Structural drawings are included in a set of construction drawings to show details of the structural elements. Jim shows examples that include the details for the building’s foundation and roof framing, and explains that structural drawings may be drawn by the architect or a structural engineer.
- [Narrator] As I said in the last segment, the structure of a building might be designed by the architect, and that's the case here in our sample project with this house. But just be aware that as a project gets more complex or has different elements to it, say, a concrete parking structure, the architect may hire another consultant, typically called a structural engineer, to design those structural details and produce the structural drawings. And in that case, when I go to my drawing list or my sheet index, I would expect to see a group of drawings labeled structural, and designated with an S in front of them.
Now, again, we don't have that here. And, you know, if we go over to our bookmarks, you can see I don't have any structural drawings or anything designated as structural drawings in my bookmarks either. But that doesn't mean that I don't have any structural drawings for this project. It just means that since the architect designed the structure, they included them in the architectural set of drawings. So, again, structural drawings will generally include things like the concrete foundations for a project, the element that holds the building up.
Again, for a parking structure it would include all of the concrete floors and ramps. For a high-rise structural steel building, a structural engineer would design all of that structural steel skeleton, and all of the connections that are used. So in this case, again, we still have structural drawings in this set of sample drawings because we have a foundation plan. And it just doesn't happen to be designated as an S drawing or a structural drawing, again, because the architect designed it.
But let's go ahead and jump over to sheet A-102 which is our foundation plan. And again, a foundation plan is clearly what could be called a structural drawing. It shows us how to construct the structure, construct the foundation that's going to hold this house up. So here I am, I'm on the foundation plan, sheet A-102, and I want to go ahead and zoom in and take a look at some of the different types of information that we would find on this structural drawing, or specifically the foundation plan.
So the foundation is made out of concrete, so if I'm the concrete contractor on this job, this is probably the drawing that I'm going to use. And take a look at this. We can see, remember from our discussion on line types, we have, what's represented here is the concrete foundation wall. And there's a note here that says, in fact, that's a 10-inch wide concrete foundation wall, and that's typical. And then we also have dashed lines, which generally indicate something below us.
And in this case, that's a two-foot concrete footing, and that's typical. So there's a lot of information here. Let's scroll over to the garage for this house, where it's a little less cluttered. And again, we see the same information. We see here, this time we have a six-inch wide concrete garage foundation wall, and again a two-foot wide concrete footing that goes around this whole thing. And if you remember from our earlier discussions, and some of the looks that we've taken at different views on the project, the house, or the garage in this case, is going to be framed on top of this foundation wall.
Now we need a little more information here. We can tell that the concrete footing is two-foot wide, but we don't really have any information on how thick it is, and I don't see any detail call-outs anywhere here on this garage. But I see this notation that designers are really fond of, the TYP, which means typical. So if it says two-foot concrete footing typical, it means it's going to show up somewhere else. So I'm going to hunt and scroll around the drawing, and find another two-foot concrete footing that says it's typical.
And now I see a detail call-out. It says for more information on the bottom of the foundation wall, and this typical detail, see detail one on sheet A-506. And in fact if we looked over here, at our bookmark list, we would see that A-506 is the foundation detail page. Now again, we'll look at detail pages in a little more depth coming up here shortly, but let's go ahead, since we have a hyperlink, let's go ahead and click on sheet A-506, and scroll in, and take a look at detail one, the bottom of that foundation wall.
Now all of a sudden, instead of just a note that says this concrete footing is two-foot wide, there's a lot more information here. There's information that shows me how thick this footing is, it shows me how this footing is to be back-filled, there's supposed to be a drain next to this footing, it shows me how to connect the foundation wall to the footing. So there's a lot of information contained in this detail that was not readily apparent on that plan view shown in the foundation plan.
So let's go back to the foundation plan. And again, remember in this plan view, all we saw was this note here. But when we jumped to the detail, we saw a cross-section, a detailed cross-section, specifically, of what this foundation wall and footing looked like. So that's the kind of jumping around that you need to do to put all of the information together and understand what to build.
Now let's look at a few more things that we find on this foundation page. We see a lot of note S3's here. Here's a couple of note S3's. And if we scroll over, we see that S3 means that everywhere there is this note, we expect to see a steel pipe column when this project is built. If we look at S6, we see S6 in multiple locations here. S6 indicates a drain. So, lots of information that can be contained on a structural drawing, or in this case on our, specifically our foundation drawing.
And we also have some notes here in the middle of the page, that talk to us about the thickness of the concrete floor slab, and what that floor slab sits on, and some plastic that underlies that concrete floor slab. So, again, if it's your job to do the concrete on this project, there's lots of information on this drawing, and you really need to go through and make sure that you include all of it, including jumping to these details, to really understand what it is that's going to be built.
So now that we've looked at our structural drawing, again, I'm going to go back to our cover page, and we're going to continue on, and we're going to look at a few more drawing types before we close out this section.
In this course, learn how to read construction drawings. Jim Rogers helps you acquire this important skillset by taking you through the different components that make up construction plans, and helping you understand the language of construction drawings. He covers types of views, highlights different kinds of construction drawings—including architectural drawings, electrical drawings, and plumbing drawings—explains how to read general notes, and more.
- Deciphering the language of construction drawings
- Understanding line types
- Reviewing plan views, elevation views, section views, and isometric views
- Reviewing architectural drawings, structural drawings, and mechanical drawings
- Drilling down to the details
- Reviewing reference points on drawings
- Understanding schedules
- The future of construction drawings