Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Revit Content Review: Lindab Gutters and Downspouts

Henrik Bengtsson is the Development Manager at the Swedish company Lindab. He just posted an update on some content I have looked at previously but not posted on.

  • BTW, speaking of Sweden, my City has a "sister city" relationship with Växjö Sweden, so my family made a point of visiting when we were in the region for the BILT-Eur 2017 conference in Denmark. Click here for more about the "sister city" relationship: Duluth Sister Cities International.

LinkedIn Post: The next generation of BIM objects for Lindab Rainwater Systems is now available for Revit.

I will share a quick overview of this content... and while the rainwater system, design wise, is specific to the European market, it is good content and could certainly be used (and even modified) in other regions.

To start, here are a few Enscape generated images of the content...

Monday, February 26, 2018

Problems With Revit Local and Central Files - A Self-Help Post

At LHB I sent out a weekly Revit tip email, which is meant to inform and remind everyone about office standards, best practices and self-help items. I thought I would share last weeks tip as I think it will be a popular post when someone gets stuck and has to deal with a Local/Central file issue.

There are a number of other scenarios that can happen, but the outline below covers the mains ones I see regularly.

Start tip...

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Revit 2018 Export to Building Site; Pages from Revit 2018 Architectural Command Reference Book

More Revit book related sharing today... my Autodesk Revit 2018 Architectural Command Reference book, by SDC Publications,  has a chapter for each tab on the Ribbon. Each chapter covers every command on that tab. It should be pointed out that MEP, and many advanced structural commands are not covered in this book; thus, the word 'Architectural' in the title.

This book is not a tutorial.

But, it does come with nearly 100 short videos.

The File tab chapter is nearly 100 pages and covers some things I do not see used very often, like the Building Site export, which allows 3D Revit geometry and some MEP connectors to be translated into Autodesk Civil 3D Styles.

 The five screen shots below are each pages from the book...

Friday, February 23, 2018

New Revit Book Chapter; Multi-Story Stairs

In a continued attempt to add value to my Revit textbooks, I recently developed a new 50-page appendix chapter covering the new Multi-Story Stair feature introduced in Revit 2018.

This new online 'exclusive' chapter is based on a presentation I did last year (2017) in Europe on the new Revit feature, which earned the #4 speaker spot. This was at the BILT conference in Aarhus, Denmark. Here are a few conference-related posts:

On a related note, I also had the opportunity to work with the developers on this new feature in 2016 via online sessions and during a week I spent with them in the Autodesk office in Shanghai China.

The result of working through this chapter is a 20-story stair with railings that return in a...

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Managing Detail References in a Door Schedule with Global Parameters

A typical project has several drafting views representing a door's head, jamb and sill condition. These drafting views are organized on sheets, and each has a unique drawing number. The drawing and sheet number are then referenced in the Door Schedule as shown in the first image below.

The problem is, this is all manually entered text as there is no way to refer directly to the drafting views from here. Schedule Keys are not practical because there are too many door combinations and those schedule cannot use Shared Parameters.

While there are certainly some add-in workflows that would work, this post will share how to use Revit's newer Global Parameters to at least ease the pain when it comes to managing all this manually entered text.

On the Manage tab, open the Global Parameters dialog as shown below. In this dialog you...

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Another Dedicated VR Space - Seriously!

In our Duluth office, where I work, we are in the process of creating a large, open collaboration area with our Integrative Design Team (IDT) floor.

Overlapping this space we added a second dedicated VR space as shown in the image below. This offers a spacious "play area" just steps away from where the work is being done.

The two Vive lighthouses are 22 feet apart (6.7M). This provides ample space to actually walk around a virtual workroom, reception area, or exam room, for example.

This space also utilizes the TPCast wireless adaptor to make the Enscape and Fuzor VR experience truly remarkable!

This space is still waiting on some furniture, so things are...

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Civil 3D Pipe Network to Revit; Epic Fail

As a full service firm with in-house surveyors and civil engineers, we have Autodesk AutoCAD Civil 3D files just a few folders away from our Revit models on most projects.

We always generate the Revit toposurface from  a C3D surface. I will save that workflow for another day.

However, there is another important feature in these files that is pretty much not accessible to us in Revit; it is the underground utilities such as sewer, storm water, water and gas pipes. In Civil 3D these elements are called Pipe Networks.

Over the last couple months I tried to get Pipe Network data into Revit and worked three...

Monday, February 19, 2018

NVIDIA GPU Technology Conference 2018

I will be speaking at NVIDIA's GPU Technology Conference, in Silicon Valley, next month (March 2018). I will be presenting on LHB's implementation of virtual reality (VR) in the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) market. This will include discussions on hardware, software and, most importantly, how our clients have responded.

There is a 25% discount code at the bottom of this post!

There are 53 sessions in the AEC sector as seen in the...

Friday, February 16, 2018


I must admit, writing blog posts for Enscape is a lot of fun.

It is personally rewarding to blend my knowledge of the visualization aspects of Revit, with the brave-new-world of Enscape's real-time rendering prowess, into written format for others to build upon and hopefully share back to the AEC community.

In this most recent article I dive into the...

