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DRAFTING MANUAL Section K12.

1
Update 61 Page 1
Definitions and Interpretations
Update
by B. Harding*
61 July 1999*

1.0 General Basic size – See Dimension, basic.


The purpose of the following definitions is to assist in clarify-
ing terms as quickly as possible. These term appear throughout Burr – A feather-like cross section of material developed
the Drafting Manual in various sections pertaining to a specific along the cut edge of a surface.
subject matter. Most definitions are related to dimensioning
CAD/CAM – Computer-aided design/computer-aided manu-
practices.
facturing are computer systems for use in component design
and fabrication.
2.0 Definitions
The most commonly used terms are defined here. Others can Center line – A unique line used to represent axes of sym-
be added later if Drafting Manual users require them. All metrical features.
definitions are consistent with the standards from which they
are derived. Circularity – Formerly known as roundness. A tolerance zone
bounded by two concentric circles within which each circular
Allowance – An intentional difference between the maximum element of the surface must lie.
material conditions (MMC) of mating parts. If specified it can
also mean the difference between the least material conditions Coaxiality – A condition where the axes of two or more
(LMC) of mating parts. As the minimum clearance it is called surfaces of revolution are coincident. The amount of permis-
positive allowance or at maximum interference between such sible variation from the coaxiality may be expressed by a
parts, the negative allowance. positional or runout tolerance. The selection of the proper
control depends on the design’s functional requirements. See
Altered item – An item taken from existing stock (usually a also Concentricity.
commercial part) or standard part, altered or reworked to meet
a specific design need. Concentricity – A condition where the median points of all
cross-sectional elements of a surface of revolution are congru-
Approximate – Usually, an interim term applied to a calcu- ent with the axis of a datum feature.
lated or an estimated dimension until the actual size is deter-
mined. Reference dimensions may be thought of as approxi- Condition, least material (LMC) – The condition where a
mate. feature of size contains the least amount of material within the
stated limits of size, e.g., the upper limit or maximum hole
Assembly – Two or more parts or subassemblies, or combina- diameter and lower limit or minimum shaft diameter.
tions thereof, joined together to perform a specific function.
The distinction between an assembly and subassembly is Condition, maximum material (MMC) – The condition
determined by the individual application. For example in one where the feature of size contains the maximum amount of
instance an assembly could be a subassembly of a higher level material permitted within the stated limits of size; for example,
assembly. minimum hole diameter and maximum shaft diameter.

Auxiliary view – An additional view to supplement the Condition, regardless of feature size (RFS) – The term used
information conveyed by the views given in conventional form to indicate the default geometric tolerance or material condition
on a drawing; a view of a surface not in the usual plane of of the datum reference applied at any increment of feature size
projection. within its tolerance where MMC or LMC is not specified. The
RFS symbol is no longer used.
Axis – A straight line or curve about which a feature of
revolution revolves or about which opposing features are Condition, virtual – The boundary generated by the collective
symmetrical. Note that in numerical control nomenclature, effects of the MMC or LMC material condition of a feature and
three mutually perpendicular straight axes form the basis of a any applicable geometric tolerances. (See Condition, maximum
Cartesian coordinate system. material or Condition, least material).

Basic hole system – A system of fits in which the design size Coordinate dimensioning – Rectangular coordinate dimen-
of the hole is the basic size and the allowance is applied to the sioning where all dimensions are measured from two to three
shaft. mutually perpendicular datum planes.

Basic shaft system – A system of fits in which the design size Coplanarity – A condition where all points on two or more
of the shaft is the basic size and the allowance is applied to the surfaces fall within the tolerance zone of a single plane.
hole.

*Purdue University *Supersedes issue of November 1989


West Lafayette, Indiana 47907 GENIUM PUBLISHING
Section K12.1 DRAFTING MANUAL
Page 2 Definitions and Interpretations
July 1999* Update 61

Cylindricity – A condition of a surface of revolution where all Drawing, non-part – An engineering drawing that provided
points are equidistant from a common axis. requirements, procedures, instruction, etc., applicable to an
item when it is inconvenient to include such information on the
Datum feature – An actual feature of a part used to establish a applicable part of assembly drawing. Examples include test
datum, such as a surface, hole, or slot. requirements drawing, wiring diagram drawing, index drawing,
etc.
Datum feature simulated – A point, axis, or plane established
by processing or inspection equipment; for example, a surface Eccentricity – A condition wherein the center of one sym-
plate, gage surface or a mandrel. metrical feature is offset from the center of another. (Note –
this term is no longer used.)
Datum feature simulator – A surface of sufficient precision
(such as a surface plate, gage surface or a mandrel) contacting Envelope, actual mating (external feature) – The perfect
the datum feature(s) used to establish the simulated datum(s). counterpart of the smallest size that can be circumscribed about
a feature as it contacts the surface at the highest points.
Datum plane – A theoretically exact point, axis, or plane
derived from the true geometric counterpart of a specified Envelope, actual mating (internal feature) – For an internal
datum feature. A datum is the origin from which the location or feature, the perfect counterpart that can be inscribed within the
geometric characteristics of a part’s features are established. feature as it contacts the highest points.

