Tag Archives: CAD drafting

Creative Uses for CAD: Film and Entertainment

Construction, architecture, and design have been simplified through the implementation and use of computer aided design — or CAD — software. CAD conversion turns simple drafts into detailed and accurate blueprints that offer a more definite view of a proposed project. Computer aided design assists in the construction process, listing necessary information, from calculations to the amounts of essential equipment.

While architectural masterpieces are products of creative genius in their own right, construction and architecture are not the only industries that benefit from the use of CAD. We’ve all sat in awe of the cinematic splendor of movies like Lord of the Rings and Jurassic Park. Dinosaurs and trolls roam across the screens, displaying the most lifelike expressions and movements. Computer aided design breathes life into the transformation from paper to screen. Before the invention of CAD software, filmmakers and animators relied on the use of puppets, a lengthy and tiresome process. Today, designers are able to combine the use of puppets with computer aided design technology to create graphics that leave fans and viewers in wonderment.

An all-time favorite, Jurassic Park, was created through combining the use of CAD and   robotic puppets. Animators created the giant dinosaurs from information that was taken from the skeleton of the specific species. Computer aided design was also used in the creation of the cities and realms in the movie Lord of the Rings. CAD ensured that the lines and curves of the cities blended with those of the hills and mountains that set the backdrop for the movie.

How Is CAD Used? 

  1. Film and Television

Much of the film and television industries still rely on the handiwork of both animators and graphic designers. However, CAD is used to add quality to a film, while also assisting on the advanced technical effects. It also helps producers deliver high-quality visuals and resolution for the big screen. CAD also enhances the quality of television advertisements, making them more appealing and interesting to the viewer. As with construction, CAD assists in plotting out the necessary resources and budget for the project. It also assists in timekeeping, to ensure that all deadlines are met.

  1. Games

Architecture and design predominantly take place in an office or on the construction site. Games, however, are created with CAD software. It assists in the design and animation, and it is also responsible for the lifelike feel that many games display.

The creative process requires a large amount of detailed work, often delicate and, at times, films will require CAD assistance to complete immense projects. CAD services include detailed budgets and material calculations, which assist project managers in both construction and film industries. These calculations ensure that productions and projects meet their deadlines, do not exceed their budgets, and also meet the expectations of investors.

Create your own masterpiece and make use of CAD conversion services. Not only will it simplify the process, it will also assist you and potential investors in visualizing the finished product.  If you are looking to enhance your architectural drafting services, give us a call at (800) 700-3305.

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Six Interesting Facts about Architecture

One of the most reliable and convenient tools of modern day architecture is that of CAD conversion. Not only does it simplify the creative process, it also ensures that the final product is accurate and of the best quality. Although CAD services streamline our design processes today, architects of earlier years had to solely rely on their own skill and calculations. This was a predominantly successful process that was seldom met with any miscalculations. If an error did occur, the construction of a structure would continue, the builders merely adjusting and adapting to ensure that the miscalculation did not reap any danger or consequence.

Computer aided design lends itself to architectural masterpieces, ensuring that the final product is completed on time and in a perfect form. During 15 BC, Vitruvius wrote the De Architectura, which explained that the point of architecture was to achieve durability, utility, and beauty. While CAD takes care of the durability and utility of the structure, architects ensure that they are aesthetically pleasing. As technology assists us in creating perfectly designed infrastructure, let us not forget about how far we’ve come. Here are eight interesting facts about architecture:

  1. Although the history of architecture dates back to the start of civilization, the academically recognized origin of architecture was by Vitruvius in 15 BC. “Architecture” comes from the Greek word arkhitekton which means “chief builder.” In his recollection called the De Architectura, Vitruvius states that people began building their homes from resources that were immediately available. These included mud, stones, grass, and wood.
  1. The most recognized historical works of architecture include a variety of structures that were built over thousands of years. Notre Dame Cathedral is also included in this list, but it took almost 400 years to complete. The construction began in 1015 and was completed in 1439. Other remarkable works include:
  • The Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy
  • St. Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow
  • The Coliseum in Rome
  • Angkor Wat in Cambodia
  • Giza Pyramids in Egypt
  • Machu Picchu in Peru
  1. In comparison to the structures of past eras, the Empire State Building sways several feet to either side in severe wind or rainstorms. Constructed in 1929, and designed by William Lamb, the building is located in the center of Manhattan. It offers unforgettable 360 degree views of New York City from the observatories that are on the 86th and 102nd floors.
  1. With no tangible evidence of the civilization that raised the monument, England’s Stonehenge is one of the world’s historical anomalies. Carbon dating suggests that it is 1,500 years older than Rome’s Coliseum, making it the oldest prehistoric monument on record.
  1. In 1945, towards the end of the Second World War, a B-25 bomber lost control and crashed into the 79th floor of the Empire State Building. The cost of the collision cost $1 million to repair and left 14 people dead.
  1. Nevada’s famous Hoover Dam was constructed to last for 2,000 years. The dam’s cavity yielded enough stone to rebuild the Great Wall of China. Due to the intensive construction and design of the dam, the concrete that was used in its construction will not be fully cured for another 500 years.

