The anticipated paradigm shift from 2D drafting to 3D modeling in plant design has yet to materialize, which prompted us to write about this topic. In general CAD software utilization, designers are still using 2D drafting more than 50% of the time. That’s not surprising. While 3D offers many advantages, 2D drafting is still easier to use and effective in terms of getting the job out the door quickly and inexpensively.
For many companies restrained by project budgets for engineering and design, 2D offers a reasonable solution. After all, most of the buildings and infrastructure that are over 25 years old were designed using pencil and paper in 2D.
Some drafting can only be performed with 2D software, for example, drawing pipe spools for fabrication. PROCAD SpoolCAD software now available with 30-day free trial is a prime example of 2D only design.
Eventually most drafting and design work will naturally move from 2D to 3D. It is only a matter of time when the change of guard from designers who grew up with 2D shifts to the new generation so adept with 3D. Not only are the new cadres trained on 3D CAD at school as curriculums advance, they use it in their daily life playing 3D video games.
3D design is the future. But we imagine 2D design will stick around for a while longer. What do you think?