Simplifying the AEC Project Lifestyle

This article and all of it’s content originally appears on GovDesignHub.com. You can can read the full article here- http://govdesignhub.com/2018/09/13/simplifying-the-aec-project-lifecycle-for-government-agencies/#.W5vdSfZFyUk

Simplifying the AEC Project Lifestyle

Our governments are continuously building things. Whether it’s a new school for a city or township, a new water treatment facility, a new highway or a military base, all levels of government—municipal, state, and federal—are tasked with building structures to effectively deliver constituent services. It’s a monumental task, especially when we are seeing explosive population growth in urban areas.

These numerous and disparate construction projects differ greatly in their purpose and complexity. However, all of them, without exception, will experience some form of the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) project lifecycle as they advance from conception to completion and operation.

Throughout this process, a project will require cooperation and collaboration from numerous stakeholders—individuals, organizations and agencies. Some infrastructure projects, in fact, may have more than a hundred entities working together to move the project forward. These individuals could be responsible for design, construction or even solicitation of public approvals. And each of them needs access to the project data relevant to their scope of work if the project is to be executed successfully.

This is where many problems have arisen in the past.

Historically, efforts to connect project data at every stage of the AEC project lifecycle have proven to be very difficult or costly. The result is that every time one stage of a project is completed, the data and models from that stage need to be passed on or, “handed off,” to another group of stakeholders, likely utilizing different applications each time. This cycle of uploading, downloading, importing and exporting of BIM and other project data between stakeholders adds significant time, effort, and cost to the project. But that’s not the worst part.

 

If you’ve ever created a document and then emailed it to your colleagues for review, you know how much of a mess that can become. Everyone edits a different copy of the same document. Multiple versions start flying around, and it becomes difficult to coordinate the changes. There’s a real risk, in fact, that the original intent of the document may be lost in the shuffle.

Now imagine this wasn’t just a document to be shared—rather, an intelligent digital model containing all of the requisite information to construct a building, highway or another public works project. That is exactly the type of reality many government entities and organizations are facing when navigating the AEC project lifecycle for a public works program.

What’s the alternative?

Creating a single, integrated view of the project
The easiest and simplest solution to these problems is to utilize a single, integrated platform across the entire AEC project lifecycle. And that’s exactly what today’s leading

AEC software providers, such as Autodesk, are looking to deliver.

By eliminating the disparate data storage applications commonly found in use across AEC projects and replacing them with a single, cloud-hosted platform that is purpose-built to understand and manage project data, we can effectively break the cycle of upload, download, import and export that’s slowing down the industry and creating quality control issues from a lack of data governance. And that’s just the beginning.  An integrated platform has the potential to deliver many other important capabilities to government stakeholders as they collaborate on public works projects. Examples include:

Security and scalability – A cloud-hosted platform provides a high degree of data security—typically far more than an on-premise solution. Compliance protocols such as SOC 2 ensure proper management of data and privacy protection. Cloud hosting also supports projects of virtually any size—with nearly unlimited numbers of participants, files, and file sizes—at a lower cost than local storage. 

Collaboration and controlled sharing – An integrated AEC platform enables users to work together seamlessly on their designs and models from virtually anywhere in the world. It offers granular permissions controls to enable tightly-controlled access. And it manages document versioning automatically.

Visualization – Unlike a network drive or cloud storage, an integrated BIM platform allows for easy viewing of model data on virtually any device.  In this way, designs may be readily shared with stakeholders, requiring no specialized software expertise for participation. While viewing 2D and 3D design data, markups and issues can be created and assigned with real-time notifications to provide feedback and ensure accountability.

Constructability reviews – When changes are made or suggested to a project, they tend to create coordination issues requiring resolution. An integrated platform makes it quick and easy to identify clashes or constructability problems that may arise from such changes. This helps to ensure that such issues don’t fall through the cracks, only to surface during construction and lead to delays or cost overruns.

Compliance and reporting – Are checklists being utilized to monitor the work being performed? Are things getting done as intended and safety protocols being followed? Who is accessing things, making changes and completing tasks? Have all required inspections been completed? These are examples of the kinds of activities and reporting to be expected from a platform that comprises all aspects of the AEC lifecycle.

