UK Vintage Radio Repair and Restoration Powered By Google Custom Search Vintage Radio and TV Service Data

Go Back   UK Vintage Radio Repair and Restoration Discussion Forum > General Vintage Technology > General Vintage Technology Discussions

Notices

General Vintage Technology Discussions For general discussions about vintage radio and other vintage electronics etc.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 11th Aug 2021, 12:58 pm   #1
Chris55000
Octode
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Walsall Wood, Aldridge, Walsall, UK.
Posts: 1,873
Default Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

Hi!

Has anybody got any suggestions I can try for making my new circuit diagrams a bit smaller but still readable please?

I tried to draw out the circuit of the Vertical Channel of the Russian C1-112A Oscilloscope/Multimeter combination using my sPlan 7 and it still sprawled out to over 550 mm long, far too inconvenient to print cheaply !

To take an example, how do SE Labs/EMI do it I think they can get a Vertical Oscilloscope Channel on one A4 sheet, including attenuator circuits, but I certainly can't !

Is it my symbol sizes are possibly too large, or am I using too large a lettering size, resulting in symbols having to be spaced too far apart?

I letter my diagrams in UNO Stencil Alphabet Upright BU for the component References, 3 mm high, Uno Stencil Alphabet Condensed BC, 3 mm high, for the component values, text notes are Uno BC, 3 mm high, and voltage readings/PCB external connections are Uno Stencil Alphabet Sloping BS, 2.5 mm high.

(These standards were adopted from Thorn/BRC service manuals as a standard for British commercial good practice).

Chris Williams
__________________
It's an enigma, that's what it is! This thing's not fixed because it doesn't want to be fixed!
Chris55000 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11th Aug 2021, 5:58 pm   #2
Herald1360
Dekatron
 
Herald1360's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Leominster, Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 15,659
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

Take a high definition scan (or digital photo) of the circuit and reduce it using a drawing package? 2:1 linear (4:1) area should do it and still be legible.
__________________
....__________
....|____||__|__\_____
.=.| _---\__|__|_---_|.
.........O..Chris....O
Herald1360 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Aug 2021, 11:44 am   #3
Chris55000
Octode
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Walsall Wood, Aldridge, Walsall, UK.
Posts: 1,873
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

Hi!

It seems to be a problem relating to the size, spacing and proportions of the components and lettering to me, and I just can't work out how the manual publishers did it!

I did try printing it on A4 size paper "as–is" but couldn't read the results – whether it's a natural consequence of "presbyopia" or there's something subtle about draughting these circuits that I can't just put my finger on I'm not sure!

I've got two more E.M.I. Oscilloscope Technical Manuals coming, so when they arrive I'll see if I can get some ideas!

Chris Williams

PS!

I have found the default passive component, semiconductor and thermionic valve symbols that came supplied with my "sPlan 7.0" were much too large on their own for anything more than a 555 circuit, etc.,on A4 paper, so I made my own, and these are now looking too big as well!
__________________
It's an enigma, that's what it is! This thing's not fixed because it doesn't want to be fixed!

Last edited by Chris55000; 12th Aug 2021 at 11:49 am.
Chris55000 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Aug 2021, 12:05 pm   #4
Craig Sawyers
Dekatron
 
Craig Sawyers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Oxford, UK.
Posts: 3,433
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

The manual publishers used to draw the schematic using stencils and drafting film. That was exactly how I used to do it in my first job in the early 80's. But that was back in the day that circuit board layout was done by hand too.

With schematic software I can get nowhere near the component density I could back in the day.

Craig
Craig Sawyers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Aug 2021, 12:31 pm   #5
Chris55000
Octode
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Walsall Wood, Aldridge, Walsall, UK.
Posts: 1,873
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

Hi!

AH!

That must be what the secret is Craig!

I've got a pair of Uno BB4 and BB5 B.S. Electronic Symbol Stencils buried somewhere, I shall have to dig them out and see what size Rs and C's they produce and then measure them!

