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Re: Info Requested: Microstation PowerDraft

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It's not so much the emailing that's the trouble.  It's the architects that
receive them that can't figure out how to plot them or worse yet, try to
translate them into AutoCAD.  OK, that only happened once, but it was a bit
frustrating.  I guess the reason I originally brought this up is more and more
clients are requesting that we email our translated files to them, usually
because of a deadline.  They would then plot them and get copies made.  The
problem is that our drawings come out looking very amateurish - the line types
and weights are lost, text overlaps, etc.  In an effort to have our drawings
look the way they should, get rid of any potential liability issues (my boss
recently went to a seminar hosted by his insurance company and apparently is a
little leery of emailing drawings now), and, frankly, not take up a lot of time
trying to map our drawings into a client's AutoCAD settings I figured that
sending plot files would solve all of that.  Much to my chagrin, it hasn't
worked out that smoothly in some cases.  Ah, what can you do?

Mark Nowmos

Structuralist wrote:

>
> You indicate that you have been trying to e-mail plot files - what is the
> problem you are having? As to your comments about cleanup, I have no doubt
> on this as it depends on the Cad system  - some are simply more DWG
> compliant than others (Visual Cadd required little if any cleanup and would
> even maintain color and line weights.
>
> Mapping line types and colors is an integral part of Autocad 2000 and later.
> You can establish cross-platform standards that required some playing around
> with, but are less expensive and time consuming than licensing two expensive
> programs.
>
> There are other solutions - including a project type intranet that will
> allow Bill to continue to work in the platform he is most comfortable with
> (or with the software he already owns). Autocad 2000i (aka 2002) is one such
> program that allows drawings to be posted on a website for review and
> comment. Assuming that the client has no need to modify Bills drawings, then
> the only reason for them to have the original CAD files is to plot (which
> can be easily done with PLT files). All other services can be accommodated
> using "viewers" or HTML intranets where plug-ins handle visual review and
> online tools allow markups.
>
> I have always used PLT files for plotting - the files are encoded with my
> standards and are plotted without the trial and error of trying to match
> another offices standards.
>
> Dennis
>
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: mnowmos(--nospam--at)compuserve.com [mailto:mnowmos(--nospam--at)compuserve.com]
> > Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2001 10:42 PM
> > To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> > Subject: Re: Info Requested: Microstation PowerDraft
> >
> >
> > Our office uses MicroStation (why, I couldn't tell you,
> > considering that EVERY
> > other office we deal with uses AutoCAD, but I digress).  Although
> > it reads and
> > writes to AutoCAD fairly well, be advised that your drawings will
> > look like
> > they were done by amateurs after being translated and plotted.  Unless of
> > course, you want to get into trying map line weights and styles
> > into AutoCAD,
> > which is a BIG headache.  Not to mention blocks or other 'complex' shapes.
> > Unless you create a CAD drawing in its native format, you're
> > gonna have to do
> > some tweaking to get it to look right.  As an aside, I've been
> > trying (with
> > varying degrees of success) to email plot files to our clients.  Benefits:
> > Looks exactly like you want it to with no errors due to translation
> > inconsistencies.  Liability issues - as far as I know, you can't
> > alter a plot
> > file (or at least without a hacker at your disposal).  Basically, it's an
> > electronic print.  Drawbacks:  Not being able to give them
> > exactly what they
> > want.  If your client wants MicroStation CAD files, and you don't
> > want to do
> > 'test runs' to see how they will plot after being translated, I
> > would suggest
> > farming this out to someone that uses MicroStation, if you are
> > reluctant to buy
> > even their 'lite' package.  You might save some time and money on
> > the learning
> > curve and avoid the headaches.  Just my opinion, I could be wrong...
> >
> > Mark Nowmos (no large primate alter-ego)
> >
> > Structuralist wrote:
> >
> > >
> > > Bill,
> > > Most Cad software I have worked with provide a "Save-as" function that
> > > allows the drawing to be saved in other formats. I believe
> > Microstation will
> > > allow the saving of their drawings in DWG format and will also
> > read-in DWG.
> > > The real issues is how cleanly the conversions are made. There
> > tends to be
> > > some clean-up, but these are less cumbersome than they had been in past
> > > years.
> > >
> > > If this is not the case, please let me know. There are programs that the
> > > OpenDWG Alliance has on their website that will make
> > conversions. I don't
> > > know if any are appropriate, but I would guess that since
> > Bentley is one of
> > > the founders of the OpenDWG Alliance, you should not be out in
> > the cold on
> > > this issue.
> > >
> > > Dennis
> > >
> > > > -----Original Message-----
> > > > From: Bill Polhemus [mailto:bill(--nospam--at)polhemus.cc]
> > > > Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2001 5:39 AM
> > > > To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> > > > Subject: RE: Info Requested: Microstation PowerDraft
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > The problem, Dennis, is that native Microstation files are
> > NOT DWG format,
> > > > but DGN (or really, the old IGDS format originated by
> > Intergraph, with (I
> > > > assume) some enhancements).
> > > >
> > > > William L. Polhemus, Jr., P.E.
> > > > Polhemus Engineering Company
> > > > Katy, Texas
> > > > Phone 281-492-2251
> > > > Fax 281-492-8203
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > -----Original Message-----
> > > > From: Structuralist [mailto:dennis.wish(--nospam--at)gte.net]
> > > > Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2001 12:11 AM
> > > > To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> > > > Subject: RE: Info Requested: Microstation PowerDraft
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > Bill,
> > > > Most cad developers have adopted a DWG standard.
> > > >
> > > >
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