Government agencies and organizations build a lot of things—important things that provide vital and essential services to their constituents. And they’re doing all of that building with taxpayer dollars. This means that we all stand to gain when government construction projects—highways, schools, military bases, and public works projects—are completed on time and on budget.

A disconnected set of software applications doesn’t help government agencies do that. The numbers don’t lie: integrated, cloud-based BIM solutions can cut project lifecycle costs by as much as 15 percent and reduce construction time by as much as 30 percent! An intelligent, connected, cloud-hosted platform that is built to support the AEC project lifecycle is the way forward.

 

By eliminating the disparate data storage applications commonly found in use across AEC projects and replacing them with a single, cloud-hosted platform that is purpose-built to understand and manage project data, we can effectively break the cycle of upload, download, import and export that’s slowing down the industry and creating quality control issues from a lack of data governance.

 

 

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

How to Achieve a Better Construction Project Management Workflow

This article and all of it’s content originally appears on the Autodesk BIM 360 blog. You can can read the full article here- https://connect.bim360.autodesk.com/construction-project-management-workflow

How to Achieve a Better Construction Project Management Workflow

Today’s job site is more complex than ever before. New building technologies, higher expectations from owners, tighter budgets, and faster timelines fuel the potential for delays, budget overruns, and team conflict.

Larger teams and a demand for greater collaboration contribute to the complexity. Which is why a more efficient construction project management workflow is vital.

RFIs and submittals are examples of these communications that need to follow a prescribed path for review and approval to meet contract obligations, but they can bog the construction process down. Even with the help of software applications designed to improve the flow of communication, the complicated dance of RFIs and submittals can feel like frustrating inefficiency.

A large number of technology point solutions attempt to address this problem by providing tools for managing RFIs and submittals. Unfortunately, they can also create additional confusion by forcing teams to switch between apps, while increasing the potential for data loss and missed communications.

It’s clear that today’s construction teams need a more streamlined way to manage project workflows, without losing the ability to align with contractual procedures.

The most efficient way to do that is to integrate contractual project controls and clear workflows on a single construction platform, so that workers have a single app to log in to and manage data through.

Autodesk’s BIM 360 Build provides all of that, as well as flexibility for day-to-day use.

The Common Data Platform

Because BIM 360 Build is built on a common data platform, it makes it easy for team members to access all project information on an as-needed basis. This includes contractual documents, design documents, markups, design and field issues, and RFIs, all visible in the context of the current sheets and models.

RFIs, submittals, and changes to documents can be made automatically visible to all team members who need access. Cloud-based connectivity and access on both mobile devices and desktops enables team members to access documents and drawings on an ongoing basis as the project progresses.

This reduces time spent transferring information from one system to another, increases ability to respond flexibly to real-time changes, and reduces the potential for errors and conflicts. All of which frees teams to quickly digest the information they need and move on to more important tasks.

 

With information in a common data platform, it makes it easy for team members to access all project information on an as-needed basis.

Seamless Project Management Workflow

Contractual procedures, communication processes, and standards can vary from one project to the next. You need to be able to create and manage multiple workflows flexibly across teams and projects, while still maintaining clear accountability.

With BIM 360 Build’s RFI workflows, teams can designate responsibilities for each step and coordinate responses from the design team. This helps RFIs and submittals to move through the process efficiently, and eliminates potential for conflicting responses.

For example, RFI workflows can be set up to allow any project member to initiate an RFI and submit it to the General Contractor. The GC can edit the RFI and assign a primary Reviewer and additional co-reviewers. This creates a clear response structure for the RFI, eliminating friction and reducing miscommunication.

Even better, BIM 360 Build allows users to establish the location of the RFI on the drawings as part of the initiation process, making it easy for everyone to visualize the location while responding to the RFI.

The combination of better visibility and controlled workflow removes guesswork and conflict, and by ensuring all critical information is immediately available to all relevant parties, it reduces rework.

