Adding Alternate Dimension Units

Alternate dimension units communicate the dimension in an additional measurement system. They commonly display the metric equivalent for imperial dimensions, or the imperial version for metric dimensions. Alternate dimension units are displayed in square brackets [ ] next to the primary units in the dimension text. You use the Alternate Units tab in the New Dimension Style dialog box to format alternate dimension units.

When you select Display Alternate Units, AutoCAD displays alternate units for dimensions. Setting the units format, precision, rounding, prefixes, suffixes, and zero suppression for alternate dimension units is the same as setting them for primary units (see “Formatting Primary Dimension Units”). However, two settings are unique to alternate units:

  • Multiplier for Alternate Units: Multiplies the primary unit by the number you enter to create the alternate units. The default value, 25.4, is the multiplier for converting inches to millimeters. If you dimension a one-inch line, the dimension displays 1.00 [25.40], and a two-inch dimension displays 2.00 [50.80] or, with inch and millimeter suffixes, 2.00″ [50.80mm].
  • Placement: Sets the alternate unit placement, either after or below the primary units. If you select below, AutoCAD places the primary units above the dimension line and the alternate units below it.


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