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Multiple Rectangle Placement


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I am laughing a bit for asking such a basic question as I have been a Vectorworks - MiniCad user for almost 20 years! Is there a way to place multiple instances of a rectangle or other shape?


For example I click on the rectangle tool, I enter the size I want, select the handle placement, and click in the screen and get a rectangle. If I want another rectangle of the exact same size and parameters I have to open the tool once again and click "OK" since all the parameters are still entered from the previous use.


This is fine but in my work every project I have requires multiple rectangles for example. It would be nice to flip a switch so that I can click, click, click, etc. placing the same rectangle all over the drawing at the click points until I release the tool and not have to continuely open up the tool for every identical rectangle I want.


Is this possible?


Over the years I get to the point of a project where I need this but I just want to finish the drawing and just work with opening the tool repeatedly. During this process I have always said "I am going to find out how to place multiple instances of the same shape without opening the tool each time". Well finally after 20 years today is the day! LOL


Anyone know if this is possible? I know from my class training with AutoCAD long long ago that AutoCAD did this 20 years ago so I figure Vectorworks must do it too. Haha.


Thanks for the help!

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Yup, I do use the click to drag duplicates and it works fine. But click, click, click, snapping to a selected midpoint or endpoint etc. continuously would be SO fast especially if you have 40 of them that are all over the screen in random locations. Maybe VW can get that feature toggle in there someday?

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4 hours ago, TomKen said:

You could also just draw a bunch of rectangles click click,  any random size.  Then select them all and in the OIP set the width and height to the size you want for all of them at the same time.


@TomKenLove this solution: as long as in the OIP the selection handle chosen is center, if I'm not mistaken & the rect tool is set to draw from center, its a piece a cake!

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7 hours ago, TomKen said:

You could also just draw a bunch of rectangles

Nice workflow @TomKen! Suggesting possible methods, noting that each rectangle deselects when a new one is started.  Method needs some way to ID the objects for selection and rescale en masse at end.  A few options:

Draw them on a unique design layer.

Set the drawing to apply some unique state prior to drawing so that the rectangles acquire this state and other objects do not - eg a designated class or flll color, or line color/type, etc, then change drawing state back to whatever is usual context.


If on unique layer, Select All. (Layer visibility should NOT be set to Show/Snap/Modify other layers)

If using unique class or attributes, select via the Select Similar tool (magic wand) or the Custom Selection command (Tools Menu). Set the selection criteria appropriately.



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if you do this a lot, maybe consider I hybrid option from all the suggestions -


- have a blue symbol of a rectangle available in your resource browser.

- place loci at the centre of all the rectangles you want to place.

- select the loci and use Replace with Symbol to place the blue symbol rectangles.

- they should be all selected and be rectangles instead of symbols. Mass edit their dimensions in the OIP as needed.


The disadvantage to just placing them all as symbols is that you have to set the rotation for each one as part of the insertion process.




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Seeing all this makes me think this is a great enhancement wish.  @jak5352 please post with details in the wish forum.


For me, I think I would fall back on my usual workflow (but I'm open to change): create the first object, copy to clipboard (cmd c), then click to establish next center location, then paste from clipboard (cmd v).  It's a 2 hand operation, and a click&command each time, but if snap points are existing, very quick and reliable.


More workaround:

If locations are not to existing snap points and are dispersed, perhaps the Edit>Array commands could be useful? Maybe run several arrays with different parameters and start points? 


If actual random locations are desired, . . . um . . . I really don't know, other than just clicking about in the drawing space to establish center points. Randomness not guaranteed.





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