Wednesday, June 10, 2015

How Many Model

When setting up projects you need to decide how many models are going to be built for the project.
The usual answer is three, Architectural, Structural, and Mechanical, but should be four with t he fourth model being a site model.

So lets get a little more complicated with how many models we build. Let's say we have a project that has multiple detached building on a site. Each building on a site should have it's own set of models. A problem that usually occurs when you have one model that has two or more building in it you lose control. 

One way you loose control is that you have way two many levels because rarely do the two building have the same finish floor.
Another way you loose control is placement of the buildings on the site. For example, lets say you have a project that has existing building on site and you are doing a major addition to one of the building one of the things you are designing is a canopy that links the two building together. Base on the survey that you provided you always assumed that the buildings were a certain distance away, but when the contractor gets to the site you find out that the buildings are actually closer or further away then the survey shows. Because you built the building in the same model if you try to move the building to the correct location on the site every live section, detail and/or elevation gets messed up. But if the buildings are separate models you can move the building without effecting any of the views of the project.

Since Revit 2013 we have been given the ability to keynote linked files which also gives us the opportunity to create a model exclusively for documenting. What you would do is link in all of your separate building models into a single model where you would create all of the elevations, and cut your sections. This workflow seems like it would be a great way to separate the design from the documentation, but it is a little clunky because you really can't separate the the design from the documentation, and you get the same problem if building are in the wrong place.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Revit 2016 What's new

It's been a few weeks now that Revit 2016 has come out, so what is new in this release?

  • Open a Sheet from a view-From the Project browser you can now open the sheet on which a view is placed. An Open Sheet option has been added to the shortcut menu that appears when you right-click a view in the Project Browser. This options allows you to quickly access the sheet on which the view is placed. -See Atodesk Video
  • Navigating the Property browser- One annoying bug that has plagued property browser is that sometimes when you are scrolling down the property browser it pops you back up to the top of the browsers, well it looks like that has bee fixed in the 2016 version of Revit
  • Thin Line Weight Enhancement-Maintain line weight settings when you open Revit.
  • Rendering - The rendering engine has been changed again in this version - See Autodesk video
  • Revision Enhancements -There is now more control of the revision numbering -See Autodesk video
  • Selection Boxes- Now we can select an object and then isolate it in a 3d view with the section box being automatically created-See Autodesk Video
  • Select host- Now when you select an object you can find out what the object is hosted to. In most cases it is pretty obvious to understand what an object is hosted to. When I see this might become useful is understanding what object a keynote is hosted too especially when you use User Keynotes.
  • Navigate During Redraw- Allows smoother panning-See Autodesk Video
  • IFC Links and Rooms- Defining Room boundry from IFC elements-See Autodesk Video
  • Rotate Project North-When rotating project north the annotation elements rotate as well -See Autodesk Video
  • Energy Analyses Enhancements-Analysing your model has gotten better with Revit 2016 and I think it will continue to get better -See Autodesk Video, you should also keep an eye on the Building Performance Analysis blog, as they are promising to show off more of the capabilities of this enhancement to Revit
  • Automatic place Room- There is now a button to place automatically place rooms in the model. This may save time placing rooms, but you will still have to go back and name the rooms appropriately
  • Addition Content- It looks like Autodesk has given us some more content with the latest release of Revit. There are some additional doors. I probably won't use them but there is more content.See Revit OpEd for a in-depth explanation of the door content.
  • Searching the content of the Model-Looking for content for the model has be made a little easier. Now when you are in a long list of items you can now start type some of the title of the content and the list of content will shorten to show just the content that contains the data you typed in.

Not only playing with Revit I looked at several web sites to discover these features. I only sited some of the new features check out these blogs for some that I missed.
Revit Rants
Building Performance Analysis
YouTube- Videos
    Autodesk Playlist
    Excitech Ltd

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Create a View Filter-Video

Back in January I wrote a blog about creating a View filter. To supplement that blog I have created a short video (which I have loaded on YouTube) to show how to create a View Filter and how to use it on a color plan.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Filtering with Parameters

Back in 2011 I began to talk about View Filters, than last month I explain how to Create a View filter. One thing I eluded to was that when creating a view filter you need a parameter to filter against. For the most part Revit has enough parameters for you to use but when the project does not have the right parameter that you need to filter against you will have to create it. The type of parameter that you will create is a project parameter. Project parameters can be created for any type of Revit category and they can be transferred between projects by using the transfer project standards command.

