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Before AutoCad, there was...

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This was my workplace from August 1970 until 1984 when a new office was built and we were all trained in CAD (Computer-aided Design)

E. Keeler Co., Williamsport, Pennsylvania USA - June 1980

Lawless photography, Mhilem, smacss, and 2 other people added this photo to their favorites.

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  1. tbower 91 months ago | reply


    I had a sliderule but I never learned how to use it very well.

    I remember the first time I ever saw an electronic calculator, though. Our chief engineer bought one...it was made by Western Digital. When we all saw how we could actually do geometry and trig (sin, cosine, and tangent were keys) WE were ecstatic! No more Smoleys! So the company arranged for all of us to buy one at a discount. Hog Heaven!! LOL!!!!

  2. 青蛙 Frog 91 months ago | reply

    I remember those days, myself as an engineer with the T ...

  3. Theaterwiz 91 months ago | reply

    another oldie, how cool

  4. SQUIRREL400 - photographingsquirrels.com 91 months ago | reply

    shades of my college blueprint class ... I got a C ... :)

  5. OH306 91 months ago | reply

    Talk about similar pasts. I worked in the design dept at Bailey Meter in Wickliffe. We spent a million bucks on a Computervision Cad system in the 80's which we later expanded. We used that for both mechanical and PCB design then bought Cadnetix for PCB design only. Cadnetix was bought by Daisy Systems and eventually went belly up. They went to ProE for mechanical later. Next was Scicards for PCB. Wow when I think of what they spent on design platforms. And your photo was shot in Williamsport where Bailey also had offices. That's two great memories you've brought me today.

  6. tbower 91 months ago | reply


    Yes, I remember Baily Meter...I knew a few people that worked there.

  7. ikkio_too 91 months ago | reply

    the days when draughting was a proper job ;o}}

  8. shadysidelantern 91 months ago | reply

    Unless you were around in such a drafting room, you might be offended if I asked if you remember Scum-X. I actually worked with a guy who wore an apron & used eye shades.

  9. tbower 91 months ago | reply

    Tim Engleman

    Scum-X...remember it well!

  10. sjb4photos 91 months ago | reply

    Nice memories, sort of, Tom. I worked civil engineering drafting with only the parallel bar and associated trinkets from 1971 until around 1990. Will have to say that once I became versed in Autocad, I rather despised hand drafting. I ended up working in AutoCad about the same length of time, until late 2009.

  11. tbower 91 months ago | reply

    Steve Brown

    Thanks, Steve!

    The true blessing of CAD to me was...:the dreaded word...REVISION. No more erasing shields, burning a hole in the vellum with an electric eraser, and what I REALLY despised above all else....SEPIA FLUID! Gawd I hated that smell! LOL!!!!

  12. sjb4photos 91 months ago | reply

    Tom Bower How true it all is, Tom, I remember it well. It is even conceivable that half a day's worth of hand revisions could be done in a minute or so by CAD. I don't believe we ever used sepia fluid, or very rarely, thank goodness.

  13. OH306 91 months ago | reply

    I don't remember the name Scum-X but I think you're talking about the ground up eraser in a sprinkle can. When I got bored I would dump a co-workers Scum-X and fill the can with ground up Parmesan cheese and wait. Got great expressions as he tried to figure out what the smell was. It would leave oil dots all over the drawing but it was worth the laugh.

  14. tbower 91 months ago | reply


    LOL!!! Yep, that's Scum-X. That's a great gag!

  15. sjb4photos 91 months ago | reply

    Did any of you folks use Pounce? The Scum-X made me think of it.

  16. tbower 91 months ago | reply

    Steve Brown

    Sounds familiar, Steve...wasn't that the little bag you rubbed over the drawing's surface?

  17. shadysidelantern 91 months ago | reply

    OH306: We had a related gag we used on new guys. We would warn them about a particular draftsman as being weird. This guy would then replace the Scum-X with Parmesan cheese & when he knew the new guy was watching, he would dump some into his hand and pop it into his mouth, appearing to eat Scum-X.

    The oil cloth on one of the drawing boards recalls the rule that boards had to be covered every night in the even of a fire sprinkler dishcharge.

  18. shadysidelantern 91 months ago | reply

    tbower: I see the guy behind you was a lefty.

  19. tbower 91 months ago | reply

    Tim Engleman

    Yep, he was a southpaw.

  20. sjb4photos 91 months ago | reply

    Tom Bower Yes indeed, Tom. It added friction to the paper surface to help the ink adhere.

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