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feargt

Main CAD issues in your office

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SuperCAD

The last hurdle that we need to get over is our drawing approval process. We're down to three project coordinators, and all three demand that we file approved drawings their way (all three being different from each other).

 

One of our clients worked out a deal where they own our drawings. Since our work is their property, they make us save the file with a special name that is in no way related to our internal job numbers/names. Also, we have to submit an initial set of drawings that are basic elevations for their approval. THEN we have to finish all the details AFTER they approved the basic drawings. THEN we have to submit the details to the project manager. We never actually get a final approval from the client so often times the drawings never get filed properly.

 

Another guy wants us to save them as a PDF, then he takes care of filing the PDF in an approved drawing folder.

 

The last guy wants us to do save PDF files AND file them in an approved drawing folder.

 

One of them is fully on board with using DWF files instead of PDF, but the other two won't even consider it. They keep giving the excuse that it would be too difficult to get their customers on board with it, even though it's 100 times easier to mark up drawings and the file sizes are significantly smaller.

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Zorg

Drawing standards is the biggest issue. We do alot of typical layouts for flats/apartments ect. When a typical layout is presented in one room, it is mirrord/copied around accordingly, however, dumb**** who don't have the simplest of logic take a slightly diffrent route each time. That means when an hours worth of changes comes in it might take a whole day because the layouts aren't so god damn typical anymore. Personally, i make up a block and i modify that one block then the whole floor is done. This take 5 - 30 minutes then 10 minutes to issue and then the client is happy because there is complete clarity. Always checking the A3 of course ;)

 

EDIT: Changes subject to layouts ofc

 

/Z/

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tzframpton
First, standards, standards, and more standards, people fail to use or set up a system for their projects in order to produce more efficient projects,"there's not enough time to do this" is the most popular response I get

I agree completely. My dad used to always tell me,"Son, if you're in a hurry and didn't do something right the first time, when will you ever have the time to do it right the second time?" I believe in this statement. That's why I don't rush through things 'just because'. I take my time, set up my drawings how I need them, and it has always proven to be more efficient in the long run.

 

Granted, there are those times where my engineer comes to me and says I have one hour to bust out a plan and I have to just do what I can to make things happen. But those are very special times in need, lol.

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feargt

Obviously standards seems to be the big winner here regarding issues people have.

What system does your company have in place to encourage use of company standards? or is it a case of users themselves deciding whether they stick to the standards or not?

 

How many people actually have Standards Documented? or even systems in place to ease users conforming to standards?

 

I find this issue more & more fascinating to be honest.

 

Are there even any users out there that are fully content with the standards provided in their office and have the pleasure of work colleagues that stick to these standards?

 

I assume there must be.......

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RyanAtNelco

My office finally started updating our standards and it is well worth it. My only issue with that is I may just put myself out of a job if i make it too easy. I have everything that is redundant in our drawings update with fields and have created libraries of blocks in tool palletes. I have the intern updating everything to match the basic template i came up with. If i become proficient in writing lisp routines and creating dynamic blocks, I could bring the standards to a point that a monkey could do the job of me and the three other drafters in my office. Not sure i want to get that good unless i have another job lined up. :)

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EMS_0525

Well my company hired a guy that used to work for our CAD reseller, his job is to create all of our Civil 3D styles and drawing templates. He bit off more than he could chew though, see my compny has architects, landscape architects, transportation dept, civil dept, enviromental dept, i think thats it... the guy they hired is just for the civil dept, but we have to work with all the other departments, and we are trying to come up with a company wide CTB file now... its worse than pulling teeth. Let me just say Landscape architects are P.I.T.A.'s and working with them sucks... i have had a smooth workings with other company's architects... and these guys work for the same company as i do. Its crazy, and its an ongoing problem and everyone knows it. Then it gets to goofy things like the plotter in our office prints different than the main office plotter. The main issue i have working here is the engineers... the way we work is we have many base files that are referenced into sheet drawings, one layout per drawing. so each drawing is a seperate file, and everything gets xref'ed into them. The engineers go into the base files and move stuff around and change stuff then i go into the sheet files and print them out like they ask and give it to them and they mark up all these places were text is overlapping and legends are wrong... and i get so frustrated. If they would just let a drafter do it, it wouldnt need redone, but no they go into the files and do all kinds of stuff then i have to go back in and readjust things and it takes 2 times as long... :twisted: All of the engineers shouldnt have cad. This company has alot of the engineers that do cad work, my last company had no engineers doing cad things.... it was much better.

