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Fonts in submitted drawings

Discussion in 'CAD / Software Discussion' started by MtnArch, Aug 2, 2015.

  1. MtnArch

    MtnArch Sawhorse

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    Just a kick-start in the forum, but (I think) a valid question ...

    We Arc-ee-tects (notice the capitalization) like to have our drawings look a certain way, whether they are hand-drawn or computer-generated. The upside now is that it's "computer-generated" and (theoretically) standard ... the downside is that with so many different programs, fonts, pen settings, plotters, etc. **'tain't NOTHIN' standard!**

    Personally, I prefer my drawings to have a "hand-drawn" font instead of Simplex, Arial or even (shudder) Times Roman! Hell, I prefer to use DataCAD instead of Acad because I can get the drawings to have "X" corners instead of "L" corners like my old hand drafting days! And if I don't have at least 5 pen settings to choose from I feel like I have both hands tied behind my back!

    BUT ... I'm on the "public" counter side of the plan check and not on the AHJ "have-to-review-a-lot-of-drawings" side of the counter. For those of you who have to spend an hour (or a few, or more, hours) looking at the masterpieces that we've spent many more hours creating for you, what have you seen that actually HELPS you (VISUALLY - not code-wise!) review the drawings?

    Since I was trained as a hand-drafter from the '70's (and I am SOOO thankful that I was!), to me, line weights are how you describe what you see in front and what you see behind the cutting plane. Monotone line weights are what mere "drafters" use! ( ;-) ).

    So how about it - can you give an Arc-ee-tect a clue how to make it clearer to YOU?
     
  2. mark handler

    mark handler Sawhorse

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    Alan

    I too was trained in the seventies as a hand draftsman.

    But now as a building official I have issues not with the font style but with the height of the font.and when the font is bolded, many fonts become muddy.

    The height for most legal document need to be 10 point or above. I get drawings at 6 or 8 point that can not be read.

    The text and drawing need to be Clear.Concise. Correct. Coherent. Complete. Coordinated.

    To me, the font style is the least thing to worry about.
     
  3. pyrguy

    pyrguy Moderator

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    I had some hand-drafting traning also. Extra small font size drives me up a wall. Too much stuff shoved on a page so the font is somewhere between magnifying glass and microscope. ;)

    Plotting a 42" sheet down to 11X17 happens all the time. Glad we get a digital copy.
     
  4. jar546

    jar546 *****istrator

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  5. Mark K

    Mark K Platinum Member

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    Eye sight deteriorates with age. As a result larger fonts are needed to accommodate the older plan checkers. To avoid claims of age discrimination smaller fonts should not be accepted.
     
  6. tmurray

    tmurray Sawhorse

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    lineweights and too many notes on a page are my pet peeves. To be honest, as long as I can read it, understand it and see what it is referencing, I really don't care about fonts.
     
  7. MASSDRIVER

    MASSDRIVER Sawhorse

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    Though no an uppity line drawer, I had 4 years architectural drawing in my formative years. The first year, all we did was letter and lines. I truly love hand lettering. I have an old quarter-sawn and cast iron drawing desk that I still do plans on. I hate it when my lettering looks like a55 and sometimes will redo it on that alone.

    Now my Dad, he can actually hand letter in common typefaces perfectly, and pretty fast. He can also letter an entire page strait with no strait edge aids. I wish I could do that.

    Brent
     
  8. north star

    north star Sawhorse

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    # ~ ~ #

    MtnArch,

    I prefer a larger sized "Century Gothic" & "Comic Sans"

    Font types for more clear wording...........My old eyes need

    a larger sized Font these days..............On another note as

    to what actually helps me to review the drawings, ...would

    be for the designer-of-record to remove all "Typicals"

    from their plans...........I do not need to see information,

    images, code or Standard references that do not

    directly apply to the project.

    Please remove all "Typicals" from your plans, ...PLEASE ! :cool:



    # ~ ~ #
     
  9. conarb

    conarb Sawhorse

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    [QUOTE='North Star]..........On another note asto what actually helps me to review the drawings, ...would

    be for the designer-of-record to remove all "Typicals"

    from their plans...........I do not need to see information,

    images, code or Standard references that do not

    directly apply to the project.

    Please remove all "Typicals" from your plans, ...PLEASE !

