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CHAPTER FOURTEEN

AXONOMETRIC

PROJECTION

OBJECTIVES
After studying the material in this chapter, you should be able to:
1.

Describe the differences between multiview projection,


axonometric projection, oblique projection, and perspective.

2.

Sketch examples of an isometric cube, a dimetric cube, and a


trimetric cube.

3.

List the advantages of multiview projection, axonometric

projection, oblique projection, and perspective .

4.

Create an isometric drawing given a multiview drawing.

S.

Use the isometric axes to locate drawing points.

6.

Draw inclined and oblique surfaces in isometric.

7.

Draw angles, ellipses, and irregular curves in isometric.

Refer to the following standard :


ASME Y1 4.4M -1989 Pictorial Drawing

AXONOMETRIC PROJECTION

S13

A Portion of a Sales Brochure Showing General Dimensions in Pictorial Drawings. Courtesy of Oynojet Research, Inc.

OVERVIEW
Multiview drawing makes it possible to accurately

drawing view, approximately as they appear to an

represent the complex forms of a design by showing a

observer. These projections are often called pictorial

series of views and sections, but reading and interpret

drawings because they look more like a picture than

ing this type of representation requires a thorough un

multiview drawings do. Since a pictorial drawing shows

derstanding of the principles of multiview projection.

only the appearance of an object, it is not usually

Although multiview drawings are commonly used to

suitable for completely describing and dimensioning

communicate information to a technical audience,

complex or detailed forms.

they do not show length, width, and height in a


single view and are hard for a layperson to visualize.
It is often necessary to communicate designs to

people who do not have the technical training to inter


pret multiview projections. Axonometric projections
show all three principal dimensions using a single

Pictorial drawings are also useful in developing


design concepts. They can help you picture the rela
tionships hetween design elements and quickly
generate several solutions to a design problem.

514

CHAPTER 14

AXONOMETRIC PRO JECTION

Axonometric

14.1 Sketches for a Wooden Shelf using Axonometric, Orthographic, and Perspective Drawing Techniques- The
Axonometric Projections in this Sketch are Drawn in Isometric. Courtesy of Douglos Wintin.

UNDERSTANDING AXONOMETRIC
DRAWINGS
Various types of pictorial drawings are used extensively in cat
alogs , sale s literature, and technical work. They are often used
in patent drawings: piping diagrams: machine, structural,
architectural design, and furniture design: and for ideation
sketching. The sketches for a wooden shelf in Figure 14.1 are
examples ofaxonometric, orthographic, and perspective
sketches.
The most common axonometric projection is isometric,
which means "equal measure." When a cuhe is drawn in

isometric, the axes are equally spaced (120 0 apart). Though


not as realistic as perspective drawings. isometric drawings
are much easier to draw. CAD software often displays the
results of 3D models on the screen as isometric projections.
Some CAD software allows you to choose between isometric,
dimetric, trimetric. or perspective representation of your 3D
models on the 2D computer screen. In sketching, dimetric and
trimetric sometimes produce a better view than isometric but
take longer to draw and are therefore used less frequently,

515

FOUNDATIONS FOR AXONOMETRIC PROJECTION

Plane of

pro jection __

Visual rays parallel to each


other and perpendicular

!> '0pi,", ~ projection

Visual rays parallel


to each other and
perpendicu lar to
plane of projection

Plane of
projection

Object

Object

(a) Multiview projection

(b) Axon ometric projecti on (isomet ric shown )


