Draw an arc

When you need more than straight lines and sharp angles, it's easy to add arcs to your Visio drawings.

What do you want to do?

Draw an arc using a drawing tool shape (requires Microsoft Office Visio Professional 2007)

Draw an arc using the Arc or Pencil tool

Reshape an arc created with the Arc or Pencil tool

Draw an arc using a drawing tool shape (requires Microsoft Office Visio Professional 2007)

If you have Office Visio Professional 2007, you can use the shapes on the Drawing Tool Shapes stencil to draw an arc.

  1. On the File menu, point to Shapes, point to Visio Extras, and then click Drawing Tool Shapes.

  2. From Drawing Tool Shapes, drag an arc shape onto the page.

  3. To edit the arc, drag any of its control handles or end points.

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Draw an arc using the Arc or Pencil tool

If you have Microsoft Office Visio Standard 2007 or Office Visio Professional 2007, you can use the Arc or Pencil tool to draw an arc.

  1. Click one of the following tools on the Drawing toolbar:

    • To draw an arc that looks like part of a circle, click the Pencil tool Button image .

    • To draw an arc that looks like part of an ellipse, click the Arc tool Button image .

      Note: If the Drawing toolbar isn't visible, click Drawing Tools button image on the Standard toolbar to display it.

  2. Point to where you want to start the arc.

  3. Drag to draw the arc.

    Tip: If you get a straight line using the Pencil tool, drag the control point on the line with the Pencil tool.

  4. When you finish, click the Pointer tool Button image on the Standard toolbar to return to normal editing.

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Reshape an arc created with the Arc or Pencil tool

Every arc that you draw using the Arc or Pencil tool follows the perimeter of an invisible ellipse. You can perform the following actions on the arc:

  • Change the bow of an arc so that the arc becomes a larger or smaller portion of the circle or ellipse. You can even completely flatten an arc to make it a line.

    Partially flattened arc

  • Reshape the ellipse on which the arc is based. You can change the way the arc leans (the angle of eccentricity) and its flatness (the magnitude of eccentricity).

    Reshaped arc

Flatten or increase the bow of an arc

  1. Click the Pencil tool Button image .

  2. Select an arc or a shape that contains an arc.

  3. Point to the arc's control point.

  4. Drag the control point until the arc looks the way you want.

Reshape the ellipse on which an arc is based

  1. Click the Pencil tool Button image .

  2. Select an arc or a shape that contains an arc.

  3. Click the control point on the arc to display its eccentricity handles Eccentricity handle image .

  4. Reshape the arc by doing the following:

    • To change an arc's magnitude of eccentricity, drag an eccentricity handle farther from or closer to the control point.

      Reshaped arc image

    • To change an arc's angle of eccentricity, drag an eccentricity handle around the control point.

      Reshaped arc image

Tip: To convert a straight line segment to an arc, click the Pencil tool Button image , select the line segment, click the control point Control point image - green X in circle , and drag the control point to a new position.

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