Revit TotD – 2.29.2011 | Family Creation take… 2.1?

I’ve decided to move forward with the Family Creation series in tandem with a series of Live Sessions I’ll be hosting over at  So I’ll be posting links to the Live Session posts when they are available as well as a link to the Recorded sessions for all to watch.


For those of you who have been watching lately, this first one will be a recap of a lot of the things I’ve already gone over. The next couple of sessions will cover new information. Unfortunately the sessions will be about an hour long each, but they will each be archived for you to view at your convenience. Remember to post your questions and suggestions for what you’d like to see so I can add it to my session tree!


Session 1:

Recorded Session:



Live Interview…

I’ll be doing a preliminary interview for anyone interested in my consulting services this afternoon. It will be in the form of a live webinar. Find more information here:

Business Call

So I figured I should actually post what is going on and why you haven’t seen a post. It seems that every time I get back to going in a good pattern for posting something stupid happens. Well this time I’m officially looking for clients. If you are looking for a Revit professional, implementation specialist or design consultant (or all of the above!) please give me a call or email me. Remote or travel, we’ll make it work. In the mean time, know that I’m still working on getting posts out to you guys but unfortunately the blog doesn’t put food on the table for my family so Job hunting is taking precedence.

Hope to hear from some of you soon, until next time.


The Whipping Boy: Starring Revit

Sad but true that a bunch of professionals can justify standing around a desk for hours blaming a piece of software they barely understand for all their project issues. I know that Revit is still the new kid on the industry block, but seriously folk; I think there have been enough successful Revit projects by now that it’s no longer an excuse to blame Revit for your office woes. So break up those water cooler gossip sessions and just let Revit take its course, you may even learn a thing or two about why what you’re doing is just bad design…?

Revit TotD – 2.7.2012 | Somewhere to Start Families 2.2

Yes! I’m really going to start this back up. A post here, A post there. Maybe one in between. Either way, I’ll be trudging through this series as well as posting the occasional impromptu tutorial post. In the meantime, I’m going to just leave the text that I wrote over 9 months ago and just let it go from there. It’s actually quite short and is just another large step on the way to understanding families. Enjoy, comment and see you for the next one.

Well, I thought all this preliminary explanation that is leading up to family creation would bore everyone, but I’ve never had so many hits on my site! This is awesome! I thought I was going to make the next one a preemptive strike on modeling and get down and dirty with some geometry creation but seeing these stats kinda makes me think I should just chug along; those who are looking for geometry creation will be back in good time.


BIM TotD – 2.6.2012 | EOH

If you don’t know by now, I’m a KS junky… that’s Keyboard Shortcut for you mouse clickers (try it, try typing KS in Revit to see what happens!). So it occurred to me that I should share another quick KS that I use quite a bit.


A personal preference of mine is to halftone objects that are being called out in an enlarged plan. This makes any dimensions or tags that are in that area pop out and become more readable against those objects. So as you can imagine I do a lot of half toning of individual objects. To prevent pulling my hair out in trying to get certain categories grouped or any fancy trick like that I usually simply halftone the individual objects using element overrides.

Believe it or not, there is actually a KS for this already provided in Revit: “EOH” If it’s not already in yours, maybe it should be. Simple to add. Search for halftone in your KS dialog and look for the highlighted command below.


That’s it for today. Thanks for stopping by and I look forward to seeing for the next BIMTotD



Revit TotD – 2.3.2012 | No School like the Old School

Finally here. The post you’ve all been waiting for: how to get PDFs into your Revit model! Yes, I posted a nice little OpEd on how I feel about people who are whining about Autodesk not putting PDF support into Revit and it apparently stirred the hornets nest a bit. I can’t say I wasn’t looking for a reaction, but I can say I was surprised at where the reaction went. I’m not going to sit here and tell you that this is the best way to go about putting PDFs into your Revit model. I’m not going to sit here and tell you that it’s the only way to be done; I’ve been using Revit too long to know that there is no ONE way to do anything in Revit. However, like everything else posted ont his site, I will tell you I’ve found this to be the best method for bringing information from a PDF into my Revit projects.

If you’re completely lost as to what this is all about, check here, here and finally here before continuing.


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(For some reason fullscreen is not working on these 2 videos, you can click on the the links below each video to view in full screen)

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“… and hopefully that puts to rest the point I was making with my original post. Thanks for watching and I’ll see you again for the next, BIM Tip of the Day!” Sorry about that, I hit my 5 minute limit on Jing, hopefully to be remedied soon.

So in today’s T[hought]otD I’m basically just going to break down and compare some different methods of bringing information in from a PDF into a BIModel: Info via PDF > Image, Info via PDF > DWG, and Info via PDF > Revit.

