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Workforce LibreTexts

1.2: Drafting Materials

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  • Drafting materials

    The most common support for drawing is paper. Even though the original creative surface has changed from the drafting table to the computer screen, on the work site drawings are still primarily in printed form.

    Drawing paper

    There is a wide variety of drawing paper available in many sizes and of different qualities. Good quality drawing paper is acid-free and will not turn yellow with age. Light-coloured drawing papers are available in pale yellow or buff, but these should be used only when it is not necessary to make copies.

    Tracing paper

    Tracing paper, which is transparent, can be used to make copies of drawings. It is thin enough to allow the light of photocopy machines to shine through the unmarked areas, and only the lines and figures will block the light. Materials used for tracing include tracing paper, vellum, tracing cloth, glass cloth, and polyester film with a matte finish.

    Standard paper sizes

    Paper sizes typically comply with one of two different standards: ISO (world standard) or ANSI/ASME Y14 (American).

    The standard ISO series of paper sizes is as follows:

    A0 841 mm × 1189 mm

    A1 594 mm × 841 mm

    A2 420 mm × 594 mm

    A3 297 mm × 420 mm

    A4 210 mm × 297 mm

    A5 148 mm × 210 mm

    The standard ANSI/ASME series of paper sizes is as follows:

    E 34 inch × 44 inch

    D 22 inch × 34 inch

    C 17 inch × 22 inch

    B 11 inch × 17 inch

    A 8.5 inch × 11 inch

    The 81/2" × 11" standard letter paper corresponds to 216 mm × 279 mm. You can buy precut sheets that have a border and a preprinted title block in the lower right-hand corner. These are available in many standard sizes.

    If the paper you use does not have a border and title block, you will have to draw them in. The left-hand border should be wider than the right-hand border and should be at least 50 mm wide to allow room for the prints to be bound. Figure 18 shows a title block with suitable dimensions added.


    1. Dimensions for title block

      Paper rolls

      Many grades of paper rolls are available in different widths that can be cut to any length required.

      Drafting or masking tape

      Use drafting or masking tape to hold the paper on the drafting surface. The tape should be attached at the corners to hold the sheet firmly stretched with no wrinkles. Only short pieces of tape are required.