Altium Designer Documentation

Working with an X-Y Axis Scale Object on a Draftsman Document in Altium Designer

Created: May 15, 2019 | Updated: April 10, 2021

A variety of X, Y Axis Scale applied to a Board Assembly View.A variety of X, Y Axis Scale applied to a Board Assembly View.


The Draftsman document X, Y Axis Scale object is an automated dimensioning graphic that applies to all corners on a Board Assembly View object. The visual style of the axis scale and the configuration of the axis scale text data can be set in the Properties panel when a placed X, Y Axis Scale is selected.


The X, Y Axis Scale object is available when a graphic object, such as a Board Assembly View, has been placed in a Draftsman document. Its placement is accessed from the Draftsman Editor as follows:

  • Choose the Place » X, Y Axis Scale command from the main menus.
  • Click the  button in the dimension objects drop-down on the Active Bar located at the top of the design space. Click and hold an Active Bar button to access other related commands. Once a command has been used, it will become the topmost item on that section of the Active Bar.

  • Right-click in the drawing design space then select Place » X, Y Axis Scale from the context menu.
  • Click the  entry in the dimensions menu () on the Drawing Annotations toolbar (View » Toolbars » Drawing Annotations).


When the command is launched, the cursor will change to a crosshair, indicating X, Y Axis Scale placement mode. To apply the axis scale to an object, the placement steps are:

  1. Hover the cursor over the corner of a Board Assembly View object. Each corner will be highlighted as an orange colored outline.
  2. Click on a highlighted corner to place the axis scale target reference.
  3. Move the mouse and click to set the position of the X, Y Axis Scale on the desired horizontal or vertical side to determine the scale.
  4. Lastly, position the scale as far or close to the Board Assembly View object as desired. Once determined, right-click to place the X, Y Axis Scale object.
To cancel the placement mode, press Esc or right-click in the design space.

Graphical Editing

The X, Y Axis Scale object can be graphically modified by selecting any part of its graphic representation and then dragging its editing handle towards or away from the Board Assembly View object – its associated extension lines will adjust accordingly.

Select and drag the dimension's editing handle to a new position.

The default settings for the X, Y Axis Scale object are available in the Draftsman - Defaults page of the Preferences dialog.

Non-Graphical Editing

Properties page: X, Y Axis Scale Properties

The non-graphical method of editing an X, Y Axis Scale object is available in the Draftsman Properties panel, which provides a wide range of editable properties and graphic options.
The Properties panel when X, Y Axis Scale object is selected.

To open the Properties panel and access the properties of a placed X, Y Axis Scale:

  • Double-click on the X, Y Axis Scale object in the design space.
  • Right-click on the X, Y Axis Scale then select Item Properties from the context menu.

If the Properties panel is already active:

  • Click on the X, Y Axis Scale bject to access its properties in the panel.
To manually open the Properties panel, select View » Panels » Properties from the main menu or click the  button at the bottom right of the design space then select Properties from the pop-up menu.
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