Join Paul F. Aubin for an in-depth discussion in this video Adding curtain grids, mullions and panels, part of Revit 2018: Essential Training for Architecture (Imperial).
- [Voiceover] In this movie we're gonna lay out a curtain wall manually as apposed to relying on the type properties, so in a previous movie we looked at edit type and the type properties available to curtain walls, but here we're going to lay out the grids exactly where we want them, just manually placing them, and it's a slightly different process but I think it's important to understand both procedures so that you have a full understanding of what's possible with curtain walls. You may recall that a curtain wall is our third wall system family, so we have basic walls, we have stacked walls, we have curtain walls, and a curtain wall can have a series of girds, mullions, and panels within its mass to create a pattern and a layout.
To get started, I'm in a simple floor plan. I have this little blank portion of a wall here, and I've removed the front door of the building, and I wanna replace it with a curtain wall design instead, so I'm gonna go to my Wall command, open up my type selector here, and this time I'm gonna use the curtain wall type. Now the curtain wall type is just a simple flat plane of glass. There's no grids or mullions. Now, highlight the center of the wall, and watch the temporary dimension, and wait for it to be one foot away from the edge there. That's where you wanna click.
Then I'm gonna move down here and I'm gonna watch the temporary dimension, and I'm gonna click when it says 15 feet, so I want this grid to be exactly 15 feet long. Now it's important that you start at that one foot off of the corner there. If you start closer, it'll try and join up with this wall, and it won't give us the result we want, so just make sure that you get that one foot offset there. Now, when you draw this curtain wall, it'll generate a warning, telling us that the highlighted walls overlap, complaining a little bit about that, but it says right here that we can use cut geometry to embed one wall within the other.
Now if you watched the previous movie, then you recall that if you select a curtain wall, and I'm highlighting that dashed line to get the actual curtain wall itself. If you go to Edit Type, there's this Automatically Embed feature. The curtain wall type does not have that checked, where storefront did have it checked, so this is the reason that we're getting the warning in this case is this wall is not set to automatically embed. Also you'll see that everything here is set to none. There are no grids, there are no mullions, so we're gonna do all of that manually in this case, so let's deal with the embedding first, so all I need to do is come over here, to the Modify tab, click the Cut Geometry tool, select the wall that I want to cut, and then select what I wanna use to cut it, and that'll be the curtain wall, and now it'll embed itself inside that wall, and then I'll click the Modify tool to cancel out, so now I have this thin little curtain wall, that's essentially just one big large pane of glass.
I think it's gonna be easier to work on this from an elevation view, so I'm gonna scroll down here and open up the south elevation. I'll go to my zoom in region, and I'll zoom in on that curtain wall there. If you move your mouse toward the edge it's gonna highlight the wall, but if you tab in, you can get to the curtain wall itself and you can see the grip points right there. Now, notice there are no grids, there are no mullions, so this is what we're gonna address first, so on the Architecture tab, you have a Curtain Grid tool right here.
When you click this tool, all you have to do is highlight one of the edges of the curtain wall and click, and it'll place a grid, so I want some small bays around all four sides, and I'm not really worrying about where I'm placing them just yet. I'm just sort of placing them randomly for now, and I'll move them later, just like we do with almost everything else in Revit, and I'm gonna place three more along the middle. Now I'm gonna click my Modify tool to cancel out of there. Now of course one way that we can manipulate where these grids occur, is to highlight them, click, click in the temporary dimension to activate it, and type in the number we want, such as two feet, and I could repeat that here.
Click on this grid, highlight the temporary dimension, activate it, and put in two feet. Now you could continue to do that for all the other, but I actually prefer to do it with permanent dimensions. I just find that a little bit easier, and I like seeing the dimension to confirm for me the sizes that I have, so I'm gonna come up here to the Align Dimension tool, or type di, start with one of the grids. If you start over here, sometimes it picks the wall and doesn't give you what you want, so start with the grid, it's a little bit better. I'm gonna pick this grid, this one. Keep going, keep going, keep going, then I'll include the two edges, here and here.
Now with a dimension, you need to click an empty space to place it, but I don't want it on top of my curtain wall, so I'm gonna pull it up here into this white space, and just make sure you're clicking on empty white space and that will place the dimension. Click your ModifY tool or press escape to cancel out of the command, and now you can use this dimension to manipulate these grids, so I'm gonna start here on the left and pick the grid on the left side. Notice that in addition to this temporary that appears, it activates the one that you just created, and I'm gonna put in one, space, six, and press enter for one foot six.
Now I'm gonna move over to this grid line, and change this one to three, then I'm gonna move over to this grid line, and change this one to three as well. Notice that I'm changing the selection each time. If you just go right to the next dimension, and make it three, it moves the same grid line and that's not gonna be what you want, so you have to change selection each time and work your way across the curtain wall, and I'm making all the internal bays three, and that will leave me with one foot six at the very end, so when you're done, you should have the two ends at one foot six and all the middle ones at three.
Okay so now that we've divided this curtain wall up into these bays, the next thing I wanna do is I actually wanna put a doorway in here. Well, in order to do that, the grids are kind of in the way, so what you can actually do is select one of the grid lines, and then up on the ribbon, there's an Add and Remove Segments button, and all you have to do is click this button, and then click the piece of the grid that you wanna remove. That middle segment right there, the command is still active and I'm gonna pick the lower segment as well.
