Sunday, 18 June 2017


When you are working on a workshared project file it is always a good idea to keep an eye on the Active Workset. Whatever the Active Workset is set to, this is the Workset all of your new modelling will be created under.

You can find the Active Workset in 3 locations.

In the Collaborate Ribbon, In the Worksets dialogue box, or the most convenient which is located at the bottom of your modelling area.

The Active Workset can change without you realising, resulting in your work being located on the incorrect Workset. This is because different users change the Current Active Workset in their local file. When they synchronise it will make their Active Workset as the default Active Workset next time you open the Central File.

The Moral of this story is to keep an eye on the Active Workset, when you next open (or create) your Local file.

Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Dynamo - Twisting Tower

Whilst I primarily use Dynamo for BIM Management tasks, I do like to delve into the Computational Modelling for facade optioning and building forms.

I am constantly getting asked about.... How do I create one of those twisting towers?

So I decided to put up a small tutorial and the Dynamo script for anybody interested in creating a twisting tower.

Starting with a Mass family, I create a rectangular shape on the Ref Level and a point element to act as my rotation point.

From there Dynamo takes over with inputs for "Number of Levels", "Floor Height", "Bottom Floor Rotation" and "Top Floor Rotation"

Just select the Rectangle and the point and twist away.....enjoy.....

You can take this much further by adding floors and facade elements, but playing with the form is so much fun!!!

Twisting Tower Script

Turning Off Everything

If you need to turn off all of the Model Categories, Annotation Categories, Analytical Categories or the Imported Categories in your model view, there is a really fast way without having to select Categories individually.

(This process can be very useful to determine what is modeled and what is annotation in the view.)

If you open the Visibility/Graphics Overrides dialogue box. In the top left corner of each Category Tab, there is a tick box ‘Show model categories in this view’. If you untick this box it will hide everything listed below in that tab. (For this example I was using the Model Categories tab, the other tabs tick boxes are named accordingly)

Alternatively for model elements you can use a parameter in the View properties dialog box, that will allow you to change Model Display from "Normal" to "Do Not Display"

You also have an option to "Halftone" model elements.

Friday, 5 May 2017

Selection Filter Alternative

When you have multiple elements from multiple categories selected in your model, an even quicker way to filter your selection is to select the pull-down menu just below the Type Selector. This will show the categories that have been selected and you can pick the category to filter.

This filter should be primarily used for smaller selections in your model.

It doesn’t work like the traditional filter, but it allows you to filter to a Category and alter the Parameters only. If you try to move or copy it will alter everything initially selected.

Another limitation to this filter selection, is that you can only select one category to filter.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Brisbane Computational Design Group April Meeting

I am co-chairing the Brisbane Computational Design Group. Meeting are on the first Wedesday of each month (apart from April when it will be held on the Wednesday the 19th)
6pm to 8pm
Agenda and Venue to be confirmed prior.

Twitter: @compDesGrp

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Parameter Type/Instance Switching

When you have multiple dimensional parameters in your Revit family, a quick way of switching between a ‘Type’ and ‘Instance’ parameter is to select the dimensioned parameter, and in the options bar you can select (tick or untick) the Instance Parameter option.

This will change it between a ‘Type’ and ‘Instance’ parameter without having to go into the ‘Family Types’ dialogue box.

Note: This only works on visible parameters (ones you can select). All the others you will still have to go to the ‘Family Types’ dialogue box. 

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Line Length

If you select a line in your model and look in the instance properties dialogue box you will see that it will display a ‘Length’ parameter value, giving you the length of the individual line. If you are lucky enough it will also display a temporary dimension showing the length.

If you would like to determine the total length of multiple lines joined together (Chain of lines), this can only be achieved with Model lines.

Under the Modify Ribbon select the ‘Measure Along an Element’ tool and then select the chain of lines. This will display the ‘Total Length’ in the Options Bar.

If you would like to determine the length of multiple Detail lines, simply select the chain of Detail lines and use the ‘Convert Lines’ tool in the ribbon above. This will convert the line work to Model lines, now you can utilise the ‘Measure Along and Element’ tool. Once the ‘Total Length’ has been determined, just convert them back to Detail lines using the same ‘Convert Lines’ tool.