You are currently viewing Create sweep Generic Model based on more than two profiles – Part 1

Create sweep Generic Model based on more than two profiles – Part 1

During the project execution, we may need geometry that will be the result of extruding several cross-sections along a specific guiding axis. At the first glance, the task seems simple, but the implementation of such an element in Revit can cause many problems. Especially when it must be created using the General Model family type.

This article I am going to divide into two parts, in which I will try to present two approaches to obtain that geometry. In the first part, we will look at what built-in Revit tools offer, and in the second, I will show you how to create the same geometry using Dynamo addon.

As an example, we will take a simple slab with different sections, which will be generated along a grade line. Below our assumptions:

plan-2D

As I mentioned before, we want to create an element based on the General Model family type, so in the first step let’s see what Revit’s tools offer us to create solids. Here they are:

  1. Extrusion
  2. Blend
  3. Revolve
  4. Sweep
  5. Swept blend
solid-options

As we can notice, none of those options allow us to create a solid with more than two profiles. So what’s now?
Fortunately, Revit gives us another type of Generic Model – the Adaptive one. In this mode, we have much more freedom in shaping the geometry and this is a family type that I am going to use when creating our slab.

1. Create a new family – Generic Model Adaptive

File > New > Family > Generic Model Adaptive

new-generic-model-adaptative

Tip: If Revit doesn’t find the default folder with families, enter the following path into File Explorer:
C:\ProgramDataAutodesk\RVT [Revit version]\Family Templates\Polish

2. Import DWG reference to the Revit family

To facilitate modeling in Revit, I have prepared a 2D DWG drawing [Link to DWG file], which presents the slab plan, longitudinal section, and all characteristic sections.

Insert > Import CAD

import-CAD
import-CAD

3. Add reference points

Compare to the General Model, the Adaptive General Model allows you to place points anywhere within the family. Now let’s insert the points where we will place the sections of our slab. At the same time, make sure that you are working on the appropriate “Working plane” because we will set the proper height coordinates from it.

set-the-ref-plane
insert-ref-points

Now let’s assign the appropriate height of our points from the “Working plane”. We will do this using the Offset variable that is assigned to each reference point.

point-offest

4. Create a guide axis using a reference line

In the next step, we will create a guide axis for our slab. Choose the Reference Line tool and indicate our lines from the DWG plan.

guide-line

5. Create reference planes at points

To create the slab geometry, you will need profiles which will be the basis of our solid. In our assumptions, profiles must be placed on the planes which will be perpendicular to the reference plane +0.00 and they are faced perpendicular to the guideline at each characteristic point. To do this, we need to insert additional reference planes to our family.

working-planes

6. Create a profile family type

It’s time to move on to create a profile family. Select again from the “File” tab:

New > Family > Profile Generic Model Face Based

new-generic-model-face-based

Let’s draw our cross-section in the viewport and add some parameters that will define its geometry.

  1. Width
  2. Height
  3. Slope

Please remember to set the reference plane to +0.00 before starting the drawing.

parametric-profile-1

Additionally, we know that the insert point of the profile will be in its symmetry axis, so the position of the bottom edge is not random and it is best to set it this way:

profile-insert-point

Once the parametric cross-section is completed, load it into the Adaptive family with a predefined guiding axis.

load-profile

7. Place a profile family at reference planes

In the next step, you have to place the sections at the characteristic points of our guideline. At the same time, the corresponding profiles must be located on previously prepared reference planes. To insert them, select the Set Plane tool and click on the first one, which corresponds to the first point of the grade line. Then insert the desired section (with or without slope). Repeat the operation for each location.

profiles-working-planes
profile-working-plane

8. Create a final solid

You have prepared all elements to create our slab by sweeping the profiles along the guideline. Unfortunately, you have some limitations in this step. Revit does not allow you to create geometry by selecting all elements, so you have to do it part by part. To do this, select all cross-sections included in a given section of the grade line, and then use the Create Solid tool.

solid-slab-1

When all segments have been created, we can merge all parts using the Join tool.

solid-slab-2

The geometry is done. The last step is to load it into the project file.

In the second part I will show you how to achive the same geometry using a Dynamo tool. Then we will look at which method will be faster and more versatile.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Francisco Rubio

    Hi
    I’m brazilian, so I apologize for the bad english.
    I couldn’t find the link for the second part (in Dynamo).
    Can you help me?

    1. bimdigitz

      Hi Francisco,
      Unfortunately, the second part of this mini-series hasn’t been done yet. I will try to create this as soon as possible and I let you know when it will be finished. If you need urgent help, please send me an email at bimdigitz@gmail.com or if you have a LinkedIn account, send me a private message.

  2. Gustavo Garcia

    Hi, Just one question, how the guide axis followed the point’s elevation, I couldn’t do so.

Leave a Reply