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An Overview of Ballooning

In this article, we take a look at setting your balloon options, balloon grouping, and balloon copy/paste

Setting your Balloon Options

Balloon Grouping

Balloon Copy/Paste


Setting your Balloon Options

Video tutorial:


There are two ways that balloon settings or options can be modified- through the InspectionXpert "Options" window, and through the InspectionXpert "Balloon Appearance" toolbar:

It's recommended that you set your balloon options such as color, text size, etc. in the "Ballooning Options" window.

To open the Options window:

  1. Click the "Home" tab, then select "Options". 
  2. Or, you can select "File", then click "Options". 

Note: In order to be able to open the Ballooning Options window, you will need to first have an InspectionXpert project open.


Using the Balloon Appearance toolbar:

The Balloon Appearance toolbar can be used to update the balloon settings that are currently saved in the "Balloon Options" window, but there are a few things to keep in mind when using the toolbar:

You will need to be sure that no characteristic is currently selected when you make the change, otherwise, the change will only be applied to the selected balloon:

Balloon appearance toolbar 1


To update all future balloons through the toolbar, "deselect" the current balloon, then make the changes in the toolbar. You'll be notified that the changes will be applied to all future balloons:

balloon settings 2

Note: Changing balloon settings or options in a project will not change any previously ballooned characteristics.

The Ballooning Options window:


1 “Starting Value” is the first balloon number that will
be used when you begin ballooning.
2 The ‘Increment” indicates the numerical difference between one balloon
number and the next.
3 "Text Color" - The color of the text inside the balloon
4 "Fit”.  The fit indicates the maximum number of digits your balloons numbers will use

"Text size":

  • “Set for document based on height of first capture” checked, - the Text size will be locked based on your Text size selection. 
  • “Set for document based on height of first capture” unchecked, you can specify the text size manually as you go along in your project. 
  • Set your text units to be "Points", "Inches" or "Millimeters".

“Text Overflow” - In the event that the text exceeds the number of characters selected in the "Fit" setting:

  • "Fit text to balloon" - text size will expand to fill the available space in the balloon
  • "Fit balloon to text" - the balloon will be sized to fit the text 


Style, Position, and Leader Lines:

1 "Border Color"- The border color of your balloon
2 "Fill Color" - The fill color of your balloon- Select "Transparent" to make your balloon invisible
3 "Balloon Shape"  Choose from "Circle", "triangle", "Hexagon", "Diamond" or 'VDA balloon"
4 'Position"- Select the default location of the balloon based on the location of the capture rectangle
5 "Leader Lines"- select color settings for leader lines and whether they will be visible or not


Characteristics Identification:

The final setting in ballooning options is "Characteristics Identification". This allows you to select a pre-defined balloon-type based on custom classifications.
To add a custom balloon type,

  1. Click the "+" to add a classification
  2. Choose a pre-defined classification from the drop-down, or create your own in the "Lists" section of the "Options" window:
  3. You can add classification values manually, or import them from a saved .CSV file.
  4. You can then specify a balloon prefix, suffix, or both as well as shape, color and text size settings
  5. Now, when you wish to use a custom balloon type, just balloon the drawing as usual, then select the classification from the menu:
    critical balloon




Balloon Grouping

Video tutorial:


Step-by-Step Guide:

  1. Select your characteristics to be grouped from the 'Table Manager'
    • Left-click on the characteristic in the group that has the smallest number in the 'Table Manager'
    • Hold down 'Shift' and left-click on the characteristic in the group that has the largest number
  2. Right-click on the selected rows in the 'Table Manager'
  3. Click on 'Grouping'
  4. Choose either 'Group' or 'Group with shared balloon'
    • 'Group' balloons 2 and 3 to create balloons 2.1 and 2.2
    • 'Group with shared balloon' for balloon 2 and 3 to create only balloon 2 
  5. To 'Ungroup', select the rows in the table manager of the grouped characteristics
  6. Right-click on the selected rows in the 'Table Manager'
  7. Click on 'Grouping'
  8. Click on 'Ungroup' to return to their original balloon and characteristic numbers


Balloon Copy/Paste

Video tutorial:



Individual balloons, as well as balloon groups, can be copied and pasted in your PDF drawing
as well as between separate pages in your PDF drawing, or between separate PDF files in your project.

To copy and paste balloons or balloon groups:

  1. Highlight the balloon or balloon group in your table manager:
  2. Right-click, and select "Copy":
  3. move to your PDF drawing, right-click and select "Paste"

There are 3 options for pasting the balloon:

Option 1 -  Paste the Capture Rectangle, Characteristic, and Balloon.

  •  The next available balloon number will be used.
  • The characteristic in your table manager will be pasted as a new characteristic
  • Allows the use of a leader line with the pasted balloon.

Option 2 - Paste the Characteristic and Balloon

  • The next available balloon number will be used.
  • The characteristic in your table manager will be pasted as a new characteristic.
  • Leader lines will not be available.

Option 3 - Paste only the Balloon

  • Keeps the same balloon number for the pasted characteristic.
  • Only copies the balloon- no change to the table manager
  • Leader lines will not be available.