Vanishing poi nt

(plane of prOjectio n~

rolection

p I

Horizon line

Plane of
/

Picture plane

VP

Visual rays parallel to


each other and oblique
to plane of projectio n

/
F

Line of
sight

~~~~~ :;~s
at
observer's
eye (station

E
F

c
G

(c) Oblique projecti on

14.2

(d) Perspective

Four Types of Projection

Projection Methods Reviewed


The four prin cipal types of projecti on are illustrat ed in
Figure 14,2, A ll except the reg ular mult iview proje ction
(Figure 14.2a) are pictorial types since they show several sides
of the object in a single view. In both multiview projection and
axonometric projection the visual ray s are para llel to each
other and perp endi cul ar to the plan e of proj ecti on . Both are
types of orthographic projections (Figure l4 .2b).

In oblique projection (Figure 14.2c), the visual rays are


parallel to each other but at an ang le other than 90 to the plane
of projecti on (see Chap ter 15).
In perspective (F igure l4.2d ), the visual rays ex tend from
the obse rver's eye , or station point (SP), to all points of the
object to form a "cone of rays" (see Chapt er 16) so that the
porti on s of the object that are furth er away from the observer
appear smaller than the closer por tions of the obje ct.

516

CHAPTER 14

AXONOMETRIC PROJECTION

Plane of
projection

Axonometric

Object

';~~

~~",""m,n"

ar

foreshortened
proportionately

14.3 Measurements are Foreshortened Proportionately


based on Amount of Incline

Types ofAxonometric Projection


The feature that distinguishes axonometric projection from
multi view projection is the inclined position of the object with
respect to the planes of projection. When a surface or edge of
the object is not parallel to the plane of projection, it appears
foreshortened. When an angle is not parallel to the plane of pro
jection, it appears either smaller or larg er than the tru e angle.
To create an axonornetric view, the object is tipped to the
planes of projection so that all of the principal fac es show in a
sing le view. This produces a pictorial drawing that is ea sy to
visualize. But, since the principal edges and surfaces of the
object are inclined to the plane of projection, the lengths of the
lines are foreshortened . The angles between surfaces and edges
appear either larger or sm a ller than the true angle . There are an
infinite variety of ways that the object may be oriented with
respect to the plane of proj ection .
The degree of foreshortening of any line depends on its
angle to the plane of proj ection. The greater the angle, the

greater the fore shortening. If the degree of foreshortening is


determined for each of the three edges of the cube that meet at
one corner, scales can be easily constructed for measuring along
these edges or any other edges parallel to them (Figure 14.3).
Use the three edges of the c ube that meet at the corner
nearest your view as the axonometric axes . In Figure 14.4, the
axonometric axes, or simply the axes, are OA, DB, and DC.
Figure 14.4 shows three axonometric projections.
Isometric projection (Figure l4.4a) ha s equal foreshort
ening along each of the three axis directions.
Dimetric projection (Figure l4.4b) has equal foreshort
ening along two axis directions and a d ifferent amount of fore
shortening along the third axis. This is because it is not tipped
an equal amount to all of the principal planes of projection .
Trimetric projection (Figure 14.4c) has different foreshort
ening along all three axis directions. This view is produced by an
object that is not equally tipped to any of the planes of projection.

La=Lb=Lc

OX=OY=OZ

(a) Isomerric

14.4

Axonometric Projections

La=Lc

ox=OY

(b) Dimetric

Y La,L b &L c unequal


OX,OY,OZ unequal
(c) Trimetric

FOUNDATIONS FOR AXONOMETRIC PROJECTION

Axonometric Projections and 3D Models


When you crea te a 3D CAD model, the object is stored so that
vertices, surfaces , and solids are all defined relati ve to a 3D
coordinate system. You can rotate your view of the objec t to
produce a view from any direction. However, yonr co mputer
screen is a nat surface, like a sheet of paper. The CAD software
uses similar projection to produc e the view transformati ons,

517

creating the 2D view of the object on your co mputer screen.


Most 3D CAD software provides a variety of preset isometric
viewin g directions to make it easy for you to manipulat e the
view. Some CAD software also allows for easy perspective
viewin g on screen.
After rotating the obje ct you may wan t to return to a
preset typical axonometric view like one of the examples
shown in Figure 14.5. Figure 14.6 shows a 3D CAD model.

s:
(a)

14.5

.J...

(b)

(c)

(a) Isometric View of a 1 inch Cube Shown in SolidWorks, (b) Dimetric View, (c) Trimetric View. Courtesy of

Solidworks Corporation.

14.6 Complicated 3D CAD Models such as this Dredge from SRS Crisafulli lnc., are Often Viewed on Screen Using
Isometric Display-Notice the Coordinate System Display in the Lower Left. Courtesy of SRS Crisafulli, Inc.

518

CHAPTER 14

AX ONOMETRIC PROJECTION

14.1 ISOMETRIC PROJECTION


In an isometric projection, all angles
between the axonometric axes are equal.
To produce an isometric projection
(isometric means "equal measur e"), you
orient the object so that its principal
edges (or ax es ) make equal angles with

the plane of projection and are therefore


foreshortened equally. Oriented this way,
the edges of a cube would be projected so
that they all mea sure the same and make
equal angles with each other (o f 120) as
sho w n in Figure 14.7 .

14.7

Creating Isometric Projections


Figure 14.8a sho ws a multiview drawing
of a cube. Figure 14.8b sho ws the cube
revolved 45 about an im aginary vertical
axi s. Now an auxiliary view in the direc
tion of the arrow shows the diagonal of
the cube as a point. This creates a true iso
metric projection. Yon can continue

revolving the cube nntil the three edges


OX, or, and 02 make equal angl es with
the front plane of projection and sho w
fore shortened equally. Again, a diagonal
through the cnbe, in this ca se OT, appears
as a point in the isometric view and the
view produced is a true isometric projec
tion . In this projection the 12 edge s of

Isometric Projection

the cube make angles of about 35 16" with


the front plane of projection. The lengths
o f their projected edges are equal to
tbe actual edge length multiplied byv'1
or about 0.816. Thu s the projected lengths
are ahout 80 percent of the true lengths
or about three-fourths of the true lengths.

'---I

:j

Isometric projection

of cube

x~z

xO:,z
0 /
xO:'Y
:Oz I!JI!J
w

(a)

14.8

(b)

~
,

Diagonal
projects as
a point

" ~(v
:
0

'z
Iso~et~ic

projection
of cube
Z

y
(c)

Isometric Projection as a Second Auxiliary View

14.2 ISOMETRIC AXES


The projections of the edges of a cube
mak e angles of 120 with each other. You
can use these as the isometric axes from
which to make measurements. An y lin e
parallel to o ne of the se is called an iso
metric line . Th e angles in the isometric

projection of the cube are either 120 or


60 , and all are projection s 01'90 angles.
In an isometric projection of a cube, the
fac es of the cube, and an y planes parallel
to them, are called isometric plan es. See
Fi gure 14.9.

Isometric
line

14.9

Isometric Axes

14.3 NONISOMETRIC LINES


Lines of an isometric drawing that a re not
parallel to the isometric axe s are called
nonisometric lines (Fi gure 14.10 ).
Only lines of an object that are drawn
parallel to the isometric axe s are equally

fore shortened. Nonisom etric line s are


drawn at other angles and are not eqnally
fore shortened. Therefore the length s of
features along noni sometric lines cannot
be measured directly with the scale.

14.10

Nonisometric Edges

14 .4

ISOMETRIC SCALES

519

14.4 ISOMETRIC
SCALES
An isometric scale can be used to draw
correct isometric projections. All dis
tances in this scale are
x true size, or
approximately 80 percent of true size.
Figure 14.11a shows an isometric scale.
More commonly, an isometric sketch or
dr awing is created using a standard scal e,
as in Figure 14.11b. di sregarding the
foreshortening that the tipped surfaces
would produce in a true projection.

If

(a) Isometric projection

14.11

(b) Isometric drawing

Isometric and Ordinary Scales

.------ TI P - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ,

Making an Isometric Scale


You can make an isometric scale from a strip of paper or cardboard as

shown here by placing an ordinary scale at 45 to a horizontal line and

the paper scale at 30 to the horizontal line. To mark the increments

on the isometric scale, draw straight lines (perpendicular to the

horizontal line) from the division lines on the ordinary scale.

Alternatively, you can approximate an isometric scale. Scaled

