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Thread: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

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    Certifiable AUGI Addict tedg's Avatar
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    Default NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    Hello people,
    I searched the forums and didn't find any reference to this.

    Problem: I want to run a check on a drawing using NCS 3.1 standards (using autodesk's "standards checker"), but have no (complete) NCS 3.1.dws to check it with.

    I was wondering if anyone out there has (or knows where to get) a complete NCS 3.1 standards in .dws format? I checked all the sources I could find, The NCS website, CSI website, Dept. of Veterans Affairs, US Coast Guard etc. and could find reference documents and stuff, but not this.

    We received a very specific ".dws" from the coast guard, but if it's not on the list, it gets kicked back as non compliant, even if I know for a fact it follows the standard in the book.

    Maybe theres a way to modify the standards checker to allow certain things with wild cards (*)? Like anything with A-ANNO* would be allowed?

    We have the NCS 3.1 book, but have had to create the symbols from scratch.
    It would be nice if you need to buy the book, that they provide you with all the supporting cadd files like .ctb files, complete layer and block templates, just wishful thinking I guess.

    Any help or advice would be appreciated, I'm new to "standards checker".

    Thanks.

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    Default Re: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    We were in your situation not too long ago, and solved it with Altiva's product.

    They have the full NCS block libraries, DWT's, and DWS's:

    http://www.nationalcadstandard.org/story_111706.php

    Their product also gave us full draft menus, and a much more capable standards "checker/fixer." The internal checker doesn't do much -- it doesn't even check any of the entities.

    HTH

    - Alan


    Quote Originally Posted by tedg View Post
    Hello people,
    I searched the forums and didn't find any reference to this.

    Problem: I want to run a check on a drawing using NCS 3.1 standards (using autodesk's "standards checker"), but have no (complete) NCS 3.1.dws to check it with.

    I was wondering if anyone out there has (or knows where to get) a complete NCS 3.1 standards in .dws format? I checked all the sources I could find, The NCS website, CSI website, Dept. of Veterans Affairs, US Coast Guard etc. and could find reference documents and stuff, but not this.

    We received a very specific ".dws" from the coast guard, but if it's not on the list, it gets kicked back as non compliant, even if I know for a fact it follows the standard in the book.

    Maybe theres a way to modify the standards checker to allow certain things with wild cards (*)? Like anything with A-ANNO* would be allowed?

    We have the NCS 3.1 book, but have had to create the symbols from scratch.
    It would be nice if you need to buy the book, that they provide you with all the supporting cadd files like .ctb files, complete layer and block templates, just wishful thinking I guess.

    Any help or advice would be appreciated, I'm new to "standards checker".

    Thanks.

  3. #3
    Certifiable AUGI Addict tedg's Avatar
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    Default Re: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan.Habib View Post
    We were in your situation not too long ago, and solved it with Altiva's product.

    They have the full NCS block libraries, DWT's, and DWS's:

    http://www.nationalcadstandard.org/story_111706.php

    Their product also gave us full draft menus, and a much more capable standards "checker/fixer." The internal checker doesn't do much -- it doesn't even check any of the entities.

    HTH

    - Alan
    Thanks, that looks like it would do the trick.

    I assume you need to buy the program?
    Do you know how much it costs? (I didn't go too far into it).

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    Default Re: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    Quote Originally Posted by tedg View Post
    Thanks, that looks like it would do the trick.

    I assume you need to buy the program?
    Do you know how much it costs? (I didn't go too far into it).
    Yes, you do buy the program. If I remember correctly, it's about twice the price of the NCS paper/PDF manual version. Considering that it comes with all the electronic support files as well as the original NCS PDF files, it was a no-brainer for us. It saves a ton of time/cost over making the block libraries/templates, etc by hand. And the program by itself is well worth it since it does drafting, checking and fixing, and bulk reporting to any standard you define in program. We use it for several client standards as well as the NCS.

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    Default Re: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    The NCS is merely a guideline for CAD Standards, not a complete document that is intended to be used right out of the box. This seems to be a common misconception by many people in the industry! If you look closely, you'll notice that the Layer lists are just a starting point and are by no means complete. The intent is for one to use the NCS as a guide, as it was intended, to create your own. That being said, we plan to develop our own Standards templates, DWS check files, etc. based on OUR company's standard, that is of course based on the current version of the NCS. Maybe it's just me, but buying a program to do what can be done relatively easily seems like a waste, especially if it is not customized to "our" version of CAD Standards.

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    Certifiable AUGI Addict tedg's Avatar
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    Default Re: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    Quote Originally Posted by Misteracad View Post
    The NCS is merely a guideline for CAD Standards, not a complete document that is intended to be used right out of the box. This seems to be a common misconception by many people in the industry! If you look closely, you'll notice that the Layer lists are just a starting point and are by no means complete. The intent is for one to use the NCS as a guide, as it was intended, to create your own. That being said, we plan to develop our own Standards templates, DWS check files, etc. based on OUR company's standard, that is of course based on the current version of the NCS. Maybe it's just me, but buying a program to do what can be done relatively easily seems like a waste, especially if it is not customized to "our" version of CAD Standards.
    I understand that the NCS is a guideline and doesn't completely cover all scenarios. They do however, have a pre-determined layer color scheme with pen wights and a layer naming format as well as symbol formats. I can only assume that they could provide the symbols on the correct layers and an "NCS.ctb" file based on colors they know to be the correct line weights. We have a couple of clients that require the NCS 3.1 standards, but these clients only provide us with pieces they want. I was hoping to get my hands on some "all inclusive" official NCS 3.1 layers, symbols (in dwt or dws format) and an NCS 3.1 ".ctb " file. I have an "NCS.ctb" file that was provided to me and in it's description it reads it's for version 2.0, which is probably the most current one, I don't know.

