We are a medium size company that does only commercial, no moldings, no face frame, and mostly laminate. The business grew around a single customer that requires next to no drawings. For some of the items we would get a sketch from a designer, but mostly it would just be a room layout and a verbal description of what was required.
Now we are venturing out and must submit shop drawings for jobs with multiple rooms with several elevations and 50 ln ft of base cabinetry with sinks, special plumbing for labs and other custom requirements. We have purchased pattern systems to automate this process, but nothing is fully automated.
How do you determine how much money to add to an estimate for drawings? Is it just experience, a formula, or some combination of the two?
What can I expect from someone with approximately 10 years of CAD experience? Should a drawing like this take a day, a week, a month?
I have about 1year (to the day) of drafting/CAD experience. If left undisturbed I can usually put out a room of fully custom residential cabinets, millwork and mouldings in a couple days (1-3) depending on complexity and integration issues with old houses. I'm sure more experienced people can draw much faster. However, if you are building industrial stuff (just uniform boxes), it shouldn't take long at all. 1-2 days max if all your room measurements are correct.
You can adjust your materials, $/HR and percentage.
The following formula goes under Engineering hours. (F5)
I just break down the scope. Picture in your head the steps involved and how much detail you will need to create clear fabrication drawings that your fabrications shops will understand.
When you get a good idea of the hours required, double them! (Ha ha…)
When I break down a project I always give myself a buffer of 1/3 the time I think is going to take. Always tell the truth and don't let pressure make you think it can be done faster.
I also factor in some B.S. I think out of 8 hours you can only get about 6 good hours of work out of your CADD people. Make them get up and walk around about 10 minutes every hour. You will get better quality work out of them.