Tag: revit

Revit Architecture

Revit Architecture

Saturday, February 25, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

RKO backlot main hotel views

RKO backlot main hotel views (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Revit Architecture

Those of us who know anything about BIM or Building Information Modeling know how much of an oh-so-joyous happy dandy fun time Revit Architecture can be.  With its tendencies for the user to have to be highly accurate in the development of a structure without having the ability to adjust measurements manually, Revit can be an extremely time consuming and often excruciatingly painstaking program to design fully developed construction in.

Rendering can be a whole other monster to deal with in itself.  Any project with a significant amount of At the school where I learned my Revit skills, we have wonderful 2 core processor Dell desktops which pretty much are good for doing a percentage of the floor plan work and unless you have several hours to spare, then forget about rendering big projects.  Especially if animation or 3DS Max plug-ins are used, then you should really expect to be spending a significantly lengthy amount of time rendering your projects.

Of course, now we have cloud-based rendering with the experimental plug-in dubbed Project Neon, located on Autodesk Labs which is in the beta phases and allows for the user to render their images through their Autodesk account instead of locally through their own computers.  But rendering a project is still very time consuming and the use of your Autodesk account is not always available (at such places like certain schools).  It is because of the complexity of the program and the time it takes to create each individual aspect of the entire program that the program in its entirety is not always taken advantage of in the workplace.

Just imagine the incredible and beautifully polished 3D designs that could be showcased during potential project bids in any given circumstance if the software were to develop with simplified convenience in mind.  Nevertheless, Revit still is a remarkable program and it is improving dramatically by the year.  I hope to see the day when rooms are created and developed with much simpler methods and randomly generated components and furniture are brought into the program.  These improvements, including the ability to freely manipulate measurements would make Revit an excellent program to use regularly in the workplace.

Can we optimize Revit for interference checking?

Can we optimize Revit for interference checking?

Sunday, February 19, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

Can we optimize Revit for interference checking?

Well, people who are not related to construction industry get confused when they hear that Revit can also be used for determining clashes between models.  The reason for that is, normally Navisworks is optimized by AEC professionals for executing clash detection services.  When client companies get to know that clashes between model elements can also be figured out in Revit they are often shocked to hear that.

But the fact remains that, Revit is the most powerful software developed by Autodesk.  It can perform many functions apart from modeling which is its specialty.  For example the software, helps architects and engineers in coordinating multidiscipline models, creating sketches and for providing realistic effects to the models by rendering them.  In fact Revit coordination modeling services have become very popular among AEC professionals now days.

However, its Interference checking feature is very important for design development teams.  Interferences between architecture, structure and MEP models can be easily figured out in Revit by BIM modelers.  First of all, when all the different models are developed by a same company, it becomes very convenient for the multidiscipline design development teams to collaborate with for determining clashes.

Revit users can determine clashes between their own model elements, as well as between multidiscipline models such as between architectural and structural model.

A quite simple method is applied by Revit users to find out clashes.  When clashes are determined within the model elements of a single model, its users simply have to compare the location of various elements.  By comparing their location, engineers can easily understand whether they are colliding with each other or not.  If in case location assigned for a model element does not interfere with the location of other model element that means there are no issues between them.  But if two or more than two model elements interfere with each other’s location that means there is a problem in the design. And hence clashes can be determined easily.

The same formula is applied when it comes to determining clashes between different models.  In this case Revit users are first required to link a model into the host model.  Once the model is linked its users have to compare the locations of the elements of a host model and linked model.  This helps in figuring out whether the model elements of host and linked model are fighting for the same location or not.  If in case they are fighting for a same location that means they are interfering with each other.

In this way Revit users can figure out all the clashes and can eliminate them in time before they could become a serious problem for architects and engineers.

Using Revit MEP for Ductwork Modelling and Ductwork Fabrication

Using Revit MEP for Ductwork Modelling and Ductwork Fabrication

Wednesday, February 8, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

Using Revit MEP for Ductwork Modelling and Ductwork Fabrication

Having been in the CAD architectural design field for some time now, I have had the opportunity and experience in working in building framing design and ductwork layout.  For a majority of my experience in this field, I have used a variety of CAD related programs including AutoCAD and Navisworks to do the work which is necessary to do in 3D or 4D views.  Revit is quickly becoming an industry standard in the architectural design field, and it is continually upgrading itself to accomodate all of the areas necessary for architectural drafters and designers to accomplish their needs.  Several of the architectural firms I have worked for were in the initial stages of adopting this program, and its use will be widespread in the near future.

