Author Topic: Drafting help please!  (Read 1722 times)


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Drafting help please!
« on: January 09, 2015, 04:09:14 pm »
I am rusty on my hand drafting skills. Is there a key or legend I can look at that will help me determine what types of marks such as hatching, plumbing, cabinet height lines should be and how I can recognize them on a drawing?  When looking at a drawing I feel overwhelmed by all of the markings and it is hard to read/understand. Any suggestions on where I can find this information all in one place?


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Re: Drafting help please!
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2015, 06:45:41 pm »
Hi SaucyM.!

Yes, I understand that when you are first learning to read construction documents (AKA blueprints) and draft them yourself, it can be a bit overwhelming to look at all of the notes, symbols, dimensions and linetypes. Over time you will learn the "language of drafting" which includes all of these elements and more. The way that the elements are used, the drafting conventions and the organization and cross referencing of construction drawings is something you will work with all along in your program. It takes time and a step by step process....

First I would just take some time to study the examples that you are given in class, and study the examples in your textbooks. You can get a feel for how drawings are put together by slowing down and looking closely at everything in them...Looking at a set of blueprints is a really great way to start to familiarize yourself with how and why a drafter presents their lines and notes and other elements the way that they do. Consider also that you can ask a local designer or architect if they might meet with you to show you some of their work! Some firms are very student-friendly and taking some time to show you some plans and how they are put together in person would be a great plus. You can also try contacting your local ASID chapter or IIDA chapter to see if a member might have some time to show you their work too...like a personalized field trip!

As far as a key or legend, you can look at the ID Department Standards thread in your classroom (which is in the course home area to your left in class) and download and review the information there. It will show you and define for you the symbols, linetypes, and "styles" for dimensioning and text that the college uses. Later, as you learn more and work with AutoCAD this information will be important for your CAD drafting too.

With linetypes, the type of line that you use (solid, dashed, long dash, etc.) depends upon what you are showing and what the view of the drawing is. For floor plans, it is important to mention that a floor plan is a horizontal "cut" or slice of your building taken at 4'-0" above the floor and you are looking downward. Thus, the objects that are from the 4' level and downward are always shown as solid lines. Lines are shown with different thicknesses too depending upon the view you are showing. Objects that are closest to you or that are cut in section are shown with a heavy line, while lines for objects that are closest away are shown with a light, thin line.

Anthing above the 4' height in a floor plan is essentially "above your view", thus it is drafted with a dashed line. This is why you will see dashed lines used for upper cabinets in a kitchen, or why you will see dashed lines used for the upper steps in a staircase. If something is above or beyond your view, you will use dashed lines.

For the long dashed linetype, you will see this used when a centerline is identified. This can be used to locate centers of columns, or centers of other items in your design.

For hatching, your hatch patterns represent different materials. It's important to remember that a hatch is not a pretty "fill", but instead, it represents a specific material and it shows either a sectional view or an elevational view or a plan view. The hatches can be different for the same material depending upon the view and the scale of the drawing.

For example, a sectional view of brick is a series of evenly spaced diagonal lines, while an elevational view of brick shows the bricks in rows as you would see them in real life, and a plan view of brick will be shown as a layer applied to the exterior of a building with diagonal hatch lines...
Another example is wood. You would see an "X" in sectional view to identify a piece of wood blocking, but in plan view you would see wood as a pattern of wood graining, and in elevation you might see the graining as well. The size of the grain and the detail in the hatch depends upon how close up the view of your wood is...

Attached are some images that show just some of the common linetypes and hatch patterns. Keep in mind that there are many more and you will learn them over time. Your textbook, "Graphic Standards for Interior Designers" will also be a great resource for this!

When you say "markings" I am assuming that you mean "symbols". You will learn more about symbols too as you go from class to class. The three main symbols used in construction drawings are elevation symbols, section symbols and detail enlargement symbols. You will find them defined in the ID Department Standards area of your classroom, and you will learn how to use them in class through the exercises and assignments. I have also placed some examples of symbols here in the attachment file.

Overall, just try not to be overwhelmed, ask many questions in class and allow yourself time to learn things one step at a time. Like learning a language, you will learn the letters first (lines and dimensioning), then the words (symbols and hatches), then soon you will be putting things together in paragraphs (the finished drawings!).

I hope these suggestions help. It's an exciting subject to learn!