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Up and Running with Revit
Illustration by Richard Downs

Exporting the model


From:

Up and Running with Revit

with Paul F. Aubin

Video: Exporting the model

Another way you might want to output data from your other projects is to export it to other file formats. So, rather than printing out on paper or in some sort of digital plot format, you can actually export a model in DWG or DGN format. Whatever view is active when you run the Export command will determine what kind of data you're going to get. In other words, if you're in a floor plan, when you export to a DWG format for example, you're going to get a flattened two dimensional floor plan on the recipient side. If you're in the 3D view, you're going to get an actual 3D model on the recipient side, so depending on what your recipient needs from you, from your Revit model, you can choose accordingly.

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Up and Running with Revit
3h 58m Beginner Jun 20, 2013

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Autodesk Revit is one of the most popular building information modeling (BIM), solutions today. This course covers the differences between the various editions of Revit and shows architects and engineers who are new to the software how to use them. Learn how to choose a template; set up the basic levels, grids, and dimensions; and start adding walls, doors, and windows to your model. Author Paul F. Aubin also shows how to create views and documentation that clearly communicate your plans, import files from other CAD programs, and produce construction documents.

Note: The techniques shown in this course will work with any version of Revit, but due to backwards compatibility issues, the exercise files for this course will only work with Revit 2014. Unfortunately, we cannot downsave the files. Please see a Revit 2013 course for usable files.

Topics include:
  • Understanding the different editions of Revit
  • Setting up levels and grids
  • Adding doors and windows
  • Loading families
  • Working with 3D views
  • Dimensioning a plan
  • Adding a schedule view
  • Importing CAD files
  • Linking to another Revit file
  • Creating sheets
  • Plotting a set of documents
  • Generating a cloud rendering
Subjects:
Architecture BIM CAD
Software:
Revit Architecture Revit Structure Revit LT Revit MEP
Author:
Paul F. Aubin

Exporting the model

Another way you might want to output data from your other projects is to export it to other file formats. So, rather than printing out on paper or in some sort of digital plot format, you can actually export a model in DWG or DGN format. Whatever view is active when you run the Export command will determine what kind of data you're going to get. In other words, if you're in a floor plan, when you export to a DWG format for example, you're going to get a flattened two dimensional floor plan on the recipient side. If you're in the 3D view, you're going to get an actual 3D model on the recipient side, so depending on what your recipient needs from you, from your Revit model, you can choose accordingly.

So, I'm just in a file called Plotting, and what we're going to do is scroll up here on the project browser and find a view that we want to export. So, let me select the level one floor plan, open that up, and I'll zoom in slightly, and maybe I just want to export this floor plan as I see it right here. So I'm going to go up to the application menu, the big R menu. Highlight export. And then you'll see lots of choices for export formats we can choose. I'm going to come up here to CAD formats, and then you can see there's four different formats that i can export to.

I'm going to choose DWG, that's probably the most popular CAD format. So I'll choose that. And then it will show me a preview of of the view that I have opened. And if I'm perfectly happy I could go right to next. But you might want to look at a few of the other settings that are here. Let's take a look. Up here it say's Export setup. Now you might have saved export setups in this list here. There's a small browse button right next to it. And I'm just going to show you the dialogue but we're not going to change anything. Because it's quite a bit of stuff in here. All of these settings are things that are meaningful on the CAD side. For example, CAD files use layers to organize the information. Revit uses categories.

So what you've got here is a list of all the Revit categories. And what layer they're going to get mapped to on the CAD side. Now the layers that you see listed here are coming from the American Institute of Architects standards. Well I'm perfectly fine with that and I'm going to accept all of that without making any changes. Blind styles. If it's a dash line in Revit, which blind style do you want it to become in CAD. Couple ways you could deal with that here. You could let Revit create automatic line types or you could map them to specific line types from an AutoCAD line type file. This is really in the realm of your office standards. So again I'm going to just accept the settings here and you could talk it over with your CAD or BIM manager.

The same is true for hatch patterns. The same is true for text and fonts. The same is true for how you want to treat colors. If you're exporting a 3D view, now we're doing a 2D view right now. But if you're exporting a 3-D view, you can change from poly mesh to ACIS solids. So it depends on what kind of 3-D geometry you want it to have, how should it interpret units and coordinates and then there's even some general settings at the very end. So I'm not going to change any of these settings. I'm just going to cancel out of this dialogue. But, the point is that you have lots and lots of settings that you can configure that control exactly how the Revit data will get interpreted when it comes out on the AutoCAD side.

So, I'm just going to click Next here, and it will suggest a name for me, and I'll accept that and click "okay". So if you have AutoCAD, you can go ahead an open up the file that was created an take a look. So let me go to open. An I'll select the file right here. It also exported the MEP model as a separate linked-in file, but I'm just going to open up the default file. And as you can see, there is the file right there, exported over to CAD. Notice that these are just individual lines now. AutoCAD doesn't have walls.

The tables and chairs are just circles. They're on the correct layers. If you go to 3D in this file. I just want to stress that it's a flattened 3D view. Whatever view you export from Revit, that's what you're going to get. So, if we switch back over to Revit. If you wanted to give your recipient a 3D model. Then, what you would do, is, go first to a 3D view. Like, maybe this axonometric view here. Go up to export. Repeat the process. I'm going to accept all the default settings. Go to next.

Click Okay. An then back here in CAD, open that up. An this time you'll see that I get a 3D model. However, I should stress that what it created here was poly-faced meshes. They're not walls. These are not Windows. So autoCAD doesn't understand the architectural objects. Instead what you get is more generic three D geometry. Now depending on what your recipient needs to do with it, that might be perfectly fine. So if you need to export your Revit model.

Out to other formats, such as Autocad. It's a very easy process. There are quite a few settings, but fortunately, most firms have poured over those settings pretty extensively and created standards to go along with that. So you can usually rely on somebody else in the company to help you through getting the correct settings, but once you make the export. The recipient on the other end will have a CAD file that's properly layered base on the geometry that you created in your Revit model.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Up and Running with Revit.


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Q: Will Revit 2014 files work in a previous version of Revit? Will the exercise files for this course work in Revit 2013?
A: Revit file formats are not backwards compatible. A new file format is introduced with each new release. Newer versions of Revit can open older version files without issue. However, files will be upgraded to the latest file format during the initial open. Once saved in the current version, there is no way to save them back to a previous version. Therefore, it is important to consider this issue carefully and discuss it with all project team members before beginning a project. For example, it is not possible for the architect to use a newer version of the software than the consulting engineers and vice-versa. All members of the team must collaborate using the same version/file format. This course was authored using Revit 2014. Therefore, its exercise files can be used with any flavor of Revit (Architecture, MEP, Structure, or LT) 2014 and later. Files cannot be opened with versions 2013 and prior.
 
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