Join Paul F. Aubin for an in-depth discussion in this video Creating a custom basic wall type, part of Revit 2018: Essential Training for Architecture (Imperial).
- [Instructor] In this movie, we're going to talk about the basic wall family and creating our own custom basic wall type. Now I want to start off by talking a little bit about wall families in general. Would it surprise you to learn that all of the walls that we've drawn so far throughout this course have been in the basic wall family? That's right. Any wall that we've created has been a basic wall. Now that's true whether or not it was a generic wall like this one here, or a stud wall like this interior partition here, or a concrete wall like this foundation wall, or even a brick wall like this one or this one.
All of those walls are part of the basic wall family. Now the differences you see are actually reflected in the types. So if I hover over any one of these walls, the tool tip says walls, which is the category, then basic wall, which is the family, and then the name of the type. Interior four and seven eighths partition in this case. Now when the tool tip goes away, by the way, it's still appears down on the status bar at the bottom left hand corner of the screen. So as you can see when I move over to the next wall, it's still walls category, basic wall family, but then foundation 12.
And this one is still walls category, basic wall family, generic brick. So what we're going to do in this movie is we're going to create our own custom wall type. But the wall type we create will be part of the basic wall family. So it's kind of important to understand that. Now a wall family is a system family. And all a system family means is that what it means to be a wall is built into the Revit system. And you and I can't change it. And that's kind of what we've been discussing here. What we can change is the types in the wall family, in the system family.
We can't change the system family itself. So to demonstrate the process to create our own custom type, let me switch over to a different file. This file's called Basic Walls and it's just a simple floor plan layout. And I wanted to do something that a little bit more practical. So right here in the middle of this space here, between these two toilet rooms, is a very thin wall. And that one is basic wall, interior four and seven eighths partition. So this is another way that you can tell what family and type it is by selecting it and looking at the properties palette.
Now what I want to do is make a custom plumbing wall for that location. So I'm going to click edit type. Go to edit structure and you want to be careful here. I'm just going to go ahead and change this real quick. If I jump right in to the edit type and start making changes, I'm probably not going to get the results that I want because what's going to happen is there's actually several instances of that interior four and seven eighths inch type throughout the model and as you can see, they all changed. So I'm going to undo that with Control + Z. So what we need to do is always remember that when you're working with types, there's a really good chance that what you probably want to do is go to edit type and then click duplicate.
Now, if your intention is to modify interior four and seven eighths partition, then by all means, go ahead and make that change and it will be global as you just saw. But a lot of times, what you're actually trying to do is make a modification that's a custom type. And so in this case, I'll go ahead and put in the name that I want here. Now, a lot of firms will use their firm's initials at the start of the name to kind of indicate that they've customized it. So I'll just use RET for Revit Essential Training and then I'll just call this Plumbing Wall.
You can name yours whatever you like. Now that I've given that a unique name, any changes that I make to this new custom wall type will only apply to the selected wall. But then afterwards, if I want to, I can apply this wall type to other instance of walls throughout the model. So it's a little bit more controlled way of doing it. Okay, so great. I've got the name now. Now what? Well, all of the important information about a wall type takes place in the structure dialog that you just saw me go in a minute ago.
So let's go ahead and click that edit structure button. Now I'm going to reposition this window a little bit. Down here at the bottom, I'm going to click the preview so that I get a nice little preview image here. And then I'm going to enlarge the window so that I can actually read what's going on in each of the columns. Now, a basic wall type can be thought of to have really three zones. So the most important zone within the wall is the core. So you can see the core indicated here and here.
So layer two in this case, layer four. Now these are greyed out. You can't change the core boundaries. They're just there for reference. And you notice they're zero thickness. And they're represented by these bold green lines here in the preview. So any layers within the core are considered part of the wall's core and the wall's core is really the part of the wall that's actually holding up the wall. So that's usually where the studs would go or any of the other structural components. Now here it says interior side.
