Industrial Layout

Industrial Layout is a discipline of technical drawing which is a combination of architectural and survey drafting. The application of this drafting discipline are used in almost any type of manufacturing including and not limited to plastic injection molding, furniture fabrication, automotive parts manufacturing, etc. It’s where a plant floor plan is drawn out exactly to scale and used for planning the functions of an industrial fabrication process or processes.

The drawing starts with the blank or open floor plan of the plant that shows all the structural members of the building that are visible on the plan view and includes columns that are out in the floor area, interior offices, exits, etc. If the plant already has fixtures, presses, molds, generators, cranes, elevators, or work stations, these are included also.

If the building is void of any fixtures, the IE (industrial or plant engineer) makes sketches on the plan locating all the machinery and work stations that’ll be in the plant so that the drafter can add them to it and it can be used once the plant is fully operational. There’s almost always one particular master drawing of the building that, as time goes on, is updated as the plant grows or new processes are added or removed.

From the main layout drawing, localized drawings are made at a larger scale of particular areas of the plant. If a new area is drawn or designed, these drawings are then integrated into the main plant drawing to keep it up to date. Sometimes machinery manufacturers will send detailed drawings of their machines or presses which can also be added into the main drawing.

Over the past century or two since the beginning of the industrial revolution, these drawings were maintained manually on the drafting board which was very labor intensive. With the advent of Computer Assisted Drafting, drawings can be easily integrated into one another just by importing a CAD file.

The drafter who keeps these drawings updated are usually given the title of general or industrial drafters. The term general is used because of the many disciplines they must posses to perform their job. These include, but aren’t limited to, architecture, survey and topographical, machine or mechanical drafting.