Datum target – A specified point, line or area on a part used Feature – Any physical portion of a part, for example, a hole,
to establish a datum plane. slot, or surface.

Delineation (graphic) – The lines which represent the object’s Feature of size – One cylindrical or spherical surface, or a set
form, outline, or contours as differentiated from the dimen- of two opposed elements or opposing parallel surfaces associ-
sions, notes, other non-pictorial representations, or descriptions ated with a size dimension.
of the part or its details.
Fit – The general term used to signify range of tightness or
Dimension – A numerical value expressed in appropriate units looseness which results from application of a specific combina-
of measure and indicated on a drawing and in other documents, tion of allowances and tolerances in mating parts.
along with lines, symbols and notes which are used to define
geometric characteristics, a part, or a part feature. Fit, clearance – A clearance fit is one having limits of size so
specified that a clearance always results when mating parts are
Dimension, basic – A numerical value used to describe the assembled.
theoretically exact size, profile, orientation, location, a feature,
or location of a datum target. It is the basis from which Fit, interference – An interference fit is one having limits of
permissible variations are established by tolerances or other size so specified that an interference always results when
dimensions in notes or in feature control frames. mating parts are assembled.

Dimension, form – A dimension that specifies a feature of a Flatness – A condition of a surface having all elements in one
part which cannot be properly defined by dimensions of size or plane.
location such as: the angle of the frustum of a cone, the
involute angle of a gear, or the angle of a thread. Full indicator movement (FIM) – The total movement of an
indicator when applied to a feature in an appropriate manner to
Dimension, location – A dimension that specifies the position measure its variations. Also known as total indicator reading
or distance relationship of one feature of a part with respect to (TIR).
another.
Interference – The total amount of deformation to be over-
Dimension, reference – A dimension, usually without toler- come in order to force an internal member into a smaller
ance, used only for information purposes and shown in external member.
parenthesis. It does not govern production or inspection
operations. Item – A nonspecific term used to denote any product,
including a system, part, subassembly, set, accessory, etc. It is
Dimension, size – A dimension that specifies the position or also used interchangeably with find numbers used to locate part
distance relationship of one feature of size on a part with numbers on assembly drawings and parts lists.
respect to another.

*Supersedes issue of November 1989


GENIUM PUBLISHING
DRAFTING MANUAL Section K12.1
Page 3
Definitions and Interpretations
Update 61 July 1999*

Item levels – From the simplest division to the more complex Size, actual local – The actual measured size at any cross
entities as follows: Part, Subassembly, Assembly Unit, Group section of a feature.
Set, Subsystem, System.
Size, actual mating – The dimensional value of the actual
Limit system – A system which indicates only the largest and mating envelope.
smallest permissible dimensions.
Size, nominal – The designation used for general identifica-
Limits – Maximum and minimum values prescribed for a tion, e.g., 1.50 IPS, 0.062 stock size, etc. It is not necessarily
specific dimension. the mean size permitted by toleranced dimensions.

Limits of size – Applicable maximum and minimum sizes. Slope – The inclination of a surface expressed as a ratio of the
difference in the heights at each end to the distance between
Limits, lower – The minimum value prescribed for specific those heights.
dimensions.
Standing instruction – An instruction issued by engineering to
Limits, upper – The maximum value prescribed for specific cover manufacturing and testing methods or processes.
dimensions.
Straightness – A condition where individual elements of a
Line fit – A condition where the upper limit of a shaft and the surface or an axis are in a straight line.
lower limit of a hole are the same value. In such cases surface
contact or clearance may result between mating parts when Symmetry – A condition in which a feature(s) is (are) sym-
assembled. metrically disposed about a center plane of a datum feature.
Matched parts – Those parts such as special application parts Technological treatment – The methods, practices, and
which are machine matched, or otherwise mated, and for which procedure of subjecting materials or products to specific
replacement as a matched set or pair is essential. treatments, measurements, tests, etc.
Materials, bulk – Those necessary constituents of an assembly Thread, left-hand – Thread with counter-clockwise progres-
of parts as listed on parts lists, such as solder, flux, cement, sion, looking at end where engagement begins.
glue, welding rod, leather, etc., for which the quantity required
can not be readily predetermined nor predicted. Thread, right-hand – Thread with clockwise progression
looking at end at which engagement begins.
Method dimensioning – A planned arrangement of dimen-
sions with definite objectives. Tolerance – The total amount by which a specific dimension is
permitted to vary. The tolerance is the difference between the
Number, reference – An identification such as a catalog
maximum or upper limit and the lower or minimum limits.
number, drawing number, parts list number, instruction
number, etc. Tolerance of form – Tolerances that specify how far actual
surfaces are permitted to vary from the perfect geometric form
Parallelism – A condition of a surface or axis equidistant at all
implied by dimensions. This includes straightness, flatness,
points from a datum plane or axis.
circularity and cylindricity.
Perpendicularity – The condition of a surface, median plane,
Tolerance of location – Tolerances that specify how far
or axis at right angle to a datum plane or axis.
features are permitted to vary from the perfect geometric form
Profile – The outline of an object in a given plane. implied by dimensions. This includes position, concentricity
and symmetry.
Projection, orthographic – A system of drawing composed of
images of an object formed by projectors from the object Tolerance of orientation – Tolerances that specify how far
perpendicular to desired planes of projection. (A projector is an features are permitted to vary from the perfect geometric form
imagined line from an object to a surface along which projec- implied by dimensions. This includes angularity, perpendicu-
tion takes place.) larity and parallelism.

