Author Topic: CAD Standards from the ground up  (Read 15144 times)

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M-dub

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #15 on: May 22, 2012, 10:24:20 AM »
As a designer, I always thought of the electronic document as the product of my job, not the printed product.

We're in somewhat of a "new beginning" phase here where I work and that's one of the ideas I'm trying to get across...

All drawings in this place used to be manual... because the place was built before computers were invented.  The drawings were all kept in tubs in an age where there really WAS one TRUE master.  Eventually, drawings were made electronic and then printed with each updated.  Some time after that, all of the manual drawings were scanned and while we kept the tubs, all drawings were then printed on 11" x 17" yellow paper and kept in dozens of different binders, so everyone sort of thought that the "masters" were now kept in these binders.  As far as I'm concerned they are all just prints or copies of the master drawings.... which reside on the network... in an electronic format.

This is going to be a very interesting thread for me in the coming months....

Keith™

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #16 on: May 22, 2012, 10:54:03 AM »
One thing is certain, if you have well defined standards that are easy to follow because of automation. People will adopt the standards quickly and the office will become more efficient ... allowing for more automation and even better compliance with standards.

For example, we had a plotting application that would plot all the files and layouts for a job. If the user did not name the layouts or files correctly, the plotting application would fail. Initially, the users would complain that the program didn't work. After explaining to them a few dozen times that the filename must be CustomerlastnameCustomerfirstname_diciplinechar and that the sheet names had to be named diciplinecharTwodigitSheetnum they would finally understand i.e. BlackieKeith_A.dwg and A01, A02, A03 etc.

Plotting the all of the plans manually would take about 20 minutes as opposed to one minute programmatically .. plus a plot log sheet would be printed automatically, where the user would have to manually enter the information in a document and print it out.
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Krushert

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #17 on: May 22, 2012, 12:58:24 PM »
The slickist automation that I saw was BOM generator that got its information from an ERP system software and recreated the BOM in Microstation file.  The engineer created the BOM on the ERP software and push a button.   Before the purchase of the ERP software the engineer created the BOM in Microstation and then a clerk manualy copied the data in older ERP software. 
The old way created lots of errors from miskeying and also created duplicate parts becuase the engineer did not dig deep enough to find an existing part.  And it was time consuming.

My point is automation can be outside of cad box as well.
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cadtag

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #18 on: May 23, 2012, 08:56:59 AM »

One thing is certain, if you have well defined standards that are easy to follow because of automation. People will adopt the standards quickly and the office will become more efficient ... allowing for more automation and even better compliance with standards.

Very true,  when the tools make it easier to follow the standard than work around it, hat's a good approach.  But that's part of what I was trying to get at with the 'questions to ask'.  What is to be accomplished with the standards?  If it's a residential builder pushing out variations on sheet rock ranchburgers in cookie cutter subdivisions, then there's one approach to standards.  If the jobs are dependents on multi-organizational collaboration juggling archies, meps, and civil, there's a different approach to standards needed.  If the work varies wildly, from multi-story ADA ramps to constructed wetlands to residential decks, there's yet another approach needed.  All are valid, but with different goals and purposes, what is important in one is less than trivial in another.  A standard that calls for plotting by 'client last name' is non-workable when the client is a utility compnay and the project is headworks renovations on a 16 MGD WWTP. 

As a designer, I always thought of the electronic document as the product of my job, not the printed product.

I think about it differently; as a designer, the product of my job is the thing that gets built.  The digital and paper documents are tools to get there, but _only_ tools to communicate design intent and guide the construction of what was designed. 
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TimSpangler

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #19 on: May 23, 2012, 10:20:54 AM »

As a designer, I always thought of the electronic document as the product of my job, not the printed product.

I think about it differently; as a designer, the product of my job is the thing that gets built.  The digital and paper documents are tools to get there, but _only_ tools to communicate design intent and guide the construction of what was designed.

I think that there is validity in both.  As a designer for a residential big builder the e-docs are a product of the job, but they are also a tools for the next jobs.  We often use old project to create new projects. Everything from copying a bath to and entire wing.  This leads to the point, the standard should make it easy for those dwg's to be accessed easily, as well as all of the product info.  Good sensible folder structure is key for this.

Also as Keith pointed out automation can make adopting standards much easier.  If the user doesn't have to think about it, the less likely they will be to complain about it.  However the automation has to be almost seamless or effortless.  Where I work they like to make pull down menus for everything, not everyone uses pull downs (me included).  Also the pull downs are very dis-organized, that makes it hard to find things.  Kind of defeats the purpose.


