Showing posts with label Acquire Coordinates. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Acquire Coordinates. Show all posts

Friday, July 24, 2020

Revit 2021.1 Reset Shared Coordinates and Acknowledge Acquire Coordinates

I saw that Daniel Stine and Autodesk both wrote about the new point release for 2021. Daniel mentioned my past post about resetting shared coordinates because the latest update includes a new feature dedicated to that task.

I also wrote about Acquire Coordinates not rewarding us for successfully completing the task and they granted that wish too.

One of my post's was written in 2012, only eight years to get my wish. Glad I'm pretty patient.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Reset Shared Coordinates Update

During April 2012 I wrote about using a separate file as a diversionary tactic to allow us to reacquire coordinates from a model we used Acquire Coordinates on before; now that it has changed and no longer lines up with our own work.

In the years since that post Revit seems to have decided it should remember more than one file has had the Acquire Coordinates tool used on it. Revit used to be monogamous but that's no longer true.

The reset process is still necessary but an extra step is required now: we must deliberately disable the link's Shared Site setting first.

Usually it is necessary to move the linked file to align with ours and so its new position can be reacquired. If the setting isn't disabled first it will trigger Revit's desire to change the Shared Coordinate system of the link. Keep in mind that Acquire Coordinates is a pull transaction but moving a file that is sharing coordinates causes Revit to think it must push that change out to the related file. If that's what is really needed then consider using Publish Coordinates instead.

Select the linked file and in the Properties Palette click the Shared Site button (by default says Internal unless someone has changed the name). In the Choose Site dialog that appears click the radio button for Do not share site of selected instance.

It should say <Not Shared> like in the image above after choosing that option. It should be possible to move the linked file into the desired position so it lines up with our model correctly again. If it works correctly you won't get a warning to save the changes to the link nor will you get prompted to do so when you save the file.

It is now possible to link a Reset File to use the Acquire Coordinates on. As soon as that is done successfully the original linked file can be used to Acquire Coordinates again, from it instead.

If the disabling step was not taken we'd find that Revit remembers it has a shared coordinate relationship with both files, the original link and the reset file. Examining properties for both linked files would reveal a Shared Site setting in play (Internal) for both.

However, Shared Coordinates and its Survey Point only acts according to the last file Acquire Coordinates was used on regardless how many files Revit is keeping track of. Trying to use Acquire Coordinates on either file in this condition will just generate this warning.

It's almost as if Revit is treating using Acquire Coordinates like a marriage and keeping a record of each marriage, regardless how many divorces the file goes through. I'd recommend it moves on, focus only on the active marriage and make that work.

To recap - if you find your shared coordinate relationship has failed you'll want a divorce. Then you'll fall for someone else quickly, on a rebound, only to discover that your previous love was the best. Just remember you need to get a lawyer involved to disable your first marriage before you start your rebound. This way you'll legally be able to get married again when you come to your senses.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Multi-Discipline Shared Coordinates

In the past I've written that using or invoking Shared Coordinates is not required to keep project files aligned with each other. It only becomes an issue or necessary when each discipline's files are expected to align with models that are produced with software other than Revit and then viewed with other software like Navisworks.

It's my observation that the most common reason for invoking shared coordinates is trying to orient models with the site conditions. Civil and survey data doesn't come from Revit so that practically guarantees that the architectural model will need to deal with shared coordinates. It's only slightly less guaranteed that the other trades have to deal with it.

I briefly dealt with (a short summary) the inter-disciplinary relationship before in the second of these TWO POSTS and it's reasonable advice until the architecture team has to move their model again, relative to the site model. The Master Site and Building Model linked file strategy I prefer becomes tedious when the building has to be relocated; tedious more so for the other trades remaining aligned with the architecture model that is.

The root issue for this tediousness is the Acquire Coordinates tool. Once the trades use it on the architectural linked model any changes to the building location don't propagate to the trade's models well. The position of the architectural model shifts being respectful of the shared coordinate relationship instead of ignoring that and remaining in the same position based on the Project Origin, the way it was linked to begin with.