Some important points I’ve made in the video:

  • Method: Bring info into model via image
  • Method: Bring info into model via PDF > DWG
  • Method: Bring info into model via
  • No method will be 100% accurate.
  • All methods require due diligence in checking the information.

So the question now remains, were the comments that were made that started this whole fiasco due to talking about 2 completely different things? I was referring to people wanting to bring an entire building plan in from a PDF to trace from. Maybe the Cudds was referring to older CAD details? I’m unsure but I honestly can’t imagine anyone truly believing that tracing an image to be more accurate that reconstructing the documents  through pure Reviteering muscle! Even if it were just a CAD detail wanting to be brought in, why would we prefer a PDF over a DWF? If it’s a portable document we want to bring in, why not at least ask the factory for support on their own portable format instead of asking them to incorporate another company’s standards in commercial use?

That’s all for today. If I get enough interest I’ll create a more detailed series on the workflow I used to get these drawings in to Revit. Until then, thanks for stopping by and I’ll see you back for the next, BIMTotD!


.Carl Gibson

Public Apologies…

I want to start this post by getting straight to the point. Mike Caudle, I apologize for coming across as harsh in my response to your comment on the PDF post.  Was it intended to be serious? No. Was it meant to be satirical. Not so much. Sarcastic, definitely. Humorous, for sure.  The problem with digital media of course is that you can’t read facial expressions in text, and hearing sarcasm via printed word is like having a mechanic diagnose your engine over the phone; it just don’t happen. So for coming across in a manner as unintended as it was taken, I apologize Mike.



That being said, I also want to apologize to anyone else who has been offended by the “dramatic” posts that have been appearing lately. I made a decision to let my blog be my voice on what I feel is happening not only with the projects I am involved with but also with what I see happening in the industry. Fortunately, that means I’m going to be posting my opinion on several things. Unfortunately, that means I’m going to be posting my opinion on several things… see what I did there? I can’t ask everyone to enjoy or agree with my opinion, but I can request that it be discussed in an honest protocol; if I seem out of line with what I say in regards to how it works in real life, feel free to post something, start a discussion, LET IT BE KNOWN THAT I AM WRONG!!! However, know that if you reply, there’s a good chance I’m going to respond. Most likely in a manner similar to your response


I certainly do not wish to lose readers just because my opinion is against a majority of my readers; even though I think if you’re more than a reader but also a watcher of the videos you already know I’m a fairly sarcastic SOB. However, I also feel that the things I have to say need to be said. They help other people know they’re not the only one out there thinking the same thing. They help people do their job better; and I know this for a fact. So I will continue doing so at the risk that I lose some of my readers.


Oh, and Mike: I know you said you’re not going to be reading any more, but the next TotD will be devoted to you, sir! (so if you know Mike, please let him know when it is published since he won’t know that it has been published.)


Till then…

.Carl Gibson

Stop putting info in your BIM model!!!

Someone recently told me I need to find the balance between modeling and drafting. I asked them why and their response was “I’M AN AUTOCAD USER DON’T QUESTION ME!”.. no seriously, I have no clue what their response was because I stopped listening once I realized that the reason they didn’t want to model things was because they didn’t know how. So in response to those people who think that modeling is a waste of time, but can’t justify it other than “It takes too much time” (so does a good scotch, but you wouldn’t really want to skimp on that would you?) I have created the following…

Image source Hyperbole-and-a-half

Revit TotD – 1.26.2012 | Moving Walls, One End at a Time

Yo dawg, I heard you like Revit tips! So I have another one for you. You know how you can move everything in Revit a specified distance? Well, everything except the objects that you want to move a specified distance, obviously. I mean, this IS Revit after all. Well, today I aim to reduce that list of immovable objects by a few.



This one is pretty easy to overlook, seeing as about 85% of the Revit population would rather blame Revit for sucking than learning to use the Tab key. We’ll use walls in this example but you can use this on just about anything with a tab-able “shape handle”, you just have to know where to find them. I’ll give you a hint on where to start.

  1. Hover over one end of a wall, and continue hitting TAB until you see Workset:Category:Family:Type:Shape Handle

  2. Select the shape handle.
  3. At this point you can simply enter the dimension by activating the temporary dimension, or…
  4. …you can start the Move command.
  5. Now you can move the end wherever you see fit, or even type it the length you wish to move it.
  6. “Tadaaaa” – WALL-E

Now, this will of course only drive slightly more insane since it will constrain to the workplane that the shape handle in question is already constrained to, but it is a great way to avoid making that reference plane, dimensioning it then using the align tool. Use it however you feel, but remember, with great power come great responsibility; use it wisely!


Thanks again for stopping by. I’ll see you next time for yet another, RevitTotd! Till then,



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