Layouts Per Sheet File, How many Should there be?

Layouts Per Sheet File- The Multiple Layouts Approach

Many AutoCAD Users, suffer when their Too Heavy Drawing Files will switch between Layouts at a frustrating Slowness. Yet, having different Output Products from the same model  – at a single place – seems very logical, Isn’t it? Well, I Hope You are going to judge it after reading these lines. Files contain one single Model and at least one Layout. In theory, AutoCAD does not Limit You on the # of Layouts you can Create as long as You’ve got at least a single one. The problem with this approach is that in the world of technical drawings, a revision is made to a Specific Sheet File and If You have many Sheets Deriving from one Single File, When You Create a New Version or a Revision, even to one Single Sheet, You’ll be in trouble…

Layouts Per Sheet File – 1:1 -or – The AutoCAD Sheet Set Approach

Sheet Sets have been in AutoCAD for many years. I’ve been using those since AutoCAD 2004-5. The only problem with Sheet Sets refer to the poor User Experience and ancient GUI. Every other functionality makes sense and work as a Swiss Clockwork. Several features make this mechanism very persuasive:

  • A Sheet is created very easily, yet it is Standard Compliant at all times – a Sheet Creation Template will let You Select the Proper Sheet Layout (or use a specific one – according to the Subset at the Project’s Hierarchy Tree – including a Title Block that will be Auto-Filled-Up with a set of Attributes preconnected with both Project’s and Sheet’s Properties (via Fields).
  • A Model View Feature, will let You Attach a Specific Named View (including a Layer State, An Annotation Scale, A Coordinate System, A View Boundary & more) – When doing so, A Set of Automatic Callout Blocks will serve to place Automatic Titles (under the Viewport – Also created by the Model View System), Refer to other Drawings, etc.
  • At any given time, You’ll be able to create a Sheet List Table suiting Your Exact Needs. Depending on where from the list was generated, offering a dynamic Table that will update according to the Sheets as being added or removed from the Set (and/or Subset)
  • Global Manipulations available for Plotting & Publishing, eTransmitting, Archiving, Re-saving all the Sheets and more.

Layouts Per Sheet File – So what’s the best practice?

All this magic is accompanied with the Sheet Uniqueness Feature that won’t let you attach a Sheet to A Sheet Set in case it’s already attached to another Sheet Set + When You are in front of Your Sheet Set Manager, You have a View on all the Sheets, A great Navigating Tool, Access to the Source Files attached through the Model Views, etc.

My Conclusions on the # of Layouts P/Sheet

When You need to Submit Drawings in Contexts of RFIs, CORs, etc. And in the Case a Single Sheet is holding the new info’ you’ll be able to send one small Sheet File (eTransmitted with all Referenced Files) instead of a Giant File in Which most Layouts are Totally Irrelevant. Till all Design Disciplines in the AEC World go Robotic, the Sheet is the only way I know to communicate Analogically or Digitally with the People at the Field.

How would You Like to Participate on a Sheet Set Master Class?


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