According to industry reprographers, the practice of scanning construction plan mark-ups in color is increasing in popularity. The resulting digital file sizes of the documents are much larger than the black and white originals and may be slow to open and hard to email. However, in most cases they can be scanned as PDFs and compressed significantly using a program such as Adobe Acrobat. For example, a D-sized mark-up scanned in color at 150 DPI might result in a 5 to 8 MB PDF file, but it can be compressed to less 1 MB.
A PDF file that contains the color mark-up information gives designers, contractors and clients more options. The digital blueprint or technical document file can be viewed or printed in color, or it can be distributed immediately. Fortunately, in each of these scenarios, physical mark-ups need only to be done once. As a result, construction firms will benefit from significant time savings and diminished opportunities for errors and omissions, particularly if there are many sheets, many contractors, and many mark-ups.
Most new wide format multi-function printing systems come with color scanners and stand-alone wide format color scanners are also readily available. In addition, many industry reprographers offer scans and prints of color mark-ups in a separate price category from scans of color graphics, which means this method of reproducing prints is relatively easy to implement.
Though the cost of color scanning can appear high, alternatively, the cost of foregoing printing construction documents in color can be even greater. Architectural, engineering and construction firms need to look closely at the total cost of producing and reproducing mark-ups by hand, including the higher incidence of errors that result.
Resource Center Home Printing Construction Documents in Color