Rotate Objects to Reference an Angle

The Rotate command can be used to match an angle of an existing object or allow you to input an angle.



This tip is especially helpful when you don’t know the angle of the objects. maybe all you know is that the objects need to be rotated to match something else…

Here’s how:

Start the ROTATE command.
The alias to start the command is RO <enter>


Select The objects that need to be rotated.

Hit <enter> when finished

Tip: You can Start the Rotate command from the right-click menu. Simply select the objects and then right-click and select “Rotate” Also note the other command that are available from this menu.


Specify the base point for the rotation. The base point is the pivot point that the objects will rotate around.



Use the sub-option “Reference” of the command by either selecting the blue R in the command line or by using R <enter>

Then pick 2 points to define the angle of the objects. This angle will match the angle in the next step.



Use the sub-option “Points” by clicking the blue P or by using P <enter> in the command line.

Pick 2 points to define the angle for the rotated objects.

Note: The order of the picked points from the “Reference” option will match the order of the “Points” option of the command.



The result will be similar as shown below:




Tip: The hot-grip method of the “Rotate” command does not have the “Points” sub-option of the command so it will help have the same result.

Just in case you don’t know how to start the hot-grip method:
The hot grip method lets you start some command without entering a command. You simply select the objects and then click on any grip. Notice how it becomes red? This is a “hot-grip.” Now if you right click, you see a limited (and different) right click menu. You can start other command from this menu.



About AutoCAD Tips

This blog serves as a knowledge base for myself (and anyone else) so that I can reference tips & tricks that I have learned and also refer others to it as well. I hope that this blog helps you learn at least one tip to make your drafting/design experience better.
This entry was posted in BASICS, Modifying, TIPS. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Rotate Objects to Reference an Angle

  1. Beekee says:

    Honestly, how often do you use what you just showed. This reference rotation is just too complicated, too many choices and clicks, although it is very useful … I personally prefer a macro that this greatly simplifies and more natural to use … Turn with three points:
    (defun C:O() ;Rotate 3pts
    (command “_select” pause)
    (command “_rotate” “_p” “” pause “_r” “@” pause pause)
    Although you can use the Align, but this is faster. Of course you have to have one point of intersection …

    • AutoCAD Tips says:

      I agree – it is too many clicks. But it is good to know that without any programming knowledge that it is able to accomplish rotating with a reference.

      Thanks for the lisp routine. I will try it in a little bit. This makes me want to try to make an action macro to try to do the same thing. That way, the AutoCAD LT folks can have an easier method as well.


  2. Jordan says:

    You can also quickly “twist” your ucs relative to the angled line, draft away, then “twist” it back to zero. You can find the short lisp here: If you want to read more about it, you can find the explanation here:

  3. Mike J says:

    Might be easier to just use align

  4. prince says:


  5. Anthony says:

    Thanks for a great post – I really needed it to not look like a fool!

  6. janatan says:


  7. ericcad says:

    I have youtube tutorial for this. It might help. ericcad

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