Creating a project drawing using the FireCAD basic template

Document Overview:

We are providing the template below in the form of an AutoCAD drawing. Click below or on the link at the end of the article to download the .dwg file for your own use. Please use and/or duplicate it freely.

After downloading the file you may copy it into any project folder and use it as a project drawing, substituting some of its content for your own project-specific content.

This article assumes you are familiar with the basics of creating a project. If not please review the following youtube video:

FireCad Basic Template Explanation:

Below is an image of the template's model space while open in FireCAD.


The NFPA 72 requirements for shop drawings:

We have placed information on the drawings model space as a guide to you in a yellow color. These yellow colors are placed on an AutoCAD non-plotting layer so that they are visible to you but will not plot to your published drawing if you use this template as we are showing you here.

The area on the left of the model space in yellow text is a listing of the 2019 NFPA 72 requirements for shop drawings. Most AHJs will look for this information when reviewing your plans.

If you are not familiar with how to use AutoCAD layers, a good tutorial is:


Relationship between what you draw in model space and your layout sheets:

MODEL SPACE Almost always, and especially when you are starting with AutoCAD you will be placing your objects in model space. Think of model space as a giant drawing board of an unlimited size. In this template we have drawn 10 yellow rectangles (on the no-plot layer).

Each rectangle is provided as an area for you to place objects/information which will then line up on the layout sheets.


PAPER SPACE Almost always, and especially when you are starting with AutoCAD you will be plotting your drawing to either a pdf file or to a printer by separating your model space content into "layout tabs", also known as paper space .

This template is provided with 10 layout tabs, each one corresponding with one of the 10 yellow rectangles which we have provided in model space.


Layout tab 1 example:

If you select layout tab 1 from the 10 layout tabs provided, the AutoCAD view will change to the one below. This view shows you not only the content from the model space which is is bordered by yellow rectangle 1 in model space but it also includes a "title block" which will be included on the published pdf or paper document you create.

We discuss title blocks and their usage in greater detail in a separate article. The basic concept, however, is that content from the model space is displayed in the area of the paper space (layout tab) within a "viewport". The viewport below is defined by a magenta rectangle.

Think of a viewport as a "porthole" or a "peephole" cut into the layout tab which reveals the content of the model space behind it.





Completing your project layout in model space:

For the rest of this article we will focus on completing the system layout in model space. Separating the content of model space into scaled layouts in paper space is covered in a separate article.

For most submittals you will want to include a title page similar to the one above. Edit the content as needed for your specific project.


Your project may require one or more floor plan layouts. We have provided an example of three floor plans in this template. 

Below is the area of the model space where you will draw your content showing the first floor.


Below is the area of the model space where you will draw your content showing the second floor.


Other information needed to complete your project layout in model space:

You will need to plan ahead to be sure you include all the content the AHJ will require. Below is a sample of content a basic project will require.




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