Number. SoftPlan will only look for dimension numbers to move. (Note: Ctrl + L will also open the Locate Type menu.

Is there a way to remove the wall thickness dimension display?


Select File > Drawing Options > Dimension Options. Remove the checkmark beside the ‘Wall Thickness’ option to have the dimension number removed. Uncheck ‘Line Through Wall’ to remove the dimension line.

How do I set up dimension and extension options specific to walls?

To ensure a precise dimension and extension location, set up options for specific walls using the Wall Definition menu: File > System/Drawing Options > Define Wall > Edit. Use the drop-down menu in the Dimension and Extension columns to specify the placement of the wall's specific materials. This setting will override all other dimension options.

Why does SoftPlan dimension to lines?

By default, with the item ‘Shape Dimension’ on the Status Bar checked, SoftPlan will automatically dimension to any wall or line it intersects. If you don't want to dimension lines, uncheck the item ‘Shape Dimension’ before you Dimension.

On Windows XP, why are 1/8″ increment fractions not displaying or printing?

A setting in Windows has caused this and needs to be changed to correct this.Click on Start > Control panel. Go into Regional and Language options. Click the Languages tab, click the Details button, and click the Advanced tab. In the System Configuration section, place a checkmark in the ‘Turn off Advanced Text Services' option. Also, on the Languages tab in the Supplemental Language Support section, make sure that both of the options are not checked here.Click the Ok button and then close the Control Panel. You may not be prompted to reboot the computer but you should do so anyway.

When I add, move or adjust an object, SoftPlan adds extensions and dimensions. How can I stop this from occurring?

To turn off this feature go to File > System Options > and uncheck the "Auto Extension and Dimension" option. Press "OK" and save the changes when prompted.