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Rob...

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #20 on: May 23, 2012, 10:59:12 AM »
In the design world, I've heard that the best jobs are the ones that don't get built. Thus the final product is the documentation.
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Keith™

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #21 on: May 23, 2012, 11:00:16 AM »
... Where I work they like to make pull down menus for everything, not everyone uses pull downs (me included).  Also the pull downs are very dis-organized, that makes it hard to find things.  Kind of defeats the purpose.

Yeah .. you kinda need to have keyboard shortcuts to be most efficient
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BlackBox

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #22 on: May 23, 2012, 03:46:22 PM »
... Where I work they like to make pull down menus for everything, not everyone uses pull downs (me included).  Also the pull downs are very dis-organized, that makes it hard to find things.  Kind of defeats the purpose.

Yeah .. you kinda need to have keyboard shortcuts to be most efficient

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cadtag

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #23 on: May 24, 2012, 05:12:29 PM »
Yeah .. you kinda need to have keyboard shortcuts to be most efficient

fast is good, if the design works. Blinding keyboard-whacking speed is only efficient when it's right the first time.
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bchapman

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #24 on: February 01, 2013, 09:59:52 PM »
Make money...don't screw up.

MeasureUp

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #25 on: February 24, 2013, 10:09:39 PM »
Make money...don't screw up.
I would like to see how far you can go without a CAD standard.  ;-)

MeasureUp

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #26 on: February 24, 2013, 10:45:26 PM »

As a designer, I always thought of the electronic document as the product of my job, not the printed product.

I think about it differently; as a designer, the product of my job is the thing that gets built.  The digital and paper documents are tools to get there, but _only_ tools to communicate design intent and guide the construction of what was designed.
IMO, the statement of product, alternatively, is:
To Drafters -The product is the electronic or paper documents.
To Designers - The product is the thing built as it is designed.

tedg

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #27 on: February 25, 2013, 10:00:09 AM »
I agree with most of what has been written here.
 
My two cents:
 
After you've gained the backing of management and you observed your power users in action so you know you won't be hindering their performance...
 
I know we didn't want to talk about specific disciplines but:
It depends on your business and company type.
 
Are you a company that produces wigets and sells them to outside sources, and so all your drawings and cad work remain internal?
 
If so, a nice basic easy to follow cad standard that meets your industry needs, that you create for your company should suffice.
 
Are you a company that designs buildings and construction projects for it's own clients, as well as consulting for other clients using other cad standards such as GSA, ACOE, VA, USCG, etc?
 
Well then it's in your best interest to streamline everything you can to the most common cad standards. For this type of business (atleast in the US) seems to be National Cad Standards (NCS) because most of these orgaizations use this as a basis for their standards.
 
With all that said, there are common standards that I feel everyone should be following, most of them mentioned already (and don't make it any more complicated then it needs to be):
 
File structure / File naming /layout naming (and procedures to be followed)
Layer names and mangagement (A layer for everything and everything on it's layer)
Named dimstyles and textstyles for your company standard (keep names genaric)
File Templates
Block Libraries
 
Basics:
All entities ByLayer: color, plotstyle, lineweight, and Linetypes
Block entities created on layer zero, (or block defined on layer zero if entities are on specific layers)
Common coordinates/insertion points for all files (blocks, title blocks, base plans etc.)
Ortho, Object Snaps, Accuracy.
 
I feel that my cad files and my printed drawings are my product.
My drawings should look good, be accurate and complete, easy to read and follow whatever the standard is, and my cad files should be set up in a way that someone can follow behind me and edit the drawing in my absence.
 
Everything sould make sense, clean cad work without extra garbage around in MS or PS if possible.
 
Have you ever gotten into someone's drawing to edit it and say WTF??
That is why standards and procedures are important!
 
 
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Krushert

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #28 on: February 25, 2013, 01:06:50 PM »
^^  Way too complicated. ^^ 

All objects on layer zero and all text and dim styles on one named style.  STD or ACAD works very well.

The only way to draw.

 :-P :lol: :evil:  <Stick-Poking-Smilely>
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tedg

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Re: CAD Standards from the ground up
« Reply #29 on: February 25, 2013, 01:22:17 PM »
^^  Way too complicated. ^^ 

All objects on layer zero and all text and dim styles on one named style.  STD or ACAD works very well.

The only way to draw.

 :P :D >:D  <Stick-Poking-Smilely>
You forgot to mention to explode all the dimensions and hatch patterns, especially sand or concrete.
 
 :ugly:
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