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Monday, August 7, 2017

Node of the Week #2 - Dynamo Days of Summer

Last week, I posted about my number one Dynamo node and explained why I chose it (click here to see the post from Node of the Week - Element.SetParameterByName).   This week, I'd like to highlight my second favorite Dynamo node:


At first glance, this node looks very similar to last weeks.  In fact, Element.GetParameterByName is the counterpart to last weeks node; Element.SetParameterByName.  So, let's talk about what it does and why I chose it as my second favorite Dynamo node...

Monday, July 31, 2017

Node of the Week #1 - Dynamo Days of Summer

As Dynamo Days of Summer continues, I wanted to take a minute to highlight some of my favorite nodes in a segment aptly called "Node of the Week".

When trying to rate my favorite Dynamo nodes it was not hard to come up with my number one.  This node is by far the most powerful and versatile.  It is the foundation of some of the most complex scripts that exist.  What is it?


That's right.  Want to know why it is my favorite (and the Node of the Week)?  Continue reading to find out...  ( P.S. - There is also some news on the beginners Dynamo course I have been working on at the end of this post... )

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Building Content Summit 2017 - Are You Going?

Due to scheduling conflicts I will not be attending BILT North America (formally RTCNA) this year... I know, I am sad too...

But!  I will be attending/speaking at the Building Content Summit for the first time this year!

As sad as I am to not be attending RTCNA (crap, I mean, BILT NA), I am excited to attend a focused two day conference about the state of content in Building Information Modeling.  While developing my presentation I realized how many opinions I actually have on building content.  I can only imagine the other 70-100 attendees feel the same!

Will you be attending BCS 2017 this year in Toronto?  If so, shoot me an email, say hi when you see me, or message/follow me on Twitter! (@TheRevitKid)

Also, if you are attending, make sure you joining my session on Tuesday morning at 10:45AM.

Similar to last year's session at RTCNA (now, BILT NA), I will be discussing how contractors use models but with an emphasis on content's (Revit Families, etc...) impact on downstream use of the model (pre-construction, construction, operations, and so on...)

I hope to see some of  you there!!

Monday, July 17, 2017

3D Printing Topography Directly from Revit ... Plus, Exciting News!

Due to the overwhelming interest, engagement, and discussions created over my last post documenting the process of 3D printing directly from Revit I figured this post is a perfect follow-up. Interesting discussions on Twitter and through emails led me to explore the concept of automating the process documented in last weeks post using Dynamo.  I have made progress with "massing" the building using Dynamo but it's not quite ready to share...  Instead, I will share something just as cool!

While exploring using Dynamo to "mass" a building for 3D printing I realized a similar script could be used to 3D print topography.  For those of you who may not have attempted printing topography I'll let you in on a little secret: it doesn't work.  Topography exports as a single surface and not a solid.  Therefore, you need to use the process I mentioned last week to mass out the topography... Imagine trying to model topography using conceptual massing... not fun!

Thanks to our good friend Dynamo (and some awesome users in the Dynamo forum), printing Revit Topography can be as easy as clicking "run"... Keeping reading to see the script and how it works...

*** P.S. - I have some exciting updates about the blog at the end of this post... so definitely read until the end!

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

3D Printing and Revit - Yes, It's Possible, and Here's How ...

When I was given the opportunity to purchase and use a LulzBot Taz 6 my first reaction was, "awesome".  Until I started doing research on 3D printing an actual Revit model, "not so awesome".  With a deadline for printing a project approaching my feeling of excitement turned to anxiety.

I found out that you just can't "press print" on your every-day Revit model and expect it to 3D print.

I also found out that there is very little information regarding the processes required to actually 3D print your working Autodesk Revit building models... So, I will save you the trouble of searching and do my best to break down the quickest and most effective method I've found to printing ANY of your Revit models.... Step 1 is the key...

Monday, May 8, 2017

From Revit to Lumion - The Ultimate Review (Revisited)

Example of a House and Site  Modeled in Revit and Rendered in Lumion

This is one of those posts that has been in my "draft" queue for quite some time now.  Finally, it is complete!  

There have been two new releases and lots of great updates to Lumion since my last post in 2015.  The review I posted in 2015 is still relevant in describing the great benefits of using Lumion (so be sure to check it out). But now, let's talk about what has happened to Lumion over the last 2 years...

Monday, April 17, 2017

Revit 2018 is Out... And... It's Alright.

