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Up and Running with Revit
Illustration by Richard Downs

Setting up levels and grids


From:

Up and Running with Revit

with Paul F. Aubin

Video: Setting up levels and grids

In the previous chapter, we took a quick look around the Revit environment and we learnt how to open and create projects. So, I made a file called Levels and Grids, and this was created from the commercial template project at the end of the last chapter. This is just the default commercial template, nothing has been changed yet. And what I want to start off with is, most buildings have some floor levels and many buildings have some sort of a column grid. locations where the columns occur. Both of these things we can designate in Ravit. We can add floor levels that actually represent the actual stories of the building, the actual floor levels of the building, a landing on the stairs, or a button on the elevator if you will.

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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

Setting up levels and grids

In the previous chapter, we took a quick look around the Revit environment and we learnt how to open and create projects. So, I made a file called Levels and Grids, and this was created from the commercial template project at the end of the last chapter. This is just the default commercial template, nothing has been changed yet. And what I want to start off with is, most buildings have some floor levels and many buildings have some sort of a column grid. locations where the columns occur. Both of these things we can designate in Ravit. We can add floor levels that actually represent the actual stories of the building, the actual floor levels of the building, a landing on the stairs, or a button on the elevator if you will.

And we can create column grids that locate where the various columns will be. So, in this movie I'd like to do both of those things to kind of get this set up so that we can start adding geometry. So, the way that you add levels is to go to one of your elevation views. So, I'm going to scroll down here on the project browser to my elevations. And it doesn't really matter which one I open. So, I'm going to open up the South Elevation just by double clicking it. And as you can see, I've got several dashed lines running across the screen. Now, these dashed lines represent the edges of the floor level. So, think of this as the finished floor height for level one. I've got it highlighted, you can see that one is level one. Now, I'm going to come over here and put my mouse at this right hand side, and I'm going to roll it slightly to zoom in, just so we can read those labels a little bit better.

And you can see that in addition to level one, I have two footing levels and I have a roof level. If we scroll back up here in the project browser, levels are the primary data element in your project. So, they're like a horizontal plane that cuts through the building and establishes a height. Furthermore, levels can be associated with floor plans. So, if you look here on screen, you see this level one. You'll notice that the name is level one and there's a corresponding level one floor plan, and level one ceiling plan.

So, both of those are associated to this level one floor plan. Notice here there's a roof level floor plan. There's also a bottom of footing, and a top of footing. Now, for this project, we're going to keep it relatively simple. So, let's go ahead and add another level to this building, I want to add a second floor to this building. So, I'm going to drag with my wheel slightly to give myself a little bit of room. And I could rename the roof level and then add a new roof up above, but I actually find it easier to select my roof level. I'm going to click right on the text here that makes up the height of that level, it's currently at 12 foot 8, and I'm going to change that to 30, and press Enter.

That will move the roof up to 30 feet, and allow plenty of space here in between for me to add the new level. Now, to add the new level I'm going to zoom back out so, I can see the full extent of the level. And then here on the Architecture tab, over here on the Datum panel on the right, I will find a Level button. I'm going to click that. If you move your mouse around in the middle of the space between level one and roof toward the end, you'll see a small little dashed line appear when you're lined up with the end. So, I want to make sure it's lined up with the end, and I'm going to click. And them I'm going to drag it over to the opposite end, and again, make sure it lines up with that little dashed line.

And when it does, I'll click again. Now, what you'll see is that that actually created the level, and over here I get a level two floor plan, I get a level two ceiling plan, and there's actually now a level to structural plan. Now, it turns out I didn't really want the level two structural plan so, I can actually just select it here on the project browser and delete it. Okay. So, I'm only interested in the floor plans and ceiling plans at the moment. Now, I going to click back over here in the drawing window, click my Modify tool to cancel the command.

I want to select it here, and I want to make sure that that level two is at 16 feet. So, I'm going to click right on here, and change it to 16. And notice that it will move that level up. Now, I want an additional level above the roof to mark where the parapet is going to be. And this level, I don't want any associated floor plans. So, I'm going to click the Level button one more time. And on the Options bar here, this check box and button is why we got floor plans when we created level two. If you click the Floor Plan Types, you could see that it's Ceiling Plan, Floor Plan and Structural Plan.

So, had I clicked first, I could've removed Structural Plan before creating level two. In this case, what I'm going to do is simply un-check the box and not create any floor plans at all. I'm going to highlight over here above the roof, and notice the small little blue dimension that appears on the left hand-side, I want to make sure that says three feet and then I'll click. Drag it across the other side here. When it's lined up, I'll click again, click the Modify tool to cancel out of the command, and then I'm going to zoom in on that location.

Now, Revit will just name it Level thre, so all I have to do is click on it, highlight the name, click again and type in the name that I want it to have. And I'll go ahead and click in an empty white space to deselect. Notice the color here, if it's black, it's letting you know there are no floor plans. If it's blue, it's letting you know there are floor plans. Now, those are the levels. The next thing I want to do is add some grids. So, you could add the grid right here in the elevation view as well, but I think it's a little easier to add them in a floor plan. So, I'm going to go back to level one floor plan. And then here on the Datum panel, you'll see the Grid button is available. I'll click that.

And all I need to do is pick a point down here somewhere, drag it straight up to about the length that I want, and click again. That creates the first grid. I'll come up lined up with it at about 24 feet away, click and click. Keep it lined up to place the second grid. It didn't quite come in exactly 24 feet. So, before I go further, I'll just change that number by clicking right on the text and making it 24.

Now, I'm going to roll in just slightly with the wheel here. Notice, the first grid was number one, and the second one automatically became two. Let's just keep going, and I'll do a couple more, and I'm just going to keep these at 24 feet for right now. You can make them any distance that your design requires. And I'll do about five or six of these. Now, the next one I'm going to run horizontally this way, and notice it goes to grid number seven. Before you go to the next one, just click right on the number seven and change that to big letter A and press Enter.

And when you do, the next one will become big letter B. I'm going to click on this dimension here, make that 24 and then I'll do two more. And these are going to actually be at 28. Now, I'm going to zoom out enough that I can see everything. Cancel out of the command. So, I have lettered grids over here, numbered grids over here. Notice these are too short, I want them to intersect through this one. Click any gridline, it doesn't matter which one.

Notice this big open circle right here. If I start dragging it, notice that Revit will not only move the one that I'm dragging, but it will move all of them and keep them all connected together. Finally, if we take a look back at our self-elevation, or really any of our elevations. And let's zoom out. Notice that grids will appear in the elevation views as well as the plan. So, this is why I said it really didn't matter if we created them in plan or elevation, but I prefer to create them in plan. So, the levels mark the actual floor locations, the finished floor locations in your building.

And the grids are going to be useful later to help us lay out the geometry, such as the columns and so forth, and those two things are common in most buildings. Most buildings have floor levels. Most buildings have a column grid. So, it's a pretty good idea to get started with those early in the project. Doesn't necessarily have to be the first thing you do, but it's not a bad idea to get them in there early.

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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