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I would like to remove (like in cut away) a circular portion from a rectangle, leaving an open object. Tried using the Path > Difference tool, but it results in a closed object.

Attached image (screen shot from Inkscape, edited in MS-Paint so looks bit crude), explains what I am trying to achieve.

graphic

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3 Answers 3

up vote 4 down vote accepted

You probably just have to "convert path to object" (Ctrl-Alt-C) before the substraction.

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Perfect ! That did it. However, where is the 'Convert path to object' option in the menu bar ? The only option seems to be 'Convert stroke to path' (which matches with hotkey combination Ctrl-Alt-C)... is that what you meant ? –  jay May 30 at 19:40
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Another option is to set a clip shape on the object:

  1. Draw your object.

  2. Create a shape that overlaps all of your object except the parts you want to cut out.

  3. Make sure that the clip shape is arranged above the object to be clipped. (The clip tool chooses the topmost object to use as the clip shape.)

  4. Select both your object and the clip shape, and then select Object → Clip → Set from the menu.

Illustration

In the illustration above, the middle image shows the object to be clipped (green rounded rectangle) and the clip shape (translucent square with a hole cut in it, created using Path → Difference from the square and the circle in the image on the left), while the image on the right shows the resulting clipped shape.

You can also use the same method to clip more complex objects, including groups and bitmap images.

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This method needs a little more thought (& planning). It works beautifully. Let me post it as an answer (with pointer back to your answer), to illustrate how to do it, step-by-step (for people who find it easier when explained visually) ! Thanks again. Voted up. –  jay May 31 at 5:40
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Note that I have already accepted an answer (that was short and simple), but I am adding this answer to explain/elaborate the alternative method proposed by @IlmariKaronen, visually s.t. newbies (like me), find it easier to comprehend. I am certain that this method can be useful and productive in few scenarios... All credits due to him.

Visual representation of the method (placeholder) -- SE imgur hosting

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