Hello Joe. Thanks for the quesitons.
I make most of my models in ME'scope. Everything you saw on my website services page for ODS and Modal was done in ME'scope. On occasion, I have taken an autocad 2D or 3D drawing and imported into ME'scope and modified the object to fit my needs.
I try to keep the drawings as simple as possible, yet I want the structure drawing to look like the machine. On a rectangular structure like an A-frame or concrete base, I make measurements at every joint (every place two lines intersect in the drawing). For a cylindrical structure like a motor or pipe, I take one X, Y and Z direction measurement at a cross section, asssign it to the radius point of the cross section and let the software interpolate the unmeasured points. The assumption I'm making here is that I'm only interested in lower frequencies where the pipe or motor housing remains rigid as it is vibrating. If I was measuring out to 2000 Hertz on a pipe or other cylindrical object, I would need to measure points around object because I know the pipe is probably deforming at the higher vibration frequencies.
In the plunger pump example, there were 450 points tested with three directions at each point for about 1400 total measurements. That's more points that I ususally need to test but I needed a lot of points because of the piping.