To create a new parameter

  • Go to Manage tab
  • Click the Project Parameters button
  • From the Projects Parameters dialog box click the Add button
  • From the Parameters Properties dialog box
  • Name the Parameter
  • Select the Parameter type (Typically you will want to use the Text type, to create a parameter you want to filter against)  
  • Select category that the Parameter affects (the parameter can be applied to multiple categories can be selected)

You may ask why and when you would create a new Parameter, well here is an example. You get the program requirements of a new building. The program says that certain rooms need to have a certain STC rating and you want to document that in the model so you can verify later that walls you surrounded the room with meet the STC rating specified in the program. Rooms have a lot of parameters associated withe them but they do not have an acoustical parameter so you will have to create the project parameter. Once you have the parameter and it is filled out for each of the rooms you can create a color plan that indicates all of the different acoustical requirements of the space, and indicates the different STC ratings of the surrounding partitions.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


Parameters are in some ways the foundation of a Revit model. Parameters are what hold the I in BIM and makes Revit a BIM authoring tool. Some people have disregarded parameters and have said that they are just Revit version of Autocad's attributes. I will agree they are much like attributes, in fact I would say attributes is what begin to make Autocad a BIM authoring tool, crud as it may be.  Revit has three types of parameters, Project Parameters, Family Parameters and Shared Parameters.

Project Parameters are parameters specific to a single project file. They are added to elements by assigning them to multiple categories of elements, sheets, or views.  Project parameters are used for scheduling, sorting, and filtering in a project. Information stored in project parameters cannot be shared with other projects. Use transfer project standards to use Project Parameters for another project.

Family Parameters are parameters that control variable values of a family, such as dimensions or materials. They are specific to the family.

Shared Parameters are parameter definitions that can be used in multiple families or projects. After you add a shared parameter definition to a family and or project, you can use it in the family or project. Shared parameters allows us to tag and schedule parameters that we would not be able to other wise. The definition of a shared parameter is stored in a separate file outside of the project or family, and because of that it is protected from change.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Color plan by Mass object

Have you ever wanted to create the space planning diagram in Revit?

A couple of months ago I began to talk about color plans in Revit. One of the ways I didn't mention was using different mass objects to create color plans. This method of creating color plan is really useful during the programming or master planning stage of a project when you are creating diagrams. When using mass objects for space planning you are given the flexibility to move the mass objects around like Lego's or building blocks to figure out the best configuration of the space.

There are two types of Mass objects that can be created, Mass object family, or in-place Mass object. In-place Mass object can only be used in the project that they were created in, and a Mass family object can be used in multiple projects.

To color a Mass object there are two techniques. You can assign materials to the mass objects and control the colors of the object through the Materials menu. Another technique of coloring mass objects is using filters. What’s nice with filters is that you can turn certain things off in the view as well. For controlling the color of the mass objects using filters is a faster technique then using materials.

To change the color of a mass family object with material you should create a custom parameter that controls what the material is assigned to the mass family object. This parameter would want to be an instance parameter so that the material of the mass family can be quickly changed.  For in-place mass objects it’s a little more time consuming. To change the material of in-place mass objects you have to edit the mass then change the material that is assigned.

With filters you can use a parameter that is common to both In-place Mass objects as well as Mass family objects to control the color the mass objects. With filters if you change the parameter controlling the color the color will change quickly. With filters you can use a different parameter in a different view to create a different color scheme for the same mass object, which you cannot do with Materials.  To create a view filter for a mass object is the same process as you would use to create a filter for a wall. The only difference is that you are selecting the mass category instead of the wall category.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

505 BUG Workset standards

they had been working on all year. A standard for Worksets. The idea is that if we have a standard that most if not all of the AEC community was using then it would make collaboration between the AEC firms easier.

Worksets are a powerful feature in Revit. Worksets is a method by which multiple people can work in the same model. Worksets allow you to only load certain parts of the model to be able to work quicker in large models. Worksets provide another level of graphic control over the model.

Over the last couple of years it has been discovered that if project team members have the same names to the worksets in their models, it gives each of the project team members greater graphic control of the other team members model with in their model.

The 505 BIM Users Group had created a standards committee that has been meeting for the last year. One of the things that has dominated the standards committee's discussion has been creating a standard for naming Worksets, so that firms in New Mexico could collaborate better.

At the 2014 November meeting of the 505 Bim Users group, the standards committee presented five proposals to creating a Worksets standard.

to see these proposals follow this link