Annotative dimensions can be an enormous time saver. Annotative dimensions allow you to use a single dimension and apply one or more scales to it. The correct scale will be used when the scale is set for the layout/view.
Each scale that is applied to an annotative dimension will hold modifications to that scale only. In other words, if a dimension needs to be spaced closer or further from the object depending on the dimension scale, it will hold that spacing for only that particular scale. To edit the spacing and placement of dimensions, you will need to change the current annotative scale (located in the Status Bar) to the desired scale and then make the changes. It is important to understand how a single annotative dimension can be used for multiple purposes.
Not all dimensions will have all the annotative scales applied. Dimensions inserted by Toolbox will automatically come in with all the available drawing scales. But dimensions inserted through AutoCAD will only have the current annotative scale applied to them. Other scales may be added by selecting the dimensions and right-clicking to access the Quick Menu. From the Quick Menu, expand the Annotative Object Scale and select Add/Delete Scales.
It is recommended, when using Annotative dimensions, to have the option “Add scales to annotative objects when the annotation scale changes” turned on in the Status Bar. This setting will help minimize having to add/delete scale.
There is a learning curve to understanding annotative scaling, but once it is learned, it will save a tremendous amount of time and will help ensure consistency throughout your drawings.