Wednesday, August 16, 2006

The Revit Experiment I

7 months into my blogger experiment and I realize that I've talked a lot about Revit tips and tricks but I haven't really talked much about our transition to Revit. This will be the first in a series of posts on (drum roll).... The Revit Experiment.

In my first two years of using Revit I was using it almost exclusively for photo realistic rendering. I enjoyed setting up lighting and rendering mostly for interiors. The office I worked for didn't use Revit for developing working drawings but I do remember wishing that I could add text to linestyles (for phone, elec, gas, etc) and I remember having trouble understanding phases but I got a lot of help from users on Zoogdesign (now AUGI).

After two years I moved on to another office (a branch office with all of 4 staff) that was using MACs but was considering a move to PCs. So for a few months I learned how to use PowerCADD. The office eventually moved on to PCs and we used AutoCAD for a short time. When I mentioned that I had Revit experience the office bought a seat of Revit and I showed them what one could do with it, but I hadn't any experience doing working drawings in Revit... yet. In one year I've learned what I had to to develop working drawings, we've managed to build up some Revit content, we've organized our templates, and we are successfully developing our details and other drafting standards transfered from PowerCADD to AutoCAD to Revit. I will go into this in future posts. Now we are putting all of our projects into Revit.

I can't say it's been the smoothest ride. Transitioning from PowerCADD to AutoCAD to Revit on all the workstations meant resolving plotting problems every other day. This doesn't plot on the correct size sheet, that doesn't plot in the correct orientation, etc. Getting our plotter drivers properly configured has finally settled down, but I'm sure we'll have to grapple with this everytime we build a new PC.

Meeting once a week for an in-house Revit class has been very beneficial. Most beginners don't really know what questions to ask until they start using the software. Preparing content for a weekly in-house Revit class is a good idea but don't restrict yourself to any particular content. Users may already have questions prepared if they are truely interested in the software. Giving users room to try things, differently than you would, is also a good idea. Faced with a new program beginners sometimes find creative solutions to difficult problems. Supplimenting your in-house classes with classes offered by a reseller or Autodesk is highly recommended.

To be continued...

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