Roundness – A term no longer used. See circularity. Tolerance of profile – Tolerances that specify how far features
are permitted to vary from the perfect geometric form implied
Size, actual – The general measured size of a feature. by dimensions. This includes profile of surface and profile of a
line.

*Supersedes issue of November 1989


GENIUM PUBLISHING
Section K12.1 DRAFTING MANUAL
Page 4 Definitions and Interpretations
July 1999* Update 61

Tolerance of runout – Tolerances that specify how far cal tolerance zone perpendicular to a datum plane within which
features are permitted to vary from the perfect geometric form the axis or the considered feature must lie; 4) a tolerance zone
implied by dimensions. This includes circular runout and total defined by two parallel lines perpendicular to a datum plane or
runout. axis within which an element of the surface must lie.

Tolerance, angularity – Angularity is the condition of a Tolerance, positional – A zone within which the center axis or
surface, center plane or axis at a specified angle (other than center plane of a feature of size is permitted to vary from true
90°) from a datum plane or axis. An angularity tolerance position.
specifies either: 1) a tolerance zone defined by two parallel
planes at the specified basic angle from one or more datum Tolerance, pre-established – Also known as default tolerance.
planes or a datum axis within which the center plane of the A group of tolerances such as ‘shop run’ tolerances which
feature must lie or; 2) a tolerance zone defined by two parallel apply to a generic line of parts, i.e., sheet metal parts, turned
planes at the specified basic angle from one or more datum parts, piping, or applicable processes.
planes or a datum axis within which the axis of the feature
must lie. Tolerance, profile – A uniform boundary along the profile
within which elements of a surface must lie.
Tolerance, bilateral – A tolerance which permits variation in
both directions from the specified dimension. Tolerance, runout – A tolerance used to control the functional
relationship of one or more features of a part to a datum axis.
Tolerance, circularity – A condition of a surface of revolution The type of feature controlled by runout tolerances includes
where, 1) for a cylinder or cone, all points of the surface those surfaces constructed both around and at right angles to a
intersected by any plane perpendicular to a common axis are datum axis.
equidistant from that axis, 2) for a sphere, all points of the
surface intersected by any plane passing through a common Tolerance, straightness – A tolerance zone where points of
center are equidistant from that center. each individual element or an axis must fall in a straight line.
The tolerance is applied in a view where the elements appear as
Tolerance, concentricity – A condition where axes of two or straight lines.
more surfaces of revolution are coincident.
Tolerance, symmetry – A condition where the center plane of
Tolerance, cylindricity – A tolerance zone bounded by two the actual mating envelope of one or more features is congruent
concentric cylinders within which all points on the surface with the axis or center plane of the datum feature.
must lie. The tolerance is a composite control of form which
includes roundness, straightness, and taper of a cylindrical Tolerance, unilateral – A tolerance in which variation is
form. permitted in one direction from the specified dimension.

Tolerance, flatness – A tolerance zone defined by two parallel Transition fit – A transition fit is one having limits of size so
planes within which all elements of the surface must lie. prescribed that either a clearance or an interference may result
when mating parts are assembled.
Tolerance, geometric – The general term applied to the
general category of tolerances used to control form, profile, True geometric counterpart – The theoretical perfect
orientation, location, and runout. boundary (virtual condition or actual mating envelope) or best-
fit (tangent) plane of a feature.
Tolerance, parallelism – A tolerance zone defined by two
planes or elements within which the surface or axis of the True position – Term no longer used. See Tolerance, posi-
considered feature must lie. It may also be a cylindrical tional.
tolerance zone parallel to a datum axis within which the axis of
the considered feature must lie.

Tolerance, perpendicularity – There are several aspects to


definition of perpendicularity tolerances. They are: 1) a
tolerance zone defined by two parallel planes perpendicular to
a datum plane or axis within which the surface or median plane
of the considered feature must lie; 2) a tolerance zone defined
by two parallel planes perpendicular to a datum axis within
which the axis of the considered feature must lie; 3) a cylindri-

*Supersedes issue of November 1989


GENIUM PUBLISHING