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In this course, Paul F. Aubin creates standardized content such as furniture, doors, and many other architectural components using The Family Editor in Revit. The course starts with the basic concepts: family hierarchy, libraries, resources, reference planes, and constraints. The course also takes a deeper look at the smart data beyond the geometry, such as material and visibility parameters, as well as creating nested families and arrays, controlling rotation in work planes, and working with advanced formulas.
In this movie we'll look at a Sweep. A Sweep takes a Sketch shape and moves it along a path. The path can be drawn directly on screen as a second sketch. So in some respects it's a little bit more flexible than what we were able to do with either a Blend or an Extrusion where the path was just a simple straight line controlled by height. Here we get to actually draw it any shape we like. So I'm going to do a couple of examples. For the first example, go to Sweep on the Home tab, I'm just going to draw everything. So the first thing that you see on the Sketch tab is two options for creating the path.
You can either sketch a path or pick a path, and we're going to look at both, but we'll start with Sketch. So I'll click that, and that introduces me to the familiar tools. Now here's the most important thing about the Sweep that's a little different than the other shapes we've looked at so far. The path can be any shape you like; it does not have to be closed. So this is a perfectly valid path. I'm going to press Escape and I've got this three segment open path, so if I were to click Finish, it's not going to complain this time and tell me that I've got to enclose the shape.
Now what I'm going to do is show you here in some of the other views what we're seeing. Go ahead and click Modify here. There is this green dashed plane that appeared on the first segment that I drew. That plane is the sketch plane for the shape that's going to move along this path. Kind of keep that in mind when you're drawing your path is that the first segment that you create determines where that plane goes. So if I go to the Sketch tab and I click the Green check box, the mode I'm actually finishing is actually the path.
So notice that that keeps me in the Sweep and I could return to the sketch if I wanted to, the path turned black to indicate that it's complete and what I can over here now is tell Revit how I want to create the profile or the shape that's going to move along the path. And I have a few options here but the one I'm going to do is to do it by Sketch and just simply Edit the Profile. So when I do that will ask me what view I want to work in. It's important to make sure you're looking at this plane, so it's offering me a few views to choose from like the Left and the Right view.
Well since we already have the Left view open over here I'll go ahead and choose that one and click Open View. Now it is possible to work in 3D View as well but I think it's easier to sketch in these parallel views than it is to sketch in the 3D view. This red dot represents the insertion point of the profile. You could really draw directly on this insertion point which is a pretty logical thing to do, or you could draw relative to it, it's really depends on the shape you're trying to draw. But in this case, I'll just go ahead and do something. Okay, so it doesn't really matter what shape I'm drawing.
This shape does need to be closed, so this is going to form solid geometry, so we're back to the same rules that we had with the Blend and the Extrusion where it's got to be an enclosed shape, but it also could have internal shapes if you wanted to. So now I'm going to make like a hollow tube along that path; that's fine, but again same rules apply. When I click Finish I'm finishing that sketch and you see that I'm still in the Sweep command, so I could return to the path and change the shape of the path, I could return to the profile and change the shape of profile, or I could finish it.
So let's go ahead and click Finish and that extrudes along the path now. So that's another way to think of a Sweep is it's basically an extrusion along a custom path that you get to sketch, and if I spin this around you can see it there. Now I did a three segment path, but I could have just as easily done a one or many segment path; it's really up to me. That's one of the advantages of the Sweep, and sometimes folks will actually use a Sweep to do things that they could otherwise do with an Extrusion, and why would we want to do that? One of the advantages of the Sweep is, if I just go ahead and create one real quick here, I'm going to do a Sketch Path and I'm going to just do a single segment path, Finish that.
One of the advantages is you can use a Profile, and so sometimes folks will do that as a way of making the Sweep more complex. Now for this example I'm just going to stick with a shape that I'm going to sketch and you can see that when I finish, it doesn't look much different than what I could create with an Extrusion. So the two main differences are, if I would prefer to sketch the path and have grip points and be able to draw it graphically on screen rather than use properties on the palette. Notice that there are no numbers over here now.
You can't type in a depth like you could with an extrusion. That's one difference in the Sweep and the other is the different options that you have for the profile. We will do a Swept profile example in the later movie, so for now I'm going to skip that one and just stick with the Sketch. I have one last example I'd like to show you. When I started this file I had this simple Extrusion here in the file. This is just an Extrusion, default depth, it's 1 foot tall and it's just a hexagon shape. You can draw any shape you like.
One of the nice features of the Sweep is instead of sketching the path, you can actually do Pick Path. Now when I do that the default behavior is going to be to pick 3D edges, and so it might be easiest to do this right here in the 3D view. And what I can do is I can start to click on the edges of this 3D form. You don't have to be limited to just one plane. So I can actually find edges that go down along the sides and wrap around.
You can do your path anywhere in 3D Space. When I click Finish, Edit my sketch, and in this case I'll keep it simple and just do a simple circle here, a little tube. Click Finish again, notice that I was able to draw that in 3D and one more time, and now my shape is following along the edges of this 3D form. Even better if you edit this 3D form and change its shape a little bit and click Finish, notice that the Sweep will continue to adhere to that form.
So that can be a really powerful way to create a complex form in your Family where one form drives the shape of the second form. So in this case the Extrusion is driving the shape of the Sweep. So as you can see the Sweep offers as many unique features not available in the other 3D forms and so this makes it a preferred choice of many Family authors.
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