How to Save Time on Construction Estimates and Blueprint Take-OffsIf you're job entails Construction Estimates and Blueprint Take-Offs, then you are familiar with taking the time to scale a blueprint or some type of document in order to get measurements. Measurements that you sum up so the contractor or builder will know what to order and how much. Some plans come with these measurements such as quantity, square footage, linear footage, cubic yards, board feet, and so on, and some plans do not. This is where your job comes in. You, the estimator, get these measurements as a service to your project or client.
As an estimator, you are familiar with Manual or Digitized Take off methods. We of course recommend the digitized method and recommend the use of tools like the Scalex Planwheel, and the Calculated Industries Scale Master II. Either of these tools will save you tons of time when performing construction estimates and blueprint take-offs. Basically, you select the scale that your drawing is drawn or printed to, then begin rolling the lines you want to sum or quantify.
If you want to automate the process even further, you can get an interface kit and connect the measuring tool with your computer. Most plan measuring tools like the Scalex Planwheel or the Calculated Industries Scale Master II will enter the information right into estimation software like TurtleSoft or Timberline, or even into a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet, but only if you have the interface kit to connect the tool to your computer.
Interface kits like the Scalex PlanWheel XLU Interface Kit or the Calculated Industries Scale Master II PC Interface Kit are usually sold separately. However, sometimes you can buy the Tool and Kit in a package like the Scalex "Deluxe Kit" Scale-Link USB or the Calculated Industries Scale Master II with PC Interface Kit which saves money since you're buying the Plan Measuring Tool and the Interface Kit all at once.
If you're just wanting to buy a Digital Plan Wheel and never have any intentions of connecting it to your computer, you can save money and buy a plan measuring wheel like the Scalex PlanWheel SA 2.
Whatever you choose to perform blueprint take-offs, you can save some serious time (therefor money) when you automate the process and use a digital plan measuring device.