As I mention every year now the "new releases" of Revit aren't always that exciting anymore.  This is mostly due to the subscription setup Autodek is implementing.  Instead of one massive launch every year they will slowly drip out new features with major releases throughout the year.  Personally, I don't mind it.  It may not have the April excitement that used to come with every new release of Revit, but it works.

Now, onto what I think of the new and "new" Revit 2018 features...

Monday, March 20, 2017

Virtual Reality and Revit in the Real-World ( Success Story with HTC Vive & Enscape 3D )

I know every single person who reads this blog is familiar with the explosion of Virtual Reality (VR) over the last few years.  I know, because I have also been saturated with everything "VR". My first personal experience with VR was using Google Cardboard over two years ago...   As you can imagine, VR has come a long way since that post.

Initially, emerging technologies can battle with the concept of pragmatism.  The first thing you hear with something like AR, VR, Dynamo, etc.. is "cool, but how can I use it in the 'real-world'"?

Today, I wanted to talk about a recent real-world experience with VR.  More specifically, with Revit, the HTC Vive, and Enscape 3D.

... Continue reading to hear about the success story and my thoughts on the aforementioned technologies (including a breakdown of the hardware and software we used)...

Monday, February 20, 2017

Revit Tip - Modifying a "Built-In" Parameter (Type to Instance)

One of the things I love about teaching a BIM course at the University level is how much I learn from it...  Whether it be the fact that I am constantly challenged with questions or the fact that the students, with brand new perspectives on the program, point out nuances I've been too in the trenches to see...

Well, today's tip is a perfect example of a nuance that I never noticed...  During a recent class I was teaching my students how to make a fully parametric casement window from scratch.  We decided, as an example, we wanted the "Width" of the window to be an instance parameter... Well, if you start with the "Window" template, guess what...?  You can't make it an instance.. Or can you..?

Continue reading to find out more...

Monday, January 16, 2017

Revit Tutorial - True Solar / Shadow Studies

Here at, 2017 is going to be the year of "bringing sexy back".  That means many of the tips, tricks, tutorials, and reviews will be related to presentation and visualization.  So, for the first post of 2017 we are going to attack a common problem for many designers using Revit.

You may have made floor plans with shadows in Revit.  Additionally, you may have created solar studies of your designs in Revit.  If so, you have probably run into a little issue when it comes to accurately depicting sun and shadows in Revit floor plans.

By default, your shadows will reflect what the floor plan view shows, which is a cut at 4'-0" above your level.  For typical presentations, this looks great.  But if your goal is to accurately represent the sun and shadows within your space, cutting the building at 4'-0" will not help!

...Continue reading to view a video tutorial that demonstrates how to make floor plans that accurately represent how your sun and shadows will appear.  Oh, I also touch on how to make a solar study animation... ;)

Monday, December 19, 2016

A Year in Review - 2016 (Plus, 5 Days of Discounts)

I read a lot of small business blogs and articles that emphasize the importance of doing a year end review.  I have been running The Revit Kid for almost 8 years now and have never formally created one.  I decided this year would be the first. 

Continue reading the post to see what happened in 2016, what are the plans for 2017, and to learn about the "5 Days of Discounts" BIM After Dark year end sale...

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Mini-Course #1 : Download Today!

A few weeks ago I held the first ever BIM After Dark Mini-Course.  This was the first time I have ever held a live, formal, class online for the blog.  The class was a huge success and those who attended gave nothing but positive feedback.

In the 1 hour and 12 minute session I walked through the entire process of creating a fully parametric base cabinet family from scratch (like the one in the picture above).  Starting from a blank family template I show you my step-by-step methods to creating parametric families, including:

- Reference Plane Creation and Planning
- Proper dimensioning.
- Adding dimensional, material, and visibility parameters.
- Testing and flexing your parameters.
- Creating geometry and constraining it to parameters.
- Working with nested families.
- When to use instance parameters.
- Creating and modifying family types.

The feedback was so positive that I decided to package up the course and sell it for those of you who missed the live event.

Starting today, you can download the recording of November's live mini-course along with the sample files and images to help guide you in creating a base cabinet from scratch!

What's Included in the Mini-Course Package Download?

- Full 1.25 hour long video tutorial with Q&A.
- Sample Family Files.
- Family Parameter Screen Captures to help guide you.

Additionally, for today only, use offer code "minisavings" during checkout to save an extra 15%. Sorry, the discount code has expired!

Click here to download the Mini-Course #1: Family Creation package today!