How to control the text settings of a Note

This blog is about controlling text settings of a Note. A Note is a text with a leader or a callout without a leader. Note comprises of two elements: a leader as a dimension element and a text as a text element. Therefore note is a composite element that gets its settings from dimension style as well as from text style.

This blog is mainly to clarify which settings of note are controlled by dimension style and which settings by the text style.

Note’s text settings such as font, height, width, color, underline, etc. are only controlled by text style and not by dimension style. The settings present in Dimension Styles > Text > Style do not affect Note's text. Similarly format and stacked fraction from Dimension Style is not applicable to Note's text.

Note's text justification is controlled by justification settings in Dimension Styles > Text > Notes. See image below. The Note's text justification cannot be controlled from Dimension Styles > Text > Format or Text Styles.

Note's Text Settings 

Let me talk about the placement tools. The two modes available for a Note’s placement are:

  1. Place Note - Allows you to place lines of text with a leader line and an arrow.

  2. Place Callout - Allows you to place lines of text with a callout.

Place Note dialog box

Fields in the Place Note dialog box

Text Style

To control the text attributes of a Note, select the desired text style from the Text Style drop-down menu in the Place Note dialog box. The selected style is activated and is used for new text. 

Through the Text Style dialog you can set attributes such as font, width, height, and color. Once a style is set it can be reused in a consistent and automated manner. Text elements placed with a text style are automatically updated when the style is modified and saved. Element templates and DGN Library can also be used for additional standardization of text.

Dimension Style

This allows activation of the desired dimension style from the list present in drop-down menu. To create a new dimension style, click on the Browse button to open Dimension Styles dialog.

Text Rotation

Text rotation can be set relative to the leader line as required, from the Text Rotation drop down menu. There are three positions of text rotation, namely Horizontal, Vertical and In-line. These can be used to place the text as per the layout on the sheet.

Text Frame

Text Frame can be set from the list of frame types. The various available frame types in drop-down menu are - Line, Box, Rotated Box, Circle, Capsule, Hexagon, Rotated Hexagon, Triangle, Pentagon, Octagonal and None.

Frame Scale can be adjusted by entering the value through the field provided in the Text tab of Dimension Style dialog box.

Height and Width

The active text Height and Width can be set in working units, during placement. To set the desired height and width, enter a value in the fields provided. The default value is taken from the text style.

Annotation Scale Lock Icon

When this lock is ON, annotation scale is applied to the note that is placed. We can change annotation scale from Model Properties dialog. It can be used for scaling text.

Apply changes to all text

This toggle applies to the text in Text Editor dialog box. If ON, style changes are propagated to all text and if OFF, the changes are propagated to selected text, or to new text in the Text Editor window.


This determines whether the leader line can be placed in multiple or single segment. Manual mode allows for multiple segments of leader line whereas in Automatic mode only one segment of leader line can be placed.

Leader Type

The type of leader line can be set as a Line or Curve.

Start At

This setting controls the placement of Note. If Terminator is selected, the first data point places the terminator’s end point and the last data point places the text; that is, the start of the note will be from terminator’s end point and text is at the last. Whereas, if Text is selected, the start of note will be from text and last point is at the end point of the terminator.

Start At text also allows you to place multiple leaders on a single piece of text by pressing the <ctrl> key. Each data point you select (after the first data point), places an additional leader on the text.

Horizontal Attachment

This allows you to set the leader and note text attachment side to auto, left or right.

In-line Leader

The inline leader is an extra segment of the leader that is aligned with the text. If ON, it uses an inline leader and if OFF, no extra segment is present. Additional settings for inline leader are provided in Dimension Style dialog box. You can directly enter the value of inline segment as desired.


If ON, notes will remain associated to the snapped element, and if OFF no association will be created.

Some additional settings related to Notes that are available through Dimension Styles dialog box Text tab


You can select the type of terminator to display. The various terminator symbols available through the drop-down menu are none, arrow, stroke, origin, and dot.

Left Margin

You can set the distance between endpoint of leader and text, in working units.

Lower Margin

This setting is active if text frame is used. It allows you to set the distance between top and bottom margins of text, and top and bottom edges of text frame, in working units.

Edit About

If the text note is to be edited later, it gets edited about this point. To see the point turn on the toggle for Text Nodes through View Attributes dialog box. In simple terms, this is vertical justification of text.


Moer blogs coming ahead, so stay tuned...