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Drafting Program Advice

 
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Old 03-15-2010, 12:23 AM   #41
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Re: Drafting Program Advice


Quote:
Originally Posted by framerman View Post
Welcome to the party. It took me years to figure out that there is no right answer.

Asking "do you draw in 3d" no, not really. We create a building model in the program. The program does most of the work.

I am just going to state in a general sense about some differences in software. I don't want anyone to start nitpicking about what I say, the guy is confused already.

There is CAD software and there is BIM software. You probably know about CAD, but BIM you may have not heard of. BIM stands for Building Information Modeling.

AutoCAD, in general, draws lines. Most programs that have "CAD" in the title will GENERALLY be similar. They can do modeling, yes, but are not quite designed for the function of 3d building design. They have 3d modeling capabilities, but the function is much different than a BIM program.

Programs like Revit, ArchiCAD, Architectural Desktop, CA, SoftPlan are considered (again...in general) BIM programs.

What happens in BIM is that the software does much more work for you. There is information in the drawings that you are creating. It's not just a line that you are drawing. There are walls, floors, roofs, foundations, siding, insulation....and a whole boatload of information attached. All you see on the screen is a line, but behind the scene the program is working for you.

And for a simple example, if you move a wall in the programs plan view, all of your views will update automatically, like sections, elevations, materials lists.

SketchUp is a modeling program that falls a little short in the BIM category. It is a design program with some CAD like functioning. Most people who are contractors can and do use it for simple design, CAD, and visualization because it is in general, a really easy program to learn and there is more public support than any other program out there. And it's cheap.

Another program that falls somewhere in between is Rhino3D. That is a hard core CAD program with some very intense modeling capabilities. It will easily do CAD, sheets, printing, designing, elevations, renderings....the whole enchilada for half the cost of CA. And with a rendering plug in, it will absolutely smoke CA and SoftPlan in quality visualizations. But it falls far short of the efficiency in making working plans.

Revit and ArchiCAD are considered the upper end of BIM. I use Revit, Cole uses ArchiCAD. Extremely difficult to justify paying 5 grand especially since it is not an easy program to master. Thus there was a vaccuum at the 2-3 grand level and that is where CA and SoftPlan come in.

I tried SoftPlan, I really gave it time to do the thing it says it could do. It is an infuriating program. And with the lack of a free trial download, they aren't even worth a look for anyone seriously considering investing money.

CA...well, there seems to be an awful lot of you guys here. I can't say anything about the program, I have never tried it. I would guess it is right up the alley of SoftPlan but with a free trial. Whatever rocks your boat. If it works for you, great, but there are many who find it confusing and useless. I don't go around pumping Revit up because I know that almost all here cannot justify the expense and the immense time to learn and master it.

If you want to draw lines and that is all, there are a bazillion AutoCAD knockoffs for under $200. SketchUp, being free, will draw lines for you. You CAN easily do simple plans, elevations and whatnot with SketchUp, but it is not designed to be a CAD program.

Last point I will make is that if you continually need to make revisions, I will take 5 minutes to fix 20 pages and be assured that everything is correct. CAD, you will have to manually fix every single page and cross your fingers that you didn't miss something. Revit and ArchiCAD will do this, SketchUp will not. CA....I don't know. I'm guessing it will.
That was incredibly lucid , and am I the only one who hears all your posts in John Wayne voice?

Last edited by moorewarner; 03-15-2010 at 12:29 AM.
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Old 03-15-2010, 10:50 PM   #42
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Re: Drafting Program Advice


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I dont use it for 2 D at all....learn to read. The original post in this thread is a good place to start.
Learn to read? I did read it and it's not a productive way to use this program architecturally speaking. But if you like making stop signs who am I to judge?

OP you can use the program to draw plans, Renders, etc it just depends on the level you want to take the program. The problem you are going to have is trying to scale a drawing in sketch up and the amount of time it takes to achieve this since its more of a conceptual type program. If I was you i'd go with Chief, the more I play with it the more I love it, and thats coming from a 10 year and counting AUTOCAD user.
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Old 03-16-2010, 12:43 AM   #43
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Re: Drafting Program Advice


"Last point I will make is that if you continually need to make revisions, I will take 5 minutes to fix 20 pages and be assured that everything is correct. CAD, you will have to manually fix every single page and cross your fingers that you didn't miss something. Revit and ArchiCAD will do this, SketchUp will not. CA....I don't know. I'm guessing it will."

There is a way of not having to manually revise each individual sheet in AutoCAD. You draw a base drawing and have everything drawn in different layers on that base drawing and XRef it on to each sheet. You simply turn on whatever layers you need on each sheet and every time you need to revise something you do it on the base drawing and each sheet with the XRef will automatically be updated.

