Wednesday, April 11, 2018

What's New in Revit 2019

It's a teaser blog title. I have no idea what is in Revit 2019, or rather until I read THIS POST.

I'm looking forward to exploring the new features myself once I actually have time to download it.

As for not knowing what was coming like in the past. My access to their review program was screwed up last spring/summer and I haven't been able to log into the site ever since. I had someone looking in to it but their tech support efforts...well suffice it to write I haven't been able to log in. Bummer...

I hope you, dear reader, enjoy the new features in Revit 2019. I, like many of you, will get to experience them with fresh eyes!

Oh, Revit 2018.3 was released the other day too so look out for that update. As always, go slow with installation and rolling it out...make sure your existing projects are in a position to tolerate the potential for some issues before upgrading any projects. I wish you pleasant upgrades.

Double oh, a little birdie told me Paul Aubin and Bill Debevc (okay Bill told me) are going to do a podcast on the new features. Also Paul has a Lynda video on the new features.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Copy Monitor - A Different Way?

Morning musing...

It's my observation that there is a prevailing mostly ambivalent attitude toward the Copy/Monitor (C/M) features. I've said before that I think the order of the tabs in the Options dialog are based on the likelihood that we'll use them. Specifically they are listed left to right: Levels, Grids, Columns, Walls and Floors.

C/M isn't hard to use but once it is in play we've got some new rules and warnings to contend with. The process depends on us identifying the elements we want to live in the C/M system. I understand the logic of that choice. Revit asks us to tell it what is important enough to us to engage the system.

Perhaps we need a completely different way to attack the problem? One that doesn't require the advance work. One that is more a reaction to work as it is created and shared, that merely exists.

I wonder if it would be more betterer if we could run a Level or Grid check as a process. The application would compare elements and compile a report, observations and differences. It could be something we read afterward or presented in a dialog for immediate action.

For example, it could just start with: "Hey Steve, there are 27 grids in your model and 30 in theirs. You should look at them." Take it slightly deeper, "Hey Steve, there are three grids that share the same name but are not in the same location."

Does it matter that they used to be in the same location and they aren't now? The application would have to start storing records for past results to do that but it could be useful to determine when or how things got off track. The rules or conditions that are interesting need to be defined.

This sort of element review and comparison doesn't have to be limited to the five that Copy/Monitor were designed for originally (overlooking the MEP elements that have been added in some fashion). It still requires two or more elements though; mine, yours and theirs. The redundancy is annoying but it does provide us with flexibility within our own models.

I imagine much of what I'm describing (and more) is possible via the API and Dynamo. It just needs someone to decide it is an interesting enough thing to do.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Five Minutes with Shape Editing a Bay Roof

I posted this screencast in response to a thread at the Autodesk Forums. Figured I might as well share it here too. I used shape editing to create the bay roof condition shown in this image.


It's based on an image of a DWG roof plan that was shared in the original post in the discussion. The sketches of the main and bay roofs look like the following image. It also shows the sketched Split Line elements I added to make raising the bay ridge up easy.


Here's the screencast I created to post at the forums.


FWIW, I made the main roof partially transparent so I could see the walls more easily. In the video I commented about using the Two Cut Plumb setting with a 12" value. The Shape Editing disables that for the bay roof but it did start out with that setting in play so it all worked out as I intended even though I was confused about it at the time.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Sketching Tangent Lines

A post based on my responses at the Autodesk Forum: Tangent Circle to Tangent Circle.

It could be easier...

I see Revit behaving this way, they regard the first point as ineligible to being tangent because it depends on the bearing of the line, With that assumption or bias, the first point is necessary to make a tangent condition possible. I can easily snap to a location on the circle (a pulley for example) that couldn't be tangent to the next pulley.

AutoCAD deals with this in a clever fashion (when we invoke the tangent snap) by fixing (changing) the first point to be tangent after the second point is placed. If we aren't careful with our second pick point (snap tangent too) the tangent line might end up on the opposite side of the pulley.

In contrast, Revit handles it naively, because it regards our first point as ineligible to tangents because it isn't considering this particular end result: "I want to draw a line tangent to two circles". AutoCAD appears to know this by virtue of snapping tangent for the first point so it can adjust the final bearing, and attachment to the circle, of the line.

To get around this naiveté, I place the first point on the pulley where it looks like it can be tangent, to my eye. The second point snaps to tangent with the icon. I return to the first point and grip/drag it away and back to let the snap icon appear, to fix it for tangent, just to see if I was close. If my guess wasn't accurate, it is now.

After reading a reply to my comments I did a quick sketch in AutoCAD and then did the same sketch in Revit using the same pulley sizes and offset from one another (see Footnote). The tangent lines have the same x/y properties for start and end as the AutoCAD version, that I made using its snap tangent.

This is the native DWG sketch and properties screen captures for each element.


This is same information but for the Revit drafting view exported to DWG. When I create an External Reference of the exported Revit drafting view it lands right on top of the native sketch. If you look really closely you'll see a value is slightly different in the Revit version. I think that might be my fault, sketching. Regardless, I think close enough is fair.


Footnote: Regarding a drafting view aligning with a DWG file after export: It might not be obvious but drafting views have an origin. To test that claim link a DWG, that has a marker at the WCS origin, into one and you'll see where the origin is. I did that before I did any sketching so I'd know how to place the pulleys in the same place. That made it possible to compare the tangent lines after exporting it to DWG.

Also the Start and End X/Y values are reversed. That's either just how Revit interprets the vector of each line segment or it's because of the direction I chose to sketch them in Revit. In AutoCAD I started at the smaller pulley. I didn't make sure to sketch in the same way in Revit, sloppy scientist.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Dimension Inline and Dynamo

(Edit: If you download and apply an update to his Rhythm package after 1/17/2018 you'll have this node too)

From time to time I've heard people ask about putting the dimension value on the line (inline) instead of above the dimension line the way Revit prefers. The only way we can do it within Revit is to manually grip and drag the dimension value down to the line.

More recently I read a thread at the Autodesk Forum asking about this. The premise in their situation is that it is a significant roadblock to using Revit for one of their client's projects, it doesn't meet their drawing standard unless the dimensions are inline.

I was trading messages with Aaron Maller and mentioned it to him. Aaron was trading messages with John Pierson and a few minutes later I learned it is possible with Dynamo and a custom node. This morning he shared this with me, as well as replying to the thread. Nicely done John! We are sooo connected these days.