The first step in using Bluebeam Revu to set up digital construction drawings for use in the field is to name each page and add bookmarks to make the set easy to navigate. Jim demonstrates how to use Bluebeam Revu to quickly add page names and bookmarks based on the drawing sheet names and numbers. Jim demonstrates the use of the Automark feature to have the software generate the names and bookmarks automatically.
- [Voiceover] To start this process, the first thing we need to do is add some bookmarks and sheet names to each page of our drawings. Now, I really can't over-emphasize how important this is in an electronic environment. When we're trying to replace paper with electronic files, the naming conventions really matter. Now, I introduced this concept in another Bluebeam course where I demonstrated how to use Bluebeam's Studio Session features to give each submittal a name that's meaningful and contains very specific information in a very specific order and when I did that, I was actually able to have the software use that information to generate a meaningful hyperlink table of contents that also served as the project's chemical list because those file names contained all the right information in the correct order.
Now, this same thing applies here to our drawings. Using properly formatted file names is really gonna help us later on when we start to process revision sheets and it's also really gonna help speed up navigation. So fortunately, Bluebeam contains features that are going to essentially automate this process for us. So I'm gonna start with a complete set of documents, or as complete as possible, as complete as we get in the construction industry, and for our example here, I'm gonna start with several different PDF files. Now, if you're a general contractor, you might receive a single PDF file that contains vector images or all of the construction drawings, but I think it's also pretty common to receive construction documents in several different files.
And so, that's what I wanna demonstrate here for our example. So I'm gonna go ahead and click on open, I'm gonna select all four sets of these files, and you can see, I've got a couple sets of architectural drawings, fire, plumbing, electrical, and mechanical drawings, and then some site plans. And I'm gonna click on open and you'll see here in my tabbed navigation across the top of the screen that I've opened all four sets of drawings. And ideally, all of these would be vector-based PDFs.
Now, I've said that a couple of times, I've used that term, vector based PDF, and what I mean by that is I don't want these to be a set of drawings that somebody picked up in paper format and then scanned into the computer. I want these to be drawings that whoever created these took the CAD files and properly converted them over to vector-based PDF format. And in a really broad sense, what that means is that when it's done properly, this PDF will contain all of the text information and it will contain all of the lines and symbols as lines and symbols as opposed to images like it would if this document was just scanned in.
So that's really important, it makes your life a lot easier if these are vector based images and if you're going to try and convert from a paper environment to an electronic environment, you need to start by insisting that electronic drawings are given to you in the right format. Now again, we live in the construction industry, we don't live in a perfect world, and so I know that we're going to get files that probably contains all kinds of different information. Some of these are gonna be scanned in, some of this information's going to be vector-based, some of it's gonna be image based.
So as we go along, I'll show you how to work around that and how to make these work anyway, even when we don't receive perfect files. So now that I have my drawing files open, I wanna go ahead and create my own bookmarks and page names for each sheet and that'll make the set easier to navigate and then it will facilitate the rest of our processing as we go though this set of documents. So if it's not already open, come to the left side of the screen and open this tab. And let's go ahead and take a look at our bookmarks that currently exist in the drawing.
The first thing I wanna do is, I wanna clear out all of these bookmarks because these names mean something and they're going to be used in document processing and revision comparison later. So it's not uncommon to receive sets of drawings that already contain a bunch of bookmarks that meant something to somebody that drew these documents, but they don't mean anything to us. So we wanna clear them out and I wanna do that one file at a time for all four of these files and that's a pretty simple process.
Again, just view my bookmarks, go ahead and highlight the first one, hold the shift key down, and highlight the rest of the documents, and then click here to delete all the bookmarks. So again, I'm gonna go through one at a time and go through that same process. This one didn't contain any bookmarks and we'll go through our last one. We've now cleared out all of the bookmarks from the existing documents.
So now, I wanna go ahead, we'll stay on our first document here and recenter that. And the next thing I wanna do is I want to add my own bookmarks. Now, that process is fairy simple, by choosing this icon, which is the create bookmarks button, and this gives us a couple of different ways to create bookmarks. One is to generate bookmarks that match the page labels and the other, that we're gonna look at, is to generate a bookmark based on page regions. So let's take a look at what that means by selecting page regions and then select.
