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??Line weights and plot styles??


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I have a general question that will probably get 100 different answers. First of all I am a second year student at The Art Institute of New York City. I have had intro to CAD, (learned the basics), and advanced CAD. Unfortunately, the two classes were taught by two different teachers with two totally different styles. Both knew what they were doing, unfortunately, our semesters are only 11 weeks. Neither taught us anything about plotting.

 

So here is my question: Every class I deal with where we do projects in CAD the teacher says show line weights. Ok, I can get the concept of line weights but is there an industry standard for walls, floors, elevations, etc? Thick to one of my teachers is .5 and another says 2.0. WTF? Some teachers have sent us plot styles but when I drop them in the plot style manager, I'm not getting too much of a difference. I know that printing and plotting are two different sides of the universe when it comes to line weights. one class she wants us to plot, and the other he wants us to just print on 11x17 bond. I have layers that he sent us but for line type in the layer properties manager just say default. Is there a professional or someone who really knows what they are doing out there that can post a drawing to be printed with poper line weights, and one to be plotted also with proper line weights? Do I have to go into the layers property manager and set the line weight for every single layer I made in the past? I know this is a long and drawn out post but CAD is a lot to learn in 11 weeks. I am open to criticism, and always open to learning something new. For the past 9 months we have been sharing our knowledge with each other. I think its time to ask the professionals. Thank you for reading and posting.

 

Struggling CAD student

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So here is my question: Every class I deal with where we do projects in CAD the teacher says show line weights. Ok, I can get the concept of line weights but is there an industry standard for walls, floors, elevations, etc?

You won't find an industry standard, too many variables from drawing size, plotter variations, personal preference, etc. I think there are line weights established by ANSI for machine drawings.

 

Thick to one of my teachers is .5 and another says 2.0
.

They are both right because that is their preference, kind of like working some where and the cad manager has their idea of what is thick, thin, etc.

 

Some teachers have sent us plot styles but when I drop them in the plot style manager, I'm not getting too much of a difference.

There are a lot of line widths to choose from but if you draw all of them in a test file and plot you will see that the widths above and below, say, 0.25 will look pretty much identical. That is why you will probably only need to use 5 to 6 lineweights on a regular basis.

 

I know that printing and plotting are two different sides of the universe when it comes to line weights. one class she wants us to plot, and the other he wants us to just print on 11x17 bond.

Printing and plotting are the same thing.

 

I have layers that he sent us but for line type in the layer properties manager just say default.

You wrote line type, did you mean line weight? Line weights need to be set to default for the plot style to work, if you set a line weight then the plot style will be over ridden.

 

Do I have to go into the layers property manager and set the line weight for every single layer I made in the past?

You don't have to do that. If you use CTB plot style then the color of the layer determines the line weight according to how you set the pen width in that file for that color. If you were to use STB plot styles then a plot style name would be assigned to each layer and the line width would be set in the STB per style name.

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If I am sending a drawing to an outside contractor I will set the lineweight via the Layer Properties Manager. When the contractor plots it the drawing will look the same as mine. I don't have to send him the CTB or STB plot style file.

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If I am sending a drawing to an outside contractor I will set the lineweight via the Layer Properties Manager. When the contractor plots it the drawing will look the same as mine. I don't have to send him the CTB or STB plot style file.

 

That's the way I do it. Makes it easier to send to outside people, and I don't have to manage multiple plotstyles.

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Wow, just learned more from you than 11 weeks of class. Thanks for your help.

 

You are welcome, glad to help.

 

As far as setting the lineweights in the layer manager; if the drawing is going to be used as an xref by another firm to add their information, they are not going to want the lineweights set in the layer manager. The reason is they will want to have the information you supply show up very light when they plot. Of course they can open every drawing you send and select all layers and change the lineweight, but over the course of a project this can happen many times. Instead if everyone agrees to use a plot style STB file then this can happen without any intervention. The STB can have 10 style names that I use and 10 that they use. When they get the file, xref it to their drawing and are ready to print, their STB will have my plotstyle names set to a light weight while theirs are set to a heavier weight.

 

If you are supplying a file to someone and they just want to print it then the method of setting lineweights is a good one.

 

There are so many ways to do things in AutoCAD and as is often posted in here, "The good thing about standards is that there are so many to choose from."

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Great info there about your STB file system. It's always good to know what others are doing and how it applies to their work. I may need to do it your way one day in another job and now I know and understand. Many thanks. o:):)

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