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Friday, November 17, 2006

Making Spaces Work For You - In REVIT

It only makes sense that my first "How To" tip in Revit be on spaces. Especially since the current issue of AUGI World features an article by yours truly on Making Spaces Work For You in ADT.

Spaces in Revit are called Rooms. They work similarly to ADT with a few exceptions. Rooms in Revit define the use of the space. They are simple enough to define. You begin by clicking on Room on the Basic tab of the Design Bar. Then as you roll over your plan you will see the room limits highlighted by enclosed walls. On the Options bar you have the option to place the Room Tag as you are defining the rooms. You also have options to set the upper limits of the room, the rotation of the tag, and naming the room.

Once the rooms are defined, you have a couple of additional options to define the extents of each room. First, on the Room and Area tab of the design bar, you can use the Room Separation tool to draw lines to define the extents of the room. This is useful when you have an open area that is divided up into separate spaces. As you draw room separations, the rooms that are already defined will be updated to extend to the room separation lines. The area outside of the room separation line will not be part of any rooms. You can use the Room tool to define the new room that was created by the room separation tool. So like ADT, you can use either walls or lines to define the extents of your rooms.

You also have the ability to select on an individual wall and go into the properties to tell it not to use this particular wall as a room boundary. This will be useful when working on a restroom with toilet stalls. You will want to set the toilet partitions not to act as a room boundary. Simply uncheck the box in the options dialog box next to Room Bounding. If you make this change after the spaces are created you will get a warning dialog box because you will have two spaces that will be overlapping each other. In the warning dialog box click on Delete Rooms and one room will be deleted, leaving the new combined room.

Rooms can be used to create schedules like square footage schedules or room finish schedules. You can also use Color Fills to create a colored floor plan for a graphical representation of the room extents.

Rooms are similar to Spaces in ADT. They contain the information of the Room. With rooms you can define usage, finish materials, calculate square footage or volume information, or simply use them to insert your room tags.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Move over ADT... Make room for Revit

I have had some time this week to dive deep into Revit. I was hesitant in the beginning like many are, but I just finished my first project. As an ADT user for years, I found Revit fairly easy to pick up as long as I kept one thought in mind-- forget what you know about CAD. I know that goes against the name of this blog, but it is necessary to understand how Revit works. I have been promising people that I would extend this blog to include Revit, and now is the time.

The basic commands in Revit work similarly to ADT. The walls clean up when joined, doors and windows can be inserted into walls, and there is a line command that you can use by picking a start point and an end point. That, however, is where the similarities end.

I was serious when I said to forget what you know about CAD. I forced myself to do this as I was learning this program. When I caught myself trying to do something in the way I would in ADT, I quickly became frustrated. I believe if I had never learned ADT, I would have been able to pick Revit up without a hitch. Once I got into it, I started enjoying it more and more. Looking back at my first project, although it was small, I can see how you can make design decisions at an early stage and see the effects of that decision in multiple views.

In the past I have had the attitude of, "well, ADT can do that too." Yes, ADT can do much of what Revit does. But you have to work to make it do it. The coordination of drawings, or views as Revit calls them, is what impressed me the most. I never had to worry about updating xrefs or schedules, or about making sure that I had the right callout on my elevations.

I do not want to run any of my ADT users away. I will continue writing about ADT, but expect to see me writing more and more about Revit.

Below are several images of my first Revit project. I am impressed, even if nobody else is.