AutoCAD Plot Styles: CTB, STB

How to set up and use Plot Style Tables in AutoCAD? Color-dependent plot style tables (CTB) and named plot style tables (STB).


A plot style table in AutoCAD is a collection of plot styles assigned to a layout or to the Model tab. There are two types of AutoCAD plot style tables: color-dependent plot style tables and named plot style tables.

Color-dependent AutoCAD Plot Style Tables (CTB)

Color-dependent plot style tables use an object’s color to determine characteristics such as lineweight. Every red object in a drawing is plotted the same way. While you can edit plot styles in a color-dependent plot style table, you cannot add or delete plot styles. There are 256 plot styles in a color-dependent plot style table, one for each color.

Named AutoCAD Plot Style Tables (STB)

Named plot style tables contain user-defined plot styles. When you use a named plot style table, objects that have the same color may be plotted differently, based on the plot style assigned to the object. A named plot style table can contain as many or as few plot styles as required. Named plot styles can be assigned to objects or layers, just like any other property.

The AutoCAD Plot Style Manager

You can use the Plot Style Manager to add, delete, rename, copy, and edit plot style tables. Both color-dependent and named plot style tables are stored in the Plot Styles folder by default.

In case of plotting of AutoCAD drawing it is important setting that drawing will be plotted by COLOR settings (CTB – Color Table) or you can set different linetypes by NAMED PLOT STYLES.

A drawing has already been defined during its creation – by selecting template drawing – if it uses CTB or STB plotting. Setting of Default type is on the Plot and Publish tab of the Options panel. Here is where you can set if the future drawings have CTB or STB settings.

AutoCAD Plot Style Table Settings Menu

How to convert from STB to CTB mode (the CONVERTPSTYLES command)?

If you get a drawing that requires STB extension file, and you don’t have it but you would like to plot this drawing by colors. The solution is the CONVERTPSTYLES command. Using it the drawing can be converted from STB mode into CTB mode.

AutoCAD CONVERTPSTYLES command

Pay attention that in this case the command – if you start it in CTB mode – will work in reverse mode. It means that you convert the drawing from CTB mode into STB mode.

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