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AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 12:42 AM

Do you use autoCAD at work daily, or do you have a CADD person to draw up your hand sketches? Everywhere I've every worked has always had a CAD person.

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#1

Re: AutoCAD at work?

04/27/2015 2:03 AM

I think it depends on how large the business run is, I mean, small engineering firms are run by engineers competent at everyday's computer work including AutoCAD, typing, text processing,.... etc. Anyway, I'm convinced of the saying which goes: "Every man for himself,.. every man to his trade"!

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#2

Re: AutoCAD at work?

04/27/2015 2:07 AM

In the "good old days" we used to have a secretary type up our reports, now we use Word to do it ourselves. Same thing with sketches, now we have a CADD program for that.

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#3

Re: AutoCAD at work?

04/27/2015 8:05 AM

we use cadd, and if theres a pool of cadd operators, we would to the initial concept design that can be used, and do a hand off.

The types of designs vary A lot of use have experience in OEM, as well as process and electrical. and there are times we would do designs cradle to grave on a project and delegate very little. It all depends on the project.

One thing I like to make clear. I use the term CADD operator, just due to the fact, a CADD operator does not an engineer make. ... or a designer for that matter. but that can be splitting hairs and semantics.

Some CADD operators just has a certificate that they took CADD courses, they may be very fluent in develop 3D models, but lack knowledge in physical metallurgy, process design, stress analysis, ect..... even though most higher end CADD can accomplish these, there are times one have to make acceptable compromises, that's the CADD operator can not make an educated or knowledgeable and prudent decision.

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#4

Re: AutoCAD at work?

04/27/2015 9:02 AM

Analogy: CADD = monk transcribers of bible, just copying what was given to them.

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#5

Re: AutoCAD at work?

04/27/2015 9:05 AM

When I worked in smaller plants (<200 people), engineers always did their own CAD work. I now work in a large plant (>1200 people), and the same is coming true due to downsizing. I prefer it that way, because I am a control freak over my designs. Tolerance stackups in assemblies, materials selection, methods of manufacturing are among a few of the items that can come back to bite me if not properly considered. AutoCad is not my choice of platforms to use compared to others out there, but that's another soap opera.

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#6

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 9:26 AM

I use AutoCAD regularly to create new design drawings and also to transfer my field notes/changes onto existing drawings.

When I am through the drawings go to document control for review, any required approvals, and/or changes needed then once finalized they are posted into the system drawing database.

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#7

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 9:40 AM

Depends on the level of engineering you need. That's why there are people called Design Engineers. Not only do they know how to use a software design program, but they are trained in design engineering.

It's the difference between simply owning a race car and knowing how to drive it.

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#8

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 1:11 PM

There is no one answer to a question such as this. As others have stated it depends on what is being done or needed.

Minor altercations to standard products can be usually be handled by detailers via referencing an approval drawing.

Prototypes designed by engineers from start to finish should be detailed by the person who designed the machine at least the first time in my opinion. Or at least deliver an accurate solid model for a CAD operator to detail and release for fabrication.

Every workplace is different and in some ways they are all the same. Ultimately, we all want to be successful and that means different things for different people. The way we all try achieve that may be very different. Same thing with getting products out the door.

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#9

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 1:37 PM

It used to be that drafters were trained in drawing technique and language. GD&T was developed as a drafting "language" to facilitate inter-office and inter-company communication. Before CAD, a drafter would either apprentice to learn it or be taught at a technical or trade school. Not so anymore. Properly trained drafters are hard to find these days.

While most engineers are smart enough to muddle their way through and produce a readable document, there has been a loss of skill in the practice of having engineers do their own documents. Out of three Mech E's that I've worked with at my present employer, only one knew GD&T well enough to do his own drawings. The other two couldn't do it. The younger of the two had no idea what GD&T was. He could do a really cool 3D rendering of a model though.

I've seen some BSME graduates who were required to take a drafting class, and some who haven't. In my mind, it makes the degree all the more valuable when an engineer can "speak the language."

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#10
In reply to #9

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 1:44 PM

drafters are usually a person with a AAS in a field such as Mechanical Design.

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#12
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Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 2:49 PM

I haven't seen anyone whose title was drafter in 20 years. These days an Industrial Designer (usually an associates degree) might be what a drafter has morphed into. Although the Industrial Designers that I've met are typically taught more ergonomics, aesthetics and artsy things like color matching an line design. It's a gamble whether you can find one that knows GD&T as well.

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#13
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Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 3:10 PM

disciplines do evolve.

GD&T is a difficult one, but I have seen employers looking for people with these skills. But the demand for these may not be as great.

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#11
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Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 2:30 PM

How many current engineers remember "way back" when there were "office pools" of secretarys whose jobs were to TYPE documents from hand-written notes provided by engineers?

Now-a-days, we did it ourselves in WORD.