From stone monoliths to architectural masterpieces, the industry has come a long way. CAD has simplified the practice of architecture, making it more accurate and reliable. If you are looking to enhance and simplify your architectural drafting services, make the smart choice and give us a call on (800) 700-3305.

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Struggling with Paper-Based Blueprints? Consider CAD Conversion

If you’re still struggling with paper- based blueprints, you should consider making use of CAD conversion services to make your life easier.

Let’s face it; trying to convince investors or direct a building project with paper- based blueprints isn’t easy. Transporting those gigantic paper rolls from point A to B is a schlepp and, with a bunch of these tucked under your arms, you can’t help looking awkward and somewhat disorganized when entering a room. First impressions matter, especially when you go to see potential investors, and it’s virtually impossible to make a good impression while carrying something like this. No matter how hard you try, you always end up bearing a strong resemblance to a clumsy, stepladder-carrying circus clown.

Paper-based blueprints also have a short lifespan and tend to become damaged from overuse. Then there is also the constant battle that involves warding-off coffee cups and dirty fingers from coming into contact with these precious originals.

The solution to these problems is to have your blueprints transferred to digital files by enlisting the services of Computer Aided Design (CAD) experts.  These experts are able to convert existing plans and sheets to AutoCAD DWG files by manually redrafting them. This will ensure that they match the original documents exactly.

There are also other benefits to making this conversion, apart from solving the above mentioned problems, and here they are:

  1. Blueprints will be easier to find and access. By further converting these digital files to PDFs, you make it possible to find specific blueprints by searching by project name, drawing number, title, and even by notes made within the drawing.  This will save you a considerable amount of time and effort.
  2. Blueprints can be shown on screens. An added advantage of converting your blueprints to digital files is that they can be stored on your laptop and, when in a meeting with potential investors, they can be projected onto a screen. This will make a far better impression than unrolling your blueprint, trying in vain to even it out, and then asking everyone to huddle up around a table.
  3. Blueprints can be stored in the cloud. Thanks to that technological marvel known as the internet, it is possible to store digital files in such a way that they can be accessed from any computerand or other device with internet capabilities. This means that you can access your blueprints even if you have forgotten your laptop at home. As a matter of fact, you don’t even have to lug your laptop around, if you are certain that the place where you will need your blueprints has an available computer that is connected to the internet.
  4. Blueprints can travel without you having to accompany them. Because your original, paper-based blueprints are precious and can easily get damaged, you always tend to accompany them when they need to be viewed by your construction manager, or you need to send someone you trust implicitly to accompany them. By converting them to digital files, it becomes possible to send them via email and, if need be, the digital file can be taken to a specialized print shop and printed. In other words, you or your trusted assistantcan spend your time on something more constructive than babysitting blueprints. 

Technology is generally known for making life easier, and CAD conversion came into existence to alleviate some of the struggles that come with paper-based blueprints. So what are you waiting for? Call (800) 700-3305 and get those blueprints converted today.

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Utilizing Revit BIM Software for Residential Construction

When you are planning the construction of a private residence, it is imperative that you are able to bring your ideas to life in not only an aesthetically pleasing, but a realistic manner, too. Revit BIM software has been developed to assist architects and construction managers in developing and designing 2D or 3D renderings. Using the right CAD drafting software will help you achieve the best results in a realistic time period.

