Rebar Code Checking with Dynamo

Those that are currently modelling their reinforcement in 3D already know the advantages of automated bending schedules. In this tutorial you can see a method of checking your rebar against codes that ensure that the bar can be fabricated and bent to the shapes and lengths specified.

This aspect is often overlooked and can be a useful tool to validate your work and provide simpler methods of checking the model. In the image bellow you can see a screen capture of a ‘3D checking view’ that shows unchecked rebar in Yellow, rebar that meets design codes in green and failures in red. This data can also be shown in bending schedules to identify issues.

Revit Rebar Checking

This is a fairly big Dynamo script that could definitely be reduced with more use of IronPython. The image below shows the overall graph. The green groups are inputs, grey is data processing and blue is outputs.

Overall Rebar Checking in Dynamo

The graph begins by recovering all the rebar in the project. The bars are then separated, straight bars and bend bars.

Get all rebar - Dynamo

Once the straight rebar is isolated you can then check for bars that are over stock length or do not conform to code 01 (i.e. bars that should be 6 or 12m). This is done with some simple design script such as ‘A != 6000 && A != 12000’ which effectively loops through the rebar and isolates all bars that are not 6000 or 12000.

Check rebar is not over stock length

I have then used some IronPython to create lists that store if rebars are OK or need checking and if errors are found, report on the code failure. This type of iteration through lists is much more compact using simple python scripts.

IronPython to check rebar

There is too much detail to show in this post but take a look at the YouTube video which will show the script running. I also step though each group so you can understand how the graph is composed.

Enjoy,

Lawrence

Revit – Setting out and scheduling coordinates from grids with Dynamo

I have had a few questions around detailing coordinates of grid intersections with Revit. You may already know that it is tricky to add spot coordinates to each grid intersection as Revit will not ‘snap’ to the grid intersection. You can add reference planes across the grid intersections, but this is quite time consuming and prone to error.

Revit - Grid Setting Out and Detailing

I have created a Dynamo script to place down a setting out family at each grid intersection and record the grid intersection, Easting and Northing at each location. This has the added value of being exposed in Navisworks or an IFC model for a contractor. We can also schedule the coordinates of each grid intersection and present this onto drawings or export to Microsoft Excel for input into site instruments.

Grid Setting Out Points - Dynamo

Update!

Thanks to Christoph for providing a Python script to replace the convert to number node. Below is the updated graph.

Dynamo Update

and here is christoph’s python script.

#@Christoph Raidl(2019)
Grids = IN[0]
IsString = []
for Grid in Grids:
    try:
        name=int(Grid)
        IsString.append(False)
    except:
        IsString.append(True)
        
OUT = IsString

Python

 

See the video below for more!

 

https://youtu.be/6_8vWdy4yzk

 

LawrenceH

Revit 2020.1 Update – Rebar Constraints

Released on the 21st August this update proves to be very useful for those using Revit for reinforcement modeling as well as some general tools to enhance usability and deliver more productivity. As always, I will not include non-structural features and just focus on the relevant tools for this sector. In this post we will focus in on the rebar constraint tools.

Rebar to Rebar Constraints

This is possibly one of the best new features for the Revit reinforcement tools for several years. The new rebar to rebar constraints allow you to set constraints between rebar objects, in previous releases it was only possible to set constraints to element faces or covers. This new command allows for much better parametric control when bar diameters are changed or when controlling lap lengths. In the image below you can see the B1 and B2 layers for a foundation. The B1 and B2 layers are constrained to the tangent faces of the rebar, if I change the rebar diameter on the B1 layer then the B2 layer and the column starter bars will automatically move! A major improvement.

Rebar to Rebar Constraints 1

In the image below you can see the beam bottom L-bars that are positioned relative to the beam top L-bars which are constrained to the Bottom and top layers in the beam. All these members are fully constrained and ‘intelligent’ and will update when members or bar diameters change.

Rebar to Rebar Constraints 2

Intuitive rebar constraints visualisation and editing

The method that you use to set rebar constraints have been improved and made more intuitive with simple icons and tooltips. Each of these can also have keyboard shortcuts assigned. The space bar will cycle through the various rebar constraints. A blue arrow now shows the positive side of the rebar which takes the guesswork away when setting offsets.

Revit 2020.1 Rebar Constraint Icons and descriptions

Revit 2020 – New Structural Features Review

This year Autodesk strengthen the steel detailing tools with some very useful tools to enable quick and efficient steel connection modelling. Revit is constantly criticised for a lack of model detail with fabrication elements. This release strengthens the 3D detailing capabilities for those that require higher Levels of Detail or fabrication models.

When using the Copy/Paste and editing tools the processing is 20x faster than the previous release and connections can now be automatically propagated. This is due to some smart background processing that calculates the elements that are being processed and allows you to continue with other tasks, the elements being processed are highlighted different colour. The background processing is for steel connections but also works when performing most editing tools. The Background Processing colour can be set in the Options dialog in the Graphics Tab as shown below.

Revit 2020 - Background Processing

Steel Connections now use types just like other Revit families. This means that you can create various types of base plates and then either select all instances and swap or edit the type parameters. This new feature makes controlling steel connections much easier.

Steel Connection Type Dialog Box

The Propagate tool automatically recognises similarly connected steelwork and adds the relevant connections which greatly speeds up the processes of adding connections. Simply select a steel connection, right click and select Propagate Connection.

Revit 2020 - Propagate Connections

Many new parameters have also been added to facilitate the efficient creation of fabrication details such as the new hole parameters dialog box. You can now also set the grip length for bolts to allow for accurate sizing and calculation.