Revit is a useful tool in the AEC industry since it was introduced. It has effectively enabled organisations to minimise the possible on-site concerns and helped to lower the overall project cost.  Revit MEP covers of all of the main services including ductwork modelling which is the subject of this particular article and specifically how it is used for modelling and how it is now being used for fabrication.

Focusing firstly on ductwork as a discipline, ductwork is a core feature of MEP design projects as it facilitates heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) for regulating the air flow and to maintain acceptable indoor air quality as well as thermal comfort.

Duct work essentially comes in three types of shape – circular, elliptical and rectangular and they are designed to be fitted at varied elevation levels.  Revit has provided an array of options in its latest update for design ductwork models, yet there are many challenges when modelling ductwork in Revit.  Ductwork is unique in design for each of the structures and all element expose different challenges while designing.  BIM services modellers must create ductwork models to accommodate customised frames, windows, fittings and complex routings.  Specific outlets are also required to be designed for ductwork to fit in the outlets as well as to leave adequate space for electrical and plumbing requirements.

As well as different shapes, ductwork has to modelled in different sizes as well, to suit the design requirements along with the factors such as flow of air and mode of discharge or exhaust.  An oversized duct may pose design challenges such as failing to accommodate the electrical and plumbing requirements and under sized duct may result in a serious design flaw and may not be able to hold the desired amount of air flow.  Ductwork modellers typically model to a high level of detail (LOD), typically at LOD 300 and increasingly at LOD 350.

Although it is only a component of MEP design, ductwork modelling does require expert inputs and precise layout plans to create a clash free duct network for building and engineering projects.  This can seamlessly accommodate plumbing and electrical lines without causing costly design changes at construction level.  Pre-Revit, the industry used AutoCAD MEP, as well as other specialist tools and add-ons such as CAD Duct to create ductwork models.  When Revit was introduced it had a number of shortfalls and incomplete areas for mechanical services and indeed for ductwork.  However later versions have addressed earlier shortfalls and the tool is at a stage where it can be used for detailed design to address the challenges and requirements detailed above but also for interfacing with fabrication level detail, which will be discussed further below.

As well as modelling capability, Revit also provides other advantages such as providing quantity take-offs at an early stage, which helps to avoid costly design changes in the later part of the design process and provides accurate quantities for ductwork, insulation and other materials.  Even though seamless ductwork models are prepared using Revit, the functionality of the design files across other platforms had remained limited.  For instance, when the ductwork model files designed in Revit had to be used for fabrication purposes on related software, due to its incompatibility on these softwares, the duct layouts had to be re-modelled leading to time delays and a more expensive fabrication process, resulting in fabrication errors which can have negative implications while assembling the ductwork.

To overcome the limitations for fabrication, Autodesk updated Revit features for ductwork modelling in its latest version – Revit 2017.  Revit 2017 now has tools to design duct fabrication which are included within the package.  This enables designers and modellers to create the ductwork models, layouts and designs for the entire project lifecycle, including fabrication teams.  The files which have wider compatibility for fabrication tools such as FABMEP help designers and modellers to design ductwork seamlessly over various platforms and save the project in a single file without affecting the actual design.  Historically, this level of interoperability has not been experienced from design, detailing and finally through to fabrication and in the future – facilities management.

In summary, Revit MEP is an established tool for ductwork modeling and it does address the core elements of a ductwork system and allow a reasonably sound set of design drawings to be issued.  The challenge for fabrication from Revit was always a concern and as briefly discussed, Autodesk have now started to address this and we are seeing fabrication interoperability at last.  Added to this is the fact that Revit is working more closely with fabrication tools in its own right and therefore the fabrication (manufacturing) industry is now starting adoption of Revit models in a way that has not previously been experienced.  The end game will surely mean accurate designs, delivered faster and therefore more efficiently – helping to reduce costs and improve timescales in the engineering and building industry.

