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Please Help- Dimensioning a Construction Drawing

Saracha

Hello All!

I am entirely new to the architecture world. My boss has given me a task to add dimensions to a construction model of a home he has designed. I am working on LayOut 2021 and have no problem with the physical act of dimensioning. The problem is, in truth, I have no idea what I’m really doing. I have referenced many other construction drawings and aimlessly googled my heart out but I can’t seem to find what I’m looking for; a beginner’s guide to dimensioning. Hence, I made an account here to ask a forum of gurus and experts for aide. I don’t want you to do the job for me, I crave understanding. I don’t know the rules of thumb or reasoning behind what I’m doing, so I have really hit a wall.

I have a novice understanding of measuring from the centers of windows and doors, but when it comes to dimensioning the internal features, I have no idea what’s going on. Everything I’ve referenced online has thrown me off, some measurements are taken from the interiors of walls, and others are taken from the exteriors, it really is overwhelming to look at. Please know I have tried everything in my power to educate myself on the matter before I came here. 

Any insight you wouldn’t mind imparting upon me to help better myself would be so appreciative. I’ll read anything you recommend- books, websites, your commentary. It will not be wasted upon my ears.

Take care out there,

Saracha

 
Jan 19, 21 12:50 pm
Wood Guy

Have you tried the search function here? This topic, or similar, comes up regularly. This is something that seems to be taught in practice, so you should ask your boss for their preferences--is there a reason you haven't done that yet?

Jan 19, 21 12:58 pm  · 
3  · 
Saracha

I have asked him many times for assistance and advice and the only real answer he has provided me with thus far has been, "look at this dimensioned floor plan of my old house and just mimic that." I hadn't tried much with the searching on here, last night when I posted this, I was having a melt down. I feel like I need to watch one tutorial or just read one article to be able to take the training wheels off.

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Saracha

Thank you for taking the time to respond to this, it is much appreciated. I will definitely search through the archives here.

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Do what your boss is asking you to do and let them mark it up. You won't get it right the first time, and you shouldn't worry if it's not perfect the first time. This is how you learn, and how your boss teaches. If you have specific questions about the markup and your boss can't or won't explain the rationale, then worry. But until then, just give it your best shot and don't waste too much time trying to figure it all out.

2  · 
mightyaa

There are also books.... not sure how good they are anymore but ran across this one for my kindle

Construction Drawings and Details for Interiors 3rd Edition, Kindle Edition


Jan 19, 21 1:28 pm  · 
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Rusty!

Dimensioning can be tricky even for old farts. Do you dimension to face of wall of centerline? It depends. There needs to be a hierarchy of most important dimensions. Some dimensions are absolutely critical to meet. Doing an ADA bathroom? Absolutely make sure no clitical dimension is left over as a running balance.

Luckily you give this job to a junior and then when you mark it up you can act all wise and knowledgeable as certain things become obvious from their poor first attempt at it.

So give it an honest effort, but a heavy handed redline will be coming your way regardless. Some dimensioning strategies are purely subjective. 

Do be consistent though! If you are doing it to center line, always do it like that. Likewise mind your tolerances. You will get chewed up if any plan dimensions are smaller than 1/2" and any detail dims smaller than 1/16", etc...

Jan 19, 21 2:08 pm  · 
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mightyaa

The only thing I disagree with is the consistent. There will be things like 'align' where you might want that window group aligned with the centerline; so you put a dash line in the center of the room, label CL, and dimension to it. There will regularly be dimensioning to edge like 4" from the hinge to the wall to allow for framing (so it's a general note and you don't dimension UNO) or needing that 18-inches clear on the pull side for ANSI clearance. So the special dimensions are for what you really intend, particularly alignments. Another hint; only do one edge or centerline of openings... schedules give them the opening dimension and manufacturer rough openings can vary. Nothing worse than dimensioning both sides, it gets built, then the window you spec'd is a 1/2-inch too wide to fit. The other hint is when dimensioning across interiors, leave one open. Because the foundation is set for the overall, you may want the GC to start snapping his lines from one side or the other and some things like millwork areas are critical; you'd rather a bedroom be 1-inch short than your refrigerator alcove.

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mightyaa

Oh, and lol. If you have a masonry building. Dimension the openings from the exterior and make damn sure it works a 4-inch module from outside corners. I hate seeing irregular brick cuts because the arch was too lazy to figure out masonry openings that coarse.

1  · 
apscoradiales

Sometimes you don't know what brick will be used. Bricks come in all kinds of different sizes. Once you do find out, revisit the dims.

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gibbost

I agree with others above.  The best advice I can offer is to think like a builder.  Put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself 'if I had to build this, what information would I need/want?'  Imagine yourself staring at a blank stretch of dirt or foundation--what would it reasonably take for you to begin laying out walls and rough-ins?  If there are critical areas of the plan that the architect wants precisely laid out, then include those important clearances.  Otherwise, the only other piece of advice is to be consistent--if you start on one side of the stud, then continue marching down the line on that side of every wall.  Good luck

Jan 19, 21 2:21 pm  · 
2  · 
apscoradiales

"think like a builder",

excellent advice not just for dimensioning but for everything you draw. Used to tell that to all the young squirts.

Jan 19, 21 2:27 pm  · 
1  · 
SneakyPete

whats a bill, derr?

 · 
Non Sequitur

plausible deniability?


3  · 

I was a young squirt builder before I was a young squirt designer/architect. I didn't even realize there was another way to think ... I just thought I was surrounded by dumb people.

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caramelhighrise

Only thing I have to add is you should not look at it as a task of simply throwing a dimension string on some walls and moving on. It should be an ongoing process as drawings develop. Adding dimension strings is a small part of it but the challenge is making sure things are where they should be. Ask an intern to dimension floor plans and you'll get a corridor that's 5' - 9 17/256" wide. Do it yourself and you'll have a 6' clear corridor, but oh wait now that room next to it is too narrow and this other wall needs to be adjusted- and shit, there's a column in the way of the sink when I fix that so I better find another spot for it.

Jan 21, 21 9:18 pm  · 
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