BIM 360 Build provides the same flexibility for submittals, which streamlines construction project management. Users can create items in the submittal log, add items to a submittal package, and submit items and collaborate in the activity section.

To ensure adequate controls, only the GC or Manager can review the submittal package and make the final decision on when it is ready for the design team to review.

BIM 360 Build’s flexible, controlled workflows ensure a consistent, contractually compliant handoff process without limiting collaboration.

Teams using BIM 360 Build experience easier, more flexible collaboration without compromising the critical controls necessary to meet contractual obligations and ensure accountability across teams. This reduces rework, increases efficiency, and helps teams meet their budgets and timelines effectively.

When project teams have all the right information at the right time, work happens faster.

 

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

Experience Better Construction Document Management with Newly Enhanced Sets

This article and all of it’s content originally appears on the Autodesk BIM 360 blog. You can can read the full article here- https://connect.bim360.autodesk.com/construction-document-management-enhanced-sets

Experience Better Construction Document Management with Newly Enhanced Sets

Whether it’s a mechanical plan, structural detail, or a door schedule, we’ve all had that moment where we question what we’re seeing.

“Is this the right page? Is it up to date? Why don’t these measurements make any sense? Am I looking at the current version?”

A single building project can require construction document management for thousands of documents and drawings, not to mention the number of revisions issued throughout the project lifecycle.

Adding to an already complicated task is the fact that document control is usually put into the hands of a document manager or a project engineer who is tasked with the arduous work of compiling, curating, distributing and tracking all project-related documentation.

The document manager is saddled with the responsibility of maintaining a record of every piece of information associated with the project–when it came in, when it changed, who looked at it and so on. Without this complete record, it’s difficult for a contractor to avoid responsibility for a dispute.

Touch Screens and Cloud Storage to the Rescue

Fortunately, the world of digital tools has provided a way to streamline this process. But as we all know, adopting digital tools for document management can pose some risks, including data loss, file incompatibility, miscommunication and the risk of errors and omissions through manual processes.

The myriad of applications contractors can use to help manage this information and stay focused on project completion can be useful, but come with their own challenges.

Are stakeholders and subs using the same software? Are the files compatible? Are all documents being kept up to date with the right version?

You can mitigate risk and avoid costly errors with a single cloud-based construction document management application such as Autodesk’s BIM 360 Docs.

BIM 360 Docs mitigates errors by serving as the central hub for your project, where all data is collected. Project members can publish, view, and manage all documents, drawings, and models — anytime, anywhere.

 

 

Project members can publish, view, and manage all documents, drawings, and models — anytime, anywhere. 

 

“Sets” for Better Construction Document Management

Over the course of the project life cycle, the Document Manager is responsible for organizing multiple documents or files into “Sets” (or packages) that are issued for a specific purpose and named to communicate the scope and intent. A digital document management application with set management capabilities is critical to streamlining this process, and ensuring teams are working off the most current set of documents.

Now, with BIM 360 Docs enhanced document Set Management feature, organizing specific document versions into formal “Sets” (or packages) just got easier.  A Set can include documents, drawings, and models from multiple folders inside BIM 360 Docs. By default, the “Current Set” (the latest version of each document associated with a Set) will display, but it’s easy to navigate to previous Sets.

When viewing a document version from a previous set, it will automatically be displayed with an orange banner to eliminate any confusion. Teams can easily compare documents within the current Set to previous Sets to fully understand what has changed and how it might impact their scope of work, schedule, and costs. These are just a few of the many options available through BIM 360’s Set Management feature.

Why Set Management is Essential to Your Workflows

  • Any change made to the published set of documents is clearly and logically recorded, easily visible and automatically made available to team members who need it.
  • Compare versions of documents between sets, creating an added layer of transparency to be sure all changes are accounted for, ultimately reducing risk.
  • Utilizing sets will help to reduce risk, rework, and lost time by making sure your team is building off of the most current plans.

