- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 14 Nov 2018
Scale drawings are used to illustrate items that it is not useful or convenient to draw at their actual size
This may be because drawing the item at full size would be unmanageable, or would not easily fit on a single sheet of paper (such as a building), or alternatively because items need to be drawn larger than full size to adequately represent all the detail that needs to be communicated (such as a complex connection).
|A distance at full size : The distance at the scale used that would be the same length.|
- A full size drawing would be 1:1 (or sometimes 1/1 or ‘one to one’).
- A half size drawing would be 1:2.
- A tenth size drawing would be 1:10.
- A double size drawing would be 2:1.
- A location plan at 1:1000.
- A site plan at 1:200.
- A floor plan at 1:100.
- A room plan at 1:50.
- A component drawing at 1:5.
- An assembly drawing at 1:1.
It is important that the scale used is noted on the drawing. In addition, because of the ease of reproducing, printing and re-sizing drawings, it is important to note the original sheet size that the scale was drawn at, so for example A4, A3, A2, A1, A0, and so on.
In some cases, it may be appropriate to use more than one scale on a single drawing, for example, to show the elevation of land across across a significant distance. In this case, differences in elevation might be illustrated at a larger scale and a smaller scale used for horizontal distances. Here, the scale might be noted on the axes of the drawing, or actual distances shown on the axes.
The use of computer aided drawing (CAD) and building information modelling (BIM) has introduced a new concept to this process, as in this case, digital models are created at full size. Drawings of any scale can then be generated from the model.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- As-built drawings and record drawings.
- Assembly drawing.
- Building information modelling.
- Component drawing.
- Computer aided design.
- Concept drawing.
- Design drawings.
- Detail drawing.
- Engineering drawing.
- General arrangement drawing.
- Installation drawings.
- Manual drafting techniques.
- North American Paper Sizes
- Notation and symbols.
- Paper sizes (ISO 216 A, B and C series).
- Section drawing.
- Shop drawings.
- Site plan.
- Symbols on architectural drawings.
- Technical drawing.
- Techniques for drawing buildings.
- Types of drawing.
- Working drawing.
Featured articles and news
The types, causes and measurement of damp in buildings.
The new NEC4 contract creates a true procurement alliance arrangement for all stakeholders.
Andrew Strauss talks about performance and team building at the 2018 BSRIA Briefing.
Applications have to be in by the end of the week.
Reflections on the 5th Annual Global Congress of Knowledge Economy, held in Qingdao, China.
An artist finds ruined and decaying buildings a source of inspiration for his work. Book review.
When is there a right to light, and what happens if it is obstructed?
What would the nationalisation of economic infrastructure mean for GB?
A new guide to improving value by reducing design error.
We've reached 80,000 page views a day and 10,000 registered users. Why not join them?
A masterplan is a framework within which a location is encouraged to develop or change. Read our introductory article.