If you'll mainly draw in 2D my vote is for AutoCAD. It's amazing all the things you can do with it and in the amount of time you can do it once you learn it.
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Old 03-17-2010, 11:25 AM   #44
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Re: Drafting Program Advice


Quote:
Learn to read? I did read it and it's not a productive way to use this program architecturally speaking. But if you like making stop signs who am I to judge?

OP you can use the program to draw plans, Renders, etc it just depends on the level you want to take the program. The problem you are going to have is trying to scale a drawing in sketch up and the amount of time it takes to achieve this since its more of a conceptual type program. If I was you i'd go with Chief, the more I play with it the more I love it, and thats coming from a 10 year and counting AUTOCAD user.
If you read the op then why are you giving advice which is irrelevent to his question? He asked for a simple way to make drawings that he would use himself to build his project. He stated he wasn't interested in 3D. Personally I think 3D is the way to go but..it's not about what I prefer.

It's easy to scale a drawing in SU (even the free version) Not sure why the original poster would want to scale anything given his original post( that you apparently didn't read). Scaling a drawing is rather useless unless you have the resources to print in larger formats. If you needed help learning how to scale a drawing I could help but since you think you know everything...

To the rest of you...not everyone is interested in nor needs to produce documents needed for permit application, printing to scale, sharing with subs, standardized details, complex material take offs or file exportation to dxf/dwg or excel...much less photorealistic rendering.

We know already that there are many expensive and propriatory software applications available that do everything very quickly especially specific to the applications purpose. For instance, deck design/building applications design decks and list the materials to do so...they don't do mechanical drawings and produce the standard ortho views for machine shops.

Nailkiller....if you are still interested...if you need/want help finding and getting set up with an application that will fit your needs and budget contact me directly....or...just have Mr. AUTOCAD tell you what you need.
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Old 03-18-2010, 07:43 AM   #45
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Re: Drafting Program Advice


In all honesty the full version is overwhelming at first- ,,,at first. The version I have 9.5 included all the training videos and tutorials. When I first started using CA , I was getting frustrated because I put the cart before the horse and didn't go through the training-FIRST. I decided to run the training videos in a parallel window and start from square 1. I found out a lot of useful information and short cuts in design and layouts. Once you get to know the program and all it's functions it truly is an incredible BIM/CAD program. I paid a fraction of what it costs for new. It was a used /open program- do a little research

I am only speaking of CA,,, the other programs that have been mentioned I have no experience in so I can't say anything about them,, not that they wouldn't suit your needs, but when I wanted a professional program to do layouts for blue prints and a truly professional presentation I knew I was going to have to get a program that was going to be rather intense and complicated , once I understood how it worked it became a lot easier to work with.


On a side note: I don't know what you are using for a printer but one recommendation is to get yourself a COLOR plot printer- You can get a used one that won't empty your bank account. I have seen them on e-bay for $200.00, -IWK. I was doing some trim work at a business and noticed this plot printer siting on the floor- dusty, so I asked the plant supervisor what they were doing with it, they were throwing it out. So I took the HP Designjet 350C - back to my shop- downloaded the manual and service manual, plugged her in - error light came up, "cartridge was not aligning with the edge of the 24" roll. So I looked in the manual, check the belt- low & behold - it was shredded. I ordered the belt kit of ebay for $27.00 , purchased recycled cartridges for $47.00- all 4, Installed the belt, installed the cartridges, plugged her in - hooked up to my laptop and ran a sample print- Worked flawlessly

So ,
I don't know what you want to sketch up, maybe layouts??? If so,, CA FULL is worth looking into along with the plot printer FMPE
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Old 04-05-2010, 08:04 AM   #46
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Re: Drafting Program Advice


Visio is a program I've used for a while. Good for layouts and room design.
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Old 04-24-2010, 11:50 AM   #47
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Re: Drafting Program Advice


Just finished the first draft of new home in sketchup
I found it fairly easy to get used to
I know their of tons of things I am missing
I taught my kids some new curse word combinations
If I had skills you would have some way of looking at it




I think I will try and complete this house in this program

Then try a new program for next project

Am I going to be able to send this to my lumberyard
and have this plotted to scale

Thanks for all the help
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Old 04-24-2010, 01:12 PM   #48
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Re: Drafting Program Advice


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Am I going to be able to send this to my lumberyard
and have this plotted to scale
Not likely unless your lumberyard is familiar with doing that or you have the proper means to create a file they use. You can export .skp to .dwg with a script or...you can use a .pdf creator to print to file in larger formats.

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