Preparing to Share Models

BIM for Architecture, Engineering, and Construction Curriculum

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  • Unit 4 | Multidisciplinary Collaboration
  • Lesson 1: Preparing to Share Models


Creating the Architectural Model

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using the Array tool to place grids versus copying them individually?

Grids are typically placed at regularly spaced intervals, so the Array tool can be very helpful for rapidly placing a series of grids, each separated by an equal distance. 

If the array is associated, changes to the position of any one grid will affect all others, which are probably not desired. So if you want to move grids independently, you should disable the group and associate option when creating an array or place the grids individually.

How do you place nonrectangular grids (for example, radial grids or triangular grids)?

To place radial grids, start by placing the common center point. Then draw the grids radiating out from that point. After placing the first grid, you can create a radial array to quickly place a series of radial grids.

To place triangular grids (or any nonrectangular geometry), draw one grid, then use the Offset tool to create additional grids that follow the same geometry a specified distance away.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of creating more than one level per floor (for example, Level 1-Floor and Level 1-Ceiling)?

Creating more than one level per floor enables greater modeling flexibility. For example, if you define a separate level for a ceiling, you can place objects relative to that ceiling level (rather than offsetting from a floor level), and if you change the elevation of the ceiling level, those objects will move with it.

Creating too many levels can create a cluttered and confusing model. When placing elements, designers must be careful to choose the appropriate levels for the base and top constraints and having many levels can complicate this process.

If columns are placed at grid intersections, will the columns move if a grid location is changed?

Columns placed at grid intersections do move if a grid location is changed. This is one of the key advantages of defining the placement point as a grid intersection.

Creating Views to Highlight the Structural Elements

What techniques can you use to filter the information displayed in a section view?

You could change the visibility\/graphic overrides to hide or display model categories. Alternately, you can hide individual element instances. Using the far clip you could bring the distance forward in order to not see so deep into the view. Also, you might alter the view settings to control fineness of detail.

Can you cut a section view using a cutting plane that is not vertical?

By drawing the section in elevation view, you can draw a section line at any angle. 

What are the advantages and disadvantages of creating duplicate views with different visibility settings?

Duplicate views allow you to have set views from which to do different tasks requiring different visibility settings.

On the downside, those duplicates views might be misleading and lead you to believe certain elements are missing, instead of simply hidden.


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