Engineering Drawing Abbreviations

Engineering Drawing Abbreviations

Most Engineering companies use drawing abbreviations and symbols to communicate the design intent clearly and concisely, primarily with the people who work in the manufacture and assemblies of the structures being documented.

Historically abbreviations (or “drafties short-hand, as it is otherwise known”) were part of the established standards when drawings were tediously hand drawn; it saved precious space, kept drawings neat as well as helping to keep the drafts-persons hands cramp-free.

These days, with drawings predominantly being produced on computer, the need for technical and non-technical word shortenings has been reduced somewhat, but there are still a number of older drafties who use abbreviations as the need arises.

The following list includes a few of the abbreviations commonly (or uncommonly) found on Klopfer Dobos drawings;

A/C Air Conditioning
AFL Above Floor Level
AG Agricultural pipe drain
AHD Australian Height Datum
APPROX Approximately
AS Australian Standard
AVG Average
BLDG Building
BLK Blockwork
BOT Bottom
BTM Bottom
BW Both Ways
BWK Brickwork
C C shaped steel purlin
C.J. Construction Joint (or Control Joint)
C/C Centre to Centre
CAD Computer Aided Design. Less commonly use is Computer Assisted Drafting.
CHS Circular Hollow Section  (steel)
CJ Construction joint
CNR Corner
COL Column
CONN’N Connection
CONT Continuous
CTR(S) Centre/S
CTRL Control
DIA Diameter
DIM Dimension
DL Dead load
DWG Drawing
EA Equal Angle (steel)
EF Each Face
EQ Equal
EQUIP Equipment
EW Each Way
F’c Characteristic Concrete Strength
FF Far face (reinforcement)
FFL Finished floor level
FH Fire hydrant (survey)
FL Floor level
FSBW Full Strength Butt Weld
FW Fillet Weld
GALV Galvanized
HORIZ Horizontal
KG Kilogram
LL Live load
m Meters
MAX Maximum
MC Mass concrete
MIN Minimum
MISC Miscellaneous
mm Millimeters
MS Mild steel
N.S.O.P. Not Shown On Plan
NF Near Face (reinforcement)
No. Number
NOM Nominal
NTS Dimension, not to scale
Ø Diameter
OPN’G Opening
OA or O/A Overall
O’ALL Overall
OD Outside Diameter
PFC Parallel Flange Channel (steel)
RAD Radius or radial
RC Reinforced Concrete
REINF Reinforcement
REQ’D Required
REV Revision
RHS Rectangular Hollow Section (steel)
SHS Square Hollow Section  (steel)
SIM Similar
SQ Square
SS or S/S Stainless steel or simply supported
STD Standard
TBM Temporary bench mark
TOB Top of beam
TOC Top of concrete
TOS Top of steel
TOW Top of wall
U/S Underside
UB Universal beam (steel)
UC Universal column (steel)
UNO Unless noted otherwise
U’SIDE Underside
VERT Vertical (reinforcement or steel orientation)
WB Welded beam (steel)