(Image courtesy of DelphiDesign)

Designers planning for efficient construction may find a new product called DelphiCad an interesting and inexpensive utility.

The tool, from U.K.-based DelphiDesign Ltd., automatically calculates a building’s "brick dimensions" in increments of half bricks and mortar joints, based on sizes specified. Users launch DelphiCad and open an AutoCAD .dxf file with a building perimeter line. Then they click "calc" to have it re-drawn to brick dimensions, in millimeters or inches, including cavity wall, if desired. This helps designers set out a plan that minimizes the need to cut bricks. It also takes into account irregular shapes and adds or deducts mortar joints accordingly.

"The product is new and we are still establishing price," says developer Rob Lloyd. "I think it will end up just under $100 for a single license," Lloyd says. See it at www.delphidesign.co.uk.