Coping with this tediousness, we can fix the alignment of models after the building has been moved by taking these steps:
  • Remove the architectural link
  • Reset shared coordinates
  • Link the architectural file again
  • Use Acquire Coordinates again
Alternatively the trades can avoid using the Acquire Coordinates tool in the first place. I did write about this in another POST before. It is a long post, and mostly words, so I'll take another run at describing it here with some images too.

The most important thing to do is mark a known location in the architectural model so the trades can adjust the location of their own Survey Point and then use the Specify Coordinates at Point (SCaP) tool. By known I mean, the North/South and East/West coordinates based on the survey data.

When the architecture model is relocated on the site the new Survey Point information needs to be captured to pass along to the team. In the images that follow I've used the same model (Tiny House) I used in the posts I provided links for at the beginning of the third paragraph.

In the following image we see a first pass at the location of Tiny House A. This image is taken from within the Tiny House A model after having used Publish Coordinates on it from within the Master Site model. In Tiny House A I opened the Location Weather and Site dialog to capture the rotation of the model (wrote it down). The coordinates I'm using are based on coordinates defined or determined in the survey by looking at the corner of the property boundary. In this example I made them up so the coordinate values were easy to remember.

Imagine now that the HVAC designer has already linked the architectural model into their own project using positioning option: Auto - Origin to Origin and started working.

The reference plane cross-hairs you can see under the Survey Point in the image that follows are in the architectural model. That's what I used to mark the corner of the survey's property boundary so I'd be able to tell the HVAC designer where that location is. Yes, I linked the Master Site model into the architectural model so I could see that location to mark it.

Earlier while preparing to start work they moved their Survey Point (un-clipped) to the intersection of my reference planes. Then using the coordinate values and rotation information I also sent them they use the SCaP tool to define the shared coordinate relationship it should have relative to site and the building (see following image).

In this case we also need to enter the elevation of 20'-0" because the building has been raised that much in the site model. Keep in mind that we will find that the building and HVAC model both are still at the project elevation of 0'-0". The shared coordinate relationship is where this elevation is defined.

Now we need to imagine that something caused the architecture team to decide the building must be in a different location. The model was moved in the Master Site file and its new location saved when prompted. Now I've opened up the Tiny House model again and I can see where the Tiny House is. I capture the rotation values like I did before. I moved the Survey Point (un-clipped) even though it wasn't necessary. I do need to move the reference planes to mark where the common benchmark is located now.

I've posted the revised building model for the HVAC designer and sent them the new rotation information. The coordinates of the benchmark remain the same...the site hasn't changed after all, just the building's location relative to the site. Using SCaP they enter the new information after moving the Survey Point (un-clipped) to the intersection of the reference planes.

From all three models (architecture, HVAC and site), I've exported NWC files from Revit for use in Navisworks to see how they line up. In the first design iteration they were all on the other side of the site and in this image I can see they (building and HVAC) have moved together to the new location. I've hidden the wall and roof so the duct is visible. The green sub-region is just to mark the property boundary.

If the design requires the building to be moved again, once it has been moved in the Master Site file it is just necessary to repeat the adjustments I've described. This way each discipline's models stay aligned with each other based on using the positioning option: Auto - Origin to Origin.

A summary of the process:

The architecture team is in charge of positioning and they:
  1. Create Master Site
  2. Link Building
  3. Position, orient and elevate the building (or Reposition)
  4. Publish Coordinates (or Save Change)
  5. Identify a bench mark in the building model (or adjust to mark new location)
  6. Capture (record) and then provide coordinates and rotation/bearing information
  7. Share model with trades
If the building location has to be changed repeat 3-7 (differences noted with parenthesis).

Trades take the following steps:
  1. Link architecture model using Auto - Origin to Origin
  2. Place un-clipped Survey Point at agreed upon bench mark
  3. Enter Coordinates and Rotation (bearing) using SCaP
When building is moved on site trades repeat steps 2 and the rotation part of step 3. Remember to use/specify Shared Coordinates when exporting from Revit.

It is important to note that ALL of the above is biased for separate firms managing model relationships.

