Our Plans come from an Engineering Company, so you can expect high quality and thorough information. They are fully engineered to perform, and that’s how it should be. The blueprints are more complete — with more and better information than others we’ve reviewed. Below is a peek at what they contain. Also, please see the slider at the bottom of the page for visual examples of the Mechanical Elements DIY plans.
What’s In The Plans?
First, Each set of plans has a Bill of Materials, which is a list of both raw materials and components to purchase for the project. It includes raw material cut lengths and quantities, component sizes and options, also options to achieve a different look or performance level. We don’t assume you are the expert, so there is some explanation when things are not obvious — especially for options.
Second, Plans include possible sources to get the materials and components. There are many possibilities, but we give a few of our favorites.
Third, We understand each customer has different goals, and those require variations in the design. To accomplish this, some plans have a section of Engineering Considerations to explain how to achieve different goals — like increasing load capacity, changing size, saving weight, cost variations, etc.. Most plans also include options that help you customize the project to be what you really want. (See Sixth, below.) We encourage customization to make the final product perfect for you.
DIY Plans — For the Do-It-Yourself Enthusiast
Forth, Our DIY plans give Tips to help with the project. These tips include set-up advice, assembly directions and/or fixturing info. Safety tips for certain areas are also in the instructions.
Fifth, Our plans have two sections . . .
- A Section of Instructions:
- The instructions include Illustrations to emphasize area details (see the sample image). Explanations are given along with the details and options.
- Instructions are formatted on standard 8.5″ x 11″ for easy viewing and printing.
- A Section of Drawings: – The DIY Plans have one of these two formats for the drawings. See the images for an example of each.
- Some drawings are Portrait to print “A” size (8.5″ x 11″) including illustrations with the instructions. Or . . .
- Some drawings are Landscape, Full Sheet format. Full sheets can print at 8.5″ x 11″ or up to 22″ x 17″ (“C” size) using options in Acrobat Reader or other PDF software.
- Note: Some drawing pages, like templates, are best to print full scale. If necessary, instructions and possible sources for large format printing are in the instructions.
Sixth, Our DIY plans include Options – like things to customize the look or modify performance. We encourage customization, so we explain where that’s OK and where it is best not. Read about When it is Safe to Customize the Plans.
Finally, Even if you don’t buy your DIY plans from us, we have a wonderful library of Tips and Advice for making your project turn out great. Click the “Mechanic’s Post” link in the page header for a great resources on many topics of building and DIY shop action. It’s all there for you.
How Do I Get Plans?
Plans are available electronically via download from this website, or you can get them by mail-order — and we offer multiple ways to receive your plans too:
Note: Plans for download are in Adobe PDF format, then for quicker downloading, may be bundled (instructions + drawings) in a .ZIP file. If your computer does not already have one, a free PDF reader is available at www.Adobe.com and a free ZIP utility at www.WinZip.com.
Note: Printed plans are delivered on 8.5″ x 11″ and/or 11″ x 17″ paper as appropriate. However, the templates, if needed, print at full size.
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Can You Show Me Some DIY Plans?
Our Plans a designed with you in mind. Learn more about what drives us here at Mechanical Elements, then get your plans and start building! Customize the project just the way you want, and don’t forget to share your progress and success. Seriously, we love seeing your build progress in photos. Customer stories are awesome for others to also read. Thank you for visiting, and Enjoy your Project.