Here are some tips and benefits to utilizing Revit BIM software for residential construction:

  1. Saving costs: Due to the fact that your project is simpler than the construction of a high-rise building, office structure, or hospital, you may not need to take on the services of an architect to design your structure. A CAD service company will be able to assist you in drawing up initial designs.
  1. Functionality: By utilizing building information modeling software (BIM) you can adequately plan the physical and functional characteristics of your new home. Floor plans, upper floor framing, cross sections, foundation plans, and other structural details will all be designed in the program, enabling you to bring your vision and plans to life in a realistic manner that is functional and viable.
  1. Risk management: The software will assist you in creating a virtual construction of your residential structure. By doing this, you can assess any potential risks or problems, and any negative impacts that could affect the construction before you commence.
  1. Scale and planning: The BIM software enables you to plan and quantify products and materials that will be needed on site. This allows you to lower the likelihood that there will be excess waste materials on site. In addition to this, determining the correct scaling of the project through the BIM software will enable you to ensure adequate safety measures are implemented throughout each step of construction.
  1.  Project management: You will not only be able to render your residence, stage by stage, but you can measure material quantities, create timelines, and note other important aspects involved in the construction. The right BIM software makes the project management of your residential construction simpler and more efficient.
  1. Conversion: Once your rendering has been completed, with inclusion of measurements, site plans, specifications, and other details, you can print your plans out. This gives you something solid to work off, edit, and improve, should you need to go back to the drawing board.
  1. Budget: Due to the accurate rendering and material calculations, you will be able to determine any budget hiccups and extensions that will be necessary upfront. Use the software to calculate material requirements to directly calculate how much money you will need for various aspects of the construction project, allowing leeway for any unforeseen expenses onsite.

Once you have completed your rendering in your BIM software program, print out copies of the plans and give them to all people involved in the residential construction project. Before you do this, if you have the right BIM software, you will be able to interactively collaborate with the various project assignees in order to commence construction in the smoothest manner possible. For the most comprehensive BIM CAD service system for your residential construction project management, call us at (800) 700-3305.

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4 of the Strangest Buildings from Around the World

Among the high rise monoliths that pierce the skylines of cities and the conformity of suburban utopias, there are a handful of wildly exquisite and strange buildings that are dotted around the globe. With a heightened concentration of architectural skill, these buildings are a wonder to behold. From Brazil to China, these buildings represent the intricacy of the design and construction process – from the CAD drafting to the final touches on the furnishing.

Here are four of the most unusually and most skillfully built buildings in the world:

Cathedral of Brasília, Brazil

Completed in 1970, the Cathedral of Brasília is the Roman Catholic cathedral in Brasília, Brazil and serves as the seat of the Archdiocese of Brasília. Designed by Oscar Niemeyer, the cathedral is a hyperboloid structure that is constructed from 16 concrete columns, weighing 90 tons each. The Cathedral of Brasilia which is also known as the Metropolitan Cathedral of Our Lady of Aparecida is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. The magnificent building looks like it is reaching up into the heavens.

Piano House, China

Located in Huainan, China, the Piano House was built in 2007 by the students at the Hefei University of Technology. Truly magnificent, this home looks like a giant grand piano, accompanied by a glass violin. Elegant and striking, you can access the body of the building through the glass violin, and find yourself travelling up the escalators that lead to an exhibit area that is currently being used as a showroom for city planners.

The Basket Building, Ohio (USA)

It may seem rather self-aggrandizing, but the Basket Building started out as a dream for the founder of The Longaberger Company, Dave Longaberger, who runs a business built around baskets. The entire office block of the company is housed by the giant basket, which was completed in 1997. The idea was to create a home office that looks like it is always “open for business.” In 1998, The Longaberger Home Office received a Build Ohio Award for its innovation with a synthetic plaster system. The building is made of a steel structure which creates the look of a Longaberger Basket®. If you think that the exterior looks amazing, the interior is breath-taking! Marble floors and a grand staircase are just a few of the enticing features that make up the office.

Eden Project, England

If you’re looking for something that looks truly futuristic, the Eden Project can be found in Cornwall, England. These domes are responsible for creating artificial biomes for plants that are collected from all over the world. The structures are located in an abandoned Kaolinite pit and attract many visitors each year. Two large enclosures connect to a variety of smaller domes that house thousands of plant species, each in its own biome. Intricate and fascinating, the domes are comprised of hundreds of hexagonal and pentagonal plastic cells that are inflated and supported by steel frames.

Other than these abovementioned architectural marvels, the world has many more to offer! A collection of unique and interesting buildings can be found in some of the most obscure parts of the globe. Many buildings are found in large cities, but many others that are found in areas less travelled are truly magnificent. For more information regarding a quote for CAD services, call (800) 700-3305.

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CAD Drafting Services Guidelines

While technology makes our lives easier, it can sometimes be difficult to understand. A simple set of guidelines can greatly improve one’s comprehension on a certain subject, making it easier to make decisions. Conversely, it is also important to recognize the necessity of certain technological processes in order to fully grasp the value of the resource. CAD conversion services refer to the process whereby drawings are converted into a 3D image through computer-aided design.