measurements of 9" = 1'-0, or three-quarter-size scale (or metric

equivalent) can be used as an approximation .

14.5 ISOMETRIC
DRAWINGS
When you make a drawing using fore
shortened mea surements, or when the
object is actually projected on a plane of
projection , it is called an isometric pro
jection (Figure 14.11a). When you make
a drawing using the full length mea sure
ments of the actual object, it is an
isometric sketch or isometric drawing
(Figure l4.llb) to indicate that it lacks
foreshortening.
The isometric drawing is about
25 percent larger than the isometric pro
jection, but the pictorial value is obvi
ously the same in both. Since isometric
sketches are quicker, as you can use the
actual measurements, they are much more
commonly drawn.

Positions of the Isometric Axes


The first step in making an isometric
drawing is to decide along which axis di
rection to show the height, width , and
depth, respectively. Figure 14.12 shows

(a)

14.12

(b)

(c)

(d )

Positions of Isometric Axes

four different orientations that you might


start with to create an isometric drawing
of the block shown. Each is an isometric
drawing of the sa me block, but with a
different corner facing your view.
The se arc only a few of many possible
orientations.
You may orient the axes in any de
sired position, but the angl e between
them must remain 1200 In selecting an
orientation for the axes, choose the posi
tion from which the obje ct is usually
viewed , or determine the position that

best describes the shape of the object or


bette r yet , both.
If the object is a long part, it will
look best with the long axis oriented
horizontally.

. - - - TIP - - - - - - - ,
Some CAD software will notify you
about the lack of foreshortening in
isometric drawings when you print
or save them or allow you to select
for it.

520

CH APTER

14

AXO NOM E T R IC PR OJE C TI ON

14.6 MAKING AN ISOMETRIC


DRAWING
Rectangul ar o bjects are easy to dra w using box construction ,
wh ich consists of imagining the object enclosed in a recta ngu
lar box whose sides coi ncide with the main faces of the object.

For example, imagine the object shown in the two views in


Figure 14.13 enclosed in a co nstruc tion box, then locat e the
irregul ar fea tures along the edges of the box as show n.

I-f
-e

1. Lightly draw the overall


di mensions of the box

14.13

2. Draw th e irregular features


relative to th e sides of the box

3. Darken the final lines

Box Constr uction

Fig ure 14.14 shows how to co nstruc t an isometric drawing of


an object co mposed of all norm al surfaces. No tice that all
measurem ent s are mad e parallel to the main edge s of the
enclosi ng box-that is, parallel to the isometric axes . No

mea surem en t along a nonisornetric line can he measur ed


directl y with the sca le as these lines are not foreshorten ed
eq ually to the normal lines. Start at anyone of the co rners of
the bounding box and draw along tbe isometric axis directions.
All measurements
must be parallel to
main edges of box

y
1. Select axes along wh ich to
block in heigh t, weight and
dept h dimensions

2. Locate main areas to be


removed from the overall block
lightly sketch along isom etric axes
to defin e portio n to be removed

y
3. Lightly bloc k in any remainin g
major portions to be removed
through the w hole block

14.14

4. Lightly block in features to be


removed from the remaining shape
along isometr ic axes

Steps in Making an Isometric Drawing of Normal Surfaces

5. Darken final lines

1 4. 7

0 F F 5 ET L0 CAT ION MEA 5 U REM EN T 5

521

14.7 OFFSET LOCATION MEASUREMENTS


Use the method shown in Figure 14.15a and b to locate points
with respect to euch another. First draw the main enclosing
block , then draw the offset lines (CA and SA) in the full size in
the isometric drawing to located corner A of the small block or
rectangular recess. These measurements are called offset

measurements. Since they are parallel to edges of the main


block in the multiview drawings. they will be parallel to the
same edges in the isometric drawings (using the rule of
parallelism) .

~B

(a)

14.15

(b)

Offset Location Measurements

14.8 DRAWING NONISOMETRIC LINES

HOW TO DRAW NONISOMETRIC LINES


The inclined lines SA and CA are shown true length in the top view (54 mrn), but
they are not true length in the isometric view . To draw these lines in the isometric
drawing use a construction box and offset measurements.

Directly measure
dimensions that are
aiong isometric lines (in
this case, 44 mrn, 18 mrn,
and 22 mm) .

Since the 54 mm dimension is not along an


isometric axis. it cannot be used to locate
point A.
Use trigonometry or draw a line parallel to the
isometric axis to determine the distance to point A.

The dimensions
24 mm and 9 mm
are parallel to
isometric lines and can
be measured directly.

Since this dirneusion is parallel to an isometric


axis . it can be transferred to the isometric.
Transfer distance

...-- T1 P - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -- --------------.
To convince yourself that non isometric lines will not be true length in the isometric drawing, use a scrap of paper and
mark the distance BA (II) and then compare it with BA on the given top view in Figure 14 .16a. Do the same for line
CA. You will see that BA is shorter and CA is longer in the isometric than the corresponding lines in the given views.

522

C H A f' T E R 1 4

bJ

C,"", blade

Surface N

A X 0 NOM ET RIC f' R0

E C T ION

All measurements must


be parallel to main
edges of enclosing box

_E_ r--..:.urface M
~

Surface j
N /)---~

-kiT
(b)

(a )

14.16

(c)

Inclined Surfaces in Isometric

Isometric Drawings of Inclined Surfaces


Figure 14.16 shows how to con struct an isometric drawing of an object that has some
inclined surfaces and oblique edges. Notice that inclined surfaces are located by offset
or coordinate measurements along the isometri c lines. For example, dimensions E and
F are measured to locate the inclined surface M. and dimensions A and B are used to
locate surface N.

14.9 OBLIQUE SURFACES IN ISOMETRIC

HOW TO DRAW OBLIQUE SURFACES IN ISOMETRIC


Find the intersections of the
oblique surfaces with the iso
metric planes. Note that for this
example. the oblique plane contains
points A. B, and C.

To draw the plane, extend


line AB to X and Y. in the
same isometric plane as C. Use
lines XC and YC to locate points E
and F.

Finally. draw AD and ED


using the rule that parallel
line s appear parallel in every
orthographic or isometric view.

14.10 HIDDEN LINES AND CENTERLINES


Hidden lines are omitted unless they are needed to make the drawing clear. Figure 14.17
shows a ease in which hidden lines are needed because a projecting part cannot be
clearly shown without them. Sometimes it is better to include an isometric view from
another direction than to try to show hidden features with hidden line s.
Draw cenrerlines if they are needed to indicate symmetry or if they are needed
for dimensioning, hut in general, use centerlines sparingly in isometric drawings . If
in doubt, leave them out , as too many centerlines will look confusing.

14.17

Using Hidden Lines

14 .11

A N G L E S I N I S aM ET RI C

523

14.11 ANGLES IN ISOMETRIC


Angles project true size only when the plane co ntaining the angle is parallel to the
pla ne of proj ection . An angle may project to appear larger or smaller than the true
angle dependin g on its positi on.
Since the various surfaces of the object are usu ally inclined to the front plane of
projection. they ge nera lly will not be projected true size in an isom etri c drawin g.

HOW TO DRAW ANGLES IN ISOMETRIC

~
~D
I 6
0

60

1~
c
C

Th e mu ltiview drawing at left shows three


60 angles. None of the three angles will
be 60 in the isom etri c drawing.

g~ E 30
~-L-..-.J~

Lightl y dra w an enclos


ing bo x using the give n

dimen sions, exce pt for

di mension X, which is not

given.

T ransfe r dim ension X to the

isom etri c to complete the

enclos ing box. Find dim ensio n

Y by a similar meth od and then

transfer it to the isom etric .

Co mplete the isometric by

locating po int E by using

dim en sion K, as shown. A


regul ar prot ract or cannot be used
to meas ure angle s in isome tric
drawin gs. Co nvert angular meas
urement s to linear measurem ent s

along isom etric ax is lines.

Checking Isometric Angles


To convince yo urself that non e of th e
ang les will be 60, measure each ang le
in the isometric in Figure 14.17 with a
protractor or scrap of paper and note
th e angle compared to the tru e 60.
None of the angles shown are the
same in the isometric drawing . Two
are smaller and one is larger th an 60.

11.00 A

To find dim en sion X,

draw triangle BO A fro m


the top vie w full size, as
sho wn.

,.--- TI P - - - - - - - - - ,

Estimating 30 angles
If yo u are sketching on graph paper
