8 Reasons Why You Should Convert Paper Drawings to CAD
For years, draftsmen designed by using pencil on paper, but today most design work is computer driven via CAD programs. Nonetheless, there remains a large store of various paper design drawings in many organizations. These paper drawings are at risk of being lost forever if they are not converted to digital CAD files. Digital documents are permanent. Paper documents fade, tear or otherwise deteriorate. Paper drawings also take large amounts of storage space to maintain, while digital CAD drawings can be easily stored in low-cost computer memory or cloud storage. These digital drawings are secure, non-fading, searchable, and can be seen by multiple users at the same time.
Scanning paper drawings have become the norm in most design industries. There are a number of reasons why companies choose to convert their paper drawings to CAD.
Why convert your designs from paper to CAD
- The chance of data damage or loss is negligible
- Reduced cost of revisions
- Reduced cost of storage
- Creation of a standard digital filing system
- The drawings are of high quality and accurate
- Retrieval and printing of electronic documents take less time
- CAD drawings can be systematically maintained at a consistent level of quality
- Ease of inclusion in EDM and PDM systems.
How to convert your designs from paper to CAD
The easiest way to convert paper to CAD is by scanning the paper drawings and then converting the scanned raster images to CAD files. It’s not hard to convert the paper drawings — the problem is that not many organizations have the experienced or the equipment to do a good job. That’s why many companies outsource the paper to CAD process.
It is critical that the paper to CAD conversion starts with a good, clean scan because the image quality is important to the final product. If two lines are blended and look like a single line in a scan, that’ll give you an inaccurate CAD file.
Next, the scanned image needs to be converted to your specific CAD vector format – AutoCAD or one of the other CAD programs that are available. Often, this process employs a number of different techniques including heads-up digitizing, commercial R to V software, custom wrote CAD conversion scripts, and software, or some combination of all three. An experienced CAD conversion outsources company will be able to determine the method that provides the best end result for your type of drawings.