    We also have our own company standards which differ a bit from NCS, so I can't use those dwt's or dws's for checking NCS standards.

    Any who...I had already pretty much created the basic symbols and I've been writing a lisp routine to make as many layers as possible based on the book (realizing they only provide a sample and is just a guideline) with colors based on the above mentioned NCS.ctb that I have in my possession. Then, once I have it all nailed down I'll create a template file (dwt) and a standards file (dws) and check against that.

    Thanks

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    Default Re: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    Quote Originally Posted by tedg View Post
    ...They do however, have a pre-determined layer color scheme with pen wights ...

    ... I have an "NCS.ctb" file that was provided to me and in it's description it reads it's for version 2.0, which is probably the most current one, I don't know.
    The only way to know if it's correct will be to compare the values in the CTB file with the printed documentation from NCS. AFAIK nothing else is official, and any purported NCS ctb file has potentially been modified. There is an available NavFacStandard.ctb from the Govt., as well as a 'aecstndardbw.ctb' from the govt as well.. (Interestingly enough. the aecstandard.ctb has everything set to 'default'. evidently the latter would prefer object weights or stb to plotting with color-to-weight mappings)


    There's not an 'NCS' layer to color mapping in NCS V3.1. There is a partial layer list, and there is a color-to-pen mapping, but a 'layer color scheme with pen weights" does not exist, and realistically is not possible. If you are using a CTB, then you'll need to change the colors of an object based on how you are presenting it, that is to say, what the purpose of that sheet is. For an electrical floor plan sheet, the walls would be light and the switches heavy, whereas an architectural floor plan would show the walls heavier. But, they still belong on A-WALL.

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    Default Re: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    Quote Originally Posted by cadtag View Post
    The only way to know if it's correct will be to compare the values in the CTB file with the printed documentation from NCS. AFAIK nothing else is official, and any purported NCS ctb file has potentially been modified. There is an available NavFacStandard.ctb from the Govt., as well as a 'aecstndardbw.ctb' from the govt as well.. (Interestingly enough. the aecstandard.ctb has everything set to 'default'. evidently the latter would prefer object weights or stb to plotting with color-to-weight mappings)


    There's not an 'NCS' layer to color mapping in NCS V3.1. There is a partial layer list, and there is a color-to-pen mapping, but a 'layer color scheme with pen weights" does not exist, and realistically is not possible. If you are using a CTB, then you'll need to change the colors of an object based on how you are presenting it, that is to say, what the purpose of that sheet is. For an electrical floor plan sheet, the walls would be light and the switches heavy, whereas an architectural floor plan would show the walls heavier. But, they still belong on A-WALL.
    Thanks "Cadtag",
    Yes, the "NCS.ctb" that was provided to me, does seem to match colors and lineweights in the "Introduction To Plotting Guidlines" in the NCS 3.1 book.
    I don't know where it originated other then the client that I need to comply with provided it to me. I open it up and in the "description" box it reads:
    "For explicit compliance with the Tri-Services Plotting Guidelines (National CAD Standard version 2.0). Use with the AIA (256 Color) layer key style. Colors are mapped to explicit lineweights and screens, colors plot in black and color."

    It must be the one I need to use when setting up with my NCS stuff.
    I just need to pick colors for the layers that will do the job I want them to (if a lineweight hasn't been recommended in the NCS book).

    Thanks

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    Default Re: NCS 3.1 (.dws) and standards checker?

    Quote Originally Posted by Misteracad View Post
    The NCS is merely a guideline for CAD Standards, not a complete document that is intended to be used right out of the box. This seems to be a common misconception by many people in the industry! If you look closely, you'll notice that the Layer lists are just a starting point and are by no means complete. The intent is for one to use the NCS as a guide, as it was intended, to create your own. That being said, we plan to develop our own Standards templates, DWS check files, etc. based on OUR company's standard, that is of course based on the current version of the NCS. Maybe it's just me, but buying a program to do what can be done relatively easily seems like a waste, especially if it is not customized to "our" version of CAD Standards.
    You're right it is a common misconception. We got into the NCS when one of our upper managers out of the blue declared that we will use the NCS, and I am sure he never even looked at the standard before deciding.

    That said, the Altiva stuff really saved us a lot of time by giving us pre-defined templates and block libraries, etc to jump start our customizations. But the real reason we bought the product was for it's drafting and checking and fixing of the objects/entities in the drawing to make sure they followed our NCS standard. We tried the internal checker, but were surprised when we found out that it doesn't check anything to do with the actual objects in the drawing. Try it out, there is literally nothing you can do to an object's properties to make the internal checker flag it as non-standard! So all we had were drawings with the correct layers and style settings, but the actual drawing objects would be on the wrong layers and people were using the wrong styles and scales for everything -- in other words, they were a mess!

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