 

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

Tech Tuesdays: AutoCAD Video Tutorial with AEC Industry Specialist Isaac Harper

 

Tech Tuesdays: AutoCAD Video Tutorial with AEC Industry Specialist Isaac Harper

In this week’s edition of Tech Tuesdays, AEC Industry Specialist Isaac Harper shares an AutoCAD tutorial on “Using Areas in Fields.”  Watch below.

 

 

 

 

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

Tech Tuesdays: Video Tutorial with AEC Industry Specialist Angela

 

Tech Tuesdays: Video Tutorial with AEC Industry Specialist Angela

In this week’s edition of Tech Tuesdays, AEC Industry Specialist Angela explains “Two Methods to Get the Autodesk App to Open Up Quickly.”  Watch below.

 

 

 

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

Why ATG? Dane Batson, Customer Success Representative Manager

 

Why ATG? Dane Batson, Customer Success Representative Manager

 

 

Why ATG? Dane Batson, Customer Success Representative Manager, is constantly focusing on the end user and continuing to cultivate changes that will increase productivity and add value for our customers. Contact Dane today to learn more about how ATG can help you build stronger relationships and greater success.
Contact Dane today at 1.800.935.4894.

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

Why ATG? Rob Bigelow, GISP, Service Sales Manager

 

Why ATG? Rob Bigelow, GISP, Service Sales Manager

Why ATG? Rob Bigelow, GISP, Service Sales Manager, has the first-hand experience from his time as an AEC Industry Specialist to understand how vast ATG’s resources are in providing our customers with the services and support they need to build stronger relationships and experience greater success. Contact Rob today at 1.800.935.4894 to learn more.

 

 

 

 


 

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

Tour The Revit 2019.1 New Features In The Latest Release

This article and all of it’s content originally appears on the Revit Autodesk blog. You can can read the full article here- http://blogs.autodesk.com/revit/2018/08/15/revit-2019-1-new-features-in-the-latest-release/

 

 

Tour The Revit 2019.1 New Features In The Latest Release

 

Two Revit 2019.1 new features significantly deepen workflows with Autodesk BIM 360 project delivery and construction management software. When you first start up Revit 2019.1 you’ll notice how the new Revit Home screen makes it easier to navigate to and access your cloud models, providing BIM 360 Design users especially a more consistent and integrated experience. Big news is a new Site Collaboration workflow between Autodesk Civil 3D 2019.1, and Revit 2019.1 via BIM 360 Docs, that enables a connection between civil engineers and architects on large infrastructure projects. Additional Revit 2019.1 new features include free-form rebar aligned distribution and improvements to perspective views and dialog sizing. This update is available to subscribers and current maintenance plan customers via your Account portal or within Revit with the in-product Autodesk Desktop App.

Revit Home is a new user experience that modernizes the way you access, store, and share project information.

With Revit 2019.1, it is much easier for you to open your BIM 360 Design models directly from Revit Home. The BIM 360 project list is integrated into the left panel in the Home UI and you can quickly and easily browse BIM 360 folders to get to the model you need. With cloud models front and center, storing models in BIM 360 makes Revit workflows easier.

 

 

Easily open a Revit sample file from the updated Recent Files screen. Additionally, now as you click on a central file from Recent Files, Revit will create a local copy of the central model for you, adopting a consistent experience with BIM 360 Design models and reducing the risk of unwanted changes directly to the central files. With Revit Home, local copies are now hidden, and only central models show up on the recent files page, making your view more streamlined and easier to navigate. The new responsive Revit Home in the Revit 2019.1 release will improve model management, organization, and discovery.

Site Collaboration with Civil 3D

Site Collaboration is a Revit 2019.1 new feature that introduces unprecedented interoperability between Revit and Civil 3D New workflows will help both save time and improve accuracy when you are transferring site information and project location data between project teams. You can easily link topography from Civil 3D into Revit using Autodesk Desktop Connector and BIM 360 Docs and will also be able to interact with this topography in Revit with surface hosting, tagging and scheduling.  Civil 3D is included in the Autodesk Architecture, Engineering, and Construction Collection, which is great way to access Revit along with other essential tools at a great value.

