The shop drawings for the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) systems of new building construction are unique in that they provide the greatest details of these systems when compared to other documentation sets. Often, the architectural and/or engineering firm tasked with designing a commercial or industrial facility will outsource the MEP shop drawings to another party. In this way, complete focus and a speedy turn-around can be given for an accurate drafting of assemblies and components which require fabrication versus purchase only.
MEP shop drawings offer an increased level of detail for fabrication and installation. HVAC or mechanical components which may require prefabrication include ductwork, air-handling units, and custom piping connections between equipment and building services. But, also elevators and cabinet systems are mechanical components which require fabrication or shop drawings.
The final dimensional accuracy of fabricated building components are taken from shop drawings, rather than the design detail and layout drawings prepared by an architect or engineer. For this reason, shop drawings serve as another set of eyes to catch discrepancies before field installation. When you use a third-party engineering design service for shop drawing creation of MEP systems, you free your in-house staff from these duties which are extremely detailed and require a working knowledge of machine shop processes.
Electrical connections and the housing for large electrical equipment will often require shop drawings. Floor space is often at a premium, and an accurate layout of exact dimensions of electrical equipment can make installations run smoothly. Likewise, cable trays which carry hundreds of connections across multiple floors have to be coordinated with plumbing and HVAC systems. Here is another area for shop drawings which take a careful measurement of space required for electrical equipment, plumbing systems, and mechanical equipment.