I've got a question that might not be a quick or direct answer but I'd hopefully just looking for some of your collective guidance / experience.
We are a quickly growing company that are both a developer and builder who work closely with outside architects, engineers and consultants. Our focus have the last few years slowing been moving towards larger scale residential / mixed use developments with growing complexity. Our most recent and current project has highlighted a number of issues that we are facing with our current way of collaborating with select third parties. We work in Archicad while the architect in Revit, precast and steel work in Tekla and consultants basically provide us with 2d dwg files.
We have found that we end up doing a lot of double work as the design develops and details change, is there any good examples online how a large complex projects can be managed with IFC files…?
In these projects are IFC files just used for a hard reference point or an actual part of a fluid constantly evolving process through out the construction development…?
We have been in contact with our local Archicad representative and asked about their more advanced IFC collaboration training but all get so far is a link sending us to a set of videos, they don’t provide a direct course but have left us with contact details if we need the schedule consulting with a trainer. I have yet to go through the videos that might interest us but I’m curious, and therefore reaching to all of you, how do larger firms work with their Archicad and produce the ‘showcase’ project that’s being touted on websites highlighting how great the new IFC collaboration is in the latest and greatest Archicad version?
I think eventually after going through these videos we might have to schedule an appointment with a trainer to get down to the nitty gritty details for our specific situation but would appriciate hearing about your experience.
I had an experience coordinating quite a lot of IFC files within one ArchiCAD project file. That was included structure, MEP and additional parts from suppliers (for example commercial kitchen equipment).
I have found the best way to merge all files together is first to export IFC into PLN file, then do necessary modifications and after hotlink the file into master ArchiCAD file. This technique gives you freedom to modify IFC exported file without touching the main project file. You also can set different IFC conversions in PLN files (i.e. to choose how elements will be converted - into library parts, morphs or native elements), use surfaces and building materials mapping. As well - when you export IFC - you can have several tries to achieve the better result. And, at the end, you always can export your IFC model again (as new revision) and just update the hotlink.
This is quite elegant technique, that do not make additional mess in the master file and for me worked just perfect. If you need more support about it - let me know.
See attached example of structural steel exported via IFC from Tekla, made by steel manufacturer. We even managed to optimise and change their proposed sequence of deliveries.