    [/QUOTE]I second that, structural engineers are the worst offenders, they'll include a couple of pages of details with half Xed out, if you have problems you can only imagine the problems the contractor in the field has trying to show carpenters what to do constantly pouring through the irrelevant information. Their excuse is that using the same typical details over and over again saves the client money, my answer is to not use them again and tell my architects not to use them. You guys could stop it at the source by refusing to accept those detail sheets.
     
  10. MASSDRIVER

    MASSDRIVER Sawhorse

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    I always ask what they think "typical" might be.

    Brent.
     
  11. ICE

    ICE Sawhorse

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    I have come across plans that had none of the superfluous detail drawings Xed out. And a lot of it too. I have sent them back to plan check to get all the extra stuff removed. They tell me that all of the pertinent details are called out on the other pages so the extra shouldn't be a hindrance. My feeling is that I should be able to scan the detail pages and know that every one of them counts rather than wonder whether I will or will not find a detail referenced in the body of the plans. I recall a single story building that had elevator detail drawings.

    Many times it looks like the architect is selling sizzle because there is not enough steak. The customer sees value for the dollar with a forty page set of plans and doesn't realize that four pages would have done the trick. It is really apparent when there is an addition to the back of a house and the architect provided elevations of the front. That may be so the contractor finds the right house.

    I have also sent plans back to separate the information into several pages rather than have so much ink on one page that it is difficult to read. That happened more often when I was checking plans.

    What about the language? I see plenty of mistakes made because the plans are in English.

    But MtnArch asked about the font didn't he? Well as long as I can read it without a magnifying glass I reckon it's good enough. But as Mark K pointed out there will come a time when it needs to be the old people's Reader's Digest.

    You know, what with ADA encroaching into all aspects of our daily life, I'm surprised that there isn't a law demanding braille plans. Hells Bells, I know more than one blind contractor.
     
    #11 ICE, Aug 4, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 5, 2015
  12. MtnArch

    MtnArch Sawhorse

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    Love this, everyone! I also like how it has morphed into "typical" details!

    Along those lines, I (personally) won't include "typical" details, and haven't "X'd" them out since I went fully cadd. If you're doing cadd drawings (NOT completely hand-drawn) there is NEVER an excuse to have details that don't apply to a project. I really appreciate the Building and Safety Departments in the Fresno and Madera (California) city and county areas that have been requiring this for quite a few years.

    I also appreciate ICE's comments - I've done (and continue to do) a lot of tenant improvements in the LA and SF Bay Area that I get access to existing/"as-built" drawings that have TONS of sheets and even more MEGA-TONS of missing information/details/dimensions/etc. The only way to truly know what's existing is to do a physical field measurement.
     
  13. mtlogcabin

    mtlogcabin Sawhorse

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    Arial

    Georgia

    Verdana

    Are easiest for me to read

    We had one architect that placed bubbles with numbers in side all over the drawings. You had to look at the legend on the right side of the sheet to know what the reference numbers referred too. What a pain in the :butt they where to decipher
     
  14. tmurray

    tmurray Sawhorse

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    I actually like this, if it is a typical note because I can just read the note and then look at the locations it applies. But they shouldn't do it for every note.
     
  15. Paul Sweet

    Paul Sweet Sawhorse

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    Virginia requires lettering on drawings for state projects to be at least 1/8" high for hand lettering, and 1/10" high for CADD. I think this dates back to when as-built drawings were microfilmed for archival retention.
     
  16. Frank

    Frank Sawhorse

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    With the reduced drawings becomming an issue we said the print had to be legible and no smaller than that in the phone book--figuring the phone company had researched how small a print one could get away with.
     
  17. conarb

    conarb Sawhorse

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    Frank:

    What do you mean "reduced drawings"? Isn't 24x36 required everywhere? My problem has been that 24x36 is too small for large buildings and would rather see 48" or longer drawings accepted, in fact on many large homes I do the permit sets at 24x36 and then do several more sets at whatever it takes to get a complete floor plan on them at ΒΌ" to the foot scale. I did one that the architect used 3/16" to fit it on one page and no one can compute 3/16" scale in their heads, splitting floor plans on two or more pages is worse.
     
  18. north star

    north star Sawhorse

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    = = >



    Unfortunately not ! :banghd< = =
     

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