When I click the Modify tool to cancel out of there, notice that it's removed those two segments of the grid line but if you move your mouse kinda where it's supposed to be, it's still there, it's just made those edges invisible, so let's do it again in this direction. Add/Remove Segments, and I'll pick that one right there, click Modify to cancel out, so now I have this one large bay in the middle. If you highlight near the edge, press tab, it'll highlight the curtain wall. Press tab again, it'll highlight one of the panels. One more time, it'll get to the big panel, and you can click to select it, so that big panel now, we can replace with something else.
Now, I wanna replace it over here, on the type selector, with a door. Curtain walls work a little differently than regular walls. You can't actually go to the door command and place a door in a curtain wall. It has to be a specially created door curtain panel. Now, if I scroll through my list here, looking for available choices, there is a storefront door double in this file already. 'Kay, so it was part of the original template that was used to create this file, so I can just choose that off the list, and it will swap in this custom double door in place of that curtain panel.
Now, that door is provided with the software, and you can also use load family to access it if you're trying to access it in other projects. Now I'm gonna come over here and tab in, and highlight one of the small panels down at the bottom, and instead of clicking, I'm gonna right click, and then up here on the right click menu, you'll have some selection options, and one of them is to select along the horizontal grid. Now when I do that, it'll go all the way across, including the door.
Now I've already reset the door to what I want it to be, so I'm gonna hold down my shift key, and click to remove the door from the selection, but that will leave the remaining panels still selected. Now I can come over here to the properties pallet on the type selector, and I'm gonna stick with the system panel family, but I'm gonna change from glazed to solid. Now, if you click somewhere in empty space to deselect, it won't look like anything changed. Let's come down here to the visual style pop up, and change the view from hidden line to shaded.
The glass is in this bright blue color, and it's a little overpowering, but you can see that the ones that we just swapped in are now in this gray color, so we can continue to work right here in the elevation, or if you want you can actually switch to the 3D view, and take a look at it there as well, so I'm gonna hold down the shift key, drag the wheel on my mouse to orbit around until I can see the curtain wall, and then I'll use my zoom in region and zoom to get a closer look. Now the nice thing about the 3D view, is even in hidden line, you can tell that these panels here are opaque, and these here are transparent.
If you want, however, you can change the visual style to shaded, and here you can see that the blue for the glass isn't quite so bright in the 3D view, because of the transparency. Now at this point, you can continue working with the curtain wall right here in 3D, or you can switch back to the south elevation, it's up to you, but what I'm gonna do now is add some mullions, so back on the Architecture tab, I'm gonna go to the Mullion tool. Now there are some mullion shapes already included in the project. I'm just gonna work with this two and a half by five inch rectangular that's already here, but it is possible to do edit type and duplicate and create other sizes, and I'll let you do that on your own but I'm gonna click on the vertical edges, like so, to create all the vertical mullions.
Now notice on the ribbon, you have other placement options, so I'm gonna switch to this Grid Line Segment instead, and that's gonna let me place this vertical one right here on only that small segment above the door, and I can repeat that for these four down at the bottom, so that I don't end up with a mullion across the bottom of the doorway, and then I'll switch back to grid line to create the final one here, and the final one up at the top. Now, if you zoom in a little bit closer, you can kinda tell that there's actually a direction implied here, so notice that this mullion is being interrupted by this one.
You can actually customize that by selecting it. Now it's a little difficult to see here in shaded, but there's a little toggle mullion joint icon right there, so if you want you could switch back to hidden line, and it might make that toggle joint a little easier to see, and then like we had with the panels, another alternative is to right click one of the mullions, and then you'll have a Select Mullions option. We can choose all the mullions on that grid line.
Notice that it highlights them all the way across, and then on the ribbon we can say, make it continuous, and it will toggle all the joints for us. Now we barely scratched the surface here of what's possible using a curtain wall and specifically by manually placing grids, mullions, and panels. I encourage you to explore further, but the combination of using either manually generated curtain walls and or using type driven ones, like we looked at in a previous movie, give you a lot of power and flexibility with your various curtain wall designs.
If you wanna go further with creating curtain walls, then I encourage you after you're done with Revit essential training, to check out advanced modeling in Revit, here in the library. Where I get into much more advanced examples of working with curtain walls, slope glazing, pattern surfaces, and so on, and that'll be a way that you can push the curtain wall tools a little bit further.
First, get comfortable with the Revit environment, and learn to set up a project and add the grids, levels, and dimensions that will anchor your design. Then author Paul F. Aubin helps you dive into modeling: adding walls, doors, and windows; using joins and constraints; creating and mirroring groups; linking to external assets and DWG files; and modeling floors, roofs, and ceilings.
Paul also shows advanced techniques for modeling stairs and complex walls, adding rooms, and creating schedules. Finally, discover how to annotate your drawings so all the components are clearly understood, and learn how to output sheets to DWF, PDF, or AutoCAD.
- Understanding BIM and the Revit element hierarchy
- Navigating views
- Creating a new project from a template
- Adding walls, doors, and windows
- Adding plumbing fixtures and other components
- Linking AutoCAD DWG files
- Rotating and aligning Revit links
- Working with footprint and extrusion roofs
- Adding openings
- Adding railings and extensions to stairs
- Creating stacked and curtain walls
- Hiding and isolating objects
- Adding rooms
- Creating schedule views and tags
- Adding text and dimensions
- Creating new families
- Using reference planes, parameters, and constraints
- Plotting and creating a PDF