Vote for AU 2017 Class Proposals – Vote Now!

Looking for ways to automate your installations and customization within Revit or AutoCAD products? Wish you could control the project launch process?  Need to maintain Revit project versions without accidental upgrades?  Want to customize Revit deployments by studio, delivery group, or Office?  Wish you could ensure that all project team members were on the same build and or service pack?  Perhaps you just need to master Revit Roofs and would like to explore more than 35 different roof types and how to create them in Revit? I’ve submitted a few classes that will interest you. Vote Now, then attend in November!

  • AutoCAD Architecture Automation Anywhere!
  • Automating and Customizing Revit Deployments for the DIY Enthusiast
  • Revit Project Launch Scripting to Standardize All Studios
  • Conquer Revit Roofs Like a Ninja

http://au.autodesk.com/speaker-resource-center/call-for-proposals/voting

DIMENSION STANDARDS TOOLS

DIMENSION STANDARDS TOOLS

I’m bringing some more standards tools to you today. A quick copy and adjust of the original text tools graph resulted in three tools for dimension styles. The first allows the user to select a dimension type and then selects all elements in the current project that use that style. The elements are selected in Revit, so the user can use the type selector to change the type.

3 tools image
3 tools in One Graph

The second tool reports all dimension types and writes them to the chosen excel file in a worksheet named dimensions after the category chosen.

Dimension report image
Reporting Dims to Excel

The third tool allows the user to choose a dimension type and change the elements selected by the “type” filter and change their family type to the desired type within Dynamo.

Here is a the complete screen capture of the 3 tool graph.

3 tools image 2
3 Dimension Tools for Dynamo

and a download BTC_DIM_STYLE_FIX

Cumulative Area and AutoCAD Hatches

Cumulative Area and AutoCAD Hatches

I was asked this question recently:

I noticed the “cumulative area” when attempting to add up SF numbers from multiple polygons. Please see the two images below. Why can I select 4/5 polygons and have it add them in the cumulative area space (Shown in Image 1) but when I select the 5th area the cumulative area disappears (Shown in Image 2)? Do you know why this occurs?

Screen Capture 1
Image 1
Screen Capture
Screen Capture 2

I suspected that there was a boundary issue, that prevented the hatch from calculating the area.  This can occur when a polyline boundary overlaps itself before its closed.  Since a hatch can generate a new boundary, I felt that was the easiest way to resolve the problem.  Here is my response:

The problem exists with the last hatch area. If you select it by itself, it displays no Area. I suspect that the boundary is probably overlapping itself. It’s not related to the number of hatches chosen, it’s actually that hatch by itself. To fix it, I did this:

1.) Unfreeze the layer containing the hatch, and make it current.
2.) Isolate that layer so only the hatch objects are visible. You can use layiso to isolate the layer containing the hatch.

Screen Cap 3
Image 3

3.) Now that the hatch is visible and isolated, select the problem hatch, right click and choose generate boundary.

Screen Capture 4
Image 4

4.) Once the new boundary is created, you can delete the original hatch.
5.) Use boundary hatch to place a new hatch into the generated boundary, to match existing hatches already created, you can use match properties.

Screen Capture 5
Image 5

 

Viola problem solved.

Dynamo Barrel Vault Brace 04

Today, we’ll make one more adaptive component family.  We’ll do this one by opening the central model and isolating the Barrel Vault Trusses…actually, we’ll isolate two of them since they are identical throughout the length of the space and our aim is to use dynamo to generate the braces used to stiffen the roof truss system.

If you are just joining this series, take a moment to view the previous 3 posts:

If you didn’t do the homework from the last session, you can download the family created here:

4 Point AC Brace

Create the AC Family for Brace Placement:

  • Open the Central model and activate a 3D isometric view
  • Use the temporary isolate to isolate two  of the barrell vault trusses adjacent to each other

IsolatedTruss

  • Export the geometry to DWG format

Export

  • Keep the temporary mode active during the export

temporary

The above steps are useful to reuse Revit geometry from a project context when you intend to model a component in the family editor.  I’ve done the export for you, you’ll find the 3D cad file at this link.

3D CAD Truss

  • New Family – Generic Model Adaptive

NewFamily

  • Click the insert ribbon and choose import cad formats dwg and locate the halltec_main_truss drawing that you just downloaded.

ImportCAD

  • Bring it in using Origin to Origin
  • Toggle off the “Do Not Select Pinned Objects” control

SelectionPin

  • Select the Cad import and move it to the origin of the family.
  • Choose the snap point as the inside face of the truss and align with the Center Front/Back reference plane in your family.

movetoorigin

  • Pin the dwg file
  • Click the Center Front/Back reference plane, hold the CTRL key down while you drag a copy to align with the other inside face of the adjacent truss in a top down or plan view.

