Archive for October, 2015

Because templates are the starting point from which each project begins it’s great to have a comprehensive template file, without making the template data heavy.

This past week Revit professionals from the Wasatch Front Revit Users Group gathered together to share tips and tricks for managing Revit Project Templates:

Here are some helpful things to consider including in your project template:

Views and information used on every project, and doesn’t often change.
  • Title Block
    • With title blocks containing label parameters to read job information directly from the Revit project file, the work of setting up sheets with pre-loaded title blocks is a snap.
  • Schedules
  • General Sheets
    • Even if your general sheet changes a little, include standard notes, symbols, and sheet lists.
  • Starting View
    • Typically a drafting view with text. This helps the project to open a little faster since it’s not trying to generate a large plan view or 3D view while it’s loading.
      • This view can include a company logo, directions from BIM/drafting managers to the drafter, Job information, etc.
Typical settings which are consistent from job to job.
  • Text styles
  • Dimension Styles
  • Line Type styles
  • Electrical and Mechanical Settings for MEP
  • Standards View Templates
    • It’s a good idea to have a view template for each sub-disciplined view type.
      • For instance: An electrical plan will usually have both a Lighting, Power, and Systems floor plan, each plan should show different components, having a view template for each of those types of floor plans helps save time.
    • It is also possible to set view templates as the default setting for any type of new view.
      • For example if a section view should always be shaded and have the detail level set to “Fine”, a template can be applied automatically defining those attributes every time a section view is created.
  • View Types
    • Separate view types can be created for the categories or sub categories in the project.
      • IE: One view type can be create for a Power plan, and one for the Systems Power with properties and view templates assigned to govern those types. That way the settings and view template can be specified right as the view is created.
      • This goes for any type of view; Sections, Callouts, Elevations, etc.
  • Location Settings
    • Revit location is set by default to Revit HQ, Right out side of Waltham, MA. Make sure that weather and lighting information is accurate to the project by specifying a local location to the project template.
Possible things to include – With Caution:
  • Typical Families
    • Keep in mind when families are updated or changed they are saved back to the library location, and are not automatically saved in the template file. The template must be opened, and the family reloaded to ensure the most up-to-date family is in the template file.
    • Also, every type of every family that is pre-loaded into the template file will appear in the type selector drop down list when placing a family in the project. The more families which are loaded, the longer the list to scroll through, which will slow down productivity.
    • And finally, if many families are loaded into the template file, the file size will be quite large before anything in the project can be loaded into it, bogging Revit down for you, and those who use your file.
    • Another workflow option would be to utilize Type Catalogs for families with many type options, and always load from a central company family library. This ensures that only the family types needed will be loaded into each project.
  • Dummy Linked file
    • Because views are controlled by levels a dummy project with levels can be linked into the template file, then  views can be set up within the template file with view specific settings already in place.
      • This is especially useful for MEP users because views in those projects are often very dependent on the Architectural linked file and views contained therein, but often excludes at least part of the information from the Architectural model.
        • For instance a Power plan should show all of the Architectural walls, but not the architectural tags. In the dummy file, change the view override for the link to “Custom” and turn off the Architectural tags, or all architectural annotation.
    • Things to be careful of
      • When utilizing a dummy link, the actual link must be reloaded using the “reload from” option in Manage Links, rather than linking the file in the typical way, or the Architectural file can be saved in place of the dummy file (by the same name).
      • If the levels are Copy/Monitored in the dummy file, the levels should move when the correct link is inserted and a  coordination review has been done. Always do a visual check of those levels in an elevation view to be sure.
      • Always check the View Override settings to make sure that something hasn’t been turned off in the template, that actually should be seen in the view.
Additional Tips:

Transferring features from projects into the template file Best Practice:
When transferring standards, families, or schedules from a project into the template, project specific information is also transferred. Extra information will bog down the program.

  • Open a blank project, import the information/feature/family to be added into the template.
  • Clean out any excess information that isn’t needed
    • Job specific family types, line styles, tags, etc.
  • Import the new the information/feature/family that has been cleaned out in the blank project into the template file.

Upgrading the template Best Practice:
Sometimes when Revit is upgraded from year to year, past template features become incompatible with the updated version of Revit. Unfortunately it’s difficult to tell what isn’t going to work correctly until that feature is used in the project, and then it might be too late.

  • Consider exporting out all of the template features and settings from the past version, and importing them back into a fresh template file from the updated Revit Version.
    • This might be a good opportunity to reorganize the company template, and discard pre-loaded features that bog the file down more than they save time.

Categorized Project Template:
Often certain category or types of projects will use repeat families/types/setting, but those same families/types/settings are not needed in other projects.

  • Consider creating a specific project template for each category or type of project.
    • This will mean having multiple project templates, but will help to narrow down what is readily available in each one.
  • Also consider creating project template files with specific types of details in the view grouped together, for easy import into future projects.
Check out the agenda for the first ever ABC Utah’s Technology Conference.
It’s a great opportunity to see what technologies can help to streamline our work and coordination.

Tech Conference Invite

Hope you all can make it!

WFRUG-OCTOBER (reminder)

October 20th from Noon – 1pm we are meeting  at GSBS (375 West 200 South, SLC 84101), to discuss Revit Templates, Browser organization, and any other questions that we can cover in 50 mins.

 Gabe Cottam, a BIM Manager for BIG-D, will be there to mediate the meeting.

 This is a great opportunity to put our heads together and find better ways of  streamlining our workflow, and get some additional Revit help from each other.

We have gotten a few questions in preparation for the meeting. I’m going to keep the survey open until the day before the meeting,
so keep the awesome questions coming!  
Click the link to RSVP and submit your questions:

Food for this meeting is being provided by our sponsor TAFT ENGINEERING, we need to get a final count to them no later than Friday, October 16th .

 Come join us for a frighteningly good time!