I wanted to share this with you, because it certainly brought a smile to my face:
Troy Whitehas sent you a message.

Date: 1/16/2013
Subject: Thanks for the add.
I have been a devoted follower of your blog for a few years now.
Excellent stuff! Your posts have helped me to streamline my workflow, and enhance my understanding of the revit back end. Appreciate all of your work! Thanks again.

Luke is a true Revit guru. His informative blog “What Revit Wants” is the last stop on my weekly review. As an operator who spends 50-plus living in the Revit-led BIM ecosystem, the importance of understanding the structure and logic of the software is key to developing an agile and efficient workflow. This is what Luke offers, a computational guide to the inner workings of this exceptional and complex program. His results are always interesting, sometimes paradigm shaking, and never lacking in thought.
-Troy White, BIM Modeler


Its good to be reminded that the blog is appreciated.  Thanks Troy!  (you can check his profile on LinkedIn)

PS.  I love it that Troy states “understanding the structure and logic of the software is key…”  This is the essence and purpose of knowing What Revit Wants and making it work for You.

Some followups from Twitter (also see the Comments):

Somewhat of a milestone for What Revit Wants – 1,000,000 pageviews were reached over the weekend.

If you want to show your continued support for this website, please Like What Revit Wants and Dimond Architects on Facebook.

You can also follow me on Twitter.

Something you might have noticed about What Revit Wants is that there is no ad banner and no Donate button.  However, I really do enjoy hearing and responding to your comments – so if you have something to say, please feel free to use the comments box below every post.

Here’s a thought to start your Monday with:
A license of Revit is just like a ticket on a plane.  You have to use it to get anywhere.  The final destination? 
BIM excellence.

If you have problems with your Revit Filled Region hatch patterns displaying grayscale when they should be black, its probably because Revit thinks that the lines are too close together for the scale of view that you are using.

What Revit wants is for you to increase the scale or spacing between the individual lines of the Filled Region pattern – then it will switch back to black, as it should be.

Using a Model pattern, I was able to observe the pattern go from light gray to black as I changed the scale (spacing) between the lines.

Interestingly, using a Drafting pattern allowed me to put the lines in the Filled Region much closer together…

Some more info at:
RevitCity.com | filled region pattern color changes when drawing scale changes

What Revit Wants finally hit 1000 subscribers on 7 June!  Interestingly, I also made my 1000th post during the past week. Thanks for all of your comments too, I enjoy the interaction.  I hope you are enjoying the blog.

There are 75 posts in my Drafts folder – so there is plenty of Revit goodness still to come 🙂

And let me know if there is something interesting you would like me to post – message me on Twitter @lukeyjohnson .

I am deeply interested in interoperability between form creation tools, as well as workflows that allow you to translate forms between these tools.  Unfortunately, there is really no reliable way to bring forms from other tools into Revit and retain parametricism.  They have to be imported into Revit as geometry that Revit ‘likes’ (smooth ACIS solids), and then the geometry needs to be re-created as vanilla, or native, Revit geometry. 

However, the end result is a good one – because you are giving Revit What it Wants.

This post will look at the following main topics:

  • Translating geometry from Mesh to Solid
  • Rebuilding or re-creating the Solid as native Revit geometry
  • Going from Revit into Rhino via gb XML
  • Some plugins for Grasshopper

Mesh to Solid
I am always on the lookout for ways to convert a mesh 3D form into a nice ACIS solid.  From what I hear, Rhino / Grasshopper is the best way to do this.

Here are a couple of other methods:
This is essentially an AutoCAD plugin that can translate polyface mesh forms to proper solids.

I installed Geomagic Studio 2012 64 bit.  It comes as a fully functional 30 day trial.  This software does have various plugins to facilitate parametric data exchange – including one for Inventor.  It can convert a mesh to polygons, and fill holes in a the object.  It can also smooth faces.

You can convert an object to Points, and then Wrap the points in a new Mesh, use some Mesh tools to tidy it up etc.  You can save as a 3DS or Open Inventor file…

From ACIS solid to genuine Revit Form
Once you have a nice, smooth closed ACIS solid form, it is time to import into Revit.

Earlier this year, David Light provided an example on how to re-create a (relatively simple) form that was imported from Rhino.  His method essentially involves:

  1. Importing the geometry into a Conceptual Mass family
  2. Divide surface of the imported geometry
  3. Create a template of intersections on the U and V grid.
  4. Trace the form using a few closed profiles
  5. Remove the Import
  6. Create the form using the traced profiles

You can read his full post here:

Revit: Rebuilding forms in Vasari or Revit 2012

Image from http://autodesk-revit.blogspot.com.au/

Going the other way – Revit into Rhino via gbXML
Sometimes you may want to translate geometry from a Revit model and bring it into Rhino for analysis.  The following quoted paragraph provides one method, and a plugin:

I wanted to streamline the process of transferring Revit geometry into Rhino and simplifying it for DIVA analysis.  gbXML seemed like a good way to do that.  So that being said, the plugin currently only uses a small portion of the gbXML schema to transfer basic geometry.  I would be interested in feedback as I am sure there are bugs…
You can download the plugin at the link below.  Installation instructions and an example are included.

Image sourced via http://www.grasshopper3d.com/forum/topics/chameleon?xg_source=activity

 via Hiroshi Jacobs at Chameleon – Grasshopper

Things you can do in Grasshopper with C#
Grasshopper features an impressive amount of highly interlinked components – from lines to trees, from circles to graph editors. Sometimes, however, when design tasks become more advanced, we might need to further customize this plugin by directly borrowing from Rhino commands. With these scripting components, the user can quickly solve otherwise more complex design behaviors.
This list of C# scripts is a work in progress and is open for requests. Supporting  v. 0.8.2 and some previous versions.

Above paragraph via Giulio Piacentino

Image from http://www.giuliopiacentino.com/grasshopper-tools/

Go to http://www.giuliopiacentino.com/grasshopper-tools/ for download links to the scripts, and the complete list.

Hopefully some of this information has been useful to you.

Feel free to post other methods or workflows as a Comment.  Thanks.

A very reasonable, interesting and intelligent post from Steve Stafford … here is a quote of my favourite part:

Consider that Archicad would love it if we all woke up tomorrow and gave them credit for doing it all years earlier. Ahead of their time, poorly marketed, not really the “right” solution?

I don’t even care. If you do, keep in mind it’s an endless debate with no practical outcome. The fact remains that until Revit and Autodesk’s ability to focus resources on creating an obvious difference between what “we” are doing and what “we” ought to be doing…there had been little or no serious progress by any product attempting to solve problems in similar ways, not even their own other product.

If you’ve made the decision. Congratulations! You are moving forward.

Read the rest at:
Revit OpEd: Yeah But

Over at blog.gayarre.eu, there is a post that compares some of the main features of Allplan and Revit.  Judging by the review, it seems that Allplan has better PDF integration than Revit (which isn’t very hard).

I think some of his description of Revit is quite good:
Revit, Autodesk, is American.
After Archicad and Allplan, Revit was the last to arrive. Is a product of Autodesk and that, in principle, gives confidence. We can imagine that if we use AutoCAD, BIM from the same company it will be easier to learn. There will be many surprises. And it is. The learning curve is very fast. It’s very intuitive.

I like your work philosophy: everything is done in 3d and then generates the planes. This is not to make a BIM or so and then end up drawing in 2D as if we were in Autocad. It is demanding but more consistent. It requires but rewards.

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