Technical drawings are an essential aspect of the architectural industry. These drawings and drafts depict the look how of the entire structure to be built with appropriate planning. There are two approaches to draw your construction ideas; one is the traditional old-school approach of Manual Drafting, which makes use of pen or pencil to draw out manual sketches on paper, while the other is a much more modernized version, CAD Drafting Services, which uses software to draft out the design intent. Both of these have their pros and cons. Still, CAD drafting is a real breakthrough in the AEC industry, as it speeds up technical drafting with precision and accuracy in designs avoiding ambiguity. Many AEC professionals prefer opting for CAD software, and its global market size is forecasted to grow 6.6% from 2020–2030, reaching $18.7 billion. The primary CAD driving forces are the manufacturing and automotive industries. CAD drafting, in many ways, is preferred over manual drafting considering the tools and automation offered by the software. CAD and Manual drafting are different; below is the tabular representation of the fundamental differences between them and why CAD drafting should be considered over manual drafting.
CAD is the future of architectural designing and drafting; it has modified and positively changed drafting techniques. Many of the complex tasks have been simplified by switching to CAD drafting. Many firms have digitized their existing manual drawings and stored them securely for future use. With its listed benefits, it has gained popularity in the construction industry to a greater extent.
The Architectural industry is very much familiar with the terminology CAD or Computer-Aided Design that is used to create and modify designs. CAD has replaced manual designing for almost all industries for several advantages enabling engineers to create, store and share creations virtually. This revolutionized process has made drawing, drafting, and designing tasks much simpler for designers and architects. Still, with the benefits of CAD, there are some responsibilities of complex data management. Though the work gets diminished in design and documentation terms with Drafting Services, it leaves an enormous volume of data files piled up to be synced and stored appropriately.
Managing this chunk of CAD files is a lot more different than other computer files, the sole reason being CAD files need both versions as well as revisions control. Let’s quickly overview the importance of controlling versions and revisions and how we can manage them effectively.
What are CAD Versions and Revisions?
Versions and Revisions may sound similar in general, but in CAD, they totally hold the difference. Versions in CAD modeling are the backup files created while an ongoing project. While working, a designer or an engineer may come up with numerous design ideas relevant to a single project. These ideas are each saved on different files and are termed as versions. Generally, designers are addicted to overwriting the changes to a single file. Still, it is wise to use a new file for a new copy as it would be easily accessible in the near future for any issues encountered, and as all the iterations are not feasible all time so the ones not needed can be straightaway deleted. Saving your versions with correct file names makes it easier to understand and access when required.
Revisions in CAD modeling, on the other hand, are the major design upgrades or changes. The purpose of Revision is to make the person aware of the timeline of the change that occurred with the necessary details to work on in the future.
Comparing Versions and Revisions
In short, Versions states the minor changes in design development, while Revisions states the major changes post-design. Revisions communicate the breakthrough or any discovery in design. Versions, on the other hand, are simple iterations with subtle alterations. The application of Revision is basically to state which Version should be ready for tooling.
Importance of Managing CAD Versions and Revisions
Now that we have a piece of good knowledge about Versions and Revisions, the difference between them, and their significance, let’s see how to manage versions and revisions.
How can Companies Manage to Control CAD Versions and Revisions with their Pros and Cons?
1)No Revision Control
This is the most traditional method used in the case of low-scaled projects. In this, the team member manually saves the versions and revisions by adding a number to a part or a particular file name.
2) Manual Revision Control
Manual revisions are the most common method used in the case of small teams. As few members are involved, CAD file versions and revisions are saved and shared via file-sharing tools. Tools like Dropbox are considered for sharing files as they are easy to understand and communicate and are of low cost. Dropbox facilitates with auto-creation of various file versions but is of no use while handling CAD files.
3) Partially Automated Revision Control
When working on a large-scale or complex project with frequent versions and revisions releases, the tools such as Workbench or other cloud-based PDM tools are used to handle them. This tool tracks down multiple versions checked in and allow restore the previous Version.
4) Fully Automated Revision Control
When several engineers work on a large-scale CAD project, PLM or PDM software systems like SolidWorks are used for versions and revision control. These are the most managed, safe, and secured systems. The loopholes of all the above control systems are covered, like allowing specific members to perform actions in versions and revisions and setting a route for file approvals.
