Got a minute? We appreciate your feedback:

Graphisoft Learn survey
General discussions
Posts about job ads, news about competitions, events, learning resources, research, etc.

Component Level Design Workflows - Conversation & feedback

James B
Graphisoft
Graphisoft

Hi All,

 

Now in Archicad, most design and data are handled at the element level - assigning properties, using Graphic Overrides or setting renovation status are a few examples.

To express design intent and extract data at a more detailed level, the component or skin level requires further data and flexibility. We already visualise these skins, have Offset Modifiers for Profiles to create smart parametric extrusions, and Component/Surface Schedules to extract data.

We plan to further develop the component/skin level of elements and expand existing functionality in that area, so we are exploring more about what you need. Some questions:

 

  • What type of data do you need to store in components/skins that may be separate or different to existing Building Material properties?
  • How is this data used and presented in documentation and schedules?
  • Renovation of components, are similar for the same composite/profile? Or mostly unique for all placed elements separately?
  • Modelling flexibility of components, in which common situations are you resorting to workarounds, like stacking elements, that existing composites/profiles with modifiers can't achieve?
  • Visualisation of components, in which situations do components need be visualised differently compared to the whole element? Such as requirement for submission to highlight structural skins.

 

As we progress in this area, your input will be invaluable to understand priorities and our direction moving forward. Thanks in advance.

 

James Badcock
Graphisoft Senior Product Manager
132 REPLIES 132

Hi Kmitotk

why i want to have the expressions in the materials? to modify a BMat property from an element property directly, for example if I have a concrete material without a texture and I apply a texture to it at the element level I could retrieve the name of the texture in the property of the element and the expression in the material could for example give a dynamic description to the material (name of the material_name of the surface)

AMD Ryzen 5950x
AMD RX 6750xt
AC27

Hello Kei thanks for the comments.

Can you describe further, about the types of information you would want on the surface level vs building material level, and where/how you'd want to output that information? Some examples can help.

And are you using Component or Surface schedules to output this data currently?

Thanks.

James Badcock
Graphisoft Senior Product Manager

Hi James 

for example, this happened to us in renovation projects where it was necessary to intervene on the insulation and the exterior finish and it was necessary to break down the wall which constitutes the exterior wall into several walls and superimpose the part which represents the insulation and the finish exterior, the first represents the existing wall to be demolished and the second is the wall to be projected, the problem in this operation is that it was necessary to propose several solutions to the customer and according to the price and the performance of the products he had to choose a solution

 

the other problem we had was the management of openings when reconstructing the wall components in the event that the size of the window had to be changed, it had to be done on all the components and on all the options

AMD Ryzen 5950x
AMD RX 6750xt
AC27

for example another project where the client has an adjoining facade so he has interior insulation on this facade and once he has acquired the adjoining land he wants to change the interior insulation with exterior insulation to gain thermal performance and gain in the useful interior surface, proceed as for the first example

AMD Ryzen 5950x
AMD RX 6750xt
AC27

Hi James, thank you for asking.

For the handling of the material spec information there should be no distinction between the surface level and the building material level. We should be able to assign material ID, classification code, and spec information to every single material in the project, and able to list them all in a single schedule. Currently this is only possible for the materials listed in the Building Materials. When it comes to the very thin covering materials such as paint, coating and wallpaper/vinyl, we basically have no choice but to use the Surface for the reasons described in my previous comments. Our workaround is to generate a separate schedule using the surface schedule for those thin materials and add the custom text cells and enter spec information there. This workaround is very awkward, limiting and not BIM. My humble suggestion would be adding the ability to add an extra BM skin, not the Surface, which could be zero thickness to the user selected faces of the element in the element settings. That way we should be able to list all the materials using just the component schedule. If that could happen then I would even think why not move all the texture & graphic properties of the Surface to the Building Materials and if I may say.. abandon Surface? 

Kei Mito

Architect | Graphisoft Certified BIM Manager
ArchiCAD 26 & 27 JPN USA & INT | Windows 10

Petar
Booster

What about the ability to offset skin top and bottom separately from the wall? We often have finish layer running just up to the suspended ceiling, it is really hard to model this correctly (you can not use complex profile since you loose a lot of annotations you can apply on composites, if you add wall finish separately you have issues when listing composites and assemblies). 

while we are talking about composites, please add ability to overwrite building material strength for specific element. We shouldnt have to create multiple bm with different strengths just to have accurate intersections. Just allow us to overwrite strength of each bm in separate element selection (like we can do for the surface overwrite)

Hi thanks for the info.

Can you elaborate more on your comment "you lose a lot of annotations you can apply on composites" as being a reason why you aren't using Profiles with offset modifiers. Can you help give me some examples where annotations are failing on profiles compared to composites? Thanks.

James Badcock
Graphisoft Senior Product Manager

James this is a really interesting thought. I do not use modifiers on my complex profiles as when they are to be measured by a QS they will be different in size and therefore can't be measured as a consistent item represented by Complex Profile "XYZ"

 

Challenges of labelling / tags a complex profile compared to a composite. GDL can access the inner most and outer building material and their overriding surface which means we can label the materials on elevations and sections. A complex profile does not enable us to label the exposed BMAT face in an elevation.

 

Maybe if there was the capability for us to label an exposed face of an element and be able to pick up the information from that specific Building Material and Surface as well as the overall information from the Composite / Complex Profile it would solve a lot of work arounds.