and estimating angl es, an angle of 30
is roug hly a rise of 1 to a run of 2.

xB

----I

~~ 30.

~~,.

Not 60
Not 60

rl .OO--j

~ K

~' !

<,

524

CHAPTER 14

I~.
a

AXO NOMETRIC PROJE CTION

~bl--

1----r
l

Llli_
(a)

14.18

(b )

(c)

Irregular Object in Isometric

Sections cut

bYPlanes~/
t:::
' .

<,

~
1.Construct sections in isometric.

14.19

2. Complete th e obj ect by drawing lines


thr ough the corners of the section s.

Using Sections in Isometric

14.12 IRREGULAR OBJECTS


You can use the construction box method to draw objects that are not rectangular
(Fi gure 14.18 ). Locat e the points of the triang ular base by offsetting a and b along
the edges of the hottom of the constructio n box. Locate thc vertex by offsetting line s
OA and OB using the top of the co nstruc tion box .
You can also draw irregular objects usin g a series of sections. The edge views of
imaginary cutting plan es are shown in the top and front view s of the multiview draw
ing in Figur e 14.19 . In the example, all height dim en sions are taken from the front
view and all depth dim en sions from the top view.

,..--- TI P - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ,
It is not always necessary to draw the complete construction box as shown in
Figure 14.18b. If only the bottom of the box is drawn, the triangular base can be
constructed as before. The orthographic projection ot the vertex 0' on the base
can be drawn using offsets 0' A and 0'8, as shown, and then the vertical line
0'0 can be drawn, using measurement C.

14 . 1 3

CUR V E SIN ISO MET RIC

1. Use oHset measurements a and b in the


isom etric to locate point A on the curve

t
C

~~
~/<3

Equal in
lengt h /

3. Sketch a smooth light freehand


curve through the points

14.20

2. Locat e points B, C, and D, and


so on

4. Draw a line vertically from po int A to


locate point A', and so on, making all
equal to the height of block (c) then
draw a light curve through the points

5. Darken the final lines

Curves in Isometric

14.13 CURVES IN ISOMETRIC


You can draw curves in isom etric using a series of offset mea
sureme nts similar to those discu ssed in Section 14.7. Select any
desired numb er of point s at random along the curve in the giv en
top view, such as point s A, B. and C in Figure 14.20. Choose
eno ugh point s to accurately locate the path of the curve (the
more points , the greater the accuracy). Draw offset gr id lines
from each point parallel to the isom etric axes and use them to
locat e each point in the isom etric drawing as in the example
shown in Figur e 14.20.

Tennis Ball (Factory Reject). Cartoon by Roger Price.


Courtesy of Droodles, " The Classic Collection. "

525

526

C HAP T E R 1 4

A X 0 N OM E T RIC

PRO J E C T I ON

14.14 TRUE ELLIPSES IN ISOMETRIC


If a circle lies in a plane that is not parallel to the plan e of projecti on. the circ le pro
jects as an ellipse . The ellipse can he co nstruc ted using offset measurements.

DRAWING AN ISOMETRIC ELLIPSE BY OFFSET MEASUREMENTS


Random Line Method

Eight Point Method

Draw parall el lines


space d at ra ndo m

across the circle.

Enclose the given circle in a

square, and dra w diagonals.


Draw anothe r square throu gh the
point s of intersection of the d iagonal s
and the circle as sho wn.

-;-1-;1 --+--niI

Tran sfer these

lines to the

isom etri c dra wing.


Where the hole ex
its the bott om of the
block , locate points
by measuring down
.
.
Same depth
a distance equ al to
the height d of the
block from each of the upp er point s. Dra w the
ellipse, part of which will he hidden , through
these point s. Dark en the final dra wing lines.

Draw this sa me construction


in the iso me tric, tran sferri ng
distances a and h. (If more points
are de sired , add rando m parallel

Jines, as abo ve.) Th e ce ruerlines in

the isom etr ic are the co nj ugate di


ameters of the ellipse . Th e 45 di
ago nals coincid e with the major
and minor axes of the e llipse. The mino r axis is
equal in len gth to the sides of the insc ribed
square.

II -,

1\ /
Wh en more accuracy is required, divide the
c ircle into 12 equal parts, as shown.
Refer to Append ix 39 for detailed meth od s of
constru ctin g the ellipse .

1/1\

['\..1/

,""

I
12 point method

Nonisometric Lines
If a curv e lies in a non isom etri c plane , not all offset measurement s can be applied dire ctly.
The elliptica l face sho wn in the auxiliary view lies in an inclined noni som etri c plane.

Draw lines in the


orthog raphic view
to locate points.

Enclose the cy linder in


a con struction box and
draw the box in the isom etri c
draw ing. Draw the base
using offset mea surements
and con struct the inclin ed e l
lipse by locat ing point s and
drawing the final cur ve
throu gh them .
Measure di stances parallel

to an isometric axis ClI, b,

etc.) in the isom etric d raw

ing on each side of the cen


terline X-X. Proj ect those not parallel to any isom etri c axis (e.

etc.) to the fro nt view and down to the base, then measur e

along the low er edge of the constru ction box, as sho wn.

.r.

Dark en
final line s.

14 .15

0 R lEN TIN GEL LIP S E SIN ISO MET RIC D RAW I N G S

14.15 ORIENTING ELLIPSES IN ISOMETRIC


DRAWINGS
Figure 14.21 shows a four center ellipses constructed on the three visible faces of a
cube. Note that all of the diagonals are horizontal or at 60 with horizontal.
Realizing this makes it easier to draw the shapes.
An approximate ellipse such as this, co nstructed from four arcs, is accurate enough
for most isometric drawings. The four center method can be used only for ellipses in
isometric planes. Earlier versions of CAD software, such as AutoCAD Release 10, used
this method to create the approximate elliptical shapes available in the software.
Current releases use an accurate ellipse.

14.21

Four Center Ellipses

DRAWING A FOUR CENTER ELLIPSE


Draw or imagine a
square enclosing the cir
cle in the multi view drawing.
Draw the isometric view of
the square (an equilateral par
allelogram with sides equal to
the diameter of the circle).

Diamete~ ~D iameter

of circle

I
30

of circle

,
30

....-- TIP - - - - - - - - . ,
Here is a useful rule. The major axis of
the ellipse is always at right angles to
the centerline of the cylinder, and the
minor axis is at right angles to the
major axis and coincides with the
centerline.

~90~
Create perpendicular bi
sectors to each side.
They will intersect at four
points, which will be centers
for the four circular arcs.

'"
/,

/ ' 0"

\:

~Minor

axis coincides
with centerlines

Draw the two large arcs,


with radius R, from the
intersections of the perpendic
ulars in the two closest corners
of the parallelogram.

Draw the two small arcs,


with radius r, from the
intersections of the perpendic
ulars within the parallelogram,
to complete the ellipse.

, - - - TI P - - - - - - - - - ,
As a check on the accurate location of
these centers, you can draw a long
diagonal of the parallelogram as
shown in Step 4. The midpoints of the
sides of the parallelogram are points of
tangency for the four arcs .

527

528

(HAPTER 14

A X ON OME TRI C PR OJE CTI O N

More Accurate Ellipses

~True ellipse

The four ce nter e llipse deviates consider


ably from a true ellipse . As shown in
Figure 14.221, a four cen ter elli pse is
somewhat shorter and "fa tter" than a true
ell ipse. When the four ce nter ellipse is
not accurate enough, yo u ca n use a closer
approximation ca lled the Orth four
ce nter ell ipse to produ ce a more acc ura te
drawing.

1?-_4-""'"

ellipse

(a)

14.22 Inaccuracy of the Four Center Ellipse

DRAWING AN ORTH FOUR CENTER ELLIPSE

To create a more accurate


app roxim ate e llipse usin g
the Orth meth od , follow the
steps for these methods.
The centerl ine method is
co nve nie nt when starti ng
from a hole or cy linder.

Centerline Method
Draw the isometr ic
ce nterlines . From the
ce nter, draw a constructi on
circ le equal to the ac tual
diameter of the hole or cy lin
der. The cir cle will intersect
the ce nterline s at four point s
A, B, C, and D.

From the two intersec


tion point s on one ce n
terlin e, draw perpendi cul ars
to the other ce nterline. Then
draw perp endi culars from
the two intersection points
on the other centerline to the
first ce nter line.

With the intersections


of the perp end icul ars as
ce nters, dra w tw o small arcs
and two large arcs .

/'" Constuction
A,)I' circle equal
D to diameter
of hole

c
B

Isometric
center lines

Enclosing Rectangle Method

Locate center and


block in enclosing
isometric rectangle.

Use the midp oint of


the isometr ic rec
tangle (the distance from
A to B) to locate the foci
on the major axis .

Draw lines at 60 0
from horizontal
through the foc i (po ints
C and D ) to locate the
ce nter of the large arc R.

Horizontal
D
~---'-t---\-L.....,~C

