Maxfield Consulting, PLLC is a full-service MEP engineering consulting firm based in the Dallas, Texas area. With a staff of three, the company takes on a wide range of commercial projects for architects and contractors.
Wilfred Kidd, who designs the plumbing systems for Maxfield, has been using Design Master Plumbing since 2006. His partners have also used Design Master Electrical and Design Master Mechanical for about ten years.
“We do all our mechanical, electrical and plumbing design work exclusively in Design Master,” Mr. Kidd states. “The software gives us a big competitive advantage by saving time and eliminating errors.”
“For example, Design Master Electrical automatically generates electrical panel schedules, which knocks out all those potential mistakes. On the HVAC side, it automatically draws the ductwork and inserts the desired fittings—that’s a huge time-saver.
“Another example is ventilation schedules, which are now required on our plans by a lot of local building codes. We used to have to fill those in manually, but now you can just take them straight from the load sheet, which the software calculates automatically,” adds Mr. Kidd.
“Another big advantage with Design Master is the ease of making changes,” Mr. Kidd notes. “This often allows us not to charge our customers for revisions.”
“For instance, if we have to move a bunch of diffusers or shift a water line or something like that, it can be done easily and doesn’t cost much time and effort. Therefore, we don’t have to charge the customer, which keeps them loyal and helps us get repeat business.
“Using Design Master also makes our work look very consistent and professional. That’s important to me, and our clients appreciate the high quality and readability,” observes Mr. Kidd.
Maxfield Consulting recently switched from running Design Master on AutoCAD to BricsCAD. According to Mr. Kidd, “I wanted to change over to BricsCAD because it costs so much less than AutoCAD.” A new BricsCAD license is currently available for less than $1,000.
“After about five months, I’m now at the point where I use BricsCAD exclusively,” asserts Mr. Kidd. “The two programs look almost identical and have mostly the same commands. It’s very hard to tell if you’ve got BricsCAD or AutoCAD running. And BricsCAD is actually faster.”
Design Master Software added support for BricsCAD in 2011. Bricsys, the makers of BricsCAD, made it very easy for developers who support AutoCAD to also support BricsCAD.
“BricsCAD runs pretty much all the AutoCAD Lisp routines without any problem,” Mr. Kidd continues. “In fact, BricsCAD runs the Design Master software even better than AutoCAD does. Design Master looks almost the same in BricsCAD, too—it’s been a very smooth transition.”
Mr. Kidd concludes: “Productivity-wise, I’d estimate that Design Master allows us to do probably three times the work we’d be able to do otherwise. The number of jobs we can do per year is much greater, so we’re much more profitable.”
“We’re just smokin’ and blowin’ compared to most of the other engineering firms our size around town,” chuckles Mr. Kidd.