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Monday, July 17, 2017

3D Printing Topography Directly from Revit ... Plus, Exciting News!

Due to the overwhelming interest, engagement, and discussions created over my last post documenting the process of 3D printing directly from Revit I figured this post is a perfect follow-up. Interesting discussions on Twitter and through emails led me to explore the concept of automating the process documented in last weeks post using Dynamo.  I have made progress with "massing" the building using Dynamo but it's not quite ready to share...  Instead, I will share something just as cool!

While exploring using Dynamo to "mass" a building for 3D printing I realized a similar script could be used to 3D print topography.  For those of you who may not have attempted printing topography I'll let you in on a little secret: it doesn't work.  Topography exports as a single surface and not a solid.  Therefore, you need to use the process I mentioned last week to mass out the topography... Imagine trying to model topography using conceptual massing... not fun!

Thanks to our good friend Dynamo (and some awesome users in the Dynamo forum), printing Revit Topography can be as easy as clicking "run"... Keeping reading to see the script and how it works...

*** P.S. - I have some exciting updates about the blog at the end of this post... so definitely read until the end!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

3D Printing and Revit - Yes, It's Possible, and Here's How ...

When I was given the opportunity to purchase and use a LulzBot Taz 6 my first reaction was, "awesome".  Until I started doing research on 3D printing an actual Revit model, "not so awesome".  With a deadline for printing a project approaching my feeling of excitement turned to anxiety.

I found out that you just can't "press print" on your every-day Revit model and expect it to 3D print.

I also found out that there is very little information regarding the processes required to actually 3D print your working Autodesk Revit building models... So, I will save you the trouble of searching and do my best to break down the quickest and most effective method I've found to printing ANY of your Revit models.... Step 1 is the key...

Monday, May 8, 2017

From Revit to Lumion - The Ultimate Review (Revisited)

Example of a House and Site  Modeled in Revit and Rendered in Lumion

This is one of those posts that has been in my "draft" queue for quite some time now.  Finally, it is complete!  

There have been two new releases and lots of great updates to Lumion since my last post in 2015.  The review I posted in 2015 is still relevant in describing the great benefits of using Lumion (so be sure to check it out). But now, let's talk about what has happened to Lumion over the last 2 years...

Monday, April 17, 2017

Revit 2018 is Out... And... It's Alright.

As I mention every year now the "new releases" of Revit aren't always that exciting anymore.  This is mostly due to the subscription setup Autodek is implementing.  Instead of one massive launch every year they will slowly drip out new features with major releases throughout the year.  Personally, I don't mind it.  It may not have the April excitement that used to come with every new release of Revit, but it works.

Now, onto what I think of the new and "new" Revit 2018 features...

Monday, March 20, 2017

Virtual Reality and Revit in the Real-World ( Success Story with HTC Vive & Enscape 3D )

I know every single person who reads this blog is familiar with the explosion of Virtual Reality (VR) over the last few years.  I know, because I have also been saturated with everything "VR". My first personal experience with VR was using Google Cardboard over two years ago...   As you can imagine, VR has come a long way since that post.

Initially, emerging technologies can battle with the concept of pragmatism.  The first thing you hear with something like AR, VR, Dynamo, etc.. is "cool, but how can I use it in the 'real-world'"?

Today, I wanted to talk about a recent real-world experience with VR.  More specifically, with Revit, the HTC Vive, and Enscape 3D.

... Continue reading to hear about the success story and my thoughts on the aforementioned technologies (including a breakdown of the hardware and software we used)...

Monday, February 20, 2017

Revit Tip - Modifying a "Built-In" Parameter (Type to Instance)

One of the things I love about teaching a BIM course at the University level is how much I learn from it...  Whether it be the fact that I am constantly challenged with questions or the fact that the students, with brand new perspectives on the program, point out nuances I've been too in the trenches to see...

Well, today's tip is a perfect example of a nuance that I never noticed...  During a recent class I was teaching my students how to make a fully parametric casement window from scratch.  We decided, as an example, we wanted the "Width" of the window to be an instance parameter... Well, if you start with the "Window" template, guess what...?  You can't make it an instance.. Or can you..?

Continue reading to find out more...

Monday, January 16, 2017

Revit Tutorial - True Solar / Shadow Studies

Here at, 2017 is going to be the year of "bringing sexy back".  That means many of the tips, tricks, tutorials, and reviews will be related to presentation and visualization.  So, for the first post of 2017 we are going to attack a common problem for many designers using Revit.

You may have made floor plans with shadows in Revit.  Additionally, you may have created solar studies of your designs in Revit.  If so, you have probably run into a little issue when it comes to accurately depicting sun and shadows in Revit floor plans.

By default, your shadows will reflect what the floor plan view shows, which is a cut at 4'-0" above your level.  For typical presentations, this looks great.  But if your goal is to accurately represent the sun and shadows within your space, cutting the building at 4'-0" will not help!

...Continue reading to view a video tutorial that demonstrates how to make floor plans that accurately represent how your sun and shadows will appear.  Oh, I also touch on how to make a solar study animation... ;)

Monday, December 19, 2016

A Year in Review - 2016 (Plus, 5 Days of Discounts)

I read a lot of small business blogs and articles that emphasize the importance of doing a year end review.  I have been running The Revit Kid for almost 8 years now and have never formally created one.  I decided this year would be the first. 

Continue reading the post to see what happened in 2016, what are the plans for 2017, and to learn about the "5 Days of Discounts" BIM After Dark year end sale...

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Mini-Course #1 : Download Today!

A few weeks ago I held the first ever BIM After Dark Mini-Course.  This was the first time I have ever held a live, formal, class online for the blog.  The class was a huge success and those who attended gave nothing but positive feedback.

In the 1 hour and 12 minute session I walked through the entire process of creating a fully parametric base cabinet family from scratch (like the one in the picture above).  Starting from a blank family template I show you my step-by-step methods to creating parametric families, including:

- Reference Plane Creation and Planning
- Proper dimensioning.
- Adding dimensional, material, and visibility parameters.
- Testing and flexing your parameters.
- Creating geometry and constraining it to parameters.
- Working with nested families.
- When to use instance parameters.
- Creating and modifying family types.

The feedback was so positive that I decided to package up the course and sell it for those of you who missed the live event.

Starting today, you can download the recording of November's live mini-course along with the sample files and images to help guide you in creating a base cabinet from scratch!

What's Included in the Mini-Course Package Download?

- Full 1.25 hour long video tutorial with Q&A.
- Sample Family Files.
- Family Parameter Screen Captures to help guide you.

Additionally, for today only, use offer code "minisavings" during checkout to save an extra 15%. Sorry, the discount code has expired!

Click here to download the Mini-Course #1: Family Creation package today!

Monday, November 28, 2016

How are Contractors Using My Model? Full Live Presentation!

I was fortunate enough to speak at the Construction Institute's BIM Council "BIM Breakfast" meeting a couple of weeks ago.  For those of you who joined me, thank you for coming!  There were some valuable discussions at the end and I enjoyed chatting with you all.

For those of you who didn't get a chance to join us, I recorded the entire presentation.  Unfortunately, the audio is a bit lacking (I used a GoPro in the back of the room with hopes of using my computer audio but that didn't quite work out).  Either way, I think you will find the presentation, information and discussion both thought provoking and informative.  Feel free to comment below with your thoughts on the discussion...

Monday, November 21, 2016

V-Ray for Revit is FINALLY Available!

Well, well, well... It's about time!  I have been publishing content about how V-Ray should make a plugin for Revit for well over 5 years.  After a soft announcement two years ago, ChaosGroup has gone through a long alpha and beta period before finally releasing V-Ray for Revit!

Continue reading for more information...

Monday, November 14, 2016

In Connecticut? Join me for a "BIM Breakfast" on Wednesday!

The Construction Institute's "BIM Council" here in Connecticut hosts a "BIM Breakfast" every other month.  Having attended many of these events in the past I am honored and excited to be speaking at the next BIM Breakfast on Wednesday.

If you are in the Connecticut area feel free to sign up.  During this Wednesday's BIM Breakfast session I will be discussing how contractors are using your models.  Using real world examples, I hope to answer many of the questions architects and engineers have about what happens to their models down stream...