Ruler and Scale

Use the Ruler to measure and set Map Scale.

Measure Distances

Use the Ruler [m] tool to measure distances between two points. The ruler displays distance based on the currently defined scale and the drawing’s Display Units. Choose View > Display Units to change units between Points, Drawing Units, or Map Units.

  1. Choose the Ruler [m] tool.
  2. Press to place its beginning point, drag and release to place its end point.
  3. Grab either end of the ruler to adjust its beginning and end points, or the middle of the ruler to reposition.

Calibrate a Custom Map Scale

The Ruler tool enables users to interactively set map scale within their drawing.

You will need a known ground-distance from the image in order to calibrate the scale (on a scanned map or photograph, this can be an existing scale bar or a recognizable feature for which you know the length, such as the side of a building).

  1. Choose the Ruler [m] tool.
  2. Press-drag the ruler to place it between two known points. Grab the ruler ends to adjust as needed.
  3. Initially the ruler shows an arbitrary distance. Do one of the following:
    • Double-click the ruler to open the scale calibration window, or
    • Choose File > Scale… or File > Map Size & Units… from the main menu.
  4. Choose the map units from the drop-down list (for example, miles).
  5. Enter the ground distance of the length measured (for example 2 miles) and the scale will adjust accordingly.

Ruler, scale bar, and drawing are now calibrated to the proper scale.

Toggle Between Points, Drawing Units, and Map Units

At the top of the Geometry Tab, toggle between displaying ‘Points’, ‘Drawing Units’, or ‘Scale Units’ from the dropdown menu. The Ruler tool and object geometry will change automatically to your selected display units.