When all the trades work in one firm the Acquire and Publish Coordinates tools work better because all the files belong to us and we have concurrent access to them on our network. This allows us to link trade models to the architecture model and then use Publish Coordinates to pass along the information we have to manually keep in sync using the approach described above.

In the single firm the process and position logic can play out like this:

  • Master Site > Acquire Coordinates from Site/Survey
  • Master Site > Publish Coordinates to Architecture Model
  • Architecture Model > Publish Coordinates to Trade Models
  • Master Site - Survey positioned using Auto - Center to Center
  • Master Site - Architecture Model positioned manually
  • Architecture Model to Trade Models positioned Auto - Origin to Origin
  • Trade Models to Architecture Model positioned Auto - Origin to Origin

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Shared Coordinates and Collaboration for Revit

I've not written anything about Collaboration for Revit (aka C4R) yet. It's a recent development that puts a project in the cloud to give a project team access to the project data regardless where they are.

When it comes to Shared Coordinates, the Publish Coordinates tool is disabled. Acquire Coordinates does work.

As I understand the issue, Publish Coordinates is the only time that Revit has to be able to write changes to a linked file. The current A360 and C4R infrastructure doesn't support allowing that to happen...yet. They do understand it is something we want and need to do.

Regardless I'd still use Acquire Coordinates on a source survey file within a Master Site file, as usual. Then I'd link any building files and position them on the site, just like I'd normally do. To cope with the loss of Publish Coordinates I'd put location markers (a unique family for example) that allow me to figure out how to link and align Master Site in each building correctly afterward.

As I just mentioned, in each Building file I'd link the Master Site model and move, rotate and elevate it as required. Then I can use Acquire Coordinates and pick Master Site. This will pull the correct Shared Coordinates into the building model. I'd repeat that for each building.

I'd do the little building position dance in Master Site even though I could probably figure out how to do the reverse (position Master Site in each Building) somehow. I'd find it a little easier to work out each building's relationship to the Master Site model this way, seeing them all together at the same time in Master Site. I think it provides for better context.

When other trades get going they just need to link the Architecture model using Auto - Origin to Origin and then use Acquire Coordinates, picking the Architecture model. It's a cascading nested understanding of the survey coordinates, using Acquire Coordinates all the way down.

SMEP-Models - AC from - A-Model - AC from - Master Site - AC from - Site Survey

When they return their files to the architect they just need to be linked using Auto - Origin to Origin too. Technically if they do use Acquire Coordinates using By Shared Coordinates would work but if they didn't Auto - Origin to Origin is long as they understand it is important that they start out using Auto - Origin to Origin themselves, when they link the architecture model.

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Survey Point - Post 4 - Acquiring Coordinates and View Orientation

The bias of the last three posts has been on creating a Master Site file and linking building models to site. That's moving buildings on a fixed site versus moving the site under fixed buildings. The earth doesn't go anywhere, we put buildings on it, so to speak. That bias feels right to me, the ways things really work.

These are links to the three preceding posts.

If you choose to take the reverse approach, link the site to a building, you have to adjust the survey information to align with the building; since its harder to move the model elements around than the survey file. In this example, I've started in a Floor Plan view assigned to Project North.

At this point is doesn't look much different than images early on in the other posts. The building is oriented conveniently for putting in on sheets. I need to move and rotate the survey DWG into a better orientation. I'm using the same preferences I had in the previous posts.

Now I just need to shift the survey down since the contours are at their actual elevations and the building model is at an arbitrary ground floor elevation of zero.

I used the same 22 feet for the ideal ground floor elevation I chose in the other post.

Now I'm ready to use Acquire Coordinates. I opened up both the floor plan and site plan views so I can see the change occur. I used Acquire Coordinates in the floor plan: Level 1 (that's a moment).

Since there are few possible combinations of actions, let's imagine that I used Acquire Coordinates a little differently. In this case I Acquired Coordinates in the floor plan view: Site and I wasn't observant enough to notice that the view is assigned to Project North which ordinarily wouldn't make sense to do, to me at least. It's easy enough to overlook because at this point the building orientation is technically the same as it is in other views assigned to Project North.

