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Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

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Tutorial Conceptual Massing and RevitStructure


Posted on March 7, 2014

Link to YouTube Video:http://youtu.be/aaBdlIoS5eI


In this tutorial I will take you through some of the tools you can use to create a mass
within Revit and then apply structural elements to the form. I will also outline some
other possible workflows with other Autodesk software. Our target will be to produce a
similar model to the one shown below. In future tutorials I will also talk about correcting
the analytical model and preparing this for analysis.

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The first step is to create the conceptual form, on the Application menu select the
Conceptual Mass command.

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https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

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The Conceptual Mass family does look a little different to the normal structural families
that you may create. You will see that the Reference Planes are visible in the 3D view
which makes them much easier to work with.

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In the Project Browser double click the Level 1 Floor plan and create the Reference Planes
as shown below.

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https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

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Once the Reference Planes are created then switch to the 3D view to view the planes in
3D. You will now set one of the Reference Planes as the active Work Plane. As shown
below, click the plane command and then select the front Reference Plane. You can also
switch on the visibility of this Plane by selecting the Show button on the Work Plane
Panel.

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https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

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Next you create the first profile, Click the Line command as shown below and draw the
three required lines. Next choose the Start End radius arc and create an arc for the curved
roof, use any radius you want for this. Note that you may need to use the Tab key to
select individual lines and arcs within the profile.

https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

Repeat this for the second profile using the image below.

Next you create the 3D form, Select both the profiles and click the Create Form command
as shown in the image below.

https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

Next you add an intermediate cross section to create a double-curved roof. Select the
solid by using the tab key to cycle to the solid form. On the contextual Ribbon you will
see the add profile tool, select this and add a profile roughly in the middle of the solid as
shown below. You may also want to enable the X-Ray command which will enable you to
visualise the cross sectional profiles.

https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

Select the middle arc and drag this up the Z-Axis to form the geometry as shown below.

You will now divide the top surface into a number of divisions. This is achieved by
selecting the top surface and clicking the Divide tool as shown on the ribbon below. Note
that you will need to turn the X-Ray model off to see the divided surface.

In the Properties Palette you now set the pattern to a Rhomboid form and then set the
Maximum Spacing to 2000 for the U and V Grids.

You have now successfully created the basic mass. Save this as ROOF MASS.rfa
Start a new Structural Project and ensure that you open the Site Structural Plan, this

https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

already has the View Range set to unlimited.


Make sure that you have also switched on the Mass Category within Visibility/Graphics
overrides dialog box.

On the Structure Ribbon, click the Component Command and then browse for your
ROOF MASS.rfa file. You can then place this on the Work Plane.

Create a new 3D view and ensure that the Mass Category is enabled. You should now see
your mass within this view. Next you create the structural framing.
Click the Beam Command and select a CHS section of your choice from the Type selector
as shown below. Note that you need to ensure that the sections are placed at the centre of
the divided lines as shown on the Properties Palette.

https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

You will now set up the Options for the beam placement. On the Contextual Ribbon and
Options Bar, set the following as shown below.

You can now start to select the divided lines and Revit will now add the 3D beams to the
divided surface lines. Note that you can use the Tab key to select panels to speed this
process up a little!

https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

You will notice that the CHS sections appear to spring back from the nodes. This is due
to the Start and End Extension calculations. You will now edit the CHS family to rectify
this.
Select one of the CHS sections on your roof and click Edit Family on the Contextual
Ribbon as shown below.

Switch to the Floor Plan Ref Level and then use the shape handles to drag the extrusion
from the inner Reference Plane to the Outer Reference Planes. This will then remove the
;Spring Back that occurs in the project. Ensure that you lock the geometry to the outer
planes. Load the family into your project and the frame should update.

https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

Hope that this has been useful for you.


LawrenceH

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https://revitstructureblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/07/tutorial-conceptual-massing-and-revit-structure/[4/12/2015 4:39:38 PM]

Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

About lawrenceh
I am currently employed by Excitech, one of the largest Autodesk resellers in
the UK, to provide training and other services such as implementation and
project support to our clients. The main products I get involved with are
Autodesk Revit Structure & Autodesk Inventor. My personal interests include
aviation, engineering and walking.
View all posts by lawrenceh

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3 Responses to Tutorial Conceptual Massing and


RevitStructure
Truc H. says:
July 21, 2014 at 8:12 pm

Hello Lawrence. In the step to edit the beam members in Edit Family to the outer
reference planes from the inner reference planes, when I selected the rectangle
for the beam (I had hollow square section), it does not show shape handles to
allow me to extend the length of the beam. Is there a step that Im missing?
Reply

lawrenceh says:
July 22, 2014 at 5:52 am

Its probably because the RHS section is still locked to the reference
planes. Pick the RHS and then edit the sweep path, you will be able to
re constrain the path to the correct work plane. Let me know if this
doesnt work for you and Ill think of plan b!
Reply

Truc H. says:
July 22, 2014 at 5:48 pm

I managed to make it work! Using Revit 2014, I clicked Edit


Sweep and then Sketch Path to adjust the lengths of two
perpendicular lines that correspond to the RHS section. Thank
you for your help!

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Tutorial Conceptual Massing and Revit Structure | Autodesk Revit Structure

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