Introduction to Reading Plans and Elevations
This module introduces techniques for reading construction drawings and specifications.
Construction drawings tell carpenters and other skilled tradespeople how to build a specific building or structure.
A specification is a contractual document used along with the construction drawings. It contains detailed written instructions that supplement the set of drawings.
As a carpenter, it is extremely important that you interpret construction drawings and specifications correctly. Failure to do so may result in:
• Costly rework and unhappy customers
• Legal liability (depending on the severity of the mistake)
Terms Associated with Reading Plans and Elevations
Click on each button to find out more:
A point established by the surveyor on or close to the building site. It is used as a reference for determining elevations during the construction of a building.
Imaginary lines on a site/plot plan that connect points of the same elevation. Contour lines never cross each other.
A legal right-of-way provision on another person’s property (for example, the right of a neighbor to build a road or a public utility to install water and gas lines on the property). A property owner cannot build on an area where an easement has been identified.
A drawing giving a view from the front or side of a structure.
The distance from the property line to the front of the building.
Physical structures that mark the location of a survey point.
Approximate or rough size (commercial size) by which lumber, block, etc., is commonly known and sold. For example, 2 x 4s. (Normally, this size is slightly larger than the actual size)
A drawing that represents a view looking down on an object.
The recorded legal boundaries of a piece of property.
A procedure that involves surveying, measuring, and counting all materials indicated on a set of drawings.
A schematic drawing that depicts the layout, components, and connections of a piping system.
An accurate and detailed drawing of a place or region that depicts all the natural and man-made physical features, showing their relative positions and elevations.