After I Acquired Coordinates I noticed the view didn't change so I realize it needs to be assigned to True North. I do that and the model rotates to show the orientation based on the survey's coordinate system, as I expected initially.

Now a little time passes (we're pretending). I find it necessary to use Reload to update the linked survey file, maybe I cleaned up some of the layers to make it a little lighter in our model. When I click Reload this happens. The survey spins out of alignment.

The cause is subtle and simple: it is IMPORTANT to respect the Orientation parameter setting used, in the view that's used, when Acquire Coordinates is used. If you change to the opposite setting and then Reload the link the orientation of the link will change undesirably; regardless of the view you happen to be using during the reload process.

To restate the cause and effect, I used Acquire Coordinates in the Site view while it was assigned to an unnatural orientation setting of Project North. I then changed it to use the more logical True North but AFTER I already used Acquire Coordinates. This means I have to remember to change it back (to Project North) EVERY time before using Reload on the Linked survey file... Or I fix it, which would require resetting the coordinates so I could Acquire Coordinate again with the better settings in place.

I believe this is another good reason to use a separate Master Site project file. The survey is linked and moved into position but it isn't rotated to reflect True North because UP is North already. The quirk I've described only affects the links rotation and there is no need to rotate it in the Master Site strategy.

Monday, April 06, 2015

Survey Point - Post 3 - Five Minutes with Shared Coordinates

I created a video that goes through the process I described in the previous two posts. It is set to a four and half minute song by Michael Lee Firkins called "The Window". If you've never heard his music I believe you owe it to yourself to check him out, very talented and unique sounding guitarist and song writer.

Survey Point
Survey Point - Post 2

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Survey Point - Post 2

Yesterday I ended the post with a list of steps that I'd take to create a relationship between my building project file(s) and the Master Site file. I started another pair of projects that I'm calling Tiny House A and B (inspired by Sean's Tiny House project). I can start a project with or without site context. Revit's bias is making the project easy to document, forget about True North initially. It is trivial to resolve that in the Master Site file once it is ready, regardless if it is created before or after the tiny house models are started.

Here's how far I took the design of Tiny House A before I decided to work out its location on site.

I closed Tiny House A's project file. I opened up my Master Site file and linked Tiny House A using positioning: Auto - Origin to Origin. The choice for positioning at this stage really doesn't matter since I'm going to move the file to another part of the site anyway; have to pick something so I just let the default option reign. In the following image you can see Tiny House A is sitting at/near the Master Site's origin, marked by the Project Base Point icon.

Now it's time to move Tiny House A into position. I moved it and then aligned it with the East boundary. Then I was careful to put it at 8'-0" from that boundary. I then made sure the closest corner (wall) of the house to the North boundary was also at 8'-0". Being fussy about this isn't particularly important, I'm just being fussy.

Now I want to make sure the house is at an appropriate ground floor elevation. I created a section view so I could see the site's contours and the floor of the house. I can see here that the house is buried under a fair bit of the site.

I decided that raising the house to 22'-0" feels good. I used the Move tool, and typed 22 into the temporary listening dimension that appeared.

I think I'm ready to deal with Tiny House B now. It's really just another project file saved with a new name. I was too lazy to make another design. If this was a real project I wouldn't be able to get away with that. I decided that this house has to be no closer than 8'-0" to the North boundary but I've also made the North end of the house parallel to the boundary.

I learned while reading the development's covenant and zoning requirements that these houses can't be closer than 15'-0 to one another. I decided to put Tiny House B 18'-0" from A. I heard that A's owner is a drummer so those extra three feet might help keep B's sanity. I also decided that the ground floor elevation for B should be 20'-0", a little bit lower than A.

Now that I'm satisfied with the positions of Tiny House A and B I'm ready to use Publish Coordinates. This tool will PUSH the site orientation information to each house's project file. Revit will use this information to shift the house's Shared Coordinate system to align with the Shared Coordinate system of Master Site. In yesterday's post, the Master Site was manipulated to be in alignment with a linked DWG file's WCS (the World Coordinate System in AutoCAD to be precise) through the use of the Acquire Coordinates tool.

