Line Thicknes standards when printing mechanical drawings

Hi everyone,
Regarding printing drawings, can anyone please tell me the line thickness standards for mechanical drawings, i.e., what are the
thicknesses supposed to be for visible continuous lines that actually show the part, hidden lines, center lines, dimension lines, text, border, title block, etc..
As I understand it, the lines that show the part are supposed to be thick and the dimension, hidden, and center lines, are supposed to be about 1/2 the thickness of the visible lines of the actual part.
I am using AutoCAD 14 and will probably print the small drawings with a standard printer on 8.5 X 11 paper. I don't know if some printers run into problems with lines being too thin and not showing up, I would guess a thickness of .005" and up should be fine.
Should I just leave all line thickness at the AutoCAD default .010" and let the machinist change the pen width to their liking ? What do most people do ? I would like the make the drawings as clear as possible before sending the DWG files off, and many shops probably don't have plotters, just standard printers.
I would be interested in learning what most people do with regards to line thickness, rules of thumb, etc.. Any suggestions on actual thickness for visible, hidden, and center lines would be great.
Thanks John
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Both the UK and the USA have standards for drawings that give this information I would imagine there is an EU standard as well as an ISO standard.
JD
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
There are so many standards, it's like there are none at all. Here is my typical setup: Contour lines = .04" Hidden = .02" Axis (center) = .01" Text / Annotation = .025" Dimension = .02" Title block = .09" Phantom = .005" Hatch = .005" Anything else I judge according to its use and "plottability". With my old printer I could set line widths to 0 and they would be half a hair wide. A thing of beauty. With my current machine anything under .005" gets cut up in segments. Keep in mind that drawings get faxed, scanned, photocopied and plotted as pdf. All of these reduce the quality and visibility of the lines. We have a certain .ctb for large drawings (C, D, E) and another for 8.5X11 and 11X17, for clarity.
Just use your judgement and do a few tests. In the immortal words of my colleague: "Do your best, and keep your fingers on Ctrl+Z"
Cheers
Dr Fleau aka Pierre

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks for your feedback Dr. Fleau,
I will just experiment and see what looks best. With my current setup, it looks like .02" for visible part lines, and then .01" for all the hidden and center lines looks pretty good.
I am also using different colors for the lines to help further. I found if you make the part visible lines white, then make the other lines color lines, even if you print in greyscale, the outline of the part is darker than the other lines, which makes things look more clear. This may help in the event someone cannot print in color (rare, but it can happen if you run out of ink or if the printer stops printing in color like mine did).
Like you, I also found with my HP printer, if you go much under .005" the lines get choppy, i.e., continuous lines start looking like hidden lines.
Thanks again, John
Dr Fleau wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
--> I am also using different colors for the lines to help further. I found if you make the part visible lines white, then make the other lines color lines, even if you print in greyscale, the outline of the part is darker than the other lines, which makes things look more clear. <--
Well sure ! Of course on screen it's much more useful to use different colours for better "reading". In your .ctb just make all your lines plot as Black -not ByColor- and you can use any color you want.
As far as colours go, there simply isn't any widely used standard. Any combination that makes your piece understandable will do.
Cheers
Dr Fleau
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Polytechforum.com is a website by engineers for engineers. It is not affiliated with any of manufacturers or vendors discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.