I have not found a good, complete, step-by-step description of how to use Publish.
So I figured it out and wrote down the procedure.
Posting it because I had a good day today and feel like sharing the knowledge :)
The constraints are:
- Generally speaking, PUBLISH is for printing multiple SHEETS of multiple DRAWINGS at the touch of a button.
- When I say SHEET I mean the MODEL tab and/or the LAYOUT tab of a DRAWING. When I say DRAWING I mean file, like a DWG or a DXF file, or any compatible drawing format.
- Each SHEET must have only one area-to-print-the-extents-of on it. For example, if you have multiple drawings SIDE-BY-SIDE on one LAYOUT tab, you must divide them up into different tabs to use PUBLISH. If you don't want to divide them up, create a VIEW for each area-to-print first, and print them one at a time, instead of using PUBLISH, not quite as fast but still pretty quick.
Before using Publish, you must do a fairly complicated one-time two-step setup:
- Create a custom plot configuration file, which will reside here:. C:\Documents and Settings\YourUserName\Application Data\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2005\R16.1\enu\plotters\YourPlotterName.pc3
- Create a drawing Template, whose sheet has its Layout Initialized to the custom plot configuration file above, and contains the Page Setup you will Import later. The Template will reside here: C:\Documents and Settings\YourUserName\Local Settings\Application Data\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2005\R16.1\enu\Template\Plot_36_14.dwt
Once everything is setup, Publish works like a charm, printing 1 or 100 (don't know what the limit is) drawings at the touch of a button.
Optionally, make sure there are no unneeded .PC3 files in "C:\Documents and Settings\... ... ...\Application Data\Autodesk\AutoCAD2005\R16.1\enu\Plotters"
In this example, we're plotting to a 36" roll as a 36"x14" paper size.
- Create a custom plot configuration file
Open any DWG (or DXG, etc) file. File > Plot >
The Plot - Model popup window opens. Select a Plotter. If the Paper Size Not Found popup appears, select Use Default paper size (it doesn't matter, you'll customize it next anyway) Select Properties The Plotter Configuration Editor - YourPlotterName popup window opens. Device and Document Settings > Custom Properties >
The YourPlotterName on 126.96.36.199 Properties popup window opens. Paper > Application Media Size > select Custom (... ...) Select the Media Sizes button width 36, height 14, Media Mapping 36" Roll > OK The Plotter Configuration Editor - YourPlotterName popup window reappears. Select OK. The Changes to a Printer Configuration File popup window appears. The pathname is in the form of C:\Documents and Settings\YourUserName\Application Data\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2005\R16.1\enu\plotters\ Edit the filename, at the end of the pathname, to say something like this: YourPlotterName.pc3 Select Save Changes to the following file. Select OK. The Plot - Model popup window reappears. CHECK What to Plot > Extents CHECK Fit To Paper CHECK Center Plot Plot Style Table Pen > monochrome.ctb (there is a right-arrow in the lower left-hand side of the popup that opens up the More Options pane) Under Page Setup select Add. Name page setup name: Setup_36_14 Select Apply To Layout. Select Cancel.
- Create a drawing Template
Save file as a Drawing Template: File > Save As > Files of type > AutoCAD Drawing Template (*.dwt) Filename > Plot_36_14 File > Close
Open the DXF file that contains the first sheet. File > Publish >
UNCHECK Layout Tab
- (add sheets) Select Drawings > highlight every sheet except the first one > Select CTRL-A to highlight every sheet listed in the Publish Popup Window Page Setup > Import > Plot_36_14.dwt > select Import Imported Setup_36_14.dwt Remove unwanted sheets from list. Make sure sheet list sequence is top first, bottom last. Select the right-hand side button to Reverse Print Order. Select Publish