And that means that anything below the core boundary here is going to be considered an interior finish. And then this one says exterior side. So anything above the core here is going to be considered an exterior finish. So in this particular wall, it currently has a finished layer on both sides and they're both assigned to gypsum wall board. So I'm not going to change the finish layers in this particular example. I want to finish the wall with gypsum wall board. So all of the work that I want to do in this particular example is going to happen within the core.
So I'm going to select layer number three which is currently designated as structure and its material is metal stud layer. Next, I'm going to click the insert button here and you'll see that any new layer you add will go above whatever one you had selected. So in this case, my new layer becomes the new layer three and everything else moves down. Now here in the thickness column, it's currently zero. So I need to assign a thickness. I can either type it in, zero space three space five slash eight and press enter, or if you want, you could actually select this one, Control + C, then click here and do Control + V, and that saves you a little bit of typing.
But either way, I want the thickness of those two layers to be the same. Now, you could actually do the same trick with materials as well. So if I want this material to be exactly the same as this one, I can click here and select the name. Control + C, click here, that'll highlight the existing entry, and I'll do Control + V. And now both of those layers are the same material and the same thickness. Now I'm going to come back and select layer four again and click insert a second time.
And once again, it will add the new layer above the one I had selected. And what I want to do this time is click over here in the thickness column and use a different thickness. So I need enough room for my plumbing. So this is going to be the actual cavity within the wall. So what I'm going to put here is six inches. And I'll enter that. So that creates that wider layer. Now this time, I'm going to click over here in the material field and notice the small little browse button that appears right here.
I'm going to click that because I want to use a different material than what I already have. So I can't do the copy and paste trick this time. Now you can browse through the list of available materials to find something, or if you know a little bit of the name, you can actually start to type it in here. So I'm just going to type in the word air. And all of the materials that have the key word air in them will appear on the list. So in this case, I'm going to choose this miscellaneous air layers air space layer. And I'll click okay.
So that just sort of assigns it to a generic air gap. Now, it's currently assigned in the function column as structure. So the function column exposes a drop down list. The drop down list has five numbered functions plus a membrane layer. Membrane layers are always zero thickness. But the other five layers can be any thickness you want. And the priority numbers are in the square brackets. So priority one material structure has the most priority.
And a priority five material finish two has the least priority. So I'm going to choose a thermal air layer here because that's the more appropriate function for this middle layer. And that assigns it automatically to a priority three then. Now over here in the far column, structural material, what this does is you can only check one thing here. Right, so obviously the air gap doesn't make sense. But either one of the stud layers. And when I click okay, that will actually assign this property right here. So that metal stud layer property for structural material is coming from whatever one you checked in the previous dialog and your structural engineer will use that information.
So at this point, we've established all the layers that we want within this wall structure. Let me click okay a second time. And the wall that I have selected will get applied to the new wall type. And you'll see it get thicker. Now I want to do is actually see what that looks like. So I can zoom in here and turn on the layers, but what I'm going to do instead is, I'm actually going to go on the view tab here and click the call out command. And drag a small little call out window right here.
You can select it, right click, and choose go to view. And that will open up that call out view. Now, by default, a call out will double the scale. So we were in an eighth inch scale drawing. We're now in a quarter inch. I'm going to change this to one inch equals a foot and then zoom in a little bit and then finally, right next to scale, change to medium detail. Now I like to do it this way because it's a little bit easier to understand what's going on with these new layers.
Notice that our new plumbing wall here had two stud layers, here and here. And notice that those are cleaning up perfectly with the stud layer in this exterior brick wall. Likewise, notice that it had a dry wall and a dry wall and those are cleaning up perfectly with the dry wall in the neighboring wall. And of course, our air gap is being interrupted by the stud wall because it had a priority three where the stud had a priority one. So you can now see the interaction between the different priorities. In order to get this nice seamless joint here, both the priority number and the material have to match.
So that's why I wanted to do this nice zoomed in view so that you could understand that. So a basic wall is a wall family that can have one or many layers within its structure. You can customize how many layers by creating a custom type. When you create a type, you can edit the structure and then insert multiple layers, configure the thicknesses and materials of those layers, and then the way they will interact with other walls is based on the comparison of the functions and materials within those various wall types.
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