Revit Families for Beginners

Revit Families for Beginners

Sunday, January 29, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

Revit Families for Beginners

Many fresh Revit technicians or architects who go through Revit training spend quite a lot of time in understanding the concepts behind developing BIM families.  Understanding the concepts and analyzing the role of Revit families in a particular project is very important.  Creating Revit content or families is vital for every BIM project, regardless of project size or complexity.

How to get there, is the question?  Let us talk about the concept and give beginners an idea of this essential part of BIM.

Revit family and content creation, is considered extremely important in the field of BIM.  Companies aim to develop families in order the maintain a seamless work flow within projects.  What are Revit families and why are they so important?

Basic Overview :
As discussed earlier, families constitute of elements with similar parameters which are the building blocks of a revit model.  Revit families can be simple or parametric in nature.  Parametric families are extremely important and sought after widely owing to its multiple advantages.  Families can be created from scratch depending on building requirements and later modified according to right project environment.

Types of Families:
Revit families can be categorized under Architectural , Structural, HVAC Electrical, Fire protection and Plumbing families.  Ceilings, doors, windows, furniture, fixtures, walls, curtain walls, etc., fall under Architectural Revit families.  Pipes, faucets, tubs, pots, toilets fall under Plumbing category while air diffusers and conduits are developed under HVAC and Electrical categories respectively.  You cannot modify or change the categories available within the Revit software but you can add types of families required.

There can be numerous variants within same family types.  These variants can have different dimensions, material specifications and parameters that differentiate each family variant from another one.  For example a kitchen faucet can have 3 variants, one can be small with a steel finish,  another can be a bit large with a porcelain finish, and one can be an oval shape with a tile finish.  Key concern is the parameter that is used and the values given to them.  The key point to note is that these four variations have the same set of parameters; however, the value of those parameters varies.  Parametric Revit families can be used within any project environment.

Changing or adding parameters is a tricky part.  All Revit modelers need to identify the difference between modifying parameters of family groups and individual families.

Interesting Career Prospects for Revit Practitioners

Interesting Career Prospects for Revit Practitioners

Sunday, January 22, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

Interesting Career Prospects for Revit Practitioners

With the building and construction industry worldwide moving towards using building information modelling (BIM) approach for designing, documentation, construction, and facility maintenance, proficiency in BIM tools and applications is becoming a sought-after skill in the modern AEC workforce.  Whilst there are several applications that enable BIM, Autodesk Revit is one of the powerful tools used by reputed architects, structural engineers, and MEP engineers worldwide.

Architectural, engineering, and construction management students and professionals proficient in Revit have a greater scope to succeed in the modern AEC industry compared to those who are just specialised in 2D CAD technologies.  As the crucial industry stakeholders worldwide push towards transitioning to smart BIM technologies, interesting prospects related to BIM jobs are poised to open up.  Autodesk certified candidates with medium to advanced level proficiency in executing Revit jobs can seek the following career advancement opportunities:

1. Revit Modeller (Architecture)
Candidates with 2 to 5 years of hands-on experience in working with Revit Architecture can enter architectural firms or design outsourcing firms as Revit Modellers (Architecture).  An important aspect of the profile will certainly include conversion of 2D/3D AutoCAD drawings/models into Revit BIM files and reusable Revit families. For this, the incumbents should be well versed in BIM concepts and an exposure to other related architectural tools (not necessarily BIM tools) including AutoCAD, Navisworks, and GRAPHISOFT ArchiCAD. Excellent visualisation skills and experience of working with diverse projects of simple to complex nature is invaluable.

2. Revit Modeller (MEP / HVAC)
Professionals having mid-level experience of using Revit MEP for modelling MEP and HVAC systems can take the opportunity to work as Revit Modeller (MEP / HVAC) for building systems design consultants or MEP design outsourcing firms.  For the incumbent to be successful in this role, he/she should have an in-depth know-how of HVAC and mechanical services systems generally adopted in commercial, residential and mixed-use facilities.  As far as software proficiency is concerned, barring Revit MEP the candidate should ideally have exposure to modelling in applications, such as CADDuct and CADMEP+.