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#14

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/27/2015 4:14 PM

Do you use autoCAD at work daily

No I use little slips of 4 inch wide coloured paper like most real Engineers. Superior to napkins and much quicker for draft design work. Produce a proper drawing, no I was too busy building and testing the prototype design.

or do you have a CADD person to draw up your hand sketches?

I have multiple CAD programs (self taught) and use them when I need them (electrical drawing, lighting design, general layout, dimensional). It's quicker and easier than using our CAD department (unless its 3D modelling which I leave to them).

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#15
In reply to #14

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/28/2015 12:33 AM

"Produce a proper drawing, no I was too busy building and testing the prototype design."

I find that whenever I don't produce a proper drawing before making anything but the simplest part, I always manage to screw up somehow...

To the OP: I use CAD every day, just not AutoCAD.

I never was much good at hand sketches. I love being able to correct my mistakes with no erasures visible!

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#16

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/28/2015 12:41 AM

nowadays sketches could be hand drawn using ipad etc without using Autocad

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#17

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/28/2015 9:12 AM

It is said that an Engineers speaks the language of drawing.

Having stated that, I believe that it totally depends on the type of work one is involved. In my case, I have found that doing it yourself is always faster than depending upon somebody else to give shapes to your thoughts. I have been doing it for more than 35yrs. Initially on a drawing board, but during the course of time, taught myself AutoCAD. Happy now as things have become more organized and they all fit into my laptop.

I also delegate but only non-critical things as of now. I think it is best to off-load only to 1 or 2 individuals as then they eventually attain the frequency and come to understand what is expected from them. It is also not right for one to expect somebody else to match up to one's experience and capabilities.

I still practice drawing sketches during discussions to put across my thoughts and nothing like it, if you can sketch isometric views as then, you can enjoy the bewildered look on faces of people around and also clinch the issue.

Best of luck.

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#18

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/28/2015 3:05 PM

I started my engineering career in 1956 as a drafter. I worked mainly in ship design and retired 10 years ago. During my last 3 years at work, I learned AutocadĀ©. Now at the age of 80, I am still using Autocad in support of my hobby of building large scale trains. Not only trains, I use it for all my projects; furniture making, prototype designs. I find a CAD program is practically indispensable for any project one can encounter. For me, it's no more sharpening pencils and shaky hands. The only thing I wish I had is a plotter. I'm limited now to a laser printer and 8-1/2x14 paper.

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#20
In reply to #18

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/28/2015 5:31 PM

I worked at an OEM and I did this at my shop. For the most drawings I used 'B" size borders, the shop floor found it easier to manage in 98% of the projects. I only plotted on larger size paper for detail requirements.

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#19

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/28/2015 4:25 PM

Try design, draw in ACAD, create wiring charts in Excel, quote, enter parts for purchasing, do UL 508A searches for approval on parts in 508A panels, and help wire control panels and run process skid wiring. Small company = do it ALL. Up until about 10 years ago, I even got to do purchasing of the parts.

Just finishing up a 150 page electrical design in ACAD for three related control panels and three power panels as well as on skid wiring diagrams for all 6 panels. Yep - do ACAD and engineer. I know I'll be helping to wire this monster.

You mean I should have someone to shove my design off to to draw it for me?

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#21
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Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/28/2015 5:33 PM

I/O charts in excel is all what is needed for terminating, I enjoyed using I/O in a spread sheet

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#22
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Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/29/2015 8:10 AM

You're looking at the one end of the connection only. Ever have to run 6 to 10 different styles of cabling going to multiple banks of a mix of discrete and analog instruments, only a few of which wire the same way, and throw in a few with factory installed receptacles as well. It takes quite bit of supporting documents if you don't want to hover over the wiring techs on the production floor. A spread sheet is good, but some drawings are quite essential to convey that information. Actually my production workers tend to ignore my spreadsheets.

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#23
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Re: AutoCAD at Work?

04/29/2015 10:30 AM

no thank you, but I have done it.

as far as looking at one end of a connection to determine the use/placement, that is the fault of the technician whose terminating for not label both ends of the wire.

Drawings can be essential when the need arises.

but even on a spreadsheet the cabling style/size could be easily called out.

And as far as ignoring or doing one thing another way. it comes down to personal preference, how it was showed to you. or internal/external standard requirements.

but even on a spreadsheet the cabling style/size could be easily called out. It is expected that wiring tech have some rudimentary knowledge of what they are doing..... but that's not always the case. I agree heavy documentation can eliminate questions from all most skill-set levels

here's a example I had used in another life. Voltage were the same, but since its called out if various voltages are used, that is already listed, and an additional column would ID wire type/size.

If course you need the CAD drawings to show where the switch/instrument is located on the machine. And you could do CAD drawings off the spread sheet.

But, if one is using a buss type of connections such as a gateway,...... I would be more reserved using this....