What I wanna do is I wanna create bookmarks that match my page names, so the first thing I wanna do is I wanna skip my title page because my title page looks different than the rest of my plan documents and I wanna go ahead and zoom in and I wanna create a bookmark for all of these drawings that starts with the page number. So I'm gonna use my mouse and I'm gonna draw a box over that page number and that's gonna give me a preview. And you see, right now, the way that my bookmarks are gonna look is the bookmark for this sheet will be a dash zero zero one.
Now, I wanna go ahead and add a dash by typing in there and then I wanna add one more region and I'm gonna highlight the actual sheet name. And now, that's gonna look like I want my bookmarks to look, and I'm gonna go ahead and click on okay. Now, before I click on okay to complete this process, I wanna make sure that, in this case, I've selected all of my drawings and then click on okay. Now, you'll see that the computer is generating the bookmarks for me. Now, this process, I'll warn you, can be a lengthy process.
You know, here we've got a set of drawings with 20 pages. If we have a set of drawings with 500 pages, this can be a lengthy process. Also, that auto mark feature that just generated these bookmarks will recognize text that is actually image based, so it will perform character recognition on the text that you highlighted if it doesn't already contain text information. But again, doing so will greatly slow down that process, so if you've got hundreds of sheets of drawings, that could take quite a bit longer than what you just saw.
But with that, let's take a look, and this has already generated all of our bookmarks for this set of drawings. Now, these all look good, I'm happy with all of these except for this first one. And you can see, the title block was not the same as my other drawings, so I didn't quite get a bookmark that looks like I wanted it to. And I can fix that by simply right-clicking and choosing rename, and I'm just gonna call this the title page. Now, the next thing that I wanna do is I wanna go ahead and look at my sheet names.
So right now, there's some existing sheet makes in there, but they're really just the page numbers and I'd like to change those so those are meaningful because, again, I still have more pages to add to this document. So, once again, there's a way to automate this process. I don't have to right-click and choose rename on each of these, one at a time. I can just click on create page labels and since I've already created bookmarks, I'm gonna go ahead and create page labels from bookmarks and just click on okay.
And again, you'll see that instantly now, my page labels have changed to something that's meaningful, so my page labels are actually the sheet number and the name of the drawings. So let's go ahead and process our other three sets of drawings. Again, by clicking on create bookmark, selecting page regions, and by the way, this will also work if your title block is oriented vertically, it will recognize vertical text as well.
Again, before we click okay, we always wanna make sure that we've highlighted the right text and our bookmarks are gonna look like we want them to look. And then, go ahead and generate page names from those bookmarks. And you'll notice, not all of these title blocks have to look the same, which is why I left these as four separate files for this processing step as opposed to combining them into one file.
So again, let's go ahead and complete this process. Again, always remembering to make sure that we're performing this operation on all pages and then our final set of drawings. And here again, you can see, let's zoom in, you can see a title block that looks very different than the rest of our title blocks.
And let's go ahead and look at what the process looks like here. Click again on create bookmarks, select our page region. Now again, here's where that naming convention comes into place. I don't wanna highlight this entire block because I want my sheet names to be preceded by a single letter, A for architectural, C for civils, P for plumbing. So what I wanna highlight is just this region here. And again, when it gives me the preview, I wanna make sure that it looks correct.
Otherwise, I can backspace and delete, then I can start that process over again. And again, my final region is now gonna be in this title block, it's gonna be here, and that's our page name. And we click on okay, make sure we have all pages selected and it's gonna go ahead and create those bookmarks again for us.
Okay, and then in our final step, we generate the last set of page labels from those bookmarks and that completes the first step in processing our drawings. So now that we've added all these page labels and bookmarks, I'm gonna go through and just save these changes and then we'll proceed to on to the next video segment and continue our processing.
- Naming documents and pages
- Adding layers for markup
- Splitting pages into separate files
- Comparing revised drawings
- Sharing drawings with the project team
- Adding hyperlinks
- Building a project navigation menu