Perpendicular

Draw the two large


arcs R tang ent to the
isometri c rec tangle. Draw
two sma ll arcs r, usin g
foci point s C and D as
ce nters, to comple te the
approximate ellipse .

Note that these steps are exactly the same as for the
regular fo ur center ellipse. except fo r the use of the
isometric centerlines instead of the enclos ing paral
lelogram. (When sketching. it worksfine tojust draw
the enclosi ng rectangle and sketch the arcs tangent
to its side s.)

14 .16

r---

D RAW I N GIS 0 MET R IC C Y LI N D E R S

529

TI P - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ,

Isometric Templates
Special templates like th is iso metric template
with angled lines and ellipses oriented in
various isometric planes make it easy to draw
isometric sketches.
The ellipses are provided with markings to
coincide with the isometric centerlines of the
hol es-a convenient feature in isometric
drawing.
You can also draw ellipses using an

appropriate ellipse template selected to fit the

major and minor axes.

14.16 DRAWING ISOMETRIC CYLINDERS


A typical drawing with cylindri cal shapes is shown in Figure 14.23. Note that the
ce nters of the larger ellip se cann ot be used for the smaller ellip se, though the ellip ses
represent co ncentric ci rcles. Each ell ipse has its own parallelogram and its own
centers. Notic e that the ce nters of the lower ellipse are drawn by projectin g the
ce nters of the upper large ellipse down a di stance equal to the height of the cylinder.

Each lower center is obtained


by dropping down a distance
C fro m the center

[iJ~ 0B
(

t-

..-J-+-+--+-J..., __
I

(b)

~-

'

~/

--rc

14.23

I-A-I
(a)

> '

~J
,~/<:://
~/'
(d)

(c)

Isometric Drawing of a Bearing

14.17 SCREW THREADS "IN ISOMETRIC


Parallel parti al ellip ses equally spa ced at the symbolic thread pitch are used to repre
sent only the cre sts of a screw thread in isometric (Figure 14.24). The ellipses may
be sketched, drawn by the four ce nter method, or created using an ellipse template.

14.24

Screw Threads in Isometric

530

CHAPTER 14

AXONOMETRIC

0", diameter
R '" radius

()

14.25

PROJECTION

14.18 ARCS IN ISOMETRICS


The four center ellipse construction can be used to sketch or
draw circular arcs in isometric. Figure 14.25a shows the
complete construction. It is not necessary to draw the complete
constructions for arcs, as shown in Figure l4.25b and c.
Measure the radius R from the construction corner; then at each
point, draw perpendiculars to the lines. Their intersection is
the center of the arc. Note that the R distances are equal
in Figure l4 .25b and c. but that the actual radii used are quite
different.

Arcs in Isometric

14.19 INTERSECTIONS

.:.-_-t= _=-
-- - - --

(a)

14.26

Oblique Plane and Cylinder

(a)

14.27

Intersection of Cylinders

(b)

To draw the elliptical intersection of a cylindrical hole ill an


oblique plane in isometric (Figure 14.26a). draw the ellipse in the
isometric plane on top of the construction box (Figure 14.26b);
then project points down to the oblique plane as shown. Each
point forms a trapezoid, which is produced by a slicing plane
parallel to a lateral surface of the block .
To draw the curve of intersection between two cylinders
(Figure 14.27 ), use a series of imaginary cutting planes through
the cylinders parallel to their axe s. Each plane will cut elements
on both cylinders that intersect at points 011 the curve of inter
section (Figure 14.26b). As many points should be plotted as
necessary to assure a smooth curve. For accuracy, draw the
ends of the cylinders using the Orth four center con stru ction,
with ellipse guides, or by one of the true ellipse constructions.

(b)

1 4 . 20

S P HER ES IN I S O MET RIC

531

m
A

al-

r---:;;;o-r--.::--+--,;

Determining the radius

Given views

14.28

1. Draw the the isometric of a great circle


parallel to one face of the cube; then
determine the radius of the sphere by
locating points on the diagonal using
measurement a to establish the ends of the
major axis

Isometric drawi ng

Isometric proj ecti on

2. The diameter of the


circle in the isometric
draw ing is
x the
diameter of the sphere

3. The diameter of the circle


in the isometric projection
is equal to the tru e
diameter of the sphere

Jf

Isometric of a Sphere

14.20 SPHERES IN ISOMETRIC


The isometric dr awi ng of any curved surface is the env elope of
all lines that can be drawn on that surface. For sph ere s, select
the great circles (circles cut hy an y plan e through the ce nter) as
the line s on the surface. Since all great circles, except those that
are perp endicular or parallel to (he plane of projecti on , arc
shown as ellipses havin g equal major axes, their env elope is a
circle whose diameter is the major axi s of the ellipse .
Figure 14.28 sho ws two view s of a sphere enclose d in a
construc tion cube. Next. an isometric of a great circle is drawn

in a plan e parallel to one face of the cube. Th ere is no need to


draw the ellipse, since only the point s on the d iagonal locat ed
by measurement s a are needed to establish the end s of the
maj or axis and thus to dete rmin e the radiu s of the sphere.
In the res ulting isom etri c drawing the diameter of the
circ le is/f. time s the actual diameter of the sphere. The isomet
ric projection is simply a c ircle whose diameter is equal to the
true diameter o f the sphe re.

14.21 ISOMETRIC SECTIONING


Isometric sectioning is useful in drawing ope n or irregularly
shaped objects. Figur e 14.29 sho ws an isom etri c full section. It
is usuall y best to draw the cut surface first , then draw tbe
portion of the obje ct that lies behind the cutting plane.
To create an isom etric half section, it is usuall y easiest to
make an isom etri c dr awing of the entire obj ect, then add the cut
sur faces as show n in Figure 14.30. Sin ce onl y a quarter of the
object is rem oved in a half sec tion. the resulting pict orial
drawing is more useful than a full sec tion.

(a)

14.29

Isometric Full Section

Isom etric broken-out sections are also sometimes used.


Section lining in isom etri c drawing is similar to that in multi
view drawing . Section linin g at an angle of 60 with horizontal
as shown in Figure s 14.29 and 14.30 is recommend ed, but
change the dire ction if 60 would ca use the lines to be parallel
to a prominent visible line bounding the cut surface. or to other
adjace nt lines o f the drawing .

Jt.r

(b)

(a)

14.30

Isometric Half Section

532

CHAPTER

14

AXONOMETRIC PROJECTION

(a) Aligned

14.31

(b) Unidirectional

(c) Incorrect

Numerals and Arrowheads in Isometric (Metric Dimensions)

14.22 ISOMETRIC
DIMENSIONING
Isometric dimensions are similar to or
dinary dimensions used on multi view
drawings but should match the pictorial
style. Two methods of dimensioning are
approved
by ANSI-namely,
the
pictorial plane (aligned) system and the
un idirectional system (Figure 14.31) .
Note that vertical lettering is used
for either system of dim ensioning. In
clined lett ering is not recommended for
pictorial dimensioning. Figure 14.31a
and b show how to draw numerals and
arrowheads for the two systems.
In the aligned system, the extension
lines , dimension lines, and lettering for
the 64 rnm dimension are all drawn in the

isometric plane of one face of the object


(Figure 14.31a). The " hor izo ntal" guide
line s for the lettering are drawn parallel
to the dimension line, and the "vertical"
guidelines are drawn parallel to the
extension lines. The barb s of the arrow
heads should line up parallel to the
extension lines .
In the unidirectional system the
extension lines and dimension lines for
the 64 mrn dimension are drawn in the
isometric plane of one face of the object
(Figure 14.31b). The lettering for the di
mensions is vertical and reads from the
bottom of the drawing. This simpler
system of dimensioning is often used on

pictorials for production purposes. Still,


the barbs of the arrowheads should line
up parallel to the extension lines, as in
Figure 14.31a.
As shown in Figure 14.31c, the
vertical guidelines for the letters should
not be perpendicular to the dimension
line s. The example in Figure 14.3lc is in
correct because the 64 mm and 32 mrn
dimensions are not lettered in the plane
of corresponding dimension and exten
sion lines, nor are they in a vertical posi
tion to read from the hottom of the
drawing. Note how the 20 mm dimen
sion is awkward to read becau se of its
position.

Figure 14.32b show s several incor


rect practices. The 3.125 dimension runs
to a wrong extension line at the right, so

the dimension does not lie in an isomet


ric plane. Near the left side. a number of
lines cross each other unnecessarily and
terminate on the wrong lines . The upper
.5 drill hole is located from the edge of
the cylinder when it should be dimen