When you successfully select a linked file to Publish Coordinates the Location Weather and Site dialog appears. This give us an opportunity to provide a meaningful name for the location we're creating for that model. I clicked Rename... and typed Tiny House A Location 1.

It's significant to appreciate that I could now create a copy of Tiny House A in Master Site and place this copy in another location. I could then use Publish Coordinates on this copy which would allow me to use Duplicate... and use another name like Tiny House A Location 2. In the Tiny House A project file I can now choose between these two named locations and make one of them current. Revit will reorient everything to show the building correctly for this location, all without really changing anything  in the model. It's pretty clever and powerful; actually doing it is something I'll save for another post.
I used Publish Coordinates again but on Tiny House B and used the name Tiny House B Location 1 when the dialog appeared. I'm ready to return to work on my Tiny House A design. I clicked Save so I can close the Master Site project. The following dialog appears twice, once for Tiny House A and the second time for B. This is confirming that I want to commit the location and shared coordinate changes I made while using Publish Coordinates. I clicked Save each time (2x), the top option in the list.

It is necessary to make sure others are not working on the Tiny House A or B now. The Save will fail if someone is working on them. Just ask them to close the project for a minute. When worksharing is involved the same is true but it is a bit more forgiving. Either way, if an error message appears you need to ask others to stop working on these files briefly; they need to Save and close them. Once my Save is completed they can get back to work.
When I open Tiny House A I find that the Site plan is oriented to True North. I changed the Orientation parameter to True North earlier (noted in the image at the beginning). All plan views in the stock templates are assigned to Project North, including the Site view. Changing it meant that I'd see the results of using Publish Coordinates immediately, or at least as soon as I bother to open the Site view. The reality of this is that the project is NOT altered materially, no physical change to any geometry, it is just oriented correctly based on my actions in Master Site. This trivializes the task of re-positioning a building on site, if that becomes necessary.

Taking things a little further, each Level type has a Type Parameter called Elevation Base. It can be assigned to either Project Base Point or Survey Point. When I change this to Survey Point I find that the levels are reporting elevation values based on how much I raised Tiny House A in the Master Site file.

Now I've decided I want to be able to see Tiny House B here too, for context, but while working on Tiny House A. I linked Tiny House B into Tiny House A using positioning: Auto - By Shared Coordinates. This is possible because I used Publish Coordinates, from within Master Site, on both Tiny House A and B. Their shared understanding of their position in Master Site makes it possible to link either file into the other using Auto - By Shared Coordinates and they land in the correct spot relative to each other.

I can also link Master Site into either Tiny House A or B and use Auto - By Shared Coordinates too. They all understand their relationship to each other because of Publish Coordinates and the work I did in Master Site to put them into the proper context with each other. Here is Tiny House A, with Tiny House B linked in. I also created a Toposurface and Building Pads for each house in the Master Site file, then I returned to Tiny House A so I could link Master Site in using Auto - By Shared Coordinates as well.

A Few Notes
  • Master Site is in CHARGE of positioning
  • Only move models in Master Site
  • Do not move linked models when viewed in other related project files
  • Acquire Coordinates created the relationship between Survey and Master Site
  • Publish Coordinates created the relationship between Master Site and Tiny House A and B
  • Respect this order and it is easy to maintain
  • It is technically possible to manipulate the relationship in either direction, DON'T.
  • You must Resist the temptation!

Multi-Discipline Comments:
  • Trades link the Tiny House A and B models into their projects using Auto - Origin to Origin, nothing else.
  • Do NOT start work without a preliminary model of the Tiny House. If you do, be prepared to move your work into alignment manually.
  • It is only necessary to use Acquire Coordinates on Tiny House A or B (whichever house you are designing for in your project file)
  • It is only necessary to use Acquire Coordinates IF there IS an expectation that your data must align in 3rd party software like Navisworks
  • The Tiny House projects will link your models using Auto - Origin to Origin too