All-in-One/ Bottom Line
The management of CAD file versions and revisions is of way importance and has varied ways in which it can be handled. It is the company’s sole decision to choose the appropriate methodology from the above listed. Depending on the size of the project, the company, their budget, project criticality, the number of engineers working on the project, and file sharing locations, we can choose the apt technique for handling CAD file management. Evaluate your need correctly and ensure the tool you select supports your methodology.
Computer-aided design or CAD is a software that collaborates with architects, engineers, and construction professionals to design ideas in 2D or 3D for better visualization of any construction process.
CAD Drafter often termed draughtsmen, is a specialist who translates these ideas into detailed technical drawings and sketches for many industries. They are the ones who design the blueprints for any infrastructure. Considering the current scenario, it is unimaginable to create any sort of architectural plan without having CAD drawings. These act as a road map to any construction process thereby increasing the popularity of CAD drafters in the market. In general, drafters are responsible for preparing the plan, communicating it, and modifying it as and when needed. They can do this either manually or by any software.
In this tech-advanced era, to design any architectural, structural, mechanical, or electrical sketches, draftsmen should have the skill to draw technical sketches with the help of computer tools and software in addition to freehand sketches. Not only this, there is a long list of skillsets including creativity, detailing, analytical thinking, and many others, a draftsman should possess in order to serve Architectural Drafting Services efficiently.
Competency of a CAD Drafter
1) Proficient in Technical Design and Engineering (Engineering Skill)
The paramount skill for a drafter is to be fluent with engineering drawings and sketches so that they can transform architectural ideas into executable 2D or 3D designs. With the help of these drafts, they can help out architects, engineers, and construction managers to view the mock-ups of their projects in the form of schematics, diagrams, and blueprints to refer to throughout the construction cycle for planning, scheduling, and cost estimations. A draftee should also be well-versed with technical writing to create and modify technical documents while developing a construction plan that states the accuracy of any building structure.
2) Mastery in CAD Software (Technical Skill)
Another mandatory skill a drafter should own is to get expertise in numerous designing software to cater to all sorts of projects be it large scale or small scale. The more knowledge a draftsman has of multiple software, the more he would be able to tackle the complexity of the project across verticals like architectural, mechanical, civil, electrical, engineering, etc. Moreover, different software illustrates different modeling types, a few of them are solely for 2D drafting while a few of them are for 3D modeling and some of them support both. AutoCAD, TurboCAD, SolidWorks, SketchUp, ArchiCAD, and Revit are a few of the industry’s most used software.
3) Thorough with Geometry and Calculations (Mathematical Skills)
It is of utmost importance for a drafter to hold a piece of extensive knowledge about mathematical and geometrical concepts, formulas, and calculations while designing as it helps in determining dimensions, costs, and weights. The comprehensive know-how of the basic principles of shapes, lines, views, distances, and sizes helps in achieving designing accuracy from different angles and getting multiple views of the design which can be helpful in simulation and prototyping.
4) Experience in BIM (Modeling Skill)
Designing is much more than 2D and 3D nowadays. This creates the need for a draftee who can integrate more value into the designs with the ability to create BIM models and 3D renderings. With knowledge of BIM modeling services, draftsmen can design a complete model with interactive ability that helps architects and stakeholders in enhanced visualization through virtual tours and panoramic views of any project.
5) Ability to Put Forward Imagination and Inventiveness (Creative Skill)
Draftsman is all about being innovative and creative in their thought process. With their creative skillset, they can easily depict the ideas of architects and clients in the form of designs and sketches using their imaginations. A creative draftsman can make multiple iterations of the designs for improved visualization.
6) Fluent with Interpretation and Estimations (Analytical Skill)
A CAD draftee with experience in interpretations and evaluations is like a cheery on the top of a cake. They can contribute to the architects and designers in analyzing the design quality, feasibility, and budget estimations for the project. They can be a part of the planning process by exploring each and every minute detail and coming up with the best strategy to design, and overcoming the project challenges. The analytical skill is of much help in creating accurate and error-free designs adhering to the details of the project.
