Floor plans are very important for us WLAN professionals. We need them to do our designs and surveys. Sometimes, the quality of the floor plans we receive from our customer (when we receive some) is not always the best.
Just like a baker needs quality flour to produce good bread. As Wi-Fi Engineers we need quality floor plans in order to produce accurate designs.
In this article, I will show you how to export good quality PDF files from an AutoCAD .dwg file. You could then import this PDF file into Ekahau (or other preferred site survey software) to perform your design.
When receiving floor plans in a .dwg file format from a customer, you have the choice to import it directly into Ekahau. Ekahau has the ability to parse the different views and layers and gives you the ability to pick and choose the view and layers you want to incorporate into your project. It even draw the walls for you!
However, there are some limitation to this process. Here are examples:
The views define in the CAD file don’t represent what you want to see in Ekahau (for example, it is dividing the building into multiple areas when what you want is to see the full building on one view)
The floor plan is not centred on the view and there is a lot of white space around it. It won’t look good in the report.
There is only one view in the CAD file when you actually need to divide the building into multiple section.
In all of these situations, I like to open the CAD file with AutoCAD and export exactly the views I want into different PDF files.
I use AutoCAD LT on macOS and I pay the monthly subscription when I need it (67$ a month).
Once I am done, I go back to Ekahau and import the PDF files to start working on my design.
And yes, this means I am drawing the walls myself! I care about providing a quality document to my customers, that’s why I take the time to make sure, the input floor plan file is good.
This video clip shows how to export different views of a floor plans from AutoCAD: