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Add 10.04.12

Publication of the article prepared for C3A company

REVIT - IS IT THE RIGHT SOFTWARE FOR MY FIRM?

WHAT DOES REVIT HAVE TO DO WITH A PENCIL?

When I started attending technical drawing classes, my teacher (elderly, experienced architect) required us to bring a set of pencils (6B - 7H) to the class and made us spend the whole lesson sharpening them. As young boys we were laughing up our sleeves that instead of drawing we would be sharpening pencils. However, when we tried to draw for the first time, we realized that having a set of well sharpened pencils is crucial and allows to achieve the intended graphical result.

Drawing tools have come a long way since that time. Technical pens had to be regularly cleaned, layers had to be set at the beginning of work with AutoCAD, AutoCAD Architecture needed libraries and other more or less advanced settings etc. Nowadays we want our pencil to do a lot of work for us. Revit is a very innovative software that offers possibilities exceeding those of a flat drawing made with the use of a sharpened pencil. However, the pencil and the program have one thing in common – they both need to be prepared to work.

LEARNING FROM SCRATCH?! IT IS WORTH DOING!

 When we started talking to Villabouw Bostoen N.V company about the Revit software, we had to answer a few important questions. Is this tool efficient enough? Will it meet our expectations? Is it better (and how much better) than the program we currently use? Is learning how to use the new software worth the effort? Only after "Revit's pencil" was sharpened we were fully convinced that using this tool meets our needs and it will live up to the expectations placed on modern software.

 

It is obvious that software change at first causes a drastic decrease in productivity. Later the productivity increases slowly, then faster and faster and finally it exceeds the productivity level from before the change. An important question is when we can take full advantage of the software change. Taking into consideration the Autodesk productivity diagram (Figure 1) and the ROI (Return Of Investment) rate it can be demonstrated that a critical factor allowing to quickly achieve high efficiency is time dedicated to software implementation and training of employees. The optimal way to implement Revit is to outsource adjusting the software to the design firm's particular needs and train employees at the same time so they are ready to work with the well sharpened tool.

Figure 1

IMPLEMENTATION PROCESS

 

Implementation process case study - Villabouw Bostoen N.V. (Table 1)

 

Tasks of the implementing company (Mikada)

Task carried out by Bostoen's design office

1

Identifying needs

Data sharing (drawings, details, problematic drawing situations etc.)

2

Getting acquainted with methods of design documentation creation

3

Joint setting of the scope of implementation

4

Preparation of system families and loadable families, creating project template

Draftsmen and project leaders training

5

Handover of prepared documentation

Feedback

6

Polishing up of the details

 

7

Final handover of template and families

Software change

8

Ongoing technical support

 

Table 1

After identifying the needs concerning the implementation of Revit software and getting acquainted with methods of design documentation creation two way work began. When Bostoen employees were participating in C3A training, Mikada team was preparing system families (walls, roofs, floors etc.) and loadable families (windows, doors, garages etc.) that were necessary for efficient work and fully tailored to Bostoen's standards.

EXAMPLE OF A LOADABLE FAMILY

Example of a window ( Figure 2) shows how well Revit can be adjusted to user's needs. 

Figure 2

Thus created window families have the following parameters:

  • Frame profile adjusted to the manufacturer's actual profile
  • Mounting method adjusted to the standard used by Bostoen
  • Adjustable height and width
  • Additional options to streamline and facilitate work:
    • Enable/disable streklaag window head
    • Enable/disable window mountings in walls, which allows to group windows in any combinations
    • Enable/disable sill
    • Easy change of material that glass and frames are made of
    • Adjustable depth of mounting of window frame
    • Adjustable length of external reveal
    • Showing the outline of lintel from inside
    • Details of sill mounting depending on placing windows at floor level or above floor level

BENEFITS 

Proper preparation of Revit can bring numerous benefits to the user:

  • Financial savings thanks to:
    • Using less time when preparing documentation
    • Using lists of materials (created automatically) to make accurate estimates
    • Using lists of equipment, rooms
    • Making fast and easy changes in the design – coherent 3D model allows to update the whole design when individual elements are changed
    • Possibility of creating visualizations in the program itself or easily exporting the 3D model to a different file type
    • Spending less time on meetings with end clients thanks to the possibility of showing them 3D models of buildings
  • The software lets the designer focus more on designing than on drawing

A creative idea is the most important part of a design process, and an architectural design is a formal way of graphic and descriptive presentation of the final idea to the investor. A well sharpened pencil in the hands of an able designer helps to transform a creative idea into an architectural design quickly and easily and is a useful tool in the whole design process.

References concerning the implementation of Revit Architecture can be obtained from Mr Peter Impe (Beleid Woningbouw) tel: 0032 9 216 16 16

If you are interested in the implementation of Revit software or need support in creating Revit families, please contact Mr Michał Kamiński in English email: michal.kaminski@mikada.eu  www.mikada.eu

 

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