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Forums >> Revit Building >> Technical Support >> Massing form Autocad

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Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 4:07:46 PM | Massing form Autocad




Joined: Fri, Oct 24, 2008
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We have a solid modle from autocad that we have imported into Revit and created an inplace mass with it.  We bring the massing studies into revit then paint the surfaces to give them a quick material so we can do some quick 3d studies.  We are having some difficulty dealing with the mass and it may be the way we have imported it or revit simply cannot do what we want it to do.  The problem(s) are as follows:

When trying to edit the mass (once inported from cad) we cannot edit it.  We can add to it but we cant changed the imported geometry.

The Mass from cad comes in on layers, for example, all the glass is on a glass layer and all the doors on massed on a door layer, the beams a beam layer, etc.  So we can isolate different parts of the mass by turning on or off the layers in the VG under the import category. When painting these different mass parts it only allows us to paint it face by face - a painstaking process you can imagine.  We can isolate the glass layer so all the mass that is glass is showing but we cant just select it all and make it all glass in one command.

So my question is there some parameter or method we can bring the different parts of the cad mass into so we can  then globally assign a material.

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Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 4:56:12 PM | Massing form Autocad



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Joined: Tue, May 16, 2006
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I don't know why you would mass in CAD instead of Revit but I guess - lessons learned.


No, you can't edit an imported mass.

Did you know you can assign materials to imports by layers?

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Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 6:54:57 PM | Massing form Autocad




Joined: Fri, Oct 24, 2008
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Well I can mass way faster in cad than in Revit.  I can do both well so its not for lack of experience, but cad is almost like sketchup and you dont have to go through all kind of gymnastics to creat different masses and move them around.  To each his own I guess.

But I am intrigued about assigning materials to layers.  Can you give me a quick idea of how?  I'll figure out the details, just need the basic concept.

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Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 7:54:33 PM | Massing form Autocad



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Joined: Tue, May 16, 2006
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Manage tab / object styles / Imported objects tab / expand the list uder your import and assign the material by layer.


BTW .... Massing in Revit only gets easier if you use it.

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Sat, Apr 23, 2011 at 3:52:37 AM | Massing form Autocad



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Joined: Sun, Apr 23, 2006
265 Posts
2 Stars: 16 Votes

hi greg-

here is the way i look at the topic you are asking about-


a DWG wireframe model can come from many different modelling

programs.. it's like an artist's sketch of something that you

can build in revit.. but it's not anything that can actually

be used as part of a revit model.. it's just for reference..


if you are going to change any materials to the import layers-

the best is an off white for all of them- so you can render it and

see better the shape of its parts.. remember the whole imported

mass DWG is for reference only.. and it's a better idea to

import that DWG as a mass into a SEPARATE session of

revit- (DWG lines mix in a revit project like oil mixes

with water)..


if you are trying to see better the different parts of that

mass by turning layers on and off- a better way is to

section-box it or use an elevation clip line or cut it at

a certain depth in plan view- sections etc. etc.


i use the measure tool only and measure parts of it as i

build it in my revit project.. i also constantly use the

windows snipping tool and import the image into

my project to create revit elements accordingly.. you

adjust the image to scale and of course you have to  

make sure you get the DWG import scale correct

in the first place.. i always import black lines only..

but you might change those line colors to see your imported

image snippets better..


i know autodesk is now marketing the massing part

of revit as a separate stand-alone program for design

artists- but most designs come from a .skp or a .dwg..

i guess the big idea with revit massing is that you can

use the "building maker" tools and place walls on the

massing lines- but that don't make much sense to me

because massing is just a conceptual sketch and the

lines are not precise enough for walls at that stage..

so it's really the same as a DWG mass import as far

as i can see.. but still i don't use revit massing to

be saying too much about it.. i always considered

revit to be a virtual construction and documentation

program- rather than a design program.. however

after seeing the flood of artists going for revit and

posting their designs in the gallery- i guess revit

is for design too..



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