Assembly drawings can be used to represent items that consist of more than one component. They show how the components fit together and may include, orthogonal plans, sections and elevations, or 3 dimensional views, showing the assembled components, or an exploded view showing the relationship between the components and how they fit together.
They may be used to show how to assemble parts of a kit such as furniture, how to assemble a complex part of a building (an assembly) or to show the relationship between a number of details.
The location of assemblies may be shown on general arrangement drawings, or sometimes on detail drawings. The components that form the assembly may be shown shop drawings that allow their fabrication.
Assembly drawings may include instructions, lists of the component parts, reference numbers, references to detail drawings or shop drawings, and specification information. However, they should not duplicate information provided elsewhere, as this can become contradictory and may cause confusion. They may also include dimensions, notation and symbols. It is important that these are consistent with industry standards so that their precise meaning is clear and can be understood.
Assembly drawings may be referred to as:
- General assembly drawings, showing an overall assembly.
- Outline assembly drawings, showing the exterior shape.
- Diagrammatic assembly drawings, representing the assembly with the use of symbols.
- Unit assembly or sub-assembly drawings, showing in more detail a part of the overall assembly.
- Fitted assembly drawings, showing the completed assembly.
- Exploded assembly drawing, showing the relationship between the separated parts.
The scale at which drawings are prepared should reflect the level of detail of the information they are required to convey. Different line thicknesses can be used to provide greater clarity for certain elements.
Assembly drawings may be drawn to scale by hand, or prepared using Computer Aided Design (CAD) software. However, increasingly, building information modelling (BIM) is being used to create 3 dimensional representations of buildings and their components.
BS EN ISO 7519:1997 Technical drawings. Construction drawings. General principles of presentation for general arrangement and assembly drawings establishes general principles of presentation to be applied to construction drawings for general arrangement and assembly. This standard compliments the ISO 128 series on technical drawings.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- As-built drawings and record drawings.
- Building information modelling.
- Component drawing.
- Computer aided design.
- Concept drawing.
- Design drawings.
- Detail drawing.
- Engineering drawing.
- General arrangement drawing.
- Installation drawings.
- North American Paper Sizes
- Notation and symbols.
- Paper sizes.
- Production information.
- Section drawing.
- Shop drawings.
- Technical drawing.
- Technical drawing pen sizes.
- Working drawing.
Featured articles and news
The origins, evolution and future of Level 3 BIM.
For new and returning Urban Design students, check out our article list divided up into the modules you'll be studying.
Report states that health of urban dwellers could be significantly improved by rethinking transport design.
The Kremlin, the centre of Russian power, includes some of the country's finest architecture.
Report launched outlining steps for a national infrastructure system that is efficient, sustainable, and delivers until 2050.
A review of Justin Bere's concise and well-presented introductory guide to Passive House.
This article describes in detail the tender process for a typical commercial construction contract.
What is energy storage, what are the different types and what is its future?
MAD Architects reveal their designs for a state-of-the-art concert hall in Beijing.
Take a look at BIG's designs for two twisting towers in New York City.
'The filing cabinet' which was labelled one of the best British buildings of the 21st century.