Line Properties

Line properties can be changed for selected objects. To edit the line properties, click on the object in the Object Manager or plot window. The properties are listed in the Property Manager on the Line tab.

 

The Line page in the Property Manager contains properties for all lines in the object. For example, a line/scatter plot Line page will include a Plot Line Properties section. The Line page will also include a Label Leader Line Properties section. The Line page for an axis can contain four sections: Axis Line Properties, Ticks Line Properties, Grid Line Properties, and Label Leader Line Properties.

 

Set the line properties in the Property Manager on the Line tab.

 

Sample

The sample of the line is displayed next to Line Properties. The sample shows the line style, color, opacity, and width options.

 

If the Line Properties section is closed, click the next to Line Properties to open the section.

 

 

Style

The Style is the manner in which a line is drawn. To change the Style, click on the existing line next to Style.Theline style palette opens. Click on a style to use it for the selected line. To create a custom line style, click the button at the right of the line style to open the Custom Line dialog, where you can create new line styles.

 

3D lines do not support the complex line styles. The standard line styles and custom line styles can still be used with 3D lines.

 

 

Color

The Color is the color of the line. Click the existing color sample next to Color to open the color palette. Click on a color in the palette to use it for the selected line.  To create a custom color, click the button at the right of the color sample to open the Colors dialog.

 

 

Opacity

The Opacity controls the transparency of the line. To change the Opacity, highlight the existing value and type a new value. Press ENTER on the keyboard to make the change. Alternatively, click and drag the to change the opacity percentage. Opacity values are between 0% (zero opacity, full transparency) to 100% (full opacity, zero transparency).

 

 

Width

The Width controls how a line appears. To change the line Width, highlight the existing value and type a new number. Press ENTER on the keyboard to make the change. Alternatively, click the to increase or decrease the thickness of the line. The line Width is a value from 0.0 to 0.5 inches (0.0 to 1.27 cm). A width of zero is one pixel wide. Values are in page coordinates.

 

 

Line Color Method

Colors can be applied to lines in various ways. The Line color method property defines which method is used to color the line:

  • Uniform, where one color is used for the entire line
  • Color variable, where line segment colors are specified by a color variable.
  • Colormap, where the color is varied along the line by a color gradient.

 

Color Variable

When Color variable is selected, the Color variable is a column/row in the worksheet that contains a color specification. The color of the line segment changes based on the color in the worksheet column. The line color stays the selected new color until another color change is specified. To change the Line color variable, click the existing column or the word None. Select any other column in the worksheet.

 

Colors can be specified in the worksheet by many different methods.

 

Method

Example

<color>

Red

<color>:<a>

Red:255

RGB(<r>,<g>,<b>)

RGB(255,0,0)

\COLOR(<r>,<g>,<b>,<a>)

\COLOR(255,0,0,255)

R<r> G<g> B<b>

R255 G0 B0

R<r> G<g> B<b> A<a>

R255 G0 B0 A255

\RGBR<r> \RGBG<g> \RGBB<b>

\RGBR255 \RGBG0 \RGBB0

 

where <r>, <g>, <b>, and <a> are red, green, blue, and alpha values between 0 - 255 and <color> is a color name as it appears in the color palette.

 

Colormap

When Colormap is selected, the colormap is a color gradient that is distributed along the line from the first vertex to the last vertex. Select the desired color gradient in the Colormap property field.

 

This Line/Scatter Plot uses a Line color column in the worksheet to change the color of the line segments.

This 3D Ribbon/Wall plot uses a Line color column in the worksheet to change the color of the line  segments.

 

End Styles

The ends of the lines can have arrowheads on them. To open the End Styles section, click the next to End Styles. Some lines, for example 3D axis grid lines, do not support end styles.

 

The Start style is placed at the first vertex of the line. The End style is placed at the last vertex of a line. Not all lines can have arrowheads. For example, the line surrounding a rectangle does not support arrowheads. To change the Start or End style, click on the current option and select the desired option from the list.

 

The Scale determines the size of the arrowhead. A larger Scale creates a larger arrow. To change the scale of the arrowheads, highlight the existing value and type a new value. Press ENTER on the keyboard to make the change. Alternatively, click the to increase or decrease the scale. A value of 1 makes the arrow the default size.

 

 

Draw Arrows

The arrow on a 3D vector plot is displayed by default. The arrow can be turned off by unchecking the box next to the Draw arrows option. This option is only available for 3D vector plots. When checked, the arrow is displayed. When unchecked, the arrow is removed.

 

 

Smooth Line

Select the Smooth line option to spline smooth the connecting line in the line plot. Control the amount of smoothing by entering a value between 0 and 1 in the Smooth tension field. The smaller the Smooth tension value, the more curved the connecting line. You may need to increase the tension if your line plot has areas where the line crosses itself. Clear the Smooth line option to connect data points with a straight line. The smoothing may not be visible if a Line color column is selected.

 

 

Use Color For Symbols

When the Line color column is specified, the Use color for symbols option is available. Symbols use the same color as the Line color column when the box next to Use color for symbols option is checked. The color of the symbol is changed on the row where the symbol occurs. The symbol is the same color as the line that follows the symbol.

 

If the Symbol table option is selected on the Symbol tab, the colors are read from the symbol table and not from the Line color column.

 


This is the same Line/Scatter plot
as above, with the
Use color for
symbols option checked.

 

Color Scaling

On a vector plot, polar vector plot, or 3D vector plot, check the box next to Color scaling to set the color of the vector based on the vector length. Set the colors to use for the vectors with the Colormap option. When the Color scaling option is unchecked, the Color option sets the color of all vectors.

 

 

Show Color Scale

On a vector plot, polar vector plot, or 3D vector plot, check the box next to the Show color scale command to show the vector map's color scale. Note: this option is disabled if the Color scaling box is not checked.

 

Colormap

The Colormap option sets the vector colors to be set from a color gradient. Click the existing color gradient and select the desired color gradient from the list. Click the button next to the color gradient to open the Color Gradient dialog. The Colormap option is disabled if the Color scaling option is not checked.

 

Surface Mesh Lines

Surface data maps, surface grid maps, and surface function maps can include a wireframe mesh on the surface represented by lines of constant X and lines of constant Z. The line properties are controlled independently in the X mesh lines and Z mesh lines sections.

 

Frequency

The Frequency defines how many mesh lines are shown on the surface map. This value must be equal to or greater than 1. The Frequency displays a line at every nth grid row or column. For example, aFrequency of 1 displays a line at every grid row or column and a Frequency of 3 displays every third line. To change the Frequency, highlight the current value and type a new value. Press ENTER on the keyboard to make the change. Alternatively, press the to increase or decrease the step value.

 

Line Properties

Edit the line properties for the mesh lines in the Line Properties section.

 

Axis Tick Line Properties

By default, tick marks have the same line properties as the axis line. Therefore, changing the axis line properties in the Axis Line Properties section also changes the tick mark line properties. You can override this setting and define unique line properties for the tick marks by setting the Major tick line and/or Minor tick line option to Custom and then setting the line properties in the following Major tick line properties or Minor tick line properties sections. To open sections, click the next to the section name.

 

Default Line Properties

You can set default line properties through the File | Options command.

 

 

See Also

Fill Properties

Symbol Properties

Line/Scatter Plot