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ECO AS Drawing Sheet

ECO AS Drawing Sheet

ECO AS Drawing Sheet

Hello all and Happy New Year!
At my first employer out of school we always added ECO's as a sheet to the actual drawing that was being revised. The ECO would be 8 1/2 x 11 with all of the usual information and stayed attached to the drawing forever. The problem I saw was that far too many times drawings would get revised to correct a spelling or other minor error on a previous ECO, hence not really adding any value to the drawing or corresponding parts/assemblies. A lot of time wasted, I felt. So, when I started running my own department, I set into place policies that made ECO's separate documents from drawings and that has worked well for 25 years.

About 1 1/2 years ago we migrated to Solidworks PDM Standard. Our ECO's are Excel spreadsheets that share variables with their PDM data cards and go through the workflow I have designed. ECO's get checked into the vault and the process has worked well, but now I question whether or not it could be made more efficient. I can forget upgrading to SW PDM Enterprise for at least a couple of years; bigger fish to fry. So, I was thinking about changing ECO's to be sheets added to the CAD drawing, like in my old days. Only now I would stipulate that ECO's must represent an actual change to the main drawing. So, I was wondering if anyone else out there adds ECO's as sheets to drawings and what rules you may have in place regarding such. Or, maybe there is an even better way that I haven't thought of?
Thanks and Cheers!

RE: ECO AS Drawing Sheet


The function of ECOs can vary wildly from site to side. If an ECO explicitly states that it corrects a spelling mistake, I can read it and assume that the design was not modified. This matters.

What do your ECOs need to accomplish? Does a person using the drawing need the level of detail provided by attaching the ECO to it? If the drawing goes out of house, is the information on on the ECO suitable for this? Why not just fill in the revision block?


RE: ECO AS Drawing Sheet

when we send drawings out, we send all the drawing sheets. Not sure I would want a supplier to see any dirty laundry that might be part of an ECO

for correcting spelling mistakes or repositioning/rescaling views I have seen the use of the same revision letter with 'none' listed for ECO to indicate the design did not change from the last ECO release

RE: ECO AS Drawing Sheet

Thanks for the input. Our ECO's serve to document the what, when, why and who of drawing changes. Sometimes there is too much information to put into the title block, so a person has to reference the ECO to get all of the details.

I definitely get not sending all ECO's out with drawings and prefer to have vendors/customers ask for an ECO if they need to see it. If I do change to adding ECO's as drawing sheets, I would stipulate that the ECO's not go with the other drawing sheets to vendors and/or customers. I'm not sure how this would work with sheet numbering though. If the sheet numbering showed, for instance, SHEET 1 OF 5, there had better be 5 sheets there or someone will ask questions.

RE: ECO AS Drawing Sheet

I spent years working change implementation to the factory floor and having all the change detail in the revision block was invaluable to me to figure out how parts did or did not go together. The ECO was instrumental in providing the 'why' of the change but wasn't necessary for putting components together.

In later years I worked with configuration managers who would allow the designers to put 'see ECO #####' in the revision block but of course when you went to ECO ##### it said 'see revision block'

RE: ECO AS Drawing Sheet

OR, the ECO ran to 150+ pages (because of an edict about too many ECOs), and it referred to dozens/hundreds of unrelated drawings. ... like what Congress calls an 'Omnibus'.

Mike Halloran
Pembroke Pines, FL, USA

RE: ECO AS Drawing Sheet


My favorite was the manager who started an ECR so that he could check out and modify drawings. There was no information on the ECR, no description of problem, no listing of changes. I could see logs showing the revised drawings, and that was it.

Another problem is that so many people are process driven. The procedure for modifying a drawing requires an ECR/ECO, so they execute their Generate ECR/ECO Procedure. They revise the drawing and fill in the revision block with "SEE ECO-XXXXX". There is no attempt anticipate what co-workers need to know, and to communicate information


RE: ECO AS Drawing Sheet

I always saw an ECO block on the title page of the drawing showing a brief snapshot of the revision history, if I needed to know more I would look at the actual ECO

never a page added.


I have seen a page added as an ECR, usually a form giving more info from the requester to engineering/drafting

RE: ECO AS Drawing Sheet

I would never consider attaching an ECO to a drawing. They're separate documents with separate purposes, and as mentioned, you don't want to be forced to share the ECOs with suppliers, etc.

My current employer insists that the drawing rev block should only contain "REVISED PER ECO xxxx" because the ECO has the information and they can't seem to understand the concept of using a short message, not regurgitating the entire ECO. This drives me nuts.

Previously, I've always used a short descriptor in the rev block, using one line, two lines max, depending on the border format. Sometimes it can completely define the change, for more complex changes it's pretty high level. Either way, it has great value for the users of the drawings. It allows you to see at a glance which ECO made that change to the chamfer that you want to look up - without having to open every ECO in the drawing's history to figure it out. Sometimes engineers have a difficult time understanding the needs of their customers - Manufacturing, Purchasing, etc.

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