Thursday, July 30, 2009

Open the wall assembly dialog (Select a wall -> Type Properties -> Structure : Edit)
This is what you get. Here you can add and remove wall layers, attach materials to them, define the thickness and tell them to wrap (or not).

A few interesting things to keep in mind:

  1. Anything between the 'Core Boundary' lines is supposed to be the supporting structure of the wall (like concrete, bricks, etc). Nothing else should be in here.
  2. The materials used here define how the model looks in 3D but they can also be used to calculate costs etc. Use them wisely.
  3. The function-filed has 5 different functions, or rather levels (the numbers in the [] ). The lower this number the higher the priority of this part of the wall when connecting with other walls. For example in a corner, a level 1 will always have priority over a level 2. When you have the same level in both walls, you can choose how the corner/intersection looks like.

If you are new to Revit, coming from a 2D / 2.5D application (like AutoCAD or Arc+), please remember:

In Revit, Things Are What They Are!

What I am trying to say: a wall in Revit is a wall, and not two parallel lines I can use as a floor in a section view. If I want a floor in a section view, I draw a floor.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Being a member of the AUGI, I stumbled on this interesting publication (click image for site):

Quote from the site:

AUGI | AEC EDGE is an exciting new print and digital publication designed to enable architects, engineers, designers, and builders using Autodesk AEC products to be more productive, better informed and help keep them at the top of their game.

I browsed through it and found it quite informative. See for yourself. It's free! :)

Just a quick tip on what not to do (as I am learning the hard way right

Don't print preselected sheets when in a schedule view.

...oh, and...

Don't try to import families into a project that only has a schedule view open.

Both lead to unpredictable Revit behaviour or even crashes.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

...and if your computer gets too hot while working with Revit, try this:

Do you wonder why you Revit gets slower and slower? Yes?

Well, here is one possible reasion: If your Switch Windows-list look a bit like this:

then you should consider Close(ing) Hidden Windows once in a while:
Or just getting used to closing the view after you're done with it.

Resaon being: Revit recalculates all views whenever there is a change in the model or you save the model. That takes time, especially once your model gets a bit more complicated.

So close hidden fews frequently and get into the habbit of not having many views open at the same time.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Making sections through the site toposurface always resulted in very "thick" drawings:

Putting these on drawings and adjusting the crop-box always resulted in uneven drawings. Not really satisfactory.

Well then, at our on-site training today we learned that you can adjust de depth to which the surface pattern is drawn:

Go to Ribbon:Massing & Site:Model Site and press the little arrow:

You will the get the following dialog where you can adjust the "Elevation of poche base" value to less than the 5m that are standard.
This will greatly reduce the "thickness" of your sections and make them all even on you drawings.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

I have just found out that there is an update available.

Go forth and install.

When creating your outer walls, it is sometimes neccessary to adjust them for extensions that don't go all the way up to the roof. Here's how:

1. Select the wall you want to adjust and click on "Edit Profile" in the Modify Walls ribbon.
2. In the sketch mode that will open, draw the outline of the wall you want. Use the "Trim" command to make the lines a closed circumference.

3. After exiting the sketch-mode you are left with the wall you want.
Simple. Just one thing you need to remember: DON'T USE THIS COMMAND!

Seriously. Don't.

We've been playing around with this and it turns out that Revit will get into serious trouble once you try to attach this modified wall to other walls or roofs or floors. If you need this type of geometry, just place two separate walls of the same type. It will look the same and the bevhaviour will be a lot better.

You have been warned.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

As I have already mentioned, we are switching CAD-packages at the moment. That means that we have a quite extensive library in the old system, but not much for Revit. For the most part, they are not compatible, since Revit is 3D, whereas our old system was 2D.

There are a few areas however, where the old symbold are still valid. One example are cars and trucks in situation drawing.

So I figured I export the truck as dxf, import it into a line-based detail family, draw over the lines and save. Little did I know that this can be done so quickly.

The trick? The line picking tool:
Since dxf is line based (duh!) this tool actually finds the lines in the imported dxf-file. So all I have to do is to select the lines I need and they get drawn! (the magenta lines are the original dxf, the black ones I "drew")
I am loving this!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Working with Revit more and more frequently, I am discovering some way of making the program work better or faster or more smoothly and I am trying to incorporate this into everyones workflow. So I thought I'll put these ideas out there for others to use - or even better comment on.

So here's number 1:


Avoid creating unnecessary relationships between elements.

The lock-icon you get when aligning elements or placing dimensions is one example. I am not saying not to use the lock, but once you have achieved what you wanted, unlock the elements. This giver Revit one less thing to worry about and recalculate when you change things.

Ataching walls to floors above is another. We have adopted a strategy where we have an extra layer at the height of the underside of the floor and we attach our walls to that. So, for example, a wall on the level first floor does not go up the the level second floor, but rather to the level ceiling first floor. That way Revit does not have to recalculate the connection with the floor above when either the wall or the floor moves.

On the other hand, the keyword above is unnecessary. Relationships can be very handy when drafting and make work go a lot faster. So I guess the old saying comes true once more: do as much as necessary but as little as possible.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Ever wanted to tag wall with a letter so you can then just write a summary with all wall types and their makeup? Well, in Revit 2010, you can. Easily.

What you are looking for is the Type Mark.

Once you have given your wall family type a Type Mark you can create a wall-schedule only with Type Mark and Type Comments. Don't itemize and sort after Type Mark and you get a nice list of all used wall types, sorted by their marks.

And now the big TIP: if you want to list multiple items under the comments (like the makeup of the wall), you can multiline them by pressing [ctrl]+[enter]. It won't show on the schedule, but once you place it on a sheet, the multiple lines will become visible.

Before coming to Revit, our company had a standard color scheme for the usage of rooms: living rooms were light yellow, wet rooms were dark blue, etc. Simple enough. Alas, when creating a color-scheme from scratch in Revit, it just picks more or less random colors and populates the list. Not what I had in mind.

One way of avoiding this is to pre-define room-names with corresponding colors in the color schemes and then just applying the room names. Not really practical when you work on very different types of buildings and create plans in three different languages.

So this is what I did:

1. In the Template I added a Project Parameter named "color on drawing" and applied it to "Rooms"
2. Still in the Template I opened the Color-Scheme dialog (Ribbon->Home) and created a new color scheme I named "Based on color" (not very imaginative, I know...)

and populated it with our standard colors.3. Save the Template.

Now when I create a new project based on this template, I get a variable "color in rooms" in my room properties with a drop-down-menu of the available colors. These stay the same in all our projects.

Corporate Identity Rocks! :)