Extend path plugin

Learn more about Astute Graphics' Extend path plugin for use in Illustrator CC 2018 2017 2015 etc (part of the Vectorscribe set)

Extend path tool plugin for Illustrator

extend path for vectorsribe plugin Illustrator
  1. To use the extend path plugin in Illustrator, you need a path so go to the Line segment tool and create a very short line

  2. Go to the extend tool path plugin in the Illustrator toolbar (found beneath the PathScribe tool)

  3. Select one of the end points of the line segment (or any other open path)

  4. Click and then drag along the displayed preview line to generate the new extended path

  5. Set preferences by double clicking extend path icon

Video tutorial on the subject by graphicxtras.com (youtube)


The Illustrator extend path tool is a powerful tool (from Astute Graphics) to extend paths without the need to manually extend them using other tools such as the join tool to add a spiral etc to a path - you can use it with open paths in 1000s of ways


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Options : Double click the extend path tool and You will see many options such as

extension mode

radius mode

always use fixed radius




They are all super useful features that can be used even with a single line but they can be used to modify many other types of open paths such spirals or arcs or paths from the curvature tool. It should be noted that some options require others to be set so the extension mode has to be constant radius and spiral for the radius mode to be of use. You can also reverse the paths via the reverse curvature. The spiral option in the extension mode is wonderful for all kinds of spiral designs.


Extend path tool and constant radius - Set the extension mode to constant radius and use a fixed radius setting of 140 or so and then select a straight line. Apply the extend path at both ends to create a nice curved S like design


Of course, you don't need to use just a straight line but for testing purposes that is often the easiest to start with. You can use a curve perhaps created by the curvature tool. In the example on the right you can see the curved line in dashes following the same as the settings on the left. You can set a smaller radius and you will see a smaller curve attached to the line.


You can use the extend path tool plugin for Illustrator with one path or multiple paths but they can only be extended one at a time. You do not need to keep selecting the path. Just hover over the end point for any of the paths you want to extend and a little indicator will appear and then the preview path will be displayed. You can also hover over an extended path and extend it again. You can also simply update the radius and change it from 30px to 60px etc You can do this via the dialog but you can change the setting for the radius by using the mouse keys left and right to decrease and increase the radius. You can also use other tools such as join tool to connect the various lines.


You can use the tool with the appearance panel - You can select a basic shape (such as a line) and then go to the appearance panel and add effects and then create a path (straight line). Go to the effects menu and select the distort / transform. Apply a transform with 9 copies and 36 degrees rotation. Go to the extend path plugin tool in the Illustrator toolbox. Click on the end point of the 'key' line (no point trying to do it with the duplicates). Extend the path and use the mouse keys to increase or decrease the radius (using the constant radius and use fixed radius value)


As it is a live tool (transform) and you can display the extend path options by going to the toolbar and double clicking that - you can also reverse and change the size as well for the radius to create all kinds of in and out flowing curved lines with the live transformation. The artwork is live so you can still transform and shift and rotate and shear and warp etc as well to create many different artworks which can all be re-modified by the extend path tool


You can also use it to remove paths. You can add to the Illustrator path and you can also use the tool to cut away or cut back a path.. Go to a path created by another tool (or the extend). Select the extend path tool plugin. Select either end (or go to the other end after you have modified the first end point). And follow the path back on itself to remove the path using the 'extend'


You can apply a width profile (or brush stroke) and then use the extend path tool plugin. Select a line and then apply a width profile and use the extend path tool


Switches : There are a few switches or shortcuts while you use the tool such as

V which reverses the curvature direction

M Absolute measurements / percentage

E goes through the extension modes such as single then constant etc

Up / down arrow keys for the spiral constant

Left / right arrow keys for scale radius


Keywords : How to use Extend path plugin for Illustrator tutorial



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