sioned from its centerline. Study these
two drawings carefully to see additional
mistakes in Figure 14.32b.
Isometric dimensioning methods
apply equally to fractional, decimal, and
metric dimensions .
Many examples of isometric dimen
sioning are given in the End of Chapter
Exercises. Study these to find samples
of almo st any special case you may
encounter.

Correct and Incorrect


Isometric Dimensioning
Correct practice in isometric dimension
ing using the aligned system of dimen
sioning is shown in Figure 14.32a .

(b)

14.32

Correct and Incorrect Isometric Dimensioning (Aligned System)

14 .2 3

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11126810

Exploded Isometric Assembly Drawing . Courtesy of Dynojet Research, Inc.

14.23 EXPLODED

ASSEMBLIES

Exploded assemblies are oft en used in

design presentations, catalogs, sale s lit

erature, and in the shop to show all the

parts of an assembly and how they fit to

gether. They may he drawn by any of the

pictori al meth ods . including isometric

(Figure 14.33).

14.24 PIPING

DIAGRAMS

Isometric and oblique drawings are well


suited for representation of piping lay
outs, as well as for all other struc tural
work to be represented pictorially. An ex
ample is shown in Figure 14.34 .

!'tOTES:
1) PIPINGSHOWN IS S01WAf.c
2) ALlOw 2' [ AOi SlD Cf 801lER WOOlJL[S fOR: SERW'lCE ACCESS
J ) DONOJ BlOCKR(WOVAl rY ANYJACl(T PIECES VIllli PIPING C~ N (C TlCli S
.4) HEAnNG POUPS AND AIRUIolI NA1M TO S( LOCA TED AS ~
5) PRCMOE C....s COO<S ON EACH BOllER

IMOUNT ALL PIPING

AS HIGH AS POSSIBLE

14.34 Portion of an Isometric Piping Diagram .


Courtesy of Associated Construction Engineering.

533

534

C HAP T E R 1 4

A X 0 NOM ET RIC PRO J EC T ION

14.25 DIMETRIC PROJECTION


A dimetric projection is an axonometric projection of an object
where two of its axes make equal angles with the plane of pro
jection and the third axis makes either a smaller or a greater an
gle (Figure 14.35 ). The two axes making equal angles with the
plane of projection are foreshortened eqnally, while the third
axis is foreshortened in a different proportion.
Usually the object is oriented so one axis is vertical. How
ever, you can revolv e the projection to any orientation if you
want that particular view.
Do not confuse the angles between the axes in the drawing
with the angles from the plane projection, The se are two differ
ent, but related things. You can arrange the amount that the
principal faces are tilted to the plane of projection any way that
two angles between the axes are equal and over 90.
The scale s can be determined graphically, as shown in
Figure 14.36a, in which OP, OL, and OS are the projections of
the axes or converging edges of a cube. If the triangle POS is
revolved about the axis line PS into the plane of projection, it

will show its true size and shape as PO '5 . If regular full-size
scale s are marked along the lines 0 ' P and 0 '5 , and the triangle
is counterrevolved to its original position , the dimetric scale s
may be divided along the axes OP and OS. as shown .
You can use an architect's scale to make the measurements
by assuming the scales and calculating the positions of the
axes, as follows :
cos a =

2hv

where a is one of the two equal angle s between the projections


of the axes, h is one of the two equal scales, and II is the third
scale. Examples are shown in the upper row of Figure 14.35,
where length measurements could be made using an architect's
scal e. One of these three positions of the axe s will be found
suitable for almost any practical drawing.

14.26 APPROXIMATE DIMETRIC DRAWING


Approximate dimetric drawings, which clo sely resemble true
dirnetrics, can be constructed by substituting for the true angles
shown in the upper half of Figure 14.35 angles that can be

obtained with the ordinary triangles ancl compass, as shown in


the lower half of the figure . The resulting drawings will be
accurate enough for all practical purposes.

--=-.75 _

___.75 ->--.
-115244\

t 103
t
l
38'

'-

10338'

-i:

1338'

1338'

t
(b)

(a)

13125'

1.0

~
t

(c)

Dimettic drawings

1.0

/;~

1.0

~
I

(d)

>
(e)
Approximate dimetric drawings

14.35

Undertstanding Angles in Dimetric Projection

(f)

14 .26

A P PRO X I MAT E DIM ET RIC D RAW I N G

535

(b)

14.36

(c)

Dimetric Drawings

HOW TO MAKE DIMETRIC DRAWINGS

1-28-r141

7.5 0

5lJl

28

~28-1

To make a dimetric draw


ing for the view s given ,
draw two intersecting axis line s
at angles of7 .5 and 45 from
horizontal. Draw the third axis
direction vertically through
them .

The dimensions for


the principal face are
measured full size. The di
mension for the receding
axis direction will be at
half scale.

Block in the fea


ture s relati ve to the
surface s of the enclosing
hox. Th e offset method of
drawing a curve is shown
iu the figure.

INDICATOR

BRACKq

FOR

THREADING MACHINE

C I-I REaD

-j

An Approximate
Dimetric Drawing
Follow these steps to make a di
metric sketch with the position
similar to that in Figure l4.35e
where the two angles are equal.

- - -

Using whichever angle produces


a good drawing of your part,
block in the dimetric axes. An angle of
20 from horizontal tends to show
many part s well.

Block in the major


features, foreshorten
the dimensions along the
two receding axes by
approximately 75 percent.
Darken the final lines.

536

CHAPTER 14

AXONOMETRI C PROJECTION

14.27 TRIMETRIC PROJECTION


A trimetric projection is an axonometric projection of an
object oriented so that no two axes make equal angles with the
plane of projection. In other words, each of the three axes, and
the lines parallel to them, have different ratios of fore shorten
ing . If the three axes are selected in any position on paper so
that none of the angles is les s than 90 , and they are not an
isometric nor a dirnctric projection, the result will be a
trimetric projection.

14.28 TRIMETRIC SCALES


Since the three axes are foreshortened differently, each axis
will use measurement proportions different from the other two.
You can select which scale to use as shown in Figure 14.37.
Any two of the three triangular faces can be revolved into the
plane of projection to show the true lengths of the three axes.
In the revolved position , the regular scale is used to set off
inches or fractions thereof. When the axes have been counter
revolved to their original positions, the scales will be correctly
foreshortened, as shown .

...--- TI P - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ,

14.37

Trimetric Scales

You can make scales from

thin card stock and

transfer these dimensions

to each card for easy

reference. You might even

want to make a trimetric

angle from Bristol Board

or plastic, as shown here,

or six or seven of them,

using angles for a variety

of positions of the axes .

14.29 TRIMETRIC ELLIPSES


The trimetric centerlines of a hole , or the end of a cylinder,
become the conj ugate diameters of an ellipse when drawn in
trimetric, The ellipse may be drawn on the conjugate diameters
or you can determine the major and minor axes from
the conjugate diameters and construct the ellipse on them with
an ellipse template or by any of the methods shown in
Appendix 4.48-4.50.
One advantage of trimetric projection is the infinite num
ber of positions of the object available. The angles and scales
can be handled without too much difficulty, as shown in
Sections 14.30 anelI4 .31 . However, in drawing any axonornet
ric ellipse, keep the following in mind:
I. On the drawing, the major axi s is always perpendicular to
the centerline, or axis, of the cylinder.
2. The minor axis is always perpendicular to the major axis;
on the paper it coincides with the axis of the cylinder.

3. The length of the major axis


diameter of the cylinder.

IS

equal to the actual

The directions of both the major and minor axes, and the
length of the major axis, will always be known, but not the
length of the minor axis. Once it is determined, you can con
struct the ellipse using a template or any of a number of ellipse
constructions. For sketching you can generally sketch an
ellipse that looks correct by eye.
In Figure 14.38a, locate center 0 as desired, and draw the
horizontal and vertical construction lines that will contain the
major and minor axes through O. Note that the major axis will
be on the horizontal line perpendicular to the axi s of the hole,
and the minor axis will be perpendicular to it, or vertical.
Use the actual radius of the hole and draw the semicircle,
as shown , to establish the ends A and B of the major axis. Draw
AF and BF parallel to the axonomctric edges WX and YX,

1 4 . 29

respectively, to locate F. which lies on the ellipse. Draw a


vertical line through F to intersect the semicircle at F ' and join
F ' to B '. as shown. From D '. where the minor axis, extended,