ADDRESSWIRE NO.SIGNALCARDDESCRIPTIONI/OTAGQNTINTERFACE
I:0/000IN0024 VDC24BWACradle Conveyor RunDIM11SW
I:0/010IN0124 VDC24BWAExit Conveyor RunDIM21SW
I:0/020IN0224 VDC24BWACradle Home Salt Cyl HomeDIC1-11PROX
I:0/030IN0324 VDC24BWACradle Home Salt Cyl SaltDIC1-21PROX
I:0/040IN0424 VDC24BWACradle Home Unload Cyl HomeDIC2-11PROX
I:0/050IN0524 VDC24BWACradle Home Unload Cyl UnloadDIC2-21PROX
I:0/060IN06N/A24BWAProduct Referencing Cyl. HomeN/AC3-01N/A
I:0/070IN0724 VDC24BWAProduct Referencing Cyl. Position #1DIC3-11PROX
I:0/080IN0824 VDC24BWAProduct Referencing Cyl. Position #2DIC3-21PROX
I:0/090IN0924 VDC24BWAProduct Referencing Cyl. Position #3DIC3-31PROX
I:0/100IN1024 VDC24BWAPrimary Salt Dispensing Cyl. Position HomeDIC4-01N/A
I:0/110IN1124 VDC24BWAPrimary Salt Dispensing Cyl. Position #1DIC4-11PROX
I:1/01IN0024 VDCIQ16Primary Salt Dispensing Cyl. Position #2DIC4-21PROX
I:1/11IN0124 VDCIQ16Primary Salt Dispensing Position #3DIC4-31PROX
I:1/21IN0224 VDCIQ16Primary Clam Cylinder HomeDIC6-11PROX
I:1/31IN0324 VDCIQ16Primary Clam Cylinder ExtendDIC6-21PROX
I:1/41IN0424 VDCIQ16Secndary Clam Cyl. HomeDIC6-11PROX
I:1/51IN0524 VDCIQ16Secndary Clam Cyl. ExtendDIC7-21PROX
I:1/61IN0624 VDCIQ16Inverter Armature Cyl. HomeDIC8-11PROX
I:1/71IN0724 VDCIQ16Inverter Armature Cyl. ExtendDIC8-21PROX
I:1/81IN0824 VDCIQ16E-Stop (pressed)DISW-11SW
I:1/91IN0924 VDCIQ16Start (pressed)DISW-21SW
I:1/101IN1024 VDCIQ16Stop (pressed)DISW-31SW
I:1/111IN1124 VDCIQ16Pause (press)DISW-41SW
I:1/121IN1224 VDCIQ16Photo EyeDISW-51PROX
I:1/13IQ16Not Used
I:1/14IQ16Not Used
I:1/15IQ16Not Used
O:0/00OUT0024 VDC24BWAMain Air Supply SolenoidDOSOL-01SOL
O:0/10OUT0124 VDC24BWACradle Home/Salt Cyl HomeDOSOL-11SOL
O:0/20OUT0224 VDC24BWACradle Salt/Unload CylDOSOL-21SOL
O:0/30OUT0324 VDC24BWAPrimary Clam CylinderDOSOL-31SOL
O:0/40OUT0424 VDC24BWASecndary Clam Cyl.DOSOL-41SOL
O:0/50OUT0524 VDC24BWAInverter Armature Cyl.DOSOL-51SOL
O:0/60OUT0624 VDC24BWAPrimary Salting Cyl.DOSOL-61SOL
O:0/70OUT0724 VDC24BWAProduct Referencing Cyl. RetractDOSOL-71SOL
O:0/80OUT0824 VDC24BWAProduct Referencing Cyl. ExtendDOSOL-81SOL
O:0/90OUT0924 VDC24BWAPrimary Salt Dispensing Cyl. RetractDOSOL-91SOL
O:0/100OUT1024 VDC24BWAPrimary Salt Dispensing Cyl. ExtendDOSOL-101SOL
O:0/110OUT1124 VDC24BWASecondary Salting Cyl.DOSOL-111SOL
O:2/02OUT00OW8Cradle Conveyor Run
O:2/12OUT01OW8Exit Conveyor Run
O:2/22OUT02OW8Start Pilot Light
O:2/32OUT03OW8Stop Pilot Light
O:2/42OUT04OW8Pause Pilot Light
O:2/52OUT05OW8Unused
O:2/62OUT06OW8Unused
O:2/72OUT07OW8Unused
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#24

Re: AutoCAD at Work?

05/09/2015 2:43 PM

By the way, there is AutoCAD plugin for calculating total lengths of cables.

Program has an editable Data Library, which means that you can always have a set of cables that you need for your work.

MeteorSpec can generate reports as specifications (summarized lengths per cable type) or as explications (list of all cables with detailed information).

Look at Autodesk Exchange apps. https://apps.exchange.autodesk.com/ACD/en/Detail/Index?id=appstore.exchange.autodesk.com%3ameteorspectrial_windows32and64%3aen

Program website meteorspec.com

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