Import PDF Geometery

New in AutoCAD 2017 is the much-needed ability to import PDFs. This new feature will import geometry and True Type Fonts (.ttf) only. If your PDF file contains fonts that use an .shx font, that text will be imported as linework. But either way, this is by far my favorite new feature.

There are two options to import the PDF:
1) Importing a PDF by browsing to a file.
2) With a PDF already attached to the drawing (like an XREF) – Importing a portion of the PDF or the entire PDF.

Here’s how:

Browsing to a PDF:
The Command to import a PDF is simply PDFIMPORT or the “PDF Import” button is found on the Insert tab > Import panel > Import Dropdown.

PDF Import

Notice the command line that asks you to “Select the PDF Underlay or [File]”. Click on the “File” option.
Select PDF or File

After you select the PDF, You will see the “Import PDF” dialog box.

Import PDF Dialog box

Make sure to check out the options in this dialog box. Something that I really like is that the line weights used in the PDF can be imported. The other great thing is that if the PDF was created using the option to create layers, those layers will be imported as well.

When you click on the “Options…” button of the dialog box, it will open the normal AutoCAD “Options” dialog box. Here you can specify where the PDF Import should place any Images that are in the PDF. These images will be imported and attached to the drawing like an XREF.

PDF Import Options Button

After you click the OK button back in the PDF Import dialog box, the progress bar will churn a little bit and then voila!!! your PDF is now imported as editable AutoCAD geometry.

PDF Import 1 Done

Importing an attached PDF:

You can use the PDFIMPORT command and button just like the above step.
Select PDF or FileThere is also a new button on the “PDF Underlay” Contextual ribbon that displays when you select the PDF that is currently in your drawing.

PDF Underlay Ribbon

When you start the command and select the PDF, you will see the options in the command line to select a portion of the PDF objects or All of the PDF.
Import all or someYou will then need to specify what should be done with the attached PDF after the import is completed.
Unload Detach or KeepThe Settings dialog box looks different but has the same settings as the “Import PDF” considering the PDF is already in your file.

Import PDF Dialog box

When you click OK it will churn away and your PDF will be imported.

Conversion Status

Attached PDF Imported


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 New in 2017, PDF, TIPS. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Import PDF Geometery

  1. ketxu says:

    Thanks for your sharing about this new, but now i cant test it, just wait ^^

  2. Excited for this one and to try it out.

  3. Mo Thao says:

    shx fonts are now recognized after hotfix update.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s