7) Knowledge of Building Codes and Industry
An overview of the fundamentals of building standards and codes is a must prior to designing and executing any construction plan as the permit by government regulation of any design would be approved keeping in mind the safety and welfare of the people involved in the project in terms of construction and living. Draughtsman should also understand the industry in which they are working be it manufacturing, infrastructure, or civil. This amplifies their design skills. Generally, they work within their specialties, say architectural drafters specifically stick to the drafts relevant to buildings and infrastructures. While, electrical drafters, produce wiring diagrams beneficial in the installation of electrical circuit devices for any structures. The Mechanical drafters contribute to the machine components design and civil drafters look over for the overall design supervision and calculations.
Apart from the above-listed blend of skills, the draftee should be good enough with communications as the AEC industry is highly collaborative and communication is the key to designing. Strong communication skills can help in discussing ideas, incorporating design suggestions, and addressing critical design issues with other AEC professionals. They should be a team player to sync up well with the project members involved and ensure no miscommunication occurs while implementing their drawings.
Above all of this falls the time management, the ability to deliver the sketches and drawings within a specified deadline is what makes them stand out while catering to Architectural CAD Drafting Services. The better they are at meeting the schedules and plans, the faster the projects will get executed on-site.
CAD acronyms for Computer Aided Design which specifically is used to create 2D or 3D designs, drafts, product development, and optimization in manufacturing as well as construction domain. It is quite a versatile tool as it allows engineers, architects, and construction managers in creating a graphical representation of any objects, editing them, and modifying them whenever needed. They can also add on information to their designs such as dimensions, descriptions, and other specifications for future reference. Thanks to CAD, engineers and other AEC professionals can now visualize the construction better without making the design look cumbersome.
CAD: A Game Changer for Construction Professional
The evolution of CAD as a B2B software has surprisingly became a game changer for the construction industry. People have found ways to make the most out of CAD software be it getting an improved visualization of any construction project, rendering, prototyping, designing, or simulation, CAD has become a one-stop solution for all the design and modeling applications. An increase in CAD applications among all verticals is the reason behind the growth of the CAD market globally. According to Statista.com, By 2028, the global CAD market is forecasted to reach around $ 13.83 billion in size. This market is mainly dominated by 3D computer-aided design, a segment that was worth $ 5.5 billion in 2018.
With CAD drafting services, designers and engineers find the best possible iterations for their designs. CAD solutions in many ways are found profitable for the AEC industry.
Reasons Behind CAD being a Rewarding Technology
1) Amplify Productivity
CAD has altogether replaced manual drafting for Architectural drawing services. It enables developers and engineers to speed up their design and drafts thereby cutting down the production cost and accelerating the project completion. In traditional times, designers and architects accomplished their sketches and drawings by hand which would consume days to complete. Replacing this with computer designing tools has made the task far more simpler, faster and communicable. With the CAD tool, AEC professionals can now recapitulate their designs, avoid manual calculations and save their work digitally for future use, and also share the same easily via the cloud platform. Since CAD allows proficient designing due to its inbuilt options, designers can now experiment on various angles, design simulations, and create premium drafts thereby increasing productivity.
It has been observed that implementing CAD has amplified employee productivity by 3 times on an average and it is forecasted that this may increase to 10 times in the near future.
Replacing CAD with manual designing, time can be our remunerative reward. Drawing complex objects, shapes, and connections among various components now simply take fractions with just a few clicks saving an ample amount of work and time for architects that can be used in other activities or projects. With CAD, alterations and even redesigning have also got a lot easier. You can just replicate the existing 3D model and add the necessary information to redesign the model in less time.
CAD software has proven of great use when there is a time crunch in implementing any project.
3) Predefined Image Stock
With CAD, designers can now just choose the suitable size of the standard parts which are common and are used in almost all sorts of projects for home design, windows, doors can be same, for machinery bolts, nuts and many others remain the same. CAD software holds the stock of such predefined images that can be directly picked from its image directory/ libraries. This saves a lot of time and works in re-designing every single minute of repetitive parts.
These parts can be easily resized and improvised with changing colors and angles for rendered images using CAD. It is not just a replacement for manual drafts, it has lot more features added that can ease out the designer’s task.
