Join Paul F. Aubin for an in-depth discussion in this video Using the ribbon and the QAT, part of Revit 2018: Essential Training for Architecture (Imperial).
- [Instructor] The most common way that you're going to access commands in the Revit interface is to use either the ribbon or the Quick Access Toolbar, so let's take a look at these two critical interface elements here in this video. Now in order to properly show you both of those interface elements, we really need to be in a project. Now it doesn't matter what project you open, you can open absolutely anything at all. In my case, I'm just going to click this Architectural Template link right here to create a new empty project. So, I don't really care what the project is because we're going to focus all of our attention on these interface elements at the top. So at the very top of the screen, we have the Quick Access Toolbar, or QAT as it's sometimes referred to, and then directly beneath that we have this tabbed interface here that is the ribbon.
Now the ribbon is the primary interface for accessing commands within the Revit software, and you've probably seen a ribbon interface in other software as well, so it works in much the same way here in Revit. Now the actual tabs that you have across the top might vary slightly from what I'm showing. You most likely have an Architecture tab, but it's possible you might not have Structure or Systems, and maybe you don't have Add-Ons, or you might actually have additional tabs that I don't see. But each of the tabs serves the purpose of just grouping commands that are similar to one another or that are categorized in the same kind of function.
So we have an Insert tab. We have all our annotation commands over here. We're going to have all our modification commands on the Modify tab. But let me click back over here on the Architecture tab. Now, the tabs themselves are organized into panels. Panels just group all the various buttons. So our first panel here is called Build, and you see that it groups together all of the basic building commands, like walls, and doors, and columns, and so on. Now we also have other panels for Circulation, and for Openings and so on. Now, most of these panels are just titles for grouping purposes, but notice that this one here called Room & Area.
If I move my mouse over, it actually highlights, and there's a small little drop down arrow right there, and if I click on it, that will actually expand that portion of the panel open and reveal a few other hidden commands in here. So if you just sort of move your mouse away from it, it will collapse down. So there are a few other places in the interface that have these expandable panels. For example, on the Annotate tab, the Dimension panel expands. The tag panel expands. So just be on the lookout for those expandable panels because sometimes there are additional commands kind of hidden away within those panels.
Now, also here on the Annotate tab, we have another kind of little interface element that's on the panel titles, and that's this tiny little arrow right here. Now if you hover over that, that's actually a button. And if you click that button, we call that a dialogue launcher so that will actually launch, in this case, the Type Properties window and it would allow me to make modifications to Type Properties. Now I'm not going to make any changes, I'll just simply click Cancel, but I just want you to be on the lookout for those small little dialogue launchers as well because they can be easy to miss sometimes. Alright, I'll click back on the Architecture tab.
Let's talk about buttons now. All of the different buttons that you see on the ribbon really boil down to three different varieties. We have a single function button that you just simply click, we have drop down buttons that display small menus, and then we have a combination of the two in the form of a split button. So Door, and Window, and Ceiling, these are all examples of individual function commands where you just simply click the button to run that command. So if I just click the Door command, it does one thing. It starts placing a door.
Now I don't really want to place a door, so let's just click this Modify button right here to cancel out of that command. Now, the next kind of button is a drop down button. So if we look over here on the Model panel, the Model Group button is actually a drop down button. So if we click it, instead of running a single command, it actually displays a menu of choices, and then we could choose either Place Model Group or Create Group, and so on in order to run that command. Now if you choose one of those commands, just click the Modify tool to cancel. You can just click away from that menu to close it.
Now the Wall command is an example of a split button, so it does a little bit of both. The top half of the button is just like the Door command where you just click it and it does that command. The bottom half of the button displays a small menu. So if we wanted to place different kinds of walls, we would use the menu, otherwise we would use the top half of the button to do the default command. What's the default command? The first one on the list. So if you want Wall Architectural, you can choose it from the drop down button certainly, but all you really need to do is just click the top half of the button and it will run Wall Architectural.
Now I'm going to click the Modify tool to cancel out of that command. So that gives you an idea of the different kinds of buttons and controls that you will find on the ribbon. Now, if you don't like clicking through the various tabs to find the command you're looking for, or if there's a command that you use frequently that you'd like to get to a little bit more quickly, that's what the Quick Access Toolbar is all about. So the Quick Access Toolbar initially is populated with many common commands. Things like Open, Save, Undo, Redo, Print, but over here at the far right of the Quick Access Toolbar, there's actually a menu that you can use to customize what actually occurs on the Quick Access Toolbar.
So you can uncheck anything that you didn't use frequently that you didn't want to appear there, and you can add anything that was unchecked to add it to the toolbar. Now, another way that you can add to the Quick Access Toolbar is to right-click any command anywhere on the ribbon, and then choose Add to Quick Access Toolbar. So if I choose the Ceiling command here and right-click it, notice it adds that Ceiling button to my Quick Access Toolbar. Now, as you'll see, if I start customizing the Quick Access Toolbar and adding more commands, I might run out of room here pretty quickly.
So another thing that you can do is right-click on the Quick Access Toolbar and choose this option to show the toolbar below the ribbon. That will move it down and give you a lot more space to work with. So if you're going to heavily customize the QAT and add lots of commands to it, you might want to display it below the ribbon. Now another thing that you can do with the Customize drop down here is choose the Customize option near the bottom. And in this dialogue, you could actually use the up and down arrows to move things around and you can even add these little separators here which would be small little vertical bars to help group things visually on the QAT to make it a little bit more legible.
So what I'm going to do is Cancel this, right-click the Ceiling command, Remove it from the Quick Access Toolbar, and then right-click the toolbar and show it above the ribbon again just to kind of reset everything. But you are welcome to move it if you wish and you're welcome to customize it any way that you like on your own system. So, the ribbon is your primary user interface for accessing all of the commands in Revit, so you just click to the tab want and then access the button that you need to run a particular command. Or you can use the QAT, the Quick Access Toolbar, to access commands that you use frequently a little bit more quickly without having to switch ribbon tabs.
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