For those who are unfamiliar with this vocation, here are a few helpful facts to assist in creating a comprehensive guideline of what CAD drafting services is all about.

What Is CAD? 

Developed by French Engineer Pierre Bezier between 1966 and 1968, CAD (computer-aided design) is the process by which a drawing is transformed into a digital technical drawing that exhibits 2D or 3D design. The first commercial applications of CAD were in the automotive and aerospace industries and, over the years, the use of computer-aided design has become popular among many more industries.

Through the use of CAD services, objects of traditional drafting are converted into 3D vector-based graphics that assist in illustrating various elements of the drawing. These include:

  • Curves or angles
  • Multiple layers
  • Materials
  • Various processes
  • Dimensions

In place of paper, a pencil, and straightedge, CAD uses computer technology to create flat 2D drawings, and, from there, to generate a 3D representation of the sketch. From the 3D design, a 3D model can be created, turning the idea into a tangible representation.

What Is the Value of CAD Services? 

Traditionally, industrial drafting is done by hand, and requires intense and refined skill. With CAD, these drawings are performed at a more efficient rate, while also designed with increased accuracy. CAD drafting is used in the following industries:

  • Automotive
  • Shipbuilding
  • Aeronautical engineering
  • Industrial and architectural design
  • Prosthetics

By using CAD, the time that is spent drafting is greatly reduced, while any changes can be made quickly, without the need to recalculate, redraw, or restart the project. CAD also allows you to see various elements of the design that would not be seen otherwise. For engineers, CAD can also be used to determine tensile strength, yield strength, and electrical or electro-magnetic properties.

How to Go about Finding a CAD Drafting Service 

It is important to remember that when a client invests in CAD services, the highest degree of quality and accuracy is guaranteed. Converted CAD files are required to be checked and rechecked to ensure that all the necessary standards are met. When searching for a company that provides CAD conversion services, look for one that performs a four-level quality control check.

Make sure that you create a checklist of criteria that your selected service provider will have to meet. Ensure that you take a look at the following:

  1.  Satisfied Customers – a well-respected provider will usually have a “testimonials” tab on their website. Take a look at what others have to say about the company. A selection of positive comments and feedback will give you the reassurance that you need in order to trust their skill set and expertise.
  2. List of Services – if your selected company displays a selection of available solutions, it is a good parameter from which to confirm that the company is a viable option. Their services must include both basic CAD services and advanced solutions.

The popularity of CAD services is on the rise, day by day, due to the speed and efficiency of the process. It is reliable and accurate, making it a safer and more proficient tool.

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CAD File Sharing in the Cloud

One of the recurring themes of this blog is the massive sea change that computer-aided design brought about in the architectural industry. Advances in technology have made virtually all aspects of the designing process much easier. But apart from the enhanced design options available with CAD, progress in the tech world has also granted us access to the powerful tools associated with cloud computing. The popularity of cloud computing has exploded in recent years, and its importance seems likely to expand in the future. More to the point, the cloud will become increasingly important to anyone who uses CAD files in a professional capacity. With that in mind, let’s take a look at cloud computing and its relevance to the CAD drafting process.

Put simply, cloud computing creates a virtual network for storing various files, software, and just about anything else. Depending on operating restrictions put into place by the users, any particular portion of this shared environment can be accessed by the general public or only those granted permission by the admins. Multiple users from various locations may have access to the network simultaneously, which provides an excellent environment for collaborative work.

How does this aid people who work with CAD files? Without a CAD-friendly cloud solution, people find themselves with limited options when it comes to sharing files. It’s certainly possible to email files back and forth, but this simply can’t compare with the collaborative options provided by cloud computing. A cloud environment allows users to share their work instantaneously. Better still, multiple parties can view and make edits to a file at the same time, which averts the organizational nightmare of dealing with separate files that must somehow be collated. Furthermore, a cloud-based solution provides an easy way to share all the dependent files (e.g., font files) associated with a particular CAD project. The shared environment also allows companies to save on server costs.

Cloud storage also provides a convenient backup for those who would rather not keep everything on personal computers that could experience a data-destroying crash at any time. It allows an individual to access their data from multiple locations; this is particularly beneficial for on-the-go types who may wish to retrieve and edit files from a mobile device when they’re away from the PC.

Another benefit provided by CAD file sharing is the ease in which one individual or organization can share designs with another. Many cloud solutions provide tools to enable a client that lacks CAD software to examine a shared file. This can vastly simplify the designer-client relationship, as well as allow the involved parties to save money on CAD licenses.

