Brett Guarrero is a Principal of Telluride eGroup, a design and engineering firm specializing in alternative energy solutions for buildings. Brett was in Phoenix for the 2009 Greenbuild Conference & Expo when he learned of a problem back in the office. One of his projects, the installation of a geothermal heating system for a homeowner, required some last minute design changes. Brett needed to redline the project drawing and email it to his drafting team as soon as possible so the CAD file could be updated.
Unfortunately, since Brett was traveling he didn't have all of his normal resources available to him. He had a PDF drawing, but no editing software for electronic markup. He also didn't have access to a large format printer or scanner, so he couldn't redline changes by hand, scan them, and then send them back to the office. The only alternative Brett saw was to take screenshots of the PDF, paste them into MS Word, and use Word's drawing and annotation tools to markup his changes. He had done this while traveling before, and he wasn't looking forward to doing it again. It was cumbersome and time-consuming. And since these changes were urgent, it meant he'd spend hours in his hotel room that night, and miss out on networking opportunities at Greenbuild.
Before returning to his hotel room for the evening, Brett decided to stop by the Greenbuild exhibit hall. As luck would have it, Bluebeam Software's booth caught his eye. Bluebeam was at the show to demonstrate how their PDF editor, Bluebeam Revu, helps project teams reduce paper by sharing, reviewing and redlining copies of PDF project drawings and documents. As he watched Bluebeam's Marketing Manager, Karen Tantzen, demonstrate how to redline a PDF with Revu, he told her about the project that was waiting for him back in his hotel room. "I have to do exactly this, markup changes on a drawing, and email them back to my drafting team tonight," said Brett. "Well, why don't we do it right now, then?" said Karen.
Brett grabbed his laptop from his bag, powered it up, and installed a trial CD of Bluebeam Revu right there on the trade show floor. He opened up the PDF drawing, and Karen showed him how to annotate it with Bluebeam. First, he changed the direction of radiant floor tubing from a horizontal to a vertical layout using Bluebeam's snapshot tool. This feature takes a 1 to 1 screenshot of a portion of a PDF. Brett took a snapshot of the horizontal layout, rotated the markup and placed it on the drawing. Next, Brett wanted to add text to denote new electronic snowmelt sensors and radiant walls. Karen showed him how to place and customize the callout annotation, which combines a text box and an arrow that moves independently. To make the markup standout, Brett changed the appearance settings to include black text, a light green and slightly opaque fill color, and a clouded border. Since Brett needed to use this annotation multiple times, Karen showed him how to save it in Bluebeam's Tool Chest, which stores custom markups for future use. After he made all of his changes, Karen then demonstrated how to flatten the markups and make them a permanent part of the PDF that can't be changed or edited.
The entire process - demo, installation and redlining - only took about an hour. And best of all, Brett got the changes to his drafting team on time, and was able to attend Greenbuild's networking events that evening. "It was perfect timing," said Brett. "Finding Bluebeam Revu at Greenbuild was such a great discovery, and I look forward to using the software on many projects to come."