3. Project Manager (Revit)
Project Manager (Revit) would be an ideal profile for Revit practitioners with 5 – 10 years of experience in implementing BIM standards using the Revit platform.  The role requires coordination with the client’s design team, setting BIM execution plans, and distributing individual/federated BIM models to the production team using Revit worksharing capabilities.  He/she would need to train the project team on client’s BIM standards whilst keeping a tight control on the Revit BIM model by overseeing day-to-day tasks.  A crucial aspect of this profile would demand prompt resolution of any technical issues related to the master model.  Besides Revit, an in-depth understanding of clash detection tools, such as Navisworks proves beneficial.

4. Revit Coordinator
The Revit Coordinator position is ideal for a candidate having more than 5 years of hands-on experience of working with popular CAD and BIM applications.  His/her key role is to control and monitor design information exchange between clients and project team members using face-to-face and virtual BIM coordination meetings.  Familiarity with multidisciplinary design projects (residential, commercial, and mixed-use) is important along with an ability to conduct quality reviews of federated models and construction documentation.  He/she has the responsibility of understanding the BIM objectives of the client and maintaining the BIM model’s integrity to meet the required design and regulatory standards.

CAD to BIM Conversion

CAD to BIM Conversion

Saturday, January 14, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

CAD to BIM Conversion

Converting CAD drawings to BIM is an important process for any design firm.  CAD to BIM usually means AutoCAD models are converted to Revit 3D models.  These conversions are not necessarily easy and can often take a bit of work to complete correctly and precisely.  BIM actually means Building Information Modeling which produces 3D ,4D or 5D Building Information Models with high level detailing and complexities using software like Revit, ArchiCAD etc.  These models can be further utilized to get a better estimation of materials for construction purposes. How can these drawings be converted?  Why should this be converted?  Let’s talk a bit on that.

Building Information Modeling has been in the CAD Industry for about a decade.  Prior to BIM, CAD Drafting was widely used to create drawings, plans and construction drawings.  Now a lot of builders are shifting to re-construction of buildings according to updated standards and technology like Green Building, Energy Analysis etc.  So it is vital to have the CAD plans convert to models for further utilization.  This gave birth to CAD to BIM Conversion.


The best software which is mostly chosen for conversion is Revit.  This software provides most accurate 3D modeling with high quality construction documentation which makes these tasks smooth for engineers, contractors, modelers and many other people involved in the project.  Thus, for conversion, the basic input we require are 2D CAD design files or drawing files.  To further continue with conversion we require a PC with moderate configuration to run Revit, and having Revit software installed.  The final output will be in the form of 3D model along with brief documentation.

Following Steps must be effectively followed for CAD to BIM conversion:

1. The very first step is to open Revit software and import CAD based drawing files drafted in AutoCAD into Revit.  A very important thing to be kept in mind while importing is that 2D drawing files must be imported by elevation level in Revit.

2. For importing one must go in the import menu and click insert drawing file.  Then, by giving the path of location of CAD drawing, it will successfully import the 2D cad drawings into Revit.

3. The next step after importing is to draw building components like walls, doors, windows, roofs etc. over imported 2D cad drawing.

4. We can easily find the building components which are already present in Revit families by default.  One can also create customized families in Revit as per client’s specifications.

In this way 3D BIM model can be easily created from 2D CAD drawings.


1. A BIM model provides a high level of construction documentation which is very useful at the time of construction for contractors and structural engineers at site.  CAD based designing does not usually provide such kind of documentation as a result of it being too much work and time to create this documentation.  Revit is simplified modeling in many ways.

2. For 3D BIM models created in Revit, a number of users can work in a single file.  In AutoCAD only a single user can access and work at a time.

3. Revit provides the ability of storing all project data in a single file.  In AutoCAD there can be multiple files for a single project.

Thus BIM can be considered the most organized and quicker process for moving towards construction faster.

Tesla CAD Outsourcing is an leading engineering firm offering CAD services including CAD Drafting, Construction Drawings, 3D Modeling Services,Architectural 3D Rendering and BIM Services to all over the world.