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Help! I just want to draft!

Anonymous
Not applicable
I am just getting started on ArchiCAD v8.1 on my new iMac, and while I'm not having any problems learning the basics of how to "create" a model and a set of drawings... I am left wondering: Can I just 2D draft with this program???!!! I have just started working with an architect (telecommute/working at home) who does not utilize the 3D stuff much at all and just needs me to produce 2D construction documents. I'm starting to think that this is not the program to accomplish this... everything seems to have to relate to the 3D model or it won't "draw" it in plan mode correctly.

Help!
14 REPLIES 14
TomWaltz
Participant
You can draw whatever you want, but the whole idea of Archicad is to model more and draw less. Trying to draw extensively will require even more workarounds than modeling would (probably a LOT more).
Tom Waltz
Dwight
Newcomer
Archicad helps you work out the overall building solution in a way drawings cannot. Like that beer that reaches the places other beers can't.

You'll profit by modeling the architect's structure and give better service because the 3D "reality" of the model will reveal building assembly problems that drafters often gloss over, leading to the generous audio stimulation of tradesmens' curses.

It may take a while to see the profit potential in this, but using the modeling/BIM aspect of Archicad gives you better productivity in CD production.

An example of this is that once the building is modeled, elevations and sections are created and maintain their 3D relationships throughout element editing. A little extra time at the beginning delivers design change efficiency later.

BTW: "Don't tell." Your employer need not profit from your software investment, but you can. You may be working by the hour right now, but charging by the job, profit is quickly seen in reduced time for editing and subsequent changes.

Remember: "Don't tell."
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The drawback from a drafting viewpoint is that elements are not groups of lines, but "objects." To be productive, you must always think in comprehensive building terms, not cheap drafting terms.

Get with us. Try it out. One project will convince you.
Dwight Atkinson
Anonymous
Not applicable
Thank you, gentlemen, for your feedback and perspective. I was afraid that I would hear that though... to "think in 3D" instead of 2D, for the sake of continuity throughout the project. It is cool how sections and elevations are automatically generated - very slick.

Since my new boss is currently doing his own drawings, running V6.5 right now, and is poised to upgrade to V10, I think he's going to see a big change in how he thinks of document creation as well. I'm just a little flustered, as a formerly-proficient AutoCAD drafter, by how complex it has become to simply create a set of drawings for the trades to build with. Not all of us are cutting-edge designers, waiting to set the world on fire with our innovative "fly-thru" tours of exotic spaces... some of us are just drafters. (And proud of it.)

I purchased ArchiCAD (at a reasonable rate, secondhand) so that there would be no issues of compatibility. I feel a little in over my head... but I'm not giving up yet. I just wasn't all that interested in learning how to "model" his spaces - I just wanted to draw them! If he continues to use ArchiCAD (especially V10), he may have to revolutionize his practice - or I'm going to have to buy some DUMBER software to just draft with!

Dwight
Newcomer
You seem to think that modeling takes more time than drafting. Modeling is ultimately FASTER than drafting because everything you do has a productivity payback down the line.

It CAN initially be frustrating because production is not linear, making external progress assessment impossible. A lot of data must be entered before meaningful images can be extracted. It's hard for junior people to dwell in the BIM since managers must carefully control their tasks or spend a lot of time assessing model completeness.

Besides, Archicad helps you think in 3D. And that is way more fun. It lets all those guys who can't think in 3D fake it, too.
Dwight Atkinson
Thomas Holm
Booster
Let her (edited) find out on her (edited) own, guys!

There is no problem working in 2D in Archicad, if you like. I've done it myself, and I know others who do it all the time. But if you want to be efficient, learn how to utilize Archicad's tools to the best. Even if you just want 2D lines, the door tool is best for doors, the wall tool is still best for walls, or any parallell lines application etc. Use composites if you want more than two lines. Just don't give a s**t about height. And use the symbolic display option in AC10 where applicable.
AC4.1-AC26SWE; MacOS13.5.1; MP5,1+MBP16,1
TomWaltz
Participant
Thomas wrote:
Let him find out on his own.
I don't know about your side of the pond, but "Susan" is a woman's name over here 😉
Tom Waltz
Thomas Holm
Booster
TomWaltz wrote:
I don't know about your side of the pond, but "Susan" is a woman's name over here 😉

OK OK! I find there is a ridiculously high majority of males on this forum, so I guess I assumed the usual without checking HER signature. Sorry!
AC4.1-AC26SWE; MacOS13.5.1; MP5,1+MBP16,1
Anonymous
Not applicable
Thomas wrote:
Let her (edited) find out on her (edited) own, guys!

There is no problem working in 2D in Archicad, if you like. I've done it myself, and I know others who do it all the time. But if you want to be efficient, learn how to utilize Archicad's tools to the best. Even if you just want 2D lines, the door tool is best for doors, the wall tool is still best for walls, or any parallell lines application etc. Use composites if you want more than two lines. Just don't give a s**t about height. And use the symbolic display option in AC10 where applicable.
We work this way all of the time at the moment - just drawing walls and adding doors and windows and then drawing completely separate sections and elevs on different 'storeys'. Archicad works pretty much like AEC AutoCAD in this respect. Although Archicad v10 doesnt easily allow for this kind of flexibility (Archicad v9 was better is this respect) but it can be done if you think of storeys in the model just as you would do different drawings in AutoCAD. Its something Archicad need to address if they want to retain architects like us who have no intention of drawing in 3d.

I am still trying hard to learn ArchiCAD 3d modelling after 4 months of working with it and am still not even able to get a section generated out of the model nor an elevation that will look anywhere near accurate or even remotely sensible! I have heard others here say they can do it but for me its far quicker to draw in 2d when you 'need stuff out' rather than poncing about with a 3d model.
Thomas Holm
Booster
I don't see why it should be more difficult to draw in 2D in AC10?
Of course, what you should do is set all tools that allow it to display "symbolic" (symbolic cut, or whatever) in your default template.
That way you don't have to think about cutplane positions and such.

On the contrary, I find the most important improvement in AC10 concerns workflow and publishing, due to the inclusion of Plotmaker (and to some degree, PDF). This at least benefits me as much, or more, in 2D as in 3D.

I sometimes use only 2D too. Depends on the task at hand. Sometimes I find 3D too expensive, or not worth it, and sometimes only limited 3D in part of a project is worthwhile. But to write it off in general like you do is simply wrong.

If you are seriously interested in testing 3D work in Archicad, you really should invest in a beginner's course. If you are a few, then it should be no problem to get your reseller to tailor a course to those who have 2D experience in AC but not 3D. Two-three days should do, and you'd get sensible, even if not complete sections out of it. Not 4 months!

That course should pay for itself in a week or so, the first time you decide that a project would be suited for 3D. Just don't start with a too big one - for example, a family home is perfect in size to begin with.

The education is important, because as experienced 2D users, you'll tend to use the methods you know even for 3D. They might not always be the best.

I'd regard it a serious professional mistake in my practice if I didn't try to utilize my investments fully. Especially when they're as heavy as Archicad. To disregard Archicad's 3D capabilties without thorough evaluation is such a business mistake, I think.

And I don't regard poking around by oneself without guidance in a modern software package the size, complexity - and cost! - of Archicad as seriously intended evaluation. Djordje repeats the education mantra again and again. And he's right!

No offence meant, though!
AC4.1-AC26SWE; MacOS13.5.1; MP5,1+MBP16,1

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