Alternate Dimension Units in Revit

Many organizations work in environments where they need to produce documents that contain both Imperial and Metric dimensions.  AutoCAD has had the ability to do this easily for many years, but Revit just recently gave us the ability to easily show both methods.  Since it has not been available like this for very long, many Revit users are not aware of this important feature.

Since the Revit 2014 release, you can display Primary units and Alternate dimension units for both the permanent and spot dimension types. This feature allows you to simultaneously display both imperial and metric values in drawings as primary and alternate dimensions.

Alternate Units String

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AutoCAD 2015 for Mac Shortcut List

AutoCAD for the Mac is becoming more popular and Autodesk has kindly provided a shortcut list for AutoCAD for Mac 2015 users.  Most AutoCAD users utilize keyboard shortcuts and this list includes all of the “Out of the Box” shortcuts for the Mac version.

Link to webpage for AutoCAD for Mac Shortcut Key Guide

Get a printable PDF version of the AutoCAD for Mac Shortcut Key Guide

Create a Sanitary to Vent System Transition in Revit

When creating plumbing systems, Revit does not have a default way of showing where the piping changes from sanitary system to a vent system.  This was easy to do in AutoCAD since we just used a different line type or a layer with a different line type to differentiate the vent portion.  Revit wants to show connected pipes as one system so we will create an easy solution to this issue.

It is important to show the different appearances for documentation purposes, so this article will show how to easily show a transition between the two systems which can then be shown as separate colors, line types, etc.

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Show Angled Wings Square to Sheet in Revit

Buildings often have portions that are created at an angle to the main portion of the building.  When this occurs, we want the construction documents to show the angled portion at right angles to the sheet to make effective usage of the sheet space.  Scope boxes provide us with a very easy way to address this issue.

Scope boxes within Revit are also an excellent method of having multiple views of the same area show the exact same portion of the building in each view.  This is helpful for consistency in showing a wing the same in a Furniture Plan, Dimension Plan, Occupancy Plan, Code Plan, Framing Plan, Roof Plan, Power Plan, Communications Plan, Lighting Plan, HVAC Plan, Piping Plan, Sanitary Plan, etc.

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Show Uncircuited Electrical Devices in Revit

When you have many electrical devices, light fixtures or other items in a Revit project file, it is easy to miss one getting placed on a circuit.  While un-circuited devices will display in the System Browser, it is nice to be able to have a quick visual check on a plan view for any of them.  We can do this through creating a custom View Filter.  The following image shows the impact of using a filter to show un-circuited items.

Uncircuited Receptacles

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Autodesk University 2014 Tips

It is almost time for the annual Autodesk University, which is AU 2014 this year.  Since I attended Autodesk University for 17 consecutive years, I thought that I would give some advice to first time attendees.  It seems that there is a large percentage of 1st time attendees each year, so maybe some of them will read this blog and get some tips.

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Electrical Sub-Panels with Lugs in Revit

I recently had someone ask me how to use Revit to connect an electrical panel to another electrical panel via lugs.  This situation occurs at times in building construction where an electrical sub-panel is wired into another panel via the lugs in the first panel and does not actually use a breaker in the first panel.  This is not normal practice, but does occur.   (Note that this is different than having an electrical sub-panel that has main lugs and does not have a main breaker which actually DOES use a breaker in the panel that feeds the sub-panel.)

For our situation described here, Panel A has a 200 Amp main breaker that controls just the circuit breakers that are seen in Panel A.  Panel B also has a 200 Amp main breaker, but is wired into Panel A at the main lug prior to the Panel A main circuit breaker.  In this case, Panel B needs to show in Revit as fed from Panel A but does not utilize a breaker in Panel A.  By default, Revit will create a breaker on Panel A to control Panel B.  We do not want that to happen in this situation.

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