 

Civil 3D Publish to Revit workflow:

The site collaboration feature connects architects using Revit and engineers using Civil 3D via the BIM 360 document management module. When publishing Civil 3D to Revit, the workflow focuses on topography only. Engineers in Civil 3D can publish topography from Civil 3D, view the resulting data in BIM 360 document management, and then link the published data into Revit.

  • In Civil 3D, from the tool space, select the surface for publish via Desktop Connector.
  • Use BIM 360 , to check the topography in a 3D view and verify the correct data has published from Civil 3D.
  • You’ll need to use the latest version of the free Desktop Connector to publish to Civil 3D surfaces for synchronizing the local files in BIM 360 Document Management.

Revit publish from Civil 3D Workflow:

In Revit, you will be able to easily link topography, which will help you to collaborate more effectively with civil engineers on the project.

  • Browse to BIM 360 and link to the Civil 3D export.
  • Civil 3D geolocation will try to place the model appropriately in Revit, but you also have the option to specify coordinates from Revit to update
  • It is possible to spot dimension, add a building pad on the topography link and create a topography schedule in Revit with name, projected area, and surface area.

This workflow also supports sub regions and hosting railings. Sub regions are good for changing the surface material in Revit.

It is also possible to place elements on the topography – this will function as a link. Updates must be made in Civil 3D and edited and published again for use in Revit.

To work best, this workflow will require strategy for efficient navigation and linking and we recommend developing your BIM execution plan accordingly.

 

 

Making Updates to the Topography – Civil 3D and Revit Workflows:

This enhancement vastly improves the workflow for topography transfer from civil engineers to architects. You can make changes in Civil 3D and then upload as described in the previous process to BIM 360. In Revit, use reload or reload from and link topography again.

 

 

Support IFC Links from BIM 360 with Desktop Connector

With Revit 2019.1 IFC files can be linked in Revit using Desktop Connector and they will maintain their links. This feature will open doors for new IFC collaborative workflows.

 

Create

This category of Revit features is focused on delivering better tools, capabilities, and experiences central to authoring of project data, generating and using models.

Free Form Rebar Aligned Distribution

In Revit 2019.1 the Free Form Rebar tool can now be used to create rebar sets with planar bars distributed along the faces of a structural element and aligned to a distribution path. This new type of the free form rebar distribution increases 3D rebar modeling versatility and helps you define accurate reinforcement for standard and non-standard shapes of concrete elements.

 

 

As with the surface distribution type, you can model aligned distribution type by working in 3D views and selecting the structural element faces to which the bars are aligned. Bars in an aligned distribution are created at the intersection of each individual bar plane with the host surface. All the bars are planar, respect the cover of the host and are aligned to the distribution path.

  • The path is the edge of an element that can host rebar. This can be selected directly when placing the set and represents the intersection of the faces in the Path Surface 1 and Path Surface 2 constraints.
  • The bars in the set can be aligned to the path (it’s the default option) or can be parallel to the face selected in the align/close constraint.
  • If the option to automatically close bars is enabled, then closed contour geometry can be obtained for each bar in an aligned distribution set. This option is enabled by default when placing a bar with the stirrup/tie style.

Get further detail on this feature in Tomasz Fudala’s post on BIM and Beam.

Move Pattern on Top of Wall

With Revit 2019.1 you have greater control over the look of a wall at every visible surface and enhanced wall control. You can now drag, rotate and align a model pattern on a painted top surface of a wall such that you may adjust the pattern tile location on all faces of a wall for highly controlled alignment.

 

 

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

AutoCAD Blog: Implementing Sheet Sets for Maximum Efficiency

 

AutoCAD Blog: Implementing Sheet Sets for Maximum Efficiency

This article and its content originally posted on the Autodesk AutoCAD blog. View the original page here: http://blogs.autodesk.com/autocad/sheet-sets-automate-callout-data-autocad/

Most sheet sets contain information that is interrelated. For example, a view on one sheet might refer to a view on a different sheet. Using traditional methods, you can manually maintain the text references between sheets, but that process can be tedious and error-prone. You can dramatