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Find out how to create compelling architectural designs using the modeling tools in Autodesk Revit software. In this course, author Paul F. Aubin demonstrates the entire building information modeling (BIM) workflow, from creating the design model to publishing a completed project. The course also covers navigating the Revit interface; modeling basic building features such as walls, doors, and windows; working with sketch-based components such as roofs and stairs; annotating designs with dimensions and callouts; and plotting and exporting your drawings.
In this movie, I want to show you the snapping behavior in Revit. Snaps are just simply rules that allow the software to lock onto certain key increments, either length increments or geometric points on objects. Revit has a few useful snapping features, we have our length increment snap feature which is tied to the zoom level on the screen, and we have object snapping behavior, things like endpoints and midpoints. And I would like to show you both of those features here in this movie. I'm in a file called Snaps and this is just based on the default template.
And to show you the length increment snapping feature, I need to zoom out a little bit. So the easiest way to do this is to use the Zoom Out(2x) Command right here. So if it is already chosen, you can just pick it off the list, otherwise you can choose it here from the dropdown and that will back up the screen a little bit. Now on the Architecture tab, I'm going to go over here to the Wall command or type WA, I'm just going to click any start point. Now you'll notice that the temporary dimension says zero, so Revit just always snaps relative to whatever that first point you clicked was.
So it indicates that as zero. I'm going to slowly start to move my mouse a little bit and what you'll see is, it's sort of jumping. It doesn't move fluidly, it sort of jumps. And if you look carefully at the dimension, you'll see that it's jumping in four foot increments. This is the length angle snapping behavior. If I click my second point, that wall is exactly 48 feet long. Move in another direction, okay, now that wall is 16 feet long. It works at any angle, so I can do it along angles or straight lines.
I'm going to press Escape. If I zoom in, and I'm using my wheel to zoom in, click a new point and start to move, notice that the increment has changed, now it's much more fine, it's going to every 6 inches. Now without even clicking, I'm going to go back to zero and zoom in a little bit closer and move again, and I guess, I got to go a little closer still, sometimes it takes a little practice to get the right increment, there it is, you can see that now it's doing every inch, okay.
So now if I click, that wall was exactly four foot, ten inches. If I continue to zoom in very close and I just use my wheel to do that, now you'll see that I'm snapping to every quarter of an inch. So what's really handy about this feature is just simply in the course of your zooming in and out, it will adjust the degree to which it's snapping, so you don't have to go back and change a setting, it sort of does this automatically. Now where is this control? I'm going to do ZF on my keyboard for zoom to fit just to back out all the way again.
I'm going to go to Manage tab, and it's the Snaps dialog right here that controls this behavior. So I'm going to click on that. And right here at the top, this is the feature that we just witnessed, it's the Length dimension snap increments. Now you'll see here that there's a number, the first number says 4 foot, and then a semi-colon, and then it says 6 inches and a semi-colon. So the semi-colons separate one increment from the next. You can change any of these values and you can introduce new values. So if I wanted to add a 2 foot snap increment, I could put it right there.
You don't have to actually put it in order, I can just simply click OK, if I go back to Snaps, notice that it reorganizes it and it put the 2 feet in the right sequence. Now let's see how that behaves, if I go to Architecture, click on the Wall command, right now you can see that at the level of zoom I'm at I'm getting a 2 foot increment. Now notice that if I get nearby some other geometry, that takes precedence. So in addition to the length angle snap, Revit will always look at nearby geometry and try to snap to it.
So in this case, I'm getting something with a fractional increment clearly not on a 2 foot increment but if I move past that, then it goes back to the 2 feet, okay. And again, if I start to zoom, I would get the different increments. You can also remove increments if you don't want to snap to all those, so all of that is controlled in that dialog. Also in that dialog we see Object Snaps. Now if you've used any CAD program before than object snapping is a familiar concept. All this geometry has certain key points, we have endpoints at either end of a line, we have the midpoint halfway between, we have quadrants on circles, we have perpendicular and tangent points, you can snap to any of these things.
I'd like you to note here in parentheses that each of these items has a keyboard shortcut. So if you remember those, you can actually use those on screen when Revit is trying to snap to a point that you don't like, you can tell it no I meant the endpoint, or no I meant the intersection by simply typing those letters. Maybe just jot these down or take a screen capture to keep it handy, but they're pretty easy to remember because they all start with the letter S. So let me click OK here and let's see how this behaves. I'm going to zoom in slightly with my wheel, let's go to Architecture, let's click Wall, right there that little square that's endpoint, and then here that little triangle that's midpoint, and then if I come over here and you see that little x right there, that's intersection.
So the symbols will become familiar to you with practice, but each of those little symbols indicates a different kind of snap. Now suppose I'm coming over here and it's trying to snap to the endpoint, but I really wanted the midpoint, this is where I could type S M, snap to midpoint. And as I move around now, you'll see that it's only seeing the midpoints of the various objects, that I try and snap to. After I click, it goes back to looking for everything, so that override with the keyboard shortcut is for one click only.
And so with the little practice you will get the hang of those, they will become an important part of your arsenal, but both the length increment snapping and the object snapping are tools that you'll just use intuitively all the time as you're working. So those features are sort of there in the background all the time but just keep in mind that you can override the behavior either by going to the snap dialog and putting in new increments, turning on and off object snaps or using the keyboard shortcuts to override on-the-fly as you're working.
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