Thursday, October 25, 2007

Egress - Path of Travel - Uh oh...

Of all the stuff I've done over the last couple years the Egress/Path of Travel family has to be the biggest hit. It has generated more email requests than anything else. I'm glad I've managed to do something useful!! If only I charged money for it! 8-)

So I'm writing to let anyone who has actually used it that there is a bug present in Revit right now that messes it up. The little dot and arrow at the end of the line-based segment won't print as filled in the latest build of Revit. If it doesn't work in earlier builds no one has said so and I can't test it on any earlier builds now either. Don't look back...keep moving build...well in this case it is a slight step backward.

The "fix" according to Revit Support staff is to print the views that these are used in using "Raster" instead of "Vector". Phew...that was close, I thought I was going to have to come up with a different strategy for those little guys.

Hopefully the bug will be fixed in a future build. For what it is worth, this most likely affects any nested annotation symbol that uses a filled region.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Shaft Opening and Foundation Slabs - Just Not Fair

If you are familiar with the tool found on the Modelling menu > Opening > Shaft Opening you have probably become as fond of it as I have. If you are not, it is a specific tool that will cut any floor, ceiling and/or roof it comes into contact with. Just sketch the shape the opening should have, define it's top and bottom constraint as well as any offset you need and Finish the Sketch.

You now have one element that creates a nicely coordinated shaft for the entire vertical height required. If the shape changes you must create another shaft opening for that, still less work than editing floor, ceiling and roof sketches all afternoon.

As a bonus you can also define Symbolic Linework while in sketch mode. This can be the proverbial "X" in your HVAC chase or the Yin/Yang symbol in a circular pipe chase. It can even be the sketch of an elevator.

To make it even better they just need to let us import a detail component and place it while in sketch mode so we don't have to draw the elevator but once or just use a nested dwg in the detail component...but I digress...the unfair bit.

There are Floor and Slab elements and they are the essentially the same but there is also a Foundation Slab and it is different, at least when it comes to the Opening Shaft. On floors and slabs it works, on Foundation Slabs they don't and that's just not fair! Even these need holes cut in them for elevator shaft pits, sump pits etc.

The solution is to use the other option on the same set of tools, Modelling menu > Opening > Opening by Face.

Here are couple images of shaft openings used less conventionally. First is the finished slab that shows using them (shaft openings) to create true holes in a slab so that the floor slab reports actual volume without using Join Geometry between columns and floors. Also showing how the slab edge plan was altered.

This image depicts the shaft openings overlaid on the floors. A bit easier managing a slab edge alteration instead of editing multiple floor sketches by just using one shaft opening.

If you are in a shaft binge mode you can review this earlier POST.

Added THIS POST to the HOK CAD Solutions blog.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Revit MEP - Fittings Get Unresponsive

If your plumbing fittings fail to adjust their size properly when you place them or when you trim or otherwise connect pipe it is time to get suspicious about the path for your Lookup Tables. Revit installs fitting lookup files that match the name of each fitting supplied in a folder called "Lookup Tables" in your content folder location. Each file is a comma delimited text file which means the information is separated by commas and the file extension is .csv.

For stand alone installations the default location is:

C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Autodesk\RME 2008\LookupTables

Network installations could be anywhere from the "D-Z drive" unfortunately.

Regardless this location is stored in your Revit.ini file located here (default installation location):

C:\Program Files\Revit MEP 2008\Program

If the actual location and the one stored in Revit.ini are different then your fittings will not resize graphically until they match. You'll need to close and restart Revit to get it to re-read the .ini file.

Last, there is no place within the Revit user interface to check or alter this location which I think ought to be changed and included within the Mechanical Settings dialog in the same way the Pipe Sizes.xml location is presented.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Revit MEP Local User Group - Los Angeles

Passed along to me by Jay Holland a new user group focused on the MEP side of life is forming to serve the greater Los Angeles area.

This is their inaugural meeting info:
Thursday – October 11th 2007, from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM

Arup, Inc.
12777 W. Jefferson Blvd.
Suite 200
Los Angeles, CA 90066
Tel: 310-578-4182

If you live in this area please find time to lend your support by attending and if possible contributing to presentations! I wish the group success!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Autodesk University Update

This is the current schedule for the labs I'm doing at AU 2007 this year.

Making Content for Revit® Architecture - Intermediate
Date: Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Time: 10:00 am

Making Content for Revit® Architecture - Basics
Date: Thursday, November 29, 2007
Time: 10:00 am

Making Content for Revit® Architecture - Intermediate
Date: Thursday, November 29, 2007
Time: 01:00 pm

While the concepts are not new these labs will be, not simply a re-tooling of what I did previously. They are fully booked at this time. There are 40 computers in a lab and 80 seats and these fill up fast unfortunately.

I'm pleased to be nearly certain that Steven Campbell will be attending and able to participate as a co-presenter during these labs. Steven has been making content perhaps longer than anyone except for a certain David C. and is a valued part of the Autodesk Revit team. I look forward to his contributions.

Please remember the classes are for basic and intermediate students, regardless of the terminology and information present on the AU website. If you are registered for any of these labs and don't fit in either of these two categories as a Revit Family editor because you are a more advanced editor consider relinquishing your seat so a real beginner or intermediate user can have it, they'll thank you for the chance I'm sure.

Notice that an intermediate class appears before the basic class. This happened because a second session was inserted for the intermediate class due to demand. There are only so many spots for a repeat and it ended up in front of the basic class. If you are attending the first intermediate session and were hoping to get the basics first, I'm sorry but it didn't work out that way.

With the lack of advanced topics for the family editor in my class sessions I proposed a AU Unplugged session for Advanced Concepts and the Family Editor. This new feature at AU is available for anyone to suggest and, if selected, host a discussion. I requested the end of the day on Wednesday, not knowing if that makes good sense or not since there is so much to do and take in at AU already. If anyone has suggested a similar session let's merge our thoughts so that we get a better chance of success. I'm not as interested in preaching advanced concepts as being a moderator in a discussion among fellow Revit users to foster discussion, ideas and answer questions.

If you are fortunate enough to attend Autodesk University this year I look forward to having an opportunity to meet you and learn of your successes and perhaps failures with Revit! Till then!


Remember Matt Dillon has a lecture on the Family Editor as well and it is:
All in the Family: Creating Parametric Parts in Revit® Architecture
Date: Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Time: 3:00 pm

Because his is a lecture format there should little if any issues regarding getting to attend.