intersects the semicircle, draw D 'E and ED parallel to F'B and
BF. respect ively. Point D is one end of the minor axis, From
center 0 , strike arc D C to locate C, the other end of the minor
axis. On these axes, a true ellips e can be constru cted, or drawn
with an ell ipse templat e.
See Appendix xx for additional methods for constructing
ellipses,
In constructi ons where the enclo sing parallelogram for an
ellipse is avai lable or easily constructed, the major and minor
axes can he determined as shown in Figure 14.38b. The direc
tions of hath axes and the length of the major axis are known .
Extend the axes to intersect the sides of the parallelogram at L
and M, and join the points with a straight line. From one end N
of the major axis, draw a line NP parallel to LM. The point P is
one end of the minor axis. To find one end T of the minor axis
of the smaller ell ipse, it is only necessary to draw RT parallel
to LM or NP.
The method of constructing an ellipse on an oblique
plane in trirnetric is similar to that shown in the Step hy Step
in Secti on 14.17 for drawing an isometric ellipse by offset
measurement s.

T RIM ET RI C ELL I P S E S

(a)

i-= Dia t

Dil to

oscaJe--j/ 5Clll

(b)

14.38 Ellipses in Trimetric. Method (b), Courtesy of


Professor H. E. Grant.

.----- TI P - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ,
When you are creating a trimetric sketch of an ellipse, it
works great to block in the trimetric rectangle that would
enclose the ellipse and sketch the ellipse tangent to th e
midpoints of the rectangle .

PRESENTATION DRAWING
The MARGE (Mars Autonomous Rover
for Geoscience Exploration) aeroshell,
shown at right, is part of a NASA
Scout mission proposal developed by
Malin Space Science Systems and the
Raytheon Company in 2005 and
2006. The blunt, conical MARGE
aeroshell is an integrated system
providing safe delivery of its payload,
two small, autonomous rovers, to the
surface of Mars. The aeroshell is about
2.4 meters in diameter.
Shown here is the part of the
system which provides aerobraking
for the spacecraft's initial descent
from orbit, the terminal rocket
descent phase just before landing,
and the final soft touchdown with the
surface. With the protective backshell
(where the parachute is located) and
rovers removed, you can clearlysee
the components of the propulsion
and control systems integrated into
the rover egress deck, and color
coded for clarity. In addition to
aerobraking and rocket-powered
descent, the MARGE aeroshell design
incorporates crushable foam layers of
increasing density to cushion the final
touchdown with the planet surface.
After the descent and landing phase
is complete, clamps are disengaged
and the rovers drive off the lip of the
aeroshell under their own power,

537

MARGE SUB-ASSY
WHEEL WELL
THRUSTER

FUEL BAY

UNFINISHED
PYRO SEPS
UNFINISHED ROVER
MOUNTS

HELIUM BAY
AVIONICS BAY

Shaded isometric views of 3D mod els are often used as presentation


drawings . This isometric view of a proposed design for the MARGE
Aeroshell was used as a presentation drawing to communicate the
features of a concept developed by Malin Aerospace. Courtesy of Malin
Space Science Systems, Inc.

538

C HAP T E R 1 4

A X 0 NOM ET RIC PRO) E C T ION

14.39

Views from an Axonometric Projection

14.30 AXONOMETRIC PROJECTION


USING INTERSECTIONS
Before the advent of CAD engineering scholars devised meth
ods to create an axonomctric projection using projections from
two orthographic views of the object, This method, called the
method of intersections, was developed by Professors L. Eck
hart and T. Schmid of the Vienna College of Engineering and
was published in 1937.
To understand their method ofaxonometrie projection,
study Figure 14.39 as you read through the following steps.
Assume that the axonornetric projection of a rectangular object
is given, and it is necessary to find the three orthographic
projections: the top view, front view, and side view.
Place the object so that its principal edges coincide with
the coordinate axes, and the plane of projection (the plane on
which the axonornetric projection is drawn) intersects the three
coordinate planes in the triangle ABC.
From descriptive geometry, we know that lines BC, CA,
and AB will be perpendicular, respectively, to axes OX, or, and
Oz. Anyone of the three points A, B, or C may be assumed
anywhere on one of the axes in order to draw triangle ABC.

To find the true size and shape of the top view. revolve the
triangular portion of the horizontal plane AOC, which is in
front of the plane of projection, about its base CA, into the
plane of projection . In this case. the triangle is revolved inward
to the plane of projection through the smallest angle made with
it. The triangle would then be shown in its true size and shape,
and you could draw the top view of the object in the triangle hy
projecting from the axonornetric projection. as shown (since all
width dimensions remain the same).
In the figure . the base CA of the triangle has been moved
upward to CA' so that the revolved position of the triangle will
not overlap its projection.
The true sizes and shapes of the front view and side view
can be found similarly, as shown in the figure.
Note that if the three orthographic projections, or in most
cases any two of them, are given in their relative positions. as
sho wn in Figure 14.39, the directions of the projections could
be reversed so that the intersections of the projecting lines
would determine the axonometric projection needed .

14.30

A X 0 NOM E T RIC PRO lEe T ION U SIN GIN T E R SEC T ION 5

539

4~-X

z
C

Sketch

14.40

Axonometric Projection

Use of an Enclosing Box to Create an Isometric


Sketch using Intersections
To draw an axonornetric projection nsing intersections, it helps
to make a sketch of the desired general appearance of the pro
jection as shown in Figure 14.40. Even for complex objects the
sketch need not be complete, just an enclosing box . Draw the
projections of the coordinate axes OX , or, and OZ parallel to
the principal edges of the object, as shown in the sketch, and
the three coordinate planes with the plane of projection.
Revolve the triangle ABO about its base AB as the axis into
the plane of projection. Line OA will revolve to O'A . and this
line , or one parallel to it, must be used as the baseline of
the front view of the obje ct. Draw the projecting I ines from the
front view to the axonometric parallel to the projection of the
unrevolved Z-axis, as indicated in the figure .
Similarly, revolve the triangle COB about its base CB as
the axis into the plane of projection. Line CO will revolve to
CO". Use this Iinc, or one parallel to it, as the baseline of the
side view. Make the direction of the projecting lines parallel to
the projection of the unrevolved X axis , as shown.

Draw the front view baseline at a convenient location par


allel to A' X. Usc the parallel line you drew (P3 ) as the base and
draw the front view of the object. Draw the side view baseline
at a convenient location parallel to 0 " C. Use it as the base (P2)
for the side view of the object, as shown. From the corners of
the front view, draw projecting lines parallel to Oz. From the
corners of the side view, draw projecting lines parallel to Ox.
The intersections of these two sets of projecting lines deter
mine the axonornetric projection. It will be an isometric, a
dimetric, or a trimetric projection, depending on the form of the
sketch used as the basis for the projections.
If the angl es formed by the three coordinate axes arc equal,
the projection is isometric; if two of them arc equal. the projec
tion is dimetric; and if none of the three angles are equal. the
result is a trimetric projection.
To place the desired projection on a specific location on
the drawing (Figure 14.40), select the desired projection P of
point I, for example, and draw two projecting lines PR ands PS
to intersect the two baselines and thereby to determine the
locations of the two views on their baselines.

540

CHAPTER

14.41

Axonometric Projection

14

AXONOMETRIC PROJECTION

Another example of this method ofaxonometric projec


tion is shown in Figure 14.41. In this case, it was onl y nece s
sary to draw a sketch of the plan or base of the object in the
desired position.
To understand how the axonometric projection in Figure
14.41 was created, examine the figure while reading through
these steps.
Draw the axes with OX and 02 parallel to the sides of the
sketch plan , and the remaining axi s OY in a vertical position.
Revolve triangles COB and AOB, and draw the two base
lines parallel to O "C and O'A .
Choose point P, the lower front corner of the axonometric
drawing, at a convenient place, and draw projecting lines to
ward the baselines parallel to axes OX and 02 to locate their

positions. You can draw the views on the baselines or even cut
