Default Revit Family Folder for Open Command

When you go to Open a family file in Revit, it will make a difference as to where you select the Open command as to what folder location Revit will default to select the file.

If you choose the Open… function from the opening screen of Revit, Revit will default to the location of the specified Revit Library Path.  (This location is specified in Options -> File Locations -> Places.)

Family Open Screen

If you choose the Open function from either the Quick Access Toolbar or the Applications menu (big R at top left of screen), Revit will default to the location where you last saved a family file.

Family Open Buttons

While this is not major information, it is handy to know when you are opening a family from one location, making changes to the family, and then saving it to another location.

PDF to DWG Converter

I don’t very often review software products for my blog, but I decided to review Able2Extract PDF Converter 8 from  This is a software that will convert PDF files to AutoCAD files.  It will also convert PDF files to Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Publisher, OpenOffice, HTML, and Images.  My primary interest is in conversion to AutoCAD, since I wanted to know how it works in assisting with building design.  I work with both Revit and AutoCAD products, so my focus is based on those software packages.

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Components for AutoCAD Details

As a consultant and trainer, I work with many people that are currently working with AutoCAD or transitioning to Revit.  I am constantly amazed at the number of architectural users of AutoCAD that are not aware of detail components within AutoCAD Architecture.  These components can be an important part of drafting the many details that are part of an architectural design office.  Over the years, I have spent many hours drafting details for construction documents and I think of the advantages of having pre-made components available to me for detailing.

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Stick a Pin in It

When a project team collaborates on a building project using Revit, it is very important that all team members maintain consistency between the different models.  One of the important aspects of consistency is to ensure that everyone is designing their building components to the same coordinate relationship as the other team members.  Team members will link Revit project files from other team members into their file via various positioning methods.  Correct positioning is important and maintaining that positioning is even more important.  It can create havoc in a project when a linked model file gets moved and building components start getting placed in positions not consistent with the linked model’s original location.

The first thing to do after linking a Revit project file into another file is to:  PIN IT.

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Getting Revit MEP to Warn About Overloading Breaker

When creating electrical circuits in Revit MEP, it is helpful to utilize Revit’s ability to warn you when you are overloading the circuit.  The issue with utilizing this capability is that if you don’t use the proper process, it won’t work for you.  In essence, you must add electrical items to the circuit one at a time and also modify the proper circuit parameter.  We will walk through the process in this article.

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Understanding Revit Pipe Sizes and Elevations

An important aspect of using Revit MEP is the ability to place pipes for various piping needs of a building project.  When placing pipes, the user specifies the pipe size and elevation, but those have some caveats which may not be readily apparent or what the user assumes.  There are pipe settings and parameters for diameter, nominal diameter, outside diameter, inside diameter, invert elevation, and justifications, which all interact with each other to determine the actual location of a pipe.

It can be a bit daunting understanding how the various pipe size parameters interact with elevation distances and dimensions.  Hopefully, this article will help make it less daunting.

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