4) Error-free Designs & Drafts
Manual works are more prone to errors be it designing or calculations or drafting bills of materials. With CAD, such errors can be averted. CAD software is quite advanced as it alerts for the wrong inputs while drawing and drafting which can be rectified immediately. CAD enables quick and error-free prototyping and alterations.
5) Easy File Sharing
CAD fosters better communication by sharing designs and drawings among the project team involved. The CAD file is stored in a cloud-based platform thus allowing access to all the team members irrespective of their locations. Any changes or alterations made in the CAD file can be viewed by the entire team remotely. This makes information sharing easier than the traditional method of carrying a set of documents and sketches which were more prone to get destroyed or damaged. This also improvises the collaboration and communication among various team members internally and on-field.
CAD has Taken Designing to the Next Level
CAD has changed the whole definition of the designing. It is not just commercial drawings; it is more of a conceptual design. It allows engineers to visualize any object or component from different angles easily for better interpretations. It produces both 2D as well as 3D diagrams with automated simpler steps. Not only designing, editing and modifications have also been easier, faster, and feasible. CAD is currently used in almost all verticals be it constructional, industrial, entertainment, or any other. It has also contributed a lot in fastening regenerative designs.
CAD and its Spinoffs
CAD whole and soul has been a profitable technology in the construction industry and other verticals as it reduces the time taken to build 2D sketches and 3D models. It also facilitates simpler and feasible designing and analyzing. It enumerates modifications and alterations and rectifies flaws prior to actual prototyping. With CAD, Engineers and Designers can showcase their creativity and take designing to a whole new level. With its technological impact, it has been a revolution for major companies. Many of the major players have been investing in R&D for syncing well with emerging technology and to gain a competitive edge. For instance, Autodesk developed a new tool implementing AI and automation named Dream Catcher, which allows users to generate hundreds of designs in a short span of time.
The use of CAD will intensify in the upcoming years with its added features to the respective industries.
A few organizations still believe that they need to settle on a decision between 2D and 3D CAD importance. However, as a result of the advancement in CAD innovation, you never again need to confuse on that decision. Why are a lot of organizations moving from 2D to 3D modeling?
There are a few key advantages of utilizing 3D CAD designs and models in AEC industry. 3D CAD importance is due to its automation, effortlessness, and intuitive analysis. Architects and engineers regularly depend on drawings and models for their ventures. 2D CAD models don’t generally give these experts the speed and exactness they require to finish the venture or discover solutions for errors.
Thus, 3D CAD has been utilized by AEC firms for a long time to enhance the productivity and quality of their designs. Incorporating CAD with planning system makes exceptionally effective design process. The effect 3D CAD has on exhibiting architectural administrations is without a doubt the biggest change that has happened.
Let’s take an account of the three fundamental 3D CAD benefits:
1. Quick, Realistic and Efficient
In 3D CAD, engineers and architects can rapidly and effectively separate the 2D data from a finished model, leaving more opportunity to concentrate on the designing procedure.
A 3D configuration can plainly demonstrate the physical measurements of the items and its importance in connection with other segments in the aggregate design.
Due to adaptability and accuracy of 3D models, architects and engineers can invest less time in the planning phase of their venture and additional time is invested in accomplishing the task.
The advanced 3D software underpins different analytic tools that enable the architects and engineers to simulate procedures like fluid flow on their design to calculate vibrations in key structures.
By simulation of these environmental elements, experts can recognize any configuration issues earlier to fix them. Thus, sparing them from rescheduling the task and huge construction cost.
2. Accuracy and Control
One of the most beneficial 3D CAD importance is that no other design segments are altered mistakenly during the process. Since every individual part of a structure can be detached, examined, tested, affirmed or changed, all before the actual construction.
This designing accuracy saves engineers and architects from costly errors by enabling them to see configuration issues or shortcomings in the structural phase of a site before constructing procedure begins.
The entire outline process is more exact when combined with a 3D mouse. The 3D mouse upgrades plan by giving the client the ability to control, zoom and rotate the model to see it from all points. Thus, more control over your venture implies more productivity.
3. Better to market and get approvals
The usage of 3D CAD is more convincing and fulfilling to a prospect than to view a 2D drawing of the project. The striking image stays in the prospect’s brain for a more time period and you stand a superior opportunity of winning the client. So, the approval rate of projects in the construction business is faster when a 3D model is utilized.