What keyboard key to constrain a line being drawn to 45 deg?


In Macromedia Freehand one could hold shift down to have lines constrained to whatever angle I had set in preferences, so 10 deg gave me such, or 45 and so on, and release shift for normal draw anywhere mode, one could draw quick with such…

I am forever holding shift and seeing no constraint kick in.

I wish to hold a keyboard key down (one within reach of my left hand) when drawing to constrain a line to 45deg angle increments or whatever I have set the constraint to.

I know I can click the line start, then type <45 and that will make the line 0 45 90 135 etc but if the next part of the draw also requires 45deg I am back to 90 deg constraints. or typing <45 for the next draw, do that a few times and it gets annoying and slow.
I dont want to be typing every time I click the next line end point during a draw !
I also dont want to set in options modelling aids snap to 45deg as then a non constraint line cannot happen.

Is the keyboard constraint option possible ?



In Options, Drawing Aids, set Ortho snap on and to 45 deg (or whatever value you need).

Then toggle the Ortho Snap on and off as required. If you don’t like using the mouse to do that then, on default McNeel keyboard settings, F8 runs the relevant command. Don’t like F8? In Options, Keyboard, copy and paste the command from F8 to the key of your choice.

I want to toggle with keyboard, however \ key next to shift would be ideal, or Z but the keys offered are all F then ctrl + a key, ctrl+\ isnt there and ctrl+Z is undo so need that as is.
There is no means of pressing a key to create a nominated key.
To have to mouse click ortho off each time I draw another part of the line is not suitable.

I need a single key to toggle but I want to toggle constraint ON. else from now on it will be a real pain just to draw lines.

Oh dear.


Why cant you set ortho to 45 degrees, hold shift and press tab to lock the direction?

1 Like

Ctrl-D for diagonal, maybe.

setting ortho snap to 45 deg sees all lines 0 45 90, shift tab simply locks to one of those,
My wish to be drawing lines at any angle as normal then constrain one to 45 is then then something I would need to ‘ask for’ each time.
Ctrl D does the ‘ask for’ it stops the constraint.
so a lot of Ctrl D to be able to work normally.

Can I have Ctrl D to only turn on ortho should I ever need it ?

Its also constraining moves as well.


Shift tab locks to ortho direction even while ortho snap turned off. Seems like @jasper has a good solution.

with ortho off I hit shift tab and it allows 90 or 0, but no 45.
in ortho snaps I have it set to 45.


It works fine at 45 deg here in R5 and R7. Are you pressing Shift and Tab simultaneously? You need to press Shift, establish the direction with the mouse and thereafter press Tab.

shift+< 45 , not sure if this is what you might need :man_shrugging:t2:


I just want to hold a key down and get a 45deg constrain during a continual line draw, next click or two not constrained, next constrained.
No having to type anything.
Now I dont know how its happened, but suddenly shift is constraining to 0 45 and 90 deg, just as I wished !

That will do me and I dont know how it decided to do that !

No doubt tomorrow it wont, but great whilst its happening.

ortho snaps are off.

shift then tab, well the shift is enough as I then click where I want the 45 line to go. but with ortho snap off on properties>modelling aids I am not sure where its taking the 45 from.

what is this^^^ ? I see three small upturned v’s


arrows pointing to the above comment.

I see, however I wish to avoid typing things when drawing. A key push and constraints occur is my aim, and I hope shift key behaving now as wished, stays doing that.
If only I knew why its managing to do that now.


shift will now ortho snap to 45