them apart from another drawing and fasten them in place with
drafting tape.
To draw the elliptical projection of the circle, use any points,
such as A, on the circle in both front and side views. Note that
point A is the same altitude, P, above the baseline in both views.
Draw the axonometric projection of point A by projecting lines
from the two views. You can project the major and minor axes
this way, or by the methods shown in Figure 14.38.
True ellipses may be drawn by any of the methods shown
in the Appendix or with an ellipse template. An approximate
ellipse is fine for most drawings.

14 .31

COM P UT ERG R A P Hi e 5

541

14.31 COMPUTER GRAPHICS


Pictorial draw ings of all sorts ca n be created using 3D CAD (Fig ures 14.42, 14.43). To
create pictorials using 20 CA D. use proj ection techniques similar to those presented in
this cha pter. The adva ntage of 3D CAD is that once you make a 3D model of a part or
assembl y, you ca n change the viewin g direction at any time for orthog raphic, isomet
ric, or perspective view s. You can also apply di fferent mater ials to the drawing objects
and shade them to produc e a high degree of realism in tbe pictorial view.
ITEM NO .

PART NAME

uter Tub e
End
op
nner Tub e
Hea t exchanger
ssem Sa mp ler
Fan
a mple Bo ttom
HX Mounting Plate

10
11

o oling Hose
Door

2
3
4

5
6

QTY.

14.42 Shaded Dimetric Pictorial


View from a 3D Model. Courtesy of
Robert Kincaid.

'':;' 'Assem Round Encloser ..,.

14.43

Isometric Assembly Drawing. Courtesy of PTe.

CAoD at WO R K
ISOMETRIC SKETCHES USING AUTOCAD SOFTWARE
Need a quick isometric sketch? AutoCAD software has
special drafting settings for creating an isometric style grid.
Figure A shows the Drafting Settings dialog box in Au
toCAD. When you check tbe button for Isometric Snap, the
so ftware calculates the spacing needed for an isometric
grid . You can use it to make quick pictorial sketches like
the example shown in Figure B. Piping diagrams are often
done this way, although they can also be created using 3D
tools.
Even though the drawing in Figure B looks 3D, it is
really drawn in a flat 2D plane. You can observe this if you
change the viewpoint so you arc no longer looking stra ight
onto the view.
The Ellipse command in AutoCAD has a special
Isocircle option that makes drawing isometric ellipses easy .
The isocircles are oriented in different directions depend
ing on the angle of the snap cursor. Figure C shows isocir
des and snap cursors for the three different orientations. In
the software, you press CTRL and E simultaneously to tog
gle the cursor appearance.

0 ~.w::onit~j

0 lidOn 1F71

Sr.ap ,~ing

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Sn'Q X ,pacing

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subdivision below g,id
, pacing

o Oitplay gridbeyondl.imil.
o Follow Dynamic.\1CS
Isometric Snap Selection

OPlion,...

OK

II

Conce!

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tlelp

(A) Selecting isometric snap in the AutoCAD drafting


settings dialog box.

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(B) A pictorial sketch created from a flat drawing using

isometric snap.

J l

Center cursor

Rightcursor

Left cursor

(C) Variously oriented isometric circles and the


corresponding snap cursors used to create them .

o
u

KEY W 0 R D S

KEY WORDS
Isometric

Pictorial

Multiview Proj ection

Axonornetric Projecti on

Orthographic Projections

Oblique Projection

Persp ect ive

Fo reshortening

543

adjacent view s, usually the top , front , and right side view,
ca n all be seen at the same time .
Inclined sur faces and oblique surfaces must be determ ined
by plotting the endpoints of eac h edge of the surfac e.
Angles, irre gular curves, and ellipses require spec ial co n
struc tio n techniques for accurate representation.
A co mmo n meth od of dra win g an obj ec t in isom et ric is by
crea ting an isometri c box and drawing the features of the
object within the bo x.
Unlike perspective dr awin g. in whi ch parallel lines co n
verge on a vani shing point, parall el lines are drawn paral
lel in axon ornetric drawings.

Isom etri c Proje ct ion

Dimerric Projection

Trimctri c Proj ection

Isometri c Axes

Noni som etric Lines

Isom etri c Scale

Isometri c Projection

Isom etri c Sketch

Isometric Dra win g

Box Con struction

Offset M easurem ent s

Isometri c Se ctioning

Isometric Dimen sion s

Ex ploded As semblies

CHAPTER SUMMARY
Axo nome tric proj ection is a method of creating a pictorial
representation of an object. It shows all thre e dim en sions
of length. width, and hei ght in one view.
Isom etri c is the easie st of the axo no rnetric projections to
draw and is ther efore the most common pictor ial drawing.
Iso metri c drawings created with C AD are often ca lled 3D
models .
Th e spaces betw een the axes o f an isom etric drawing eac h
are 120. Isometric axes ar c dr awn at 30 to the hori zont al
and verti cal.
The onl y lines o n an isometric drawing that are to sca le are
parallel to the thre e isom etri c axes .
An axon om etric drawing is cr eat ed by rot atin g an objec t
about ima ginary verti cal and hori zontal axes unt il three

REVIEW QUESTIONS
I . Wh y is isom etri c drawing more co m mo n than perspecti ve
drawing in enginee ring work?
2. What are the differences between axonome tric projection
and perspecti ve?
3. Wh at type of proj ection is used when creating a 3D model
with CAD?
4 . At what ang les arc the isom etric axes drawn '?
5 . Wh at are the thre e view s that are typically sho wn in an
isom etric drawing '?
6 . Wh ich type of proj ecti on places the observer at a finit e dis
tance from the object ? Whi ch types place the observer at
an infinite distance '?
7. Why is isometric eas ier to draw than dirn etri c or trim etric?
8. Is the four circle ellipse a true ellipse or an appro ximation ?
9. Is an ellipse in C AD a four circle ellipse or a true co nic
sec tion?

EXERCISES
Axonometric Problems
Exercises 14.1-14.9 are to he drawn axonornctri call y. Th e ear
lier isometri c sketches may be dr awn on isometric pap er. and
later s ketches should be mad e 0 11 plain drawing pap er.
Since many of the exercises in this cha pter arc of a gen eral
natu re, they can also be solved using CAD. Your instru ctor may
assign yo u to use CAD for specific problems.

544

CHAPTER

14

A X O NOMETRI C P ROJECTION

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Exercise 14.1 (1) Make freehand iso metric sketches . (2) Use CAD to make isometric dra wings. (3) Make
dimetric drawings. (4) Mak e trimetric drawings with axes chosen to show the objects to best advantage .
Dimension your drawing only if assigned by your instructor.

545

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Exercise 14.2

1--

10 LOCATOR

11 TRIP ARM

( 1) Ma ke freehand isometric ske tches . (2) Use CA D to make isometri c drawings.


(3) Make dime tric drawings. (4) Make trirnetric drawings with axes chose n to show the objects to bes t
advantage. Dimension your drawing only if assigned by your instructor.

CHAPTER 14

A XONOMETRIC PROJE CTI ON

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Exercise 14.3 ( I) Make freehand isom etr ic sketches . (2) Use CAD to make isometric drawings.
(3) Make dim etri c drawin gs. (4) Mak e trim ctri c draw ings with axes chose n to show the objects to best
advantage. Dim ension yo ur drawing only if assigned by yo ur instructor.

547

EX ERe I S ES

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Exercise 74.4

13

~TRIC]

(1) Make freeh and isom etri c ske tches . (2) Use CAD to make isometri c drawings. (3)
Make dim etric drawings. (4) Make trimetric drawings with axes chosen to show the obj ects to best ad
vantage . Dimension your drawing only if assigned by your instructor.

548

C HAP T E R 1 4

A X 0 NO M ET RI C PRO J EC T ION

8
9

10

11

Exercise J4 .5 ( I) Make freehand isometric sketches . (2) Use CAD to make isometric drawings.
(3) Make dimetric drawings . (4) Make trimetric drawings with axes chosen to show the objects to best
advantage. Dimension your drawing only if assigned by your instructor.

EXERCi SES

Exercise 14.6 Draw the nylon


collar nut as follows. (1) Make
an isometric freehand sket ch .
(2) Make an isometric draw ing
using CAD.

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Exercise 14. 7 Draw the plastic


'l-handle plated steel stud as fol
lows. ( I) Make a diametri c draw
ing usin g CAD. (2) Make a
trimetric drawing using CAD .

I
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Exercise 14.8 Draw the mountin g plate as follows. (1) Make


an isometric freehand sketch. (2) Make isometric drawing s us
ing CAD.

Exercise 14.9 Draw the hanger as follows. (1) Make an iso


metric freehand sketch. (2) Make isometric drawing s using
CAD .