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Automatic Drawing Sheet Linking

Overview

Drawing sheet links make it easier for users to quickly navigate between related drawing sheets. When you upload drawing sheets to Procore, advanced image processing techniques are used to quickly analyze a drawing and automatically create drawing sheet links for detailed callouts that reference other section cuts in drawings.

Procore leverages Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology to intelligently scan a drawing for shapes and characters that are most likely detailed callouts that reference section cuts of other drawings or even of the drawing itself. The image processing application will attempt to decipher the drawing sheet number of a detailed callout and create a drawing sheet link to the related drawing if an existing drawing can be found with a similarly named drawing number, which is why it's important to use drawing sheet numbers that match the detailed callouts as much as possible. If an exact match can be found between an uploaded drawing number and the drawing number identified with OCR in a drawing's section cut, a drawing sheet link will automatically be created. However, if an exact match cannot be found, an attempt will be made to find a match where spaces and other symbols such as dashes (-), periods (.), and commas (,) are ignored. 

For example, the following permutations should result in drawing sheet links for 'A1500' if an exact match cannot be found.

  • A - 1500
  • A-1500
  • A  1500
  • A.1500
     

 

Three Types of Callouts that Procore Automatically Links To:

  1. Detail Callouts: Detail callouts reference a closer view of a smaller aspect of a project.
  2. Section Cut Callouts: Section callouts are usually shown on a floor plan and reference a vertical 2-D view of a building, from the perspective of where the callout is located. 
  3. Elevation Callouts: Elevation callouts reference a 2-D view of the building, and can show either the interior or exterior view. 

Things to Consider

  • There is no guarantee that every detailed callout will automatically be converted into a drawing sheet link when you upload new drawings. 
  • Drawing sheet links will typically appear within a few minutes after you have finished reviewing and publishing the uploaded drawings. However, processing time can vary depending on how many drawing sheets are currently being uploaded to Procore. During peak upload times, it may take over 45 minutes for drawings to be fully processed.
  • Currently, there is no way to determine whether or not a drawing sheet was fully processed. If you view a drawing and do not see any drawing sheet links, Procore's servers might still be processing your drawing or perhaps it might have already been processed.  
  • It's recommended that you perform a small test of your drawings to see if the image processing application is able to properly identify and add sheet links to your drawings. Upload a few sample drawings before uploading entire drawing sets.
  • There may be several reasons why the image processing application is unable to create sheet links on your drawings. Please see, Why are Automatic Drawing Sheet Links Missing?
  • Once files are uploaded, you can still use the Markup Toolbar to add links manually.
  • Automatic drawing sheet links will not be applied to drawings that were uploaded prior to Oct. 14, 2014. 
  • You do not have to upload all related drawings at the same time in order for automatic sheet linking to occur. In fact, if you upload related drawings at a later time, drawing sheet links will automatically be added to link to the previously uploaded drawings, but no drawing sheet links will be added from the older drawings to the newly uploaded drawing.

Tips for Getting Automatic Sheet Linking to Work as Expected

There are several best practices that you can follow that will increase the likelihood that automatic drawing sheet links are applied to your uploaded drawings.

  • When you review and publish your drawings, name the "Drawing #" so that it matches the drawing number in the drawing's section callouts. For example, if the section cut says "A1500" you should name the drawing appropriately with matching upper/lower case characters. 

    BEST: A1500  (Link will be created)
    GOOD: A-1500, A 1500, A - 1500  (Link should be created)
    BAD: a1500  (Link may not be created)

  • Make sure section callouts use standard sans-serif fonts (e.g. Arial) to prevent character confusion; it's difficult to decipher serif fonts (e.g. Times New Roman)

For tips as to why your drawing sheet links might not be working, see Why are automatic drawing sheet links missing?

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