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GCarr78
... its worse than pulling teeth. Let me just say Landscape architects are P.I.T.A.'s and working with them sucks....

 

Hey lets not go bashing the Landscape guys! :wink:

 

I feel your pain our firm is also multi disciplinary... sometimes one CTB file can't work. The key to creating standards in this case

 

1. find the similarities for all disciplines and use that as your base for standards.

 

2. if specifics are needed then fine, but document them and share them with the firm so others know.

 

3. Work with other dept's to better create files to simplify transitions from disciplines.

 

I'm having a ****** of a time convincing people this should be the way to do it.

 

You also MUST have support and enforcement from your upper managers or nothing will work out right.

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GCarr78
I agree completely. My dad used to always tell me,"Son, if you're in a hurry and didn't do something right the first time, when will you ever have the time to do it right the second time?" I believe in this statement. That's why I don't rush through things 'just because'.

 

I like the to use the comparasson "so, if you're late for an appointment, do you not have time to obey traffic laws and drive through red lights to get to where you are going?"

 

I always ALWAYS emphasize with anyone who discusses this subject with me... the more work you do at the beginning of the project. The less you will have to do at the end of the project.

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GCarr78

ops sorry I didnt know that word I used was a swear word!

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Strix

I'm guessing you don't know what it literally means :wink:

 

Apology noted :thumbsup:

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Dipali

Well, I do not have major problems with geting my staff to follow standards & fyi, we do documentation work for several companies so have to follow each of their standards for their work. Its as if, we have goten into habit of following standards from sample files provided.

the main problem I have with my Employees are that I keep telling them to write documents while working, about the unusual changes they make in standard documentation so that while checking i pay attention to them, Also when I or my senior assistant does checking & we ask them to make notes but they don't & then it is hard to track, if the changes are done correctly......:roll:

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GCarr78

Probably not :) thanks for understanding ..wont happen again

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janey28
Obviously standards seems to be the big winner here regarding issues people have.

What system does your company have in place to encourage use of company standards? or is it a case of users themselves deciding whether they stick to the standards or not?

 

How many people actually have Standards Documented? or even systems in place to ease users conforming to standards?

 

I find this issue more & more fascinating to be honest.

 

Are there even any users out there that are fully content with the standards provided in their office and have the pleasure of work colleagues that stick to these standards?

 

I assume there must be.......

 

Hi there,

 

First post here.

 

We do indeed have a 'company bible' of CAD standars including layers, file directory system, text styles, heights etc Even so not everyone sticks to it or pays it any mind. I do my best to I think standards are important. I often dip into many different projects across the company, Im going into many project directories and when I get into the drawings, It's a miracle if they are 'to standards'

 

One thing that bugs me is when people do not stick to the file structure! They make their own little folders with names on that only make sense to them and drop them in wherever. Then when I look for say Gas Schematics, they are not in the mechanical>schematics folder they are plonked in some other random place - WHY??

 

When we get the Architect's drawings in, we are supposed to clean them up and get rid of alot of the stuff we dont need, let's just say some CAD operators don't clean them up much at all leaving 600 layers and all sorts embedded in the drawing.

 

anyway....those are my 2 cents! :)

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RyanAtNelco

Our standards are now constructed quite well. We use fields to update sheet names and references, as well as anything else that can be automatically updated. It makes life a bit easier not having to edit create dates or file paths. They are automatically updated when the drawing is created. Before i came here, we had lots of repetitive editing to do that i saw no need for and have since convinced my boss to let us update the standards. I save a good 5-6 hours a week just taking incorporating "new" autocad features that so many people do not seem to know about (aka fields and dynamic blocks).

