Introduction: Arduino (AutoCAD) ShortCut Keyboard

Hello to all,

After browsing for many hours, and designing lots of cool stuff, I finally got around to actually building something. Therefore, get ready for my first Instructable!

I spend a lot of my hours, both professionally as for fun, doodling around in AutoCAD. For ergonomic purposes I already bought an extra Numpad keyboard to use with my left hand, so I don’t need to let go of the mouse. However, I still need to move my hand to type in certain commands like “BOX” or “RECT”. And to make things worse: I also need to hit the ENTER key after I do so. Needless to say, I find this “Moving your left hand”-thing a bit too much exercise for my taste.

So wouldn’t it be nice if you could hit just 1 key, and get a box (or something alike) in return?

That’s why I designed this wonderful Arduino powered ShortCut Keyboard.


Things you will need:

1x Arduino Micro – If you’re living in the beautiful country of The Netherlands you can find it here:

2x 2,54mm, 10Pin Screw Terminal -

1x RobotDyn Button Switch – Again: or:

1x RobotDyn 4x4 Button Matrix -

1x Joystick for Arduino – I had some laying around, but I’m pretty shure these were the ones I ordered:

1x USB to Micro USB cable


1x Toggle switch -

Step 1: Print Your Case and Hook-up Your Hardware

Print out the stl file I have provided below. This will be the basis for your keyboard.

It took me about 9 hours to print this case, which gives you enough time to hook-up all your hardware to the Arduino Micro.

I connected the different components to the Arduino as followed:

Keyboard -> A0

X-Axis Joystick -> A1

Y-Axis Joystick -> A2

Selectpin Joystick -> 7

Button (ShiftPin) -> 6

I haven't connected the toggle switch yet because I don't have any use for it yet. But you can use any (digital)pin you want.

Now that you have connected all your components, your case probably isn't ready yet. But don't worry! This gives you time to print out the graphics for the buttons. You'll find these in the files named "ACAD Toetsenbord Knoppen".

I know that the quality of these is poorly, but I couldn't find better picto's online, nor had the motivation to design some myself.

Step 2: Upload the Code

This step is easy. Just hook up your Arduino and upload your code to it using Arduino IDE.

Feel free to alter the commands to better suit your needs. I don't know how to insert parts of the code here for extra explaination, so if you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comment section.

Step 3: Final Assembly

Now your print should be finished, and you will be ready to instal all of the components in the case. you will need 8x M3x5mm, 4x M2x5mm and 2 wood screws 4x16. Different lengths would work as well I guess, but these are the ones I used.

All that is left now is to hook it up to your computer and start having some fun!