10 Helpful Revit Tips
One of the challenges of working with Revit is how apparently complex the software is. Notice that I describe the complexity of Revit as ‘apparent’ – read on for some tips, tricks, and workarounds to make you more productive, enhance your productivity – and your sanity as well!
Some little tricks….
1) Wall Tricks – Revit walls are so incredibly powerful. Did you know that you don’t need to jump through hoops to model something complex like this? This trick saved my sanity while modeling existing historic structures from a point cloud.
This is a job for the Join command!
Place walls to create the required plan outline – jogs, chamfers, and all. Use the Join command to remove those annoying overlapping lines. Step back and admire.
2) Wall Sweeps – did you know that Wall Sweeps can be
independent of the host walls?
To Stretch them – just grab the blue dot….
Don’t worry about doors and windows cutting through the Sweeps – correctly built families with Opening Cuts built in will cut through the Wall Sweeps as well.
If they don’t, then that’s a whole new conversation….
Note – to split the Sweep, the host wall will need to be Split. No worries – as long as the host walls are perfectly coplanar, you won’t see a junction line….
3) The Opening Cut Surprise!
Did you know that Door and Window families have an Opening Cut object that can be edited (use Edit Sketch for this!) to cut whatever shape opening that you want out of the wall (and out of Wall Sweeps too!)? Round windows, anyone?
Once you’ve sketched the new opening, you will need to redo the frame and panel geometry. The easy way out would be to model extrusions (that’s what I always do!). But if you’re brave enough, you can model the frame as a Sweep. To constrain the Sweep, constrain its path in the Modify Sweep >> Sketch Path mode.
If the Door / Window family does not cut through Wall Sweeps, open the family to investigate. A possible reason could be that the Opening cut has been replaced by a Void.
4) Do you need to place an image on a sheet - maybe to create a notto-scale view representing existing site conditions?
Placing the image directly on the sheet may not be an option!
Create a drafting view. Place the image into the view, manipulate it to fit, place notes, leaders, and the appropriate View Title.
5) Do you need to export multiple Revit views or sheets to AutoCAD and want to save some time?
File >> Print >> Print >> Selected views/sheets
Select the views or sheets that you need to put in the set, name and save the set – I called mine SAVED SET.
Close the dialog box.
To export the SAVED SET to DWG –
Now for Some Big Guns!
6) Selection Sets – Are there groups of elements that you need to select repetitively? Use Selection Sets!
7) Object Visibility – Please don’t hide objects in a view! Besides slowing down the model, it is an extremely painful exercise to locate randomly hidden elements.
A preferred workflow is to add a filter to the view template that controls the view. In this example, I have filtered Rated Doors by their Fire Rated values.
Filtering can be made more precise by adding parameter driven Rules using the AND or OR operator.
New in Revit 2022! Filtering by Phase! Hooray!!!
In addition to hiding elements, filters control the color, line weight, line style, of filtered elements.
8) Hide Grids / Levels in linked files
This tip makes turning the Grids of linked models off quick and easy. Grids are placed on a dedicated Work set which can be turned off when the model is linked.
Some required groundwork would be to mandate that all disciplines place the grids on a dedicated Work set.
9) Copy geometry / family instances from linked models
This is another huge time saver.
Tab-Click to select the element from the linked model
CTRL→V in the host model
This tip works on family instances as well as other model elements.
10) Fill pattern (near) disasters
Does your roof look like this? Check to ensure that you have a Model pattern applied to it
And do your walls look like this in plan?
Edit the Orientation in Host Layers from Orient to View to Align With Element.
I hope that you find these tips helpful – these are some of the tips that get help me get the job done every day. These would be a starting point for you to give you a level of familiarity with the software.
Soon you will be developing such tricks and workarounds yourself! I hope that you find them helpful!
Rina Sahay is an Autodesk Expert Elite Team member; a Revit Certified Professional; and a Revit and AutoCAD Subject Matter Expert. As the Architectural BIM Manager at Fishbeck, she creates and maintains BIM standards; provides project support and troubleshooting; training and onboarding. Rina is an educator at Kalamazoo Valley Community College; provides technical support for Revit, AutoCAD, and 3DS Max via the Autodesk forums and Directly.com; and serves on the Kent Career Technical Center Advisory Board. She was a Top-Rated Speaker at AU2021 and has presented multiple times at Autodesk University, in Autodesk Community Conversations, and for In Awe Towards Green; and is the author of the LinkedIn blog “Rina’s Random Revit-isms”.