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JoeC

I think the consensus is that most definitely CAD Standards are a huge issue. File naming, layer management and proper layout formatting just to name a few.

 

We send drawings back and forth to our customers, and the biggest issue we still struggle with is when they explode our blocks! This is one of the most elementary SINS in the Acad world as it totally screws the next guy who has to work on the drawing!!

 

Anyone have a good solution for this? (aside from a butt whoopin')

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Ryder76
I think the consensus is that most definitely CAD Standards are a huge issue. File naming, layer management and proper layout formatting just to name a few.

 

We send drawings back and forth to our customers, and the biggest issue we still struggle with is when they explode our blocks! This is one of the most elementary SINS in the Acad world as it totally screws the next guy who has to work on the drawing!!

 

Ayone have a good solution for this? (aside from a butt whoopin')

 

I highly recommend the butt whoopin'. The personal satisfaction you get from mentally taking that person out the back to the woodshed is just incredible. LOL

 

Exploded dimensions and overriding text in dimensions is another pet peeve of mine. Perpetrated by the lazy and/or ignorant.

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RyanAtNelco

I think the only way around it is more communication. I occasionally get drawings with blocks that i need to explode. I only need a few line segments here or there to show the general shape of something drawn way more specifically than I need. If it is clear exactly which parts of the drawing are needed it is easier for the person who created the drawings to pull that out than someone who gets this huge drawing with 2304978209358 times more information than is needed.

 

dimensions should never be exploded. EVER. The stripmtext routine by steve doman is a godsend for people who constantly deal with overridden text from others (i use it 5-10 times a day).

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GCarr78
One thing that bugs me is when people do not stick to the file structure! They make their own little folders with names on that only make sense to them and drop them in wherever. Then when I look for say Gas Schematics, they are not in the mechanical>schematics folder they are plonked in some other random place - WHY??

 

People always have a tendancy to do what comes easy to them the most, instead of reading a silly handbook or standards manual, they just do what comes natural.

 

"I don't have enough time to do it right" or, "Well, this was easier at the time":x

 

Its just lazy... people don't realise ones you do it the right way, sure it may take some time to adjust its EASIER going forward:P

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Ryder76

I know this isn't really a 'CAD' issue but here is something that really costs time and money - Client Changes.

 

I work in a manufacturing environment. We submit drawings for approval and give the client a date that the drawings need to be returned with or without comments. This date is very important as it affects our production schedule when it isn't met. Here are two scenarios:

 

Scenario One:

Drawings are sent to client.

Date of return is slipped.

Email and multiple phone calls happen.

Excuses made.

Drawings come back 6 weeks beyond return date - with no comments.

Their ship date gets pushed, our schedule is pushed and no one is happpy.

 

Scenarion Two:

Drawings are sent to client.

Date of return is slipped.

Email and multiple phone calls happen.

Excuses made.

Drawings come back with comments that add things to the point the job is no longer what was originally asked for and quoted.

Schedules thrown off - Purchasing screwed.

Change order gets written to cover the extra cost.

Client wants original ship date and original quoted cost.

 

How to effectively educate your client to minimize this occuring. Oh yea, you can't give 'em a butt whoopin'.

 

My engineers just go crazy with these issues. And then, when there are delays because drafting is reinventing the wheel for the fifth time on the same job. We get the blame for the job being late. I just love it! No matter how fast or efficient a drafting department is there are some things that the drafting department just can't fix or control.

 

I feel better now....:lol:

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JoeC

Ryder76...If I didn't see that you're from Houston, I'd swear you work in our office!! These are the exact issues we struggle with as well. We have started sending out, what we call, a confirmation package. This package contains the original proposal, technical data sheets, spec sheets, and the final layout. We have a sentence in the confirmation letter that basically says with or without your approval signature, we will proceed with this drawing to meet your desired delivery date. If you find discrepancies, it is your responsibility to notify us, and then the delivery date is subject to change.

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