Nathan Hildebrandt fraia
Director | Skewed
AC6 - AC27 | WIN 11 | i9-10900K, 3.7Ghz | 32GB Ram | NVIDIA GeForce RTX
3070

DGSketcher
Legend

@James B Although they have been mentioned, one aspect of Component Level Design that isn't getting much air play here are 3D Documents. I use them a lot in my line of drawing because I need to display inclined views, which is achieved using "Look to perpendicular of clicked surface". That process is working reasonably well when it comes to extracting the parts I need. Where it absolutely fails is the subsequent dimensioning process which can be unreliable & frustrating. As we have discussed previously, if there isn't a flat surface in scope on which to establish the required dimension plane Axonometric View dimensioning can be impossible to complete. Relying on the screen XY plane is broken and has been for some time. If you want to improve Component documenting, 3D Document dimensioning needs fixed so that we can isolate elements with Cut Planes, Marquee, Layers etc and reliably add the required notation.

 

 

Apple iMac macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds)

Agree completely. Just recently i saw some 3d views from sketchup, and before i could mock them, they presented them with complete dimensioning within the model.

Thanks for the additional feedback.

Are you using 3D Docs from Floor Plan? Or are these 3D Docs more as elevations? Because you mentioned you are clicking to make the view perpendicular to elements. Would it be possibly to show some examples highlighting the dimensions that you're struggling with that then is preventing you from using 3D Docs? Thanks.

James Badcock
Graphisoft Senior Product Manager

Hi James,

3D Docs from plan are ok. I am working with inclined roof panels and trying to dimension the framing as if it was laid flat (how the factory works). The process needs an axonometric 3D view showing only the required framing looking perpendicular to the top face of the panel. This is saved as a 3D document. Having configured the 3D Document appearance I can then start notation. Labelling is ok. Dimensions in the x-axis are ok. The problem is the addition of y-axis dimensions. I can find the end points that I need but to complete the dimension you need a plane reference. The problem is zoomed out to a suitable scale to view the endpoints the top surfaces of the rafters seem nearly impossible for AC to recognise as a relevant plane without zooming right in to pick the surface and then zooming out to place the dimension.

 

As a very polite reminder we did discuss this by PM on the DCP on 14/07/2021 under the heading of ACBETA-733 Dimensions in Orthagonal 3D Views. The posts are still there, hopefully you can still access the Beta report (I can't) as well which contained a file highlighting & explaining the issue.

Apple iMac macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds)

DGSketcher
Legend

@James B I have added this as a new post as I appreciate it is probably on the fringe of your current remit, but Component design implies documenting an element in potentially repetitive use. You know what's coming... If we had instancing / internal modules then the documenting process becomes a lot simpler. We are no longer constrained to digging into the model with cut aways etc, or relying on unique & potentially unstable grouping, the instance can be placed away from the model to simplify documenting whilst still having the assurance that it is identical to all the other clones in the model. I am not sure how many times this needs repeated, but the lack of instancing is one of AC's biggest weaknesses. And No! Hotlink Modules are not a good alternative for the creation & management of small components.

 

Edit: In response to a comment to use "Save as Object" for components, I can confirm they fail my requirements completely.

Apple iMac macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds)

Hi Trevor.

We're aware of your passion for instancing πŸ™‚ and we know it's not a new idea.

We need to focus on attribute handling first and I believe there are other technical requirements we need to overcome, before delving further into this area.

James Badcock
Graphisoft Senior Product Manager

I'm starting to take bets on whether instancing is delivered before I retire. πŸ˜‰

Apple iMac macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds)

kmitotk
Advocate

In addition to the ability to select and label individual skins in composites/profiles in plan/section views, I'd like the same ability in 2D previews in the schedules so I can generate live wall types with associative labels.

Kei Mito

Architect | Graphisoft Certified BIM Manager
ArchiCAD 26 & 27 JPN USA & INT | Windows 10

Hi Kei, can you outline what information you'd want to label from these skins/components? Do you have any examples that you are manually doing currently? Thanks.

James Badcock
Graphisoft Senior Product Manager

Hi James, 

The information that I put in the wall type 2D previews in the wall type schedule is basically the name and thickness of each skin. It's pretty similar to what @Nathan Hildebrandt is showing in the wall type drawing image earlier in this thread. In my case I use the schedule, not the mockup walls in the 3D space, to generate wall types lists so they update automatically, and I wish the labels that I put in the wall section previews in the schedule were interactive as well.

Kei Mito

Architect | Graphisoft Certified BIM Manager
ArchiCAD 26 & 27 JPN USA & INT | Windows 10

I stopped using the Schedule Previews for annotation after a couple of incidents when the Schedule reset, not sure why, and in the process deleted all my annotations loosing several hours work.

Apple iMac macOS Sonoma / AC27UKI (most recent builds)

@DGSketcher That problem has happened to me too. It happens in the merging/refreshing process. To avoid it keep the number of the element properties to list in the schedule minimum and try to keep them exactly the same among the same composite. The software needs better warning functionality before the refreshing process. Even better, composite properties, my another big wish, should be made available so we could schedule the walls using the composite properties instead of the element properties so the properties will always match. The 2D previews of the element in the schedules are nice Archicad features, something Revit lacks. I hope GS will improve and enhance their functionalities so we can get the most out of it.

Kei Mito

Architect | Graphisoft Certified BIM Manager
ArchiCAD 26 & 27 JPN USA & INT | Windows 10

Still looking?

Browse more topics

Back to forum

See latest solutions

Accepted solutions

Start a new discussion!