View Full Version : Future in CAD?????????

25-10-2004, 10:37 PM
I saw this post on another forum and thought it would be interesting to see the replies here ..... 8)

"How old are ya'?"
"How long have you been drafting (or using CAD)?
"And do you see yourself doing it until you retire?"



9 years

yes & no
I'm an architect [architech] so .. I'm assuming CAD will always be there but it should lessen as I climb up ... at least I hope. :shock:

On a scale of 1-10 how much do you like drafting. (1=seething hatred, 10=orgasmic lust)

6 for liking CAD drafting

25-10-2004, 11:55 PM

6 years

I'm trying to work my way out of CAD over the next ten years or so.

ADDITIONAL QUESTION (if that's okay with you architech)
On a scale of 1-10 how much do you like drafting. (1=seething hatred, 10=orgasmic lust)

7.4 :wink:

mom of 3
26-10-2004, 01:31 AM
old enough - a woman never gives her true age.......... :mrgreen:
almost 5 yrs
probably, at the rate I'm going, I'll still be a CAD tech when I'm on my deathbed!!!!!!!!!!! :oops: I have always wanted to get into architecture, but I've been led down the engineering detour, so, I guess it will always be part of my career........whether I become an architect, engineer, or architectural engineer............
how much do I like it??????? I have 2 answers.........board drafting - 10, CAD - 4.........I don't like computers, I get too confused easily.......... :roll:

26-10-2004, 06:37 AM

9 years

i dont give **** ... i make good money, i enjoy live so what do i care if i draw till i am dead. Life is too short to really bother about this. I dont have to be a high classed person. That takes stress with it ... i just enjoy my wife, son and life in general.

On a scale of 1-10 how much do you like drafting. (1=seething hatred, 10=orgasmic lust)


29-10-2004, 11:45 AM

6 years (If you include college) using CAD

I see myself using CAD until my stubby little fingers get arthritis and form into an evil lobsteresque claw. So maybe till I'm dead.. yeah. Plus I agree with YosSa about the status thing.. except I'm on phenominally turd money.

And I'd give it an 8. Because its raining right now and my mate is digging up roads in Gateshead whereas I am in a climate controlled office with a kick a**e free vending machine. Nuff sed.

02-11-2004, 09:41 PM
"How old are ya'?"
"How long have you been drafting (or using CAD)?
"And do you see yourself doing it until you retire?"

3 Years

Not sure,possibly.Will my fingers and eyes be up to it,will I find something that I enjoy even more as a job?


03-11-2004, 04:34 AM
8) 30+ yrs.....hehehe

Since 1987...WOW it's been that long :cry:

Probably take my laptop with me to the grave...just incase.....

05-11-2004, 08:25 PM
To add to the confusion.....

66 (No wise cracks, please!)

Since 1990

Already semi-retired; can't pull myself away from the keyboard.

How do I like drafting? Some days 2; others 8 or 9.

05-11-2004, 11:11 PM
66!!!!!!!!Wow thats cool.I bow to you oh masterful one.If only I could have your knowledge of CAD at my age. :)

06-11-2004, 03:57 AM
Hypo: Forgot to add that I have 20+ years on the boards before learning cadd. Also had 3 years b4 that as machine designer. That's where I picked up a sense of how important it is to be accurate. Cadd embraces accuracy; that's why I like it.

Always been interested in computers -even before there were computers. Went on my own in 1990, figured I'd better learn cadd to stay employable and been at it ever since. Not too bright on the gee whiz features (that's why I read the forums all the time to pick up tidbits).

Most of it is the application of common sense after you learn how to arrange the sticks properly.

Feel free to ask questions; that and time are the way to learn.

06-11-2004, 07:14 PM
Yeh I realise that some of that would have been draughting.Makes it alot easier if youve spent years doing technical drawings with your drawing board set square and pen.Was worried you might think my comments were a wise crack :) .

06-11-2004, 07:50 PM
hypo: That was 20 + years BEFORE I started learning cadd. I simply built on this past experience, adapted what I could to the new media -and threw away a LOT of old habits that were "pencil and paper unique".

