What are the major accomplishments of Walter AEC in the field of Revit Family Development?

Why is the development and use of families important for making top quality 3D/4D/5D models of a building? Can you imagine a building without some of its key parts, such as doors, windows, stairs or a heating system? We neither! The same goes for the BIM families that are indisputably a key component of a building model. More precisely, parameters are the heart of a BIM model. They list the constraints and properties of all components of the objects. These components are better known as families, and parameters for any family can be created, added, and modulated to create family types.

The previously mentioned parameter components, or families, are the basis for creating BIM models in Autodesk Revit BIM software. These components offer an open graphics design system. In fact, families include elements such as windows, doors, casework, fixtures, furniture, planting, fan coil units, fans, electronic boards, lighting, electrical switches, pipes etc. The geometry of each fabricated family is related to parameters like dimensions, materials, price, description, etc. Families can also contain technical information relevant to engineers such as flow, pressure drop, device power etc.

There are three types of families: system families, loadable families and in-place families. System families are such families that are predefined in Autodesk Revit and cannot be loaded by users themselves. With the help of the “Transfer Projects Standards” command, these families can be transferred between different projects. Loadable families can be developed by users with a special Revit tool, saved to external files and uploaded to Autodesk Revit projects as needed. In-place families are created by Autodesk Revit users using special customer specifications that clearly state their requirements; for example, material used, dimensions, family size, etc. It is important to note that the “Transfer Projects Standards” command does not apply to these families.

A large number of manufacturers have recognized the importance of BIM families. Therefore, today, there is a large base of ready-made families for almost every element, whether it is a pump, valve, radiator or something else. Furthermore, equipment manufacturers have also recognized Revit as an excellent design tool in building construction, so that they are creating Revit families of their own products. However, if engineers are not able to find a specific element in a base, they can always make a suitable family by themselves. The advantage of working with parametric objects lies in the fact that if a very simple parameter changes, consultants can easily define a new variant of the object. Additionally, families are very useful when it comes to reviewing and analyzing the data, and also they help engineers a lot about getting the most precise cost estimates of the entire projects very quickly.

As for Walter AEC, the company possesses a great experience in working with families on numerous different international projects. The BIM components that Walter AEC has been creating for almost 10 years so far are simple to use, available to engineers both in 2D and 3D and enriched with important information that can always be used for both – client’s marketing purposes as well as engineering analysis, cost estimations and simulations.

Furthermore, for those clients who are not confident enough about which digital files they need for their project, Walter AEC is always more than willing to give an advice and consultancy, and to get in line with client’s wishes no matter what software they prefer: Revit, ArchiCAD, SketchUp, AutoCAD, 3ds Max, etc. Besides, considering its Asset Development Department, Walter AEC offers BIM content creation, consulting and best practice implementation, as well as the development of templates and graphic standards.

Talking about Walter AEC’s previous projects in the field of BIM Families Development, it can be said that the company possesses a very extensive list of top quality projects it was hired on. For example, using only one corner junction for the panels, substructure for the systems and 5 different construction details, Walter AEC professionals have created 5 different panels with different variations in height and length, for the KeraTwin K20 Facade System through BIMObject AB.

Later on, the company was also hired again by BimObject AB to create windows for Jansen Janisol Arte, as well as for Westcoast Windows System. Based on received information and documentation, the consultants created 5 categories of windows/doors by Westcoast Windows, which needed to be developed as BIM objects for Autodesk Revit. Families have several glazing options (36mm – 2-glazing, 48mm – 3-glazing). When it comes to Jansen Janisol Arte, based on provided documentation and project descriptions, Walter AEC’s task was to develop 9 window families with a different scheme, 3 LOD implementation and dimension constraints. Furthermore, Walter AEC was also engaged by BimObject AB, to develop a Revit model of a roof window with various parametric functions for LAMILUX CI System Smoke Lift Twin.

Through BimObject AB, Walter AEC was also hired for a slightly different project than had ever been done before. More precisely, the company was tasked to create models of escalators for Thyssenkrupp AG. According to the project request and documentation, these products were developed as two-level based families. Depending on a different height option, the number of stairs is calculated, also including the option of railing height and type. Since one of the requests was to implement different options for different markets (US and EMEA), the consultants have developed 2 different families for the same product. Velino is a reliable escalator system that operates at the highest level. Proven technologies like the dual-circuit brake system – an optimum safeguard- ensure the highest degree of safety and long service life. In addition, Velino offers a wide array of design options. These are the best prerequisites for adding highlights without compromising the unique style of your shopping center, multi-functional congress center, or airport.

In addition to these big international projects, Walter AEC is also very proud to be a part of one great local project – Gazzda Furniture Content Creation. Based on the documentation Walter primarily developed Autodesk Revit files (v2015) following all the Autodesk Revit Content Style Guides and implementing the best practice methods acquired through years of experience. All the products specified by the client were developed in the following file formats:.rfa (Autodesk Revit Family Files), .gdl (Graphisoft Archicad Objects), .3ds (Autodesk 3D Studio Max models), .obj (Wavefront 3D Data Format), .dwg (Autodesk AutoCAD Files) – 2D and 3D, .skp (Trimble SketchUp Components), .dxf and .dae.

All in all, Revit Family Creation is a very interesting and modern technique typical for the new age of digital engineers. It has shown to be extremely useful in the financial projections, installation planning, heating system setup, etc. but, at the same time, it is a big step forward in marketing. Today, investors are able to see how exactly the future building is going to look like before the construction has even started. They are also enabled to get the full price of the building construction, as well as to feel the vibe of the building interior, including furniture, lightening, plants, and similar.

Increase the accessibility of your product in the AEC industry and make your buildings digital with Walter AEC. The company functions based on the belief that the buildings of tomorrow will be aware of their condition and utilization through information provided by IoT on the inside and environmental data provided by smart city components from the outside. It is already happening. So, the time is now!

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