Cloud storage solutions are controversial among many people who fret about the security hazards associated with this technology. It’s not an entirely unreasonable concern—after all, the cloud storage service Dropbox fell victim to a well-publicized 2012 data breach. It should be pointed out, however, that there are an increasing number of reputable cloud providers that cater to the specific needs of the architecture and engineering industries, providing high levels of security (including the ability to configure user-access permissions) and an array of CAD-friendly tools (including embedded CAD viewers). Some companies have decided to take matters into their own hands by constructing their own private cloud solution.

For world-class CAD services, including 3D design, AutoCAD drafting, and PDF to DWG conversion, contact us today. Our team of drafting pros has years of combined experience in the field.

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Blueprints Gone Wrong: Top Building Mishaps Due to Poor Planning

It seems as if every industry has its own history of notorious disasters that inspire jokes for years afterward, whether you’re talking about costly films that flopped at the box office, sports teams that lost spectacularly, businesses that went under due to catastrophic misjudgment, political campaigns that alienated voters, or some other kind of embarrassing public failure. The engineering sector is no exception to this tendency. There are a handful of particularly notable building design blunders that have achieved legendary status, to the extent that they have become infamous even among those who ordinarily take little interest in engineering matters. Let’s take a look at a few of them.

The John Hancock Tower (Boston, MA)

The tallest building in all of New England, the 62-story John Hancock Tower is today considered one of the architectural wonders of the Boston area. Upon the building’s completion in 1977, the legendary I. M. Pei & Partners were formally recognized for their design efforts with a National Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects. But there was a time during its long construction period in the ‘70s when the John Hancock Tower was practically a byword for poor judgment. The problems surfaced in January 1973, when dozens of huge glass panes—each weighing about 500 pounds—came loose and smashed to bits on the pavement below. Luckily, no one was injured—but the problems were only beginning. Attempts to investigate the cause of the falling-glass incidents uncovered a variety of alarming defects. Inhabitants of the tower began complaining about excessive building sway during high winds, which was particularly bad for those in the upper floors. Worst of all, it was revealed that the entire building was so inadequately designed that it was in danger of literally collapsing altogether. Fixing all these myriad flaws cost millions of dollars and delayed the official opening of the John Hancock Tower for years—once again proving the old axiom that an ounce of prevention beats a pound of cure.

601 Lexington Avenue (New York, NY)

Situated in midtown Manhattan, the 59-floor building known as 601 Lexington Avenue (formerly the Citigroup Center) provides another vivid near-miss example in the history of engineering. Built from 1974 to 1977, it posed an unusual design challenge because it had to be constructed in a way that would not interfere with St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, which rested on the premises. This problem was ingeniously solved by structural engineer William LeMessurier; he decided to build the whole thing on huge stilts that were nine stories tall. This seemed to be an ideal solution—until in the summer of 1978 LeMessurier received a tip from an engineering student who revealed that his oddly designed building could be dangerously unstable. In fact, it could even topple over in the face of a strong enough wind. The problem was that during the construction of the building, LeMessurier had consented to allow the use of bolted joints rather than more stable (and more expensive) welded joints, but although the change wasn’t supposed to create a safety risk, he had failed to fully account for the effects of quartering winds on a structure held together in such a fashion. More alarmingly, there was little time to make necessary changes: Hurricane season was already shaping up to be worse than usual. In a true race-against-time scenario, a construction crew worked for several months to reinforce the building as dangerous weather conditions closed in. Their efforts possibly prevented a major tragedy; today, the building’s distinctive design makes it one of the most prominent features of the Manhattan skyline. Incidentally, LeMessurier—who remains highly respected in the industry—was also one of the people called upon to fix the mess with the John Hancock Tower.

The Vdara Hotel & Spa (Las Vegas, NV)

Open to the public since December 1, 2009, the Vdara is a 59-story building intended to provide fun and relaxation for those visiting the Las Vegas Strip. What it isn’t intended to do is make its patrons feel like they’re being microwaved, but a design defect has done just that to more than a few visitors. The building’s concave design has the unfortunate effect of intensifying and reflecting dangerously hot sunrays onto the pool area. These rays are sometimes strong enough to melt plastic materials in the area as well as create a very unpleasant environment for those merely hoping to catch some sun. The Vdara “death ray,” as it has been cheekily termed, has attracted national media attention.

Q-CAD, Inc. is here to help you get it right the first time. Contact us today for information about our CAD drafting services.

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