Posted on

Rebellious Engineering

Rebellious might be a bit strong for this post but I was wondering how engineers personalize their projects?

For example, on one river bridge I designed, I put a sea serpent on the cadd plans. I’m not sure it made it to the final letting plans but I tried.

On another plan set I labeled certain steel bars with my initials as the bar designation. Now this may not be rebellious, maybe more in the vein of immature behavior, but hey, I was trying to set my plans apart from other engineers.

My question is, can you personalize your engineering drawings? If I saw your plans compared to another engineer, could I tell the difference? If not, how can we add our style into a plan set?

Should we have a style?

4 thoughts on “Rebellious Engineering

  1. TBG,
    “Vive la revolution”, but make it clandestine. We all need to keep our jobs. In the pre-digital age each person had their own writing & drawing styles & drafting equipment. We did our own drawings at least in the concept stages, so each personality showed automatically, even if standardisation was preferred then as today.

    Do any engineers sketch freehand, or draw with a pencil on paper any more, or do we all stare at a rectangular computer screen all day long, clicking on a mouse? Are CADD designs just block-copied from one project to another, with just a change in a few dimensions and the title block? Sometimes. Are computers killing our creativity, originality & personality. I don’t think so myself, but sometimes I do find that too much of my brain is occupied by the manipulation of user-unfriendly software.

    Today we could make our own fonts for the CAD drawing notes, although the boss mightn’t like it.e.g.
    Adding a sea serpent, or an optical illusion, is another way to express oneself, to add some humour, AND to see if the checking person is awake or not. I like it – its a kind of a “canary in the coal mine”…

  2. Thanks David for the links! Seeing how I used to draft brings back a lot of memories. I wasn’t the best at drafting using pencils (I kept smudging everything.) but it was fun using the L-square arms.

    I think a little bit of style in your work is necessary to stay sane. I like the canary in the coal mine analogy!


  3. In model space for autocad I have always been able to hide a block of spider-man but that was more of something which I didn’t want people to know who left it.

    I also use to write my name along the title blocks in very small lettering so it almost looked like a smudge.

    Now I find it more fun to hide things in calculations

  4. That’s the spirit Eric!

Comments are closed.