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  1. #11
    Banned Alan Cullen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by athlone View Post
    hello im in ireland and only use autocad for simple agricultural shed designs to date i want to design a house is there anywhere on the net that i can download house plans and maybe just change them a bit to suit myself
    Sorry about this, athlone...I'll get back to you in a minute.......I just have to put my $0.02 in here to justify grabbing you......

    caleb....you've had a whole heap of good advice here......but I have to agree with what SLW210 said.....stick to autocad and the add ons.......you will become very good at the standard cad package......all potential future employers will grab you if you savy acad...and most drafties around use acad.....so you won't have problems getting and working with potential employees.....

    Now, everyone.....go about your business while I chat to athlone.....
    Mate....my forebears came from Athlone......you are the first person I have ever come across from Athlone......could you do me a favour and find out a little bit about the Cullens from Athlone......I'm always here......cheers, mate......

  2. #12
    Super Moderator Strix's Avatar
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    I've had mixed reports of archicad - and it seems to suit architects better than other people trying to produce the same thing (for some unbeknown reason)

    how much detail do you require your package to produce?

    have you looked at sketchup?
    I think they used to have a trial version downloadable
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  3. #13
    Super Moderator f700es's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strix View Post
    I've had mixed reports of archicad - and it seems to suit architects better than other people trying to produce the same thing (for some unbeknown reason)

    how much detail do you require your package to produce?

    have you looked at sketchup?
    I think they used to have a trial version downloadable
    They have a free version now. Add the ruby script of House Builder and you are good to go!

    Ruby Scripts
    http://www.crai.archi.fr/RubyLibrary...rary_Depot.htm

    Please do not PM me with CAD questions. Post your question on the forum. Our users are the best out there and you'll get the best possible answer to your question.

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  4. #14
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    Take a look at Chief Architect http://www.chiefarchitect.com/

    I don't use it, but seveal builders in this area use it.
    John Helton
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  5. #15
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    Just what is it about the architects drawings you find shocking??
    I would think that you as a builder work with several different architects....there must be someone out there you have worked with who produces good drawings.

    There are programs out there where you type in the dimensions and it can create a floor plan for you...
    The problem here arises when you actually need to build from it and need to produce details.

    The details will have to be approved by your local authority, sometimes these guys even specify what line types and line colours they require... getting something through local authority planning approval can be a lengthy process...something the builders rarely see the full light of. Your time here would be wasted and non-productive. What about engineering drawings...you going to attempt them too??

    Frankly speaking, I don't think you as a builder could even compete with the architects in the drawing department/design especially if you have no cad exeperience before, and are asking us for tips...

    Tip..

    Concentrate on building better more sound buildings and teaching your guys to read drawings properly. Concentrate on man/materials management and delivering the final product on time! The time there is better spent I think.

    If you want your clients to come to you for a complete solution..then find yourself an architect you like.

    I don't mean this to sound bad, just giving you real advice. Because as a builder you see the final (ish) plans issued to you.

    These may look to you like a set of pretty or unpretty drawings, but they are usually the product of months or even years of negotiating and planning depending on the size of the job.
    Last edited by iain9876; 13th Jul 2007 at 10:15 pm.

  6. #16
    Super Moderator Strix's Avatar
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    Iain, was that personal attack really necessary?

    the op only said SOME drawings he's had to work to were unworkable - which I can appreciate from either side of the drawing production process

    If all he's doing is domestic work, there's no reason why he can't learn to produce his own drawings - especially if he's doing repeats of similar projects rather than bespoke projects each time
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  7. #17
    Senior Member ZenCad1960's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strix View Post
    If all he's doing is domestic work, there's no reason why he can't learn to produce his own drawings - especially if he's doing repeats of similar projects rather than bespoke projects each time
    I would have to somewhat agree with Strix here. I was a contractor building residential housing, apartments and condos for 15 years before moving into the office. I have seen both fantastic drawings and drawings you just scratch your head and think what the **** were they thinking. To be real, it really depends on the architect and the drafting support they have. Even though the building is a sound design, paper plans that are messy, unclear and look like crap, are useless.

    As a builder I knew just about every phase of the 'building process' there was. All the permitting, all the inspections, all of it. However it is another thing to design this for a brand new building with no cookie cutter plans to go by. If you have the cookie cutter types of homes, then it is a snap. Keep in mind however some agencies require an architect's seal so you would have to find someone for that and we can all agree, some of them are touchy about their seals as they should be.

    Doing it on your own for a full housing project will be a rough road for a while until you get the right people in place as support but it isn't un-doable. It is just going to be maybe a little more involved than you think. Don't take on a job until you are ready. Do your homework, draw some up and have an architect look at them and advise you if you are heading the the right direction or not.

    I think that last post was a little strong in telling you to not try at all. If you want to give it a go, I say go for it. Nothing ventured nothing gained.

    Have a great weekend.

  8. #18
    Full Member P_c's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by caleb View Post
    ^^Hi, im am from New Zealand.

    I heard about a program called ArchiCAD, anyone familia with that? Apperantly its the program i want to be getting?
    Gday, Neighbour

    From my experience i would defenitly give archicad by graphisoft a try. http://www.graphisoft.com/ Im not to sure if they have a free version to try, but it is well worth a look. Alongside AutoCad which i use for civil work, i use Archicad for architectural work and i find it to be a very usefull and good program to use with practice.

    The automatic sections/elevations can be really usefull and time saving as well as the 3D aspect of building design.
    Most of the work in the program is done using 3d objects/tools eg. Walls can be easily made just by specifying a height and width, along with other attributes if nessesary.

    Keep in mind though, dont draw everything in 3d if you can to save time during the rendering process.

    As a little note, archicad files can also be made compatible to use in cinema 4d to realy get that realistic looking render.

    Thumbs up from me. Go for it.
    Pauly

  9. #19
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    I guess it all comes down to how much time you want to put into it,
    for most of us this is our job, 'using CAD' so your question would be like an architect/drafty saying whats the best tool to be a builder,
    Back to to your original question , Autocad is like pitching a roof where as Archicad & others are like using prefab trusses, the program does alot for you, but you need to understand why/what its doing.
    I know doesn't help much just my 0.2c.
    Which everway you go, stick around places like this and your already a mile ahead.
    Cheers Paul

  10. #20
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    As a tenured design/build company owner, I can feel where Caleb is coming from.

    There are way too many "architects" out there that do nothing besides draw a pretty picture. They draw out something that is aesthitically pleasing and rely on someone else to make it work.

    Now I say "architects" because this falls in line with licensed architects as well as residential designers who think they know everything.

    Too many people out there designing structures who have never swung a hammer. Now, you do not have to be a builder to know how to design a house, but it helps if you know how things are going to go together. This way you know what information is necessary in order to build the structure.

    Now, i will step off of my lecturing stool and get back to the original question.

    I have been designing houses with AutoCAd for about 12 years now. I have recently switched to Cadsoft Envisioneer. It is not a plug in program, but it is based off of the same design engine that ACAD uses. I like it because I can directly import all of the blocks I designed in ACAD in to Envisioneer. i can also import any 3d designs I have created in Google Sketch-Up in it.

    There are many websites that have premade blocks (as already mentioned) that can be downloaded in to the program.

    Best of all, the proce of Envisioneer is only around $900. I bought mine earlier this year and it was only $864 (gove or take a little).

    Give them a look www.cadsoft.com and look at Envisioneer. They have a great users forum as well.

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