Chris Williams
__________________
It's an enigma, that's what it is! This thing's not fixed because it doesn't want to be fixed!
Chris55000 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Aug 2021, 1:50 pm   #6
Craig Sawyers
Dekatron
 
Craig Sawyers's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Oxford, UK.
Posts: 3,433
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

The other thing was logic symbols - for something like an 8-line bidirectional latch you could draw the box just big enough to label the pins and function. With software you just get what you are given - or draw custom symbols.

I'm sure you will find that the stencil sizes are a good bit smaller than those on a schematic drafting package.

Unfortunately you're stuck if you use a package that does the circuit board layout from the schematic. I use KiCAD, and it is wonderful, but you are kind of stuck with the circuit drafting side of things.

Craig
Craig Sawyers is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Aug 2021, 3:21 pm   #7
duncanlowe
Octode
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Stafford, Staffs. UK.
Posts: 1,378
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

Do you have the option to allow the circuit design to be on a big 'piece of paper' then when it comes to printing, tell it to shrink it to A4?

Where I've worked with design / layout packages you split the circuit into blocks. Page one is the whole circuit, but as maybe 4 or 5 blocks, and only the signals that go between them. The following pages details what's in those blocks, which may be another set of blocks, until you get down to component level. It does mean you have to flick between pages to follow the circuit, but also makes it easy to print off on A4. It's kind of the same thing you do when writing code where mostly the top level code just calls a series of functions / subroutines.
duncanlowe is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Aug 2021, 4:11 pm   #8
MotorBikeLes
Octode
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Kirk Michael, Isle of Man
Posts: 1,857
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

Chris, if you are creating these drawings, you can do a lot using Libre Office Draw. I have quite a few M/cycle electrics related symbols, and I import them to my drawing, and enlarge or reduce as much as suits me.
You can work in any size you want (A4, A3, probably A2) and if you want to scale things, you can set your magnification or reduction over a very wide range.
It is something you can use at once, but obviously takes time to learn all (NO, some) of its methods. If you draw your circuit with it, you can set line lengths, angles and much more by pressing F4 for any selected item.
I have done various circuits over the years always getting what I want.
I have also done very many "engineering" drawings for M/cycle stuff as well.
There is a very wide range of fonts, and for the lovers (and I know there are many haters) of Microsoft's "Comic Sans", you can import those to use with Libre Office. At the risk of upsetting some here (Craig?), I like Comic sans.
Les.
MotorBikeLes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Aug 2021, 5:02 pm   #9
David Simpson
Nonode
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Aberdeen, UK.
Posts: 2,521
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

Thing is, Chris, years ago, circuit diagrams, like many technical & architectural diagrams, and detailed maps, were hand-drawn on huge drawing boards - A0 size & similar, then reduced during the eventual printing process to A2, A3 & A4(or imperial equivalents), prior to insertion into manuals & handbooks. Some guys at the Hydro-Electric Board's drawing office in Elgin sat at boards approx 4' x 6'. The industrial printing machine could size diagrams down to A4 or up to about 8' x 12'.
I have an original 1940's Cossor 339 factory diagram on yellowed linen - about 3' x 4', but the Manual's version is near enough A4.
A cousin of mine used to be a draughtsman with MANWEB, & I remember him telling me his board was the size of a dining table.
Years ago, when I used to do building plans for folk, I had an A2 drawing board, but a kind chum in the H/E's office in Elgin would print off A3 plans for me which were the size the Council's Building Office wanted. I once did a wiring diagram(Shackelton "Dodo") in the RAF which was reduced from A2 to A3.
So, the simple answer is - most old circuit diagrams were hand drawn with large stencils for all the components we all know so well. Likewise, large lettering & numbering. Then reduced for printing purposes. Then along came CAD & other software which I haven't a clue about. Nowadays, I'm just an old outdated user of Rotring & Uno pens & stencils, and use an A3 Board. But - its a ****** on the old eyes.

Regards, David
David Simpson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12th Aug 2021, 7:32 pm   #10
Radio Wrangler
Moderator
 
Radio Wrangler's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Fife, Scotland, UK.
Posts: 18,347
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

The extent of circuits can always outpace the sizes of paper you have access to.