Revit 2020 - Hole Dialog Box

The only missing feature is the creation of automatic fabrication documents and CNC code which I am sure we will see in due course. I would anticipate that this will be a cloud-based tool to take advantage of efficient processing times and could use the BIM 360 products to track versions and store the drawings and NC codes.

Concrete Detailing Tools

This release brings more stability to Revit whilst adding reinforcement bar with slightly different cover settings. Certain elements can cause reinforcement bar to constrain to the wrong faces when copying, mirroring or moving bars. The algorithm has been updated to ensure that rebars remember faces and covers from the original element.

Revit 2020 - Reinforcement Placement Improvements

Improvements has also been made to the multi rebar annotations to allow dimensioning to the formwork. Multi rebar annotations can now also be added to freeform reinforcement provided that the reinforcement bars remain parallel.

MRA to formwork

LawrenceH

Revit 2019 Tutorial – Analytical Model Visualisation

Quite often when structural engineers are viewing the analytical model within Autodesk Revit it can be a little difficult to see which members are fixed or pinned or have specific release conditions set. The standard way to achieve this is to select the analytical bar and then look in the Properties Palette for the information.

The image shown below is a typical representation of the analytical model with the loads and end colours shown.

revit analytical model

Here you can see the same model  with some filters applied to help visualise fixed and pinned conditions.

revit analytical model with filters applied

The filters are set within the Visibility/Graphic Overrides dialog box. In the example below, I have chosen to indicate a Fixed or Pinned condition by using the colours red and green. Note that I have also had to create a separate filter for columns.

visibility graphic overrides dialog box

In the image below, you can see the new OR functionality being used to set a filter that either has the start or end release set to Pinned.

revit 2019 filters using or statement

I would suggest that you create a separate view within your current structural template to enable the engineers to easily check the release conditions on the analytical model, this is much easier that selecting each element and viewing the Properties.

Hope this Helps,

LawrenceH

Tutorial – Piling with Revit 2019, Dynamo and AutoCAD Civil 3D 2019

In this tutorial we will look at a simple method to generate piling from a finished ground level to a rock stratum from borehole data. Most of you will now have access to the Autodesk AEC collection but, I often find that people tend to use just one or two tools from this collection which doesn’t return value or efficiency. In this workflow we will utilise Revit 2019, Civil 3D 2019 and Dynamo.

Revit and Civil3D Piling workflow

This workflow can also be achieved using Dynamo and Revit to find the intersections between the piling and the surfaces, but this can take quite a while to execute on large datasets, is computationally expensive and will invariably crash the machine.

Piling to Rock

So, presented below is another option if you want to move into the use of Civil 3D. We will start in AutoCAD Civil 3D 2019. In Civil 3D you can either create the surfaces from points or from an existing set of contours a little like the workflow in Revit. We then place the pile locations as AutoCAD points and convert these points into Civil 3D points. The Civil 3D points can then obtain levels from surfaces. The group of points are then exported as a text file.

Export Points

The next stage is to use Dynamo to organise and prepare these points for use in Revit. The Dynamo script will first open the text file and create an ordered list from the data.

Dynamo Section 1

Once this list is created, we then get the Project Base Point from Revit. The PBP is set to the local setting out point. This is then used to create the local coordinates that Revit will need to set out the piles.

Dynamo Section 2

Because the top and bottom points are in the same list, we can use dynamo to sort the points on the X coordinates (the X and Y value will be the same for the top and bottom point). This section of the script separates the Eastings, Northings and Levels and transforms the coordinates to local grid suitable for Revit.

Dynamo Section 3

The last part then creates the Revit elements and sets the depth parameter to send the piles to the rock level.

Dynamo Section 4

Here is the final layout in Revit.

Revit Piling Layout

Obviously, we can directly use the coordinates to create a piling schedule and use the point numbers to number each pile.

Hope that has been useful,

Lawrence H

 

Revit 2019 Tutorial Part 1 – Adding Vertical Bracing Systems

I still find many people asking what the best methods are for adding bracing to steel models, some are still using beams to try and model bracing, others still get into a bit of a mess with vertical bracing, more struggle with the representation on drawings.

I thought it was about time I created a tutorial on this subject, covering both horizontal and vertical bracing as well as some typical connections for adding those all-important details.

So first we need to look at some of the basics. In the images below, you can see Vertical, Horizontal and Roof Bracing.

Revit Bracing Examples

Creating Vertical Bracing

When creating vertical bracing it is best to create a framing elevation. The framing elevation creates an elevation on the frame a few hundred millimetres deep and sets a working plane for the bracing.

Framing Elevation

You must use the dedicated brace command to efficiently add bracing.

Bracing

You can roughly sketch the bracing that you require and then use the Properties Palette to fine tune the exact location of the bracing.

In the example below, you can see some vertical X-bracing, note that the start and end attachments are attached to the correct levels and you also have the option of adding offsets from each of these levels.

Vertical Bracing with PropertiesIn this example we have used Equal Angle to create the bracing. Both angles are in the same plane and hence clash.

This can easily be resolved by using the y Offset Value on each member. The analytical line remains centred, but the physical elements will be located correctly.

Offset Bracing in the Y Axis

The bracing is automatically represented in a plan view and can be tagged. The standard in the UK is to show a parallel line on the outside for bracing above and a parallel line on the inside for bracing below.

Plan Bracing

You can control the type of representation and spacing in the Structural Settings dialog box.

Structural Settings Bracing

Finally, if you want to tidy up the bracing and make the drawings look a little better you can either use 2D detail components to represent a connection or use the connection tools to add 3D connections.

Revit 2D and 3D Bracing

LawrenceH