The Basics of Drawing Blueprints for Commercial Construction Projects

There are aspects of commercial building projects that everyone can take notice of. There are the various phases of construction, the finished building, the landscaping on the outside. But do you realize that no construction process even begins without first drawing up blueprints? That is an absolute fact! This article will discuss different facets of reading and drawing up blueprints.

In order to correctly draw up blueprints a person must first know how to read them. If you do not have much expertise in either science or mathematics, fear not! You can still learn how to read blueprints. This industry seems to have a language of its own with various words, lines and strange-looking symbols. You will learn how to read somebody else’s sketches with all of these “peculiarities.” You will also learn how to properly make rough sketches of your own based upon what you will want your finished project to end up looking like. A wise person said this. Reading blueprints is “a little like eating elephants. You eat them one bite at a time.” Over time, and with a lot of patience, this CAN be accomplished.

There is one basic; yet crucial, step to reading blueprints to always keep in mind. That is: “plan, elevation and section.” The definition of a plan is: “a view looking downward on the object, usually the horizontal plane cut at 30″ above the floor.” Elevation is a sideways view of an object, and typically from one direction or another. A section is a cut-through look at an object, frequently an imaginary view allowing a person to see how it will be built. No matter how skilled you become in the blueprint field, this concept is something you absolutely must adhere to each and every time you read one.

The most mundane part of reading blueprints is reading the specs and overall conditions for the particular project. However, skipping this process is a huge mistake with serious ramifications. The specs include things like milestones that must be achieved by certain dates in the construction phases, or permitted times of the week or day construction can be done. It can even be as simple as clean up requirements. People do not design specs just for their own health! There are specific reasons for them at all times! Again, not paying attention to these details can be extremely costly for everyone involved in the construction process. Do yourself a favor in your job as a blueprint reader – READ THE SPECS!

If you want to be in the profession of drawing up blueprints, a lot of knowledge can be gained from learning how to read them. However, the best advice we can give you is to GO TO SCHOOL FOR THIS! Nothing substitutes for a great education in this industry. There are plenty of higher education facilities that offer degrees in these subjects. Let us not forget apprenticing or entry-level jobs where you can gain actual experience. If you take the time to properly learn how to do this job; you will be rewarded with an important career for the duration of your life.