The big problem I see with people my age trying to transition to cadd is that they tend to want to continue to use everything that they've become comfortable with in the past and some of those things simply don't lend themselves very well to cadd media. For example: In pencil and paper, you simply couldn't draw with precision. In cadd, you (almost) can. Almost I say because civil drafters who draw on a very large scale discover sooner or later that cadd has it's precision limitations albeit much less than with pencil and paper.

Don't know about material sizes in your part of the world but in the US, an eight inch concrete block is actually made 7-5/8" (193.6mm or 194mm?). Older people using cadd tend to draw this material 8 inches because that is what they did with P&P; they couldn't draw it more accurately. They compensated when it came time to dimension these materials by using the actual size value in dimensioning. Then along comes cadd which generates dimension values EXACTLY. Point is that you have to draw the actual size of materials in cadd otherwise your dimensions will be messed up. Hard lesson to learn for some...

Corresponding with people who later discover my age ....they fall into two rather sharply defined categories: Those who respect you and those who disdain you. Think you may may fall into the former.

The ones who squint their eyes at older people in their business I don't worry about... they will grow older soon enough and only then will they realise that they acted like idiots. I already know this so I don't confront them because they won't believe me anyway! I think YosSa alluded to this in his post -in his unique, round about sort of way.

Well, I've gone on too long (again!). Old people tend to babble a bit...


07-11-2004, 11:47 AM
I understand that its hard for some draughters who have spent years on a drawing board and arent very computer literate to change over to CAD.What I meant that having an understanding of drawing layouts from doing draughting is a bonus(depending on whether you leave some of the habits behind and arent timid of IT work.Dont know you well enough to say I respect you,but you cant knock a bloke who has 66years years draughting experience.Alot of the time people knock other poeple for their age/experience,its just light hearted and in a weird way theyre actually showing their admiration for your knowledge.Mind you, you also get the odd one who's totally ignorant and immature to see how valuable knowledge is.

07-11-2004, 08:01 PM
Hypo: Having prior experience drafting (or draughting as you say) is a big help. But, where people in transition have difficulty is grasping the concepts of modelspace and paper (layout) space.

I have explained this concept to some of my contemporaries until I'm blue in the face and they still give me blank stares.

I have changed my approach to drafting and layouts drastically over the past few years. Although I draw full size in model space I , unlike many, place my images at finite locations.

For example, I start the lower left-hand corner of a floor plan at X=100', Y=100'. If I have a multi-floor building, the lowest floor starts at 100', 100' the next floor up starts at X=100', Y= Building Width + the distance required to place the same corner at some even 100 foot multiple on the Y-axis. If you know generally where your images are, it's easier to place them in viewports properly aligned.

Wall and/or building sections are located in model space so the the first floor elevation is at Y=100'. This is done in concert with the de facto standard of expressing floor elevations in the US. (First floor elevation = 100'-0"). Once located as such, it becomes ridiculously easy to express the heights of other elements using the ID command.

I also locate building sections a finite distance apart along the X-axis going to the right measured from a common side of the building. This concept is similar to that described for floor plans except the offset distances are horizontal instead of vertical. Once you know how far apart building sections are, it's easy to set up a wall section and get it positioned in a viewport the way you want it. The second wall section becomes simpler to set up. Copy the first view port to the side, make the second one active then bring the new wall section in to view using the "dash P" command to displace a specific distance right or left. Now you have two wall sections whose floors align perfectly without having to resort to using the Align command. This trick goes back to before Autocad had an align command.

In answer to your comments, I know a lot of people near my age or younger who were forced into using cadd. Their approach is to learn just enough to get by and tough it out until they can retire. In my mind, those people are ones who refuse to continue to grow in their practice and eventually they become a liability rather than an asset. For them a software upgrade is a nightmare because things are no longer the same and they are forced to do something different.

I don't feel sorry for them because in most cases it's a combination of pride and stubborness that they're fighting. I'd much rather take a person who's inexperienced in how things go together but cadd literate and teach them how the "sticks" should be arranged than try to teach cadd to someone who knows how building should go together but refuses to learn anything more than minimal cadd commands.


