A document was recently released that essentially describes differences in the way that Tekla and RST respond to changes in a linked architectural model. This document doesn’t really take into account the other benefits of working in a completely Revit environment – not having to convert to and from IFC, tagging through links, scheduling, bidirectionality, and so on (I don’t feel a need to keep listing reasons 🙂

Download the comparison PDF (keep in mind this was prepared by/for Tekla)


We are seeing this error on a received Structural model:
Analytical model edge cannot have a length of zero (0)

Revit does not offer a solution – you can’t Delete Checked, and you can’t press OK.  It just keeps coming back.

Unticking the “Structural” instance parameter for the hosting floor will work (it just gets rid of the problematic Analytical Floor), even if unticking the “Enable Analytical Model” box in the Properties Palette won’t…

However, I think this is a bug or at least an undocumented problem that needs a better fix.

Some forums mention the issue, but there is no real solution yet:
Analytical model edge cannot have a length of zero… – Autodesk Community
Analytical Model Edge Warning

I had a Structural Framing member (a portal frame) and I wanted to demolish only the overhanging part of it.  Using methods like Cut By Face would not have any proper respect for Phasing, so I thought “I’ll use an in-place Structural Framing void”.  Guess what?  In-place families can not cut a Structural Framing family.  What now?  Read on below the bars…

Great tip in the comments from Michael Clothier – just use Parts!  Turns out I am guilty of not using current Revit functionality…

You can use a Generic Model Component with a Void, and set the Cut with Voids When Loaded property to Yes:

Here is one I prepared earlier, for you to download and use:
SuperVoid Family download

Ok, once you have loaded and placed this family, you can resize it to suit and then use Cut Geometry to slice up your Structural Framing:

But guess what?  It STILL does not respect Phasing!  Revit will think that the Structural Framing is ‘cut forever’.  Workaround – copy the original Structural Framing element, Paste Aligned to same place and then use another SuperVoid to chop that one with the opposite geometry.  Now that you have two bits, you can set Phasing to suit.  This is starting to get messy though, and it may all be better if you just had two different Structural Framing families to make this work…

You will also notice that the SuperVoid family has model lines locked to the edges.  Use the instance parameter Edge Lines vis to turn these off.

Heads-up from the Autodesk Forums:

Create a Generic Model . Just model a void extrusion e.g. Enable Cut with Void.
Place the void family and cut it with your framing family…..
Model in Place won’t work.

Regards Jordi

Void component cutting beams – Autodesk Discussion Groups

AutodeskEd’s Youtube channel has been very busy – I have collected 25 videos specifically relating to Structural users, including information on:

  • Reinforcement
  • Rebar
  • Assemblies
  • Parts
  • Loads
  • Interoperability

Link to playlist:


Check out lot’s more at:
Autodesk Building Solutions channel — http://www.youtube.com/user/AutodeskBuilding?feature=watch

The goal of this Preview Version of “SOFiSTiK Reinforcement for Autodesk® Revit®” is to enable the productive design of 3D reinforcement with Autodesk® Revit®. This particularly includes the creation of 2D plans and steel schedules.
SOFiSTiK AG – Finite Elemente & CAD Software f�r den Ingenieurbau: LabsReinforcement

Register / download link

Heads up:

There is a extensive list of whitepapers for Revit Structure over at this link.  A few particular items of interest are shown below:

Coordination between Revit Structure and Revit Architecture
Structural engineers who use Revit Structure software can coordinate their work with architects using Revit Architecture software. This paper examines how building information is shared between Revit Structure and Revit Architecture users.

Coordination between Revit Structure and Revit Architecture (pdf – 623Kb)

Maintaining BIM Integrity in the Structural Engineering Office
A key benefit of building information modeling (BIM) is the ability to share digital model data among members of the design team. This paper examines the role of the structural engineer in the BIM process and explains how the integrity of the building model is maintained during the structural engineering process.

Maintaining BIM Integrity in the Structural Engineering Office (pdf – 674Kb)

Autodesk – Autodesk Revit Structure – White Papers

I am currently installing Building Design Suite Premium 2012 from the shiny USB stick we received yesterday.  There are just two quick tips that I wanted to share with you:

  1. If your packaging does not have a Serial Number printed on it, you will need to log in to Subscription Center, go to Contract Administration and then click Coverage Report.  From here you should be able to find your Serial Number.
  2. If you want to use the ‘UK Terminology’ in Revit Structure (as previously posted about on various blogs), there is an option in the installation – see image below:

My installation took about 50 mins – and I installed every product.  Enjoy!