CopyRefPlane

  • Reselect the Center Front/Back Ref Plane to activate it as a work plane

Activate WorkPlane

  • Switch to the front elevation view
  • Add Reference planes as snap intersections for the splines you will draw

RefPlanesPickPoints

  • Click the Spline through points tool and draw a 3 pt spline using the intersection and midpoint snaps along the top chord of the truss while the Center Front/Back reference plane is the active workplane

SplineTrace

  • Repeat the sketch process for the bottom chord while the Center Front/Back reference plane is the active work plane.

drawchordsketch

  • Switch to the 3D view and window select the two splines and associated points.
  • Use the filter tool to eliminate any other elements you might select using the window method.

rcp

  • Once the splines and points are selected, copy them using the end points of the ref planes in a top down 3D view.
  • Your family should look similar to the image below.

chords complete

  • Open your 4 Point AC Brace family and load it into this placement family.
  • Save your family as Adaptive Component Placement.rfa

 

We’re finally ready for Dynamo. That’s all for this post. See you next time as we begin to create the Dynamo graph.

Update to Chainlink Fence (Railing)

Update to Chainlink Fence (Railing)

I’ve updated the Chainlink as Railing example to utilize the latest railing styles and modified the construction to allow for displaying in a site view with x’s as the post.  I’ve also added a material that renders as chain link.  So now you get the easy creation method of the rail object, with surface patterns, render material, and you can control visibility in your site view to show as a traditional linework.  Since its a railing, it will also allow curves.Here is a site view of the “fence” in action:

Here is an elevation view in realistic mode:

Here is an elevation “hidden line” view showing the surface pattern:

Here is a rendered view:

Here is how it is constructed.

Continuous Chain Link Fence_2014

 

Revit Buildchecker Version 9 for 2015 Products

I updated this tool last year, but didn’t upload it to the blog.
 RBCv9
Sorry folks, here is a copy that works with products 2008 through 2015.
ACA: Double Click Schedule Table to Update

ACA: Double Click Schedule Table to Update

Of course you can always set an AutoCAD Architecture Schedule Table to update automatically, but when you choose to leave that property setting set to no, it would be nice to be able to double click the table and have it update, rather than simply show the properties.  Since the updateschedulenow command is not directly available in the cui editor (it didnt appear in searches using schedule, or update keywords), you’ll have to follow these directions to create a double click behavior after creating a custom custom command.  Here are the steps:

  1. Access the CUI editor – Type cui and hit the enter key.
  1. Choose the Main CUI – Use the selector to choose the main cui file
  1. Create a new double click action – Right Click on the Double Click Actions Node and choose Add new double click action
  1. Name it what you want, I named mine Schedules.
  1. Create your new command, by clicking on the star icon as shown in the image below.
  1. You will get the skeleton of a command created automatically as shown in the image below.
  1. Name your command Update Schedule Now – also add a description, the command display name and add the following macro:  ^C^C_ScheduleUpdateNow   You can select the OOTB icon from the selection provided as shown in the image below. It is named RCDATA_SCHEDULE_TABLE_UPDATE
  1. Now drag your new command to the Double Click Action and drop it on top of the node.
  1. Close the CUI editor to complete this task and update your main CUI with the new tool.
Flush your Undo – AutoCAD

Flush your Undo – AutoCAD

As I roll out the 2014 versions of Building Design Premium, a designer sent me the following warning message from AutoCAD:

Warning! The undo file length is 1569321556 bytes.  Undo will be automatically disabled at 1750000000 bytes to prevent overflow…

Although I’m not sure what an UNDO Overflow would look like, rather than soil the carpets with all those abandoned and rolled back activities, I decided to investigate further.  I recommended that the designer saveas to ensure no data was lost and then began an investigation.

The solution:

  1. Use Saveas to write the file back to the harddrive or network location in case of a potential fatal error.
  2. Clear out the temp folder – Use %temp% in the file dialog and delete files found.
  3. Flush the Undo register – Type Undo – C – All

For more info refer to this Autodesk technical reference.

Hatch Origins to the Rescue

Problem:   A designer calls and asks for a new hatch pattern for gravel.  Further inspection reveals that the standard gravel pattern was used, but when viewed it looks like many random intersecting lines rather than the rounded gravel pattern they were expecting.
Solution:  Pick the hatch pattern and use the edit hatch command. Pick a new origin point close to the hatch object. Click ok and watch your hatch magically restore itself.
Sometimes, hatch patterns do not display correctly when their origin point is a large distance away from the hatch itself. This occurs frequently in metric – imperial conversions.
Note: Watch out for masonry patterns. Ensure your new origin displays the correct masonry coursing.

Exploded Attribute Text will not be visible when referenced

Remember to check your “Insert” options when bringing in blocks with attributes. You NEVER want to insert those type of blocks with the “Explode” option still toggled on.  Nevertheless, this is a frequent hurdle for designers who are not as familiar with attributes as they SHOULD be.What is confusing for designers is the fact that they can see the text and think it is a value, but it is typically the attribute tag they are seeing.  The typical steps they take to resolve before requesting assistance include:

  • They double check the entity layer, and find it on a plotting layer
  • They check the reference layer and find that it is thawed, on, and plottable.
  • It is visible in the drawing (xref file) where it is placed, but when that dwg is externally referenced into another file, the text values do not show.

Quick Fix:  Copy the tag name to the “default” value text box when editing the attribute definitions, then cut the definitions to the clipboard and reinsert using “Paste” as block.  Save your file, reload the xref, and your text will magically appear.

Best Practice:  Understand the difference between simple text/mtext and attributed blocks. Ensure that you don’t inadvertantly leave the “explode on insertion” option toggled on in the Insert block dialog box.