July 22, 2013

What's New in AutoCAD MEP 2014: What is your "Standard" - Enhanced Layer Standard NCS 5.0

 At Ideate, we’ve been reviewing the Autodesk 2014 product line and sharing new features and enhancements that we think will benefit users. AutoCAD MEP 2014 has some solid enhancements, one of the ones that will give companies and users additional flexibility is the Layer Standards and Layer Key Styles compatible with the new US standard - NCS 5.0.

Autodesk created the NCS 5.0 Layer Standard, NCS 4.0 Layer Standard, and 3.1. They had several goals to accomplish. Bring AutoCAD MEP up to date with NCS 5.0 Layer Standard. Make AutoCAD Architecture and MEP both use the same Layer Standard and Layer Key Style for consistency. Some companies standardize on a ALL CAPITAL LETTER layer format, and some on a Title Case format.

The MEP layer standard accommodates the NCS standard, with some flexibility (optional front status, and extra Minor3). The primary change in 2014, is the Field values match NCS 5.0 values everywhere possible (exception being the additional MEP values that support our content). Autodesk updated the layer values on the keys, so that they accommodate the NCS 5.0 values where applicable. That was huge in MEP, because back in 2007 they had Minor1 values that were only 3-characters. There is now the enhancement to have 4-character values in Minor1 everywhere in MEP.

This new enhanced Layer Standard drawing features:
o Ability to generate the correct layer names more easily 
o New layer standard and layer key styles
o NCS 5.0-compliant
The bottom line is for those firms that follow the NCS 5.0, you will no longer need to modify layer names manually to comply with NCS 5.0.

Bill Johnson
Ideate Senior MEP Application Specialist

Bill has over 20 years experience in applying AEC design solutions for large commercial companies. A graduate of Pasadena Institute of Technology, he has worked for TEECOM Design Group, GTE/GTEL, Greg LeDoux and Associates, and Scottish Power in England. Bill has also had the opportunity to act as Lead AutoCAD Designer for multimillion dollar communication sites which have included structural, electrical, HVAC, conduit, cable plans and equipment layouts. He has a Sustainable Design Certification from the University of California at Berkeley.

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