Join Paul F. Aubin for an in-depth discussion in this video Ceiling soffit tip, part of Revit: Tips, Tricks, and Troubleshooting.
- Let's take a look at what happens when you have ceilings at different heights. So, I have a really simple example here. I've got an acoustical ceiling tile here at one height and then I have a drywall ceiling dropped down below that. That gives me this gap here that I'm going to need to fill in. The easiest way to do that is to use a soffit wall, so you just create a small, little wall, and you fill in those little gaps there. I've already got one of those walls drawn here; I've just got it hidden, so if I reset my temporary height, isolate there, you can see I've got this small, little wall here. It's using the Soffit Wall type. It's got a Base Offset at eight and a Height of one.
Okay, so that's important, because otherwise, it would be drawn down here on the floors, so by using a base offset of eight, it puts it up at the height of the ceiling, which is also at eight. So, let's draw the one in the other direction. I'm going to go to my Reflected Ceiling Plan to do this, and I'll zoom in on that location. I could go to the wall command, but if I go to the wall command, what you'll see is I have to remember to put in that base offset and sometimes I forget, so a better way is to actually select the existing wall that's already here, and I'll use Create Similar.
That will match all the settings, including the type and the base offset and the height, and then I can just simply draw that small, little wall in where it needs to be. Cancel out of the command, and as you can see there, there's still a small gap right here. It's also visible if we go back to perspective there; you can see there's a small gap there. So, we're going to fix that in just a moment, but the other thing that I want to look at is I've got a couple sections here. Here's a north-south section. You can see the original, small soffit wall that I have here and the two ceilings.
You may or may not be satisfied with the way that these things connect with one another, and as you'll notice here, we get this big, bold lines between the two components. It's actually possible to join that geometry up with one another to make a cleaner intersection. To do that, we just simply use the Join Geometry command. So, I'm going to select Join Geometry, pick my wall, and then my ceiling. Do it again; pick the wall and the other ceiling. So, now here, in a course level of detail, that looks really good, and we're seeing a nice, clean joint there, and it would work really well at a smaller scale, but if I go to this callout here, I've got an enlarged scale view, and this enlarged scale view is set to medium detail, so now it's showing the layers within the walls and in the ceilings.
Now, let's just back up for a minute and talk about that. I've got a couple views here in this project. Got one called Layered Walls, which you're probably very familiar with this sort of behavior, because you've, no doubt, created walls that have multiple layers like this brick wall here and this stud wall here, and then when they joined one another, they do so in a really nice way. All the layers internal to that wall structure clean up nicely in ways that you would expect, but it turns out that all of your layered hosts can have that behavior. So, roofs are layered hosts, and floors are layered hosts, and ceilings are layered hosts, and they all have similar layer structures, just like our walls do, and when we look at this enlarged soffit detailed section, you can now see there's the drywall layer, there's the stud layer, and they're not currently joining up in maybe the way that we want.
I'd like the drywall to wrap around here and join up with that existing wall. So, how do we do that, exactly? It turns out the joined geometry is just the first step, but then, the other thing we have to look at is how the geometry is actually intersecting one another, and because the sketch line of this ceiling is actually at the face of this wall, then it's going to stop right there, and this drywall never makes it over here. The simplest solution to this problem is to simply edit the sketch of the ceiling and move the sketch line over to the face of the stud here.
I'll just simply select the ceiling, edit its boundary; that will prompt me to open a floor plan, so I'll open my Reflected Ceiling Plan, and then I'm going to take these two sketch lines right here, delete them, and recreate them from the soffit walls. I'm going to choose the Pick Walls option and the Extend into Core checkbox. Now I've picked this wall here, and it chose the lower face of the core. No big deal.
I can flip it right here, and it will now go to the upper face of the core there. You can see there's a small gap there for the thickness of the drywall. Then I'll click the neighboring wall, and it will use the same face of core, leaving the gap for the drywall, and I'm going to get this error message here. What's happening here is, down here, Revit's unhappy with this intersection. No big deal. I'll just click Un-join Elements. Then I'll come back with my Trim and Extend command and just reconnect that. Not sure why it couldn't keep it joined, but sometimes you get an error like that, and it's easy enough to fix.
So, let me finish this, and that's going to do two things. It's going to get the ceiling in the location it needs to be for us to move to the next step, and it also, incidentally, solved the gap problem that we had between the ceiling and the object there. Now, we still need to do Join Geometry to join this wall with the ceiling to get rid of that extra line, but I'll let you do that on your own. But meanwhile, let's go back to the enlarged soffit here, and we get this condition here. Now, if you're satisfied with this result, then you're done, but sometimes, you might say, well, I really want the stud of the wall to continue down and past the ceiling, instead of vice versa.
So, it turns out when we did Join Geometry, the order you pick actually matters. We did wall first, ceiling second. There's a Switch Join Order command right here, and you can reverse the join order between these two objects, but unfortunately, that puts us right back where we started from. There are two potential solutions to this. This ceiling is using a drywall layer that is .052. I could take the height of this wall and adjust it by .052.
If I add a base offset of .052, that moves that wall up by the thickness of the drywall. Now, you're saying yeah, but I've got a funny gap here. Well, the next step is to edit the wall type, edit its structure, and I'm going to click the preview button here, because in order for you to get to these grayed out buttons here, you have to be in preview. I'll go to my Section Preview, and it's a little tough to see, but if you zoom way in at the bottom edge here, what I want to do is click the Modify button here, select the bottom edge of that drywall, and unlock it.
I know this seems like a lot of steps. I'm going to click Ok. Ok again. And one more time, but notice what that does. I'll get two sets of grips here, and that means I can actually pull the drywall free from the rest of the wall. Now, the easiest way to get that exact is to use your Align command and align it like so. So, now I have the clean up the way that I want, but it did take a few extra steps to get there. So, there is a simpler alternative, but you have to make one small compromise. What I'm going to do here is back up a couple steps, and I'm going to back up to this Switch Join Order command, so I'm going to undo everything I did back to Switch Join Order, and I'm back to right here.
Instead of modifying the wall structure and unlocking the layers and doing all those manual adjustments, I'm going to select the ceiling instead, Edit Type, edit its structure, and if you can live with changing the function of the structure layer in the ceiling and just moving it up one level of priority here to substrate, then you'll get exactly the same look without all the extra steps. I'm going to change that to substrate, click Ok a couple times, and now I get exactly the same look, and the only compromise is this layer within the ceiling is no longer considered a structural layer; it's a substrate layer.
So, you'll have to decide in your own projets which of those methods will work better for you. If you need that layer to stay a structure, then you can use the first technique I showed, but if you can live with it being a substrate, then I think this is a much faster and easier way to do it, and that's a real simple way for you to get those soffit conditions and have them clean up correctly.
NOTE: The exercise files for this course can only be opened in the most recent version of Revit (Revit 2017).
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