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Curtain Wall Door Schedules on Wrong Level

Occasionally I see this problem, where a door within a curtain wall is reporting the incorrect level. I am not exactly sure what the root of the problem is, but I will outline the steps I take, which typically corrects the issue.

The Problem

In this first image, notice the curtain wall itself is reporting the correct level, 1st Floor. However, the door is showing up under the Basement heading, in the schedule. For context, a regular door was placed to the left (#130-D).

The Fix (or Workaround?)

Here are the steps to change which level the door schedules on....

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Revit Books with Substance (IMHO)

I recently had the opportunity to talk with several professors and instructors who teach Revit or BIM. I always love the chance to learn how these classes are taught, and what works and what doesn't. Thanks to Autodesk's annual software renewal cycle I get the chance to make changes to my books fairly regularly and thus respond to some of the challenges or shortcomings in my books. The main goal, of course, is to help instructors teach a well-rounded class, and provide the students with the best possible learning experience.
If you want to chat with me about your Revit/BIM course, please reach out via LinkedIn, Twitter or SDC Publications.
Some of the teachers I have spoken with use books in their...

Monday, February 12, 2018

BIMedge - YouTube Videos by Joe Banks

Joe Banks has a great series of short videos on YouTube covering various Revit tips and tricks. He has been added new videos regularly. If you subscribe to his YouTube channel you will be updated anytime he posts new tips.


Sunday, February 11, 2018

Midwest University 2018

The world of Revit and CAD conferences is pretty small, so it is nice we have a formidable one right in our backyard here in Minnesota; Midwest University hosted by CTC. This conference always has high quality speakers and the great Lynn Allen, formerly with Autodesk, who will be back again this year.

In addition to Lynn, the world's #1 AI robot, Sofia, will be there. That should be interesting.

Keynotes from Jim LynchAutodesk VP Construction Products | David Ivey, HOK Regional Design Technology Manager | Lynn Allen, Autodesk Technical Evangelist SophiaHanson Robotics, Artificial Intelligence Robot  | Shane Scranton, Iris VR CEO & Co-Founder | Vickie Patel  HKS, Practice Technology Manager & Reeti Gupta, HKS- Director of Practice Technology


Friday, February 9, 2018


The real-time world is expanding! Those using Rhinoceros, by Robert McNeel and Associates (RMA), as their 3D authoring tool of choice will be excited to know that Enscape has expanded their popular real-time rendering and VR experience to work with it.

All of the great Enscape features are now at the fingertips of Rhino users! Navigate the model in real-time or jump right into VR.

I wrote a post about this over on the Enscape blog.

Below are a couple images from the article...

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Revit.ini File and Location

The Revit.ini file is a text file Autodesk Revit uses to store settings such as template file location and recent files. Many of the settings can be set within Revit and are just saved here when a change is made.

Here are a few examples of what I beileve can only be set from the ini file:

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Working With Revit's Journal File

My friend Nauman Mysorewala published an article on understanding Revit journal files. This is based on a class he presented at Autodesk university 2017 a few months previous.

To read Nauman's article, go here: Howto read the Revit Journal file - Understanding Journal Files

In addition to being a BIM Manager/Architect/Associate at GBBN Architects in Cincinnati, he is also an Autodesk Expert Elite and an educator who uses my books. Nauman is super helpful in providing feedback on the books. I once added about 30 pages on live detailing and drafting views based on his comments! Plus, he is currently reviewing an updated manuscript for one of my books based on some new software coming out soon that I cannot mention;)

Nauman has worked with Autodesk to create a series of webinars called Build Your Revit IQ; click the link to check him out on YouTube.

Brian Mackey, aka The Revit Geek, had a great session on journal files at BILT last year... http://www.rtcevents.com/bilt/na18/.

I previously mentioned Brian's session in this post: BILT-NA 2017 Toronto Canada; Day One

In a previous post I mention Revit backup files that appear in the Journal file folder. You can check that out here: Autodesk Revit's "Secret" Backup Location

Monday, February 5, 2018


Once again, I had the opportunity to pen another blog post for Enscape. This post is about all-things-Virtual-Reality (VR) using Enscape.

The image below is a screenshot of a video I created where I am superimposed in the...

Friday, February 2, 2018

Friday Fun Post: Old Revit Content Website Still Live

Here is a blast from the past for us "old" Revit users... the defunct Revit online content webpage is still live via this Autodesk link: http://revit.autodesk.com/library/html/.

This first image shows a collection of old French content. On a side note, by son is learning French in school and I was and just this morning I was trying to get him to translate (just to see if he could) a few Tweets from https://twitter.com/FrenchBIM.

Be sure to scroll all the way down and check out the UK samples files...

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Pre/post-occupancy Evaluations and Generative Design

All the talk about deep learning, AI and generative design is very exciting; both Autodesk and NVIDIA are doing some amazing things in this space. But, just like energy modeling and lighting analysis, which I am familiar with, if the inputs are not accurate the old says holds true; garbage in, garbage out.

In energy modeling, if the thermal properties or orientation of a wall is not correct the resultant EUI will not be valid. In lighting analysis, if the photometry is wrong or a surface reflectance is not set properly the illuminance calculation will be false.