Eventually, you have to learn how to partition a circuit across multiple pages. This means partitioning your circuit so that each page has an understandable function rather than just being random. Then you may need to add an overall block diagram as a map for readers to visualise the overall function with.

David
__________________
Can't afford the volcanic island yet, but the plans for my monorail and the goons' uniforms are done
Radio Wrangler is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 13th Aug 2021, 10:20 am   #11
David Simpson
Nonode
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Aberdeen, UK.
Posts: 2,521
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

As David says, tis well worth initially drawing up a block diagram. E.g.many block diagrams, like circuit diagrams, for vintage(and not so vintage)radios follow a left(signal in) to right(AF out) format. With the likes of the military ARC52 vhf/uhf tranceiver the multitude of removable sub-units roughly corresponded to the blocks in the blockschematic diagram. Many old pre & post war diagrams for scopes(oscillographs) also followed a common protocol for orientating the circuitry around the CRT. Then along came HP & TEK & their range of scopes with removable sub-units. Along with the "fold-out" long circuit diagrams in their manuals for the mainframe & each sub assembly.
Many of the manuals & circuit diagrams circulating amongst the vintage radio fraternity & the associated Forums are in A4 PDF format. The first thing I do is get the diagrams enlarged up to A3, for ease of reading, prior to a project. But then, as I said in my previous post - back in the factory's drawing office these diagrams would've started out much larger anyway. Some diagrams circulating around our fraternity, sometimes take up four A4 sheets which then need to be carefully sellotaped together - to make up A2 in size.
Some VR folk are a dab hand at photographing with their iPhones or digital cameras(but not old me) and end up printing off decent A3 diagrams.
So, in conclusion, to save your eyes, and prevent RSI in your wrists, draw up diagrams at a larger "A" format, then print off at a readable smaller size. I've just an A4 printer, but the local chemist has an A4 - A3 printer, and many local authority planning/building offices have A2 printers. Obviously, a small fee is involved.

Regards, David

Last edited by David Simpson; 13th Aug 2021 at 10:22 am. Reason: spelling
David Simpson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14th Aug 2021, 6:09 pm   #12
G6Tanuki
Dekatron
 
G6Tanuki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Wiltshire, UK.
Posts: 10,400
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

From my days in the 1980s of drawing-out the emergent UK's "uucp" bang-path-addressed pre-Internet connectivity [where to send email you had to explicitly specify the route to your nearest 'well-connected' node] and the fun of BITNET IBM-specific networking back then I learned to break things down into nice modular chunks.

The biggest issue being to do consistent 'off-edge' connection references and keep the individual 'chunks' small because they would invariably get bigger as more participants joined.

and we really didn't believe things when a bunch of nodes associated with !kgbvax!kremvax appeared... on April 1st ..

https://www.newsweek.com/april-fools...eertema-318451
G6Tanuki is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 14th Aug 2021, 8:09 pm   #13
Chris55000
Octode
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Walsall Wood, Aldridge, Walsall, UK.
Posts: 1,873
Default Re: Circuit Diagrams sprawling over acres of paper?

Hi!

I'm reasonably happy I can split the gear into recognisable blocks by circuit function or complete PCB assembly, but no matter how much I partition the blocks, as "Radio Wrangler' David said, they still seem to sprawl over twice the "paper acreage" I plan for !

I'm looking at two EMI/SE Labs EM102 Oscilloscope Manuals I received this morning for ideas, as I've an oscilloscope input attenuator split over two wafer switch sections, a third wafer in the positive f/b loop between two differential amplifiers, followed by two pairs of cascode/long–tail–pair stages, a balanced delay line and a final balanced amplifier pair, before we go to the final deflection amplifier on PCB U3!

Chris Williams
__________________
It's an enigma, that's what it is! This thing's not fixed because it doesn't want to be fixed!
Chris55000 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools



All times are GMT. The time now is 3:37 pm.


All information and advice on this forum is subject to the WARNING AND DISCLAIMER located at https://www.vintage-radio.net/rules.html.
Failure to heed this warning may result in death or serious injury to yourself and/or others.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2002 - 2021, Paul Stenning.