National CAD Standard

National CAD StandardThe United States National CAD Standard® (NCS) is comprised of The American Institute of Architect's CAD Layer Guidelines, the Construction Specification Institute's Uniform Drawing System (Modules 1-8), and the National Institute of Building Sciences BIM Implementation & Plotting Guidelines.

The NCS coordinates these publications to allow consistent and streamlined communication among owners and design/construction teams. Use of the NCS will result in reduced costs for developing and maintaining office standards and the transfer of building design data from design to facility management.

Adoption of the NCS by the building design and construction industry is voluntary. Several government agencies and private organizations have adopted and implemented the standard.

Uniform Drawing System (UDS)

CSI's Uniform Drawing System is a major portion of the U.S. National CAD Standard (NCS) and establishes standardized guidelines for organizing and presenting building design information. It is used to organize and manage construction drawings for virtually any project and project delivery method, for the entire life cycle of a facility.

Drawing Set Organization
Establishes set content and order, sheet identification, and file naming for a set of construction drawings.

Sheet Organization
Provides format for sheets - Includes drawing, title block, and production reference areas and their content. Also includes a coordinate-based location system and preferred sheet sizes.

Sets consistency in format, terminology, and content. Additional guidelines include how to "build" a project-specific schedule and an organizational system for identifying and filing schedules.

Drafting Conventions
Addresses standard conventions used in drawings: drawing orientation, layout, symbols, material indications, line types, dimensions, drawing scale, diagrams, notation, and cross-referencing.

Terms & Abbreviations
Provides standard terms and standard abbreviations used in construction documents and specifications. It provides consistent spelling and terminology, standardizes abbreviations, and notes common usage.

Addresses commonly used standard symbols, classifications, graphic representation, and organization in creating, understanding and fulfilling the intent of construction documents. The symbols are categorized using MasterFormat™ 2004 numbers and division titles and unique 3 digit extension number for easy referencing.

Provides guidelines for classifying, formatting, and locating notes; using and linking notes to specifications.

Code Conventions
Identifies types of general regulatory information that should appear on drawings, locates code-related information in a set of drawings, and provides standard graphic conventions. This tool can be used to expedite code review by designers and plan review authorities.