08-11-2004, 11:46 PM
csiarch - you made an interesting comment up top, that when I first started I experienced a kind of an inverse to it. You said that some hand drafters had trouble getting used to the idea that CAD is much more accurate vs. pen and paper.

To preface, I only worked on a bored in school and a few rare times at work.

I had trouble getting used to the idea (especially with roads, pipe, and dirt) that during construction, contractors will lot of times “just make it work.” What I mean by that is; “growing up” around 12 decimal point accuracy (and not getting to go out to the field because I was a newbie) I didn’t realize, in some situations it is not worth the client’s money and your companies time to be accurate within a 100,000th of a foot or even a 100th. However after a few years of getting to watch construction I learned that concrete, asphalt and pipe, can’t be laid to the 1,000th of a percent grade and surveyors can’t easily shoot anything closer than 0.03. Not to say I don’t still try to be too accurate, because a rounding error should never be an excuse. I guess you have to take all advice in moderation; too much accuracy costs money today, not enough costs lots more money tomorrow.

Anyway, I just thought this was a pretty fascinating contrast to others past experiences.

I also learned on those site visits that contractors will cut corners every chance they get...

mom of 3
09-11-2004, 12:31 AM
I have to agree with some of what VCD said.......
I'm also in civil & no matter how accurate our drawings are, when we go to do our final asbuilts, soooooooo much has been "altered to make it fit" by the contractors. it's frustrating to me because ashtray will tell me one thing (oh sorry.........that's what I call my engineer - he's the only smoker in our office......), I do it exactly as he says, he looks at it, says oh, I don't like that or that's not gonna work, but the contractors are gonna build it however they want anyway so just leave it. :evil: why bother drawing to a scale or with precision or anything then? now, when I was in structural, it was a whole different story........I'd have to agree with CSI if I were still in that field.......

ok........shutting up now.........(although I've been pretty quiet lately....)


09-11-2004, 02:44 AM
Well, Now. I think I should have clarified my statements about accuracy. My intent was to point out the differences in GRAPHIC accuracy. No way can you draw super accurate in P & P but you can in cadd.

When people did drawings in P & P, they checked the math and put down the correct dimensions. With cadd, if you draw inaccurate objects then apply dimensions, they won't be correct because this dumb program does exactly what you tell it to do: Tell you how far it is from here to there. So someone gets in a hurry, blows away the little <> and types in what it should be. That person has set upon a course which will eventually lead to embarassment, cost overruns and ironically, he'll wind up going back and revising what he should have done correctly in the first place -or his replacement will be saddled with that task.

Not drawing accurately increases the possible margin of error. IF you draw something accurately (as best you know it to be accurate) then your margin of tolerance is a finite value either side of (assumed) dead center. Slop in something close instead and you're immediately beyond either the acceptable plus or minus tolerance range.

The situations you describe about civil work are no different than those in architectural work except for the acceptable margin of error. Rule of thumb in architecture is +/- 1/8" (3mm). Don't know for sure about civil but I'm guessing +/- 1/2" (13mm) would be "very close".

Contractors "...making things fit..." is a fact of life. One should determine why the contractor has to do this. The possibilities include: 1. The contractor made a mistake. 2. The drawings were not accurate. 3. The contractor doesn't care (i.e., "we know how to do this without a bunch of drawings"). and so on... If you KNOW for a fact that your drawings are accurate and based on the best possible information available at the time they were prepared, then guess where the blame and the responsibility for corrections) lies? This in itself is sufficient reason for being accurate AFAIK.

One thing I've learned is you should try to be as accurate as possible in any discipline. If allowance for contractor error is assumed, an accurate drawing forms the basis of determining how far off things are and how much adjustment is required to correct the error. How are you going to be able to determine this if your drawings are not as accurate as they can be?

But you do what you think is best, my friends.


One little added footnote to drei: Your engineer seems to have a low GAS factor. Contact me pm if you want to knwo what GAS stands for. As soon as you can, find another position somewhere where you can work for someone competent.

09-11-2004, 07:18 PM
Maybe your engineer should get out of the concrete, dirt, and water business and go work in microprocessor design. Microchips have to be designed and built at micro meters or they just won't work. He could work at an accuracy of one millionth of a meter till his little anal-retentive heart is content.