Making charts is one of the most common use of Excel or other spreadsheet software. But do you know a simple trick that can save you lot of time while using excel charting features?
Chart Templates or User Defined Charts
yes, using chart templates can save you a lot of time.
If you use a particular type of chart or formatting all the time, you can save all the steps involved in making the chart by using templates.
Here is a simple tutorial on using chart templates in excel.
1. Prepare your chart
First step is to to prepare a chart that you would like to save to template. The chart can be a formatted version of one of the typical excel charts or a more complex combination chart.
2. Now save the chart as a chart template
In excel 2007 you can do this by selecting the chart and going to design tab in the ribbon and clicking on “Save as template”
For earlier versions of excel, right click on the chart and select chart type and go to “custom types” tab. Select “user-defined” as the chart type and click on the Add button to add the chart to excel chart templates.
3. Use the chart templates
Next time you need to insert a chart, use the templates and save time.
In Excel 2007 use the templates option. In earlier versions, use custom types to find your already save templates.
Bonus tip: Moving Chart Templates from One Computer to Another
If you want to move all your chart templates from one computer to another, just go to My Documents \Application Data\Microsoft\Excel and copy the file XLUSRGAL to the other computer. Make sure you are not overwriting the existing XLUSRGAL file, but just add the sheets from one file to another.
If you are using Excel 2007, the chart templates are stored as *.crtx files. Just locate them and copy to target system. Usually they can be found in \AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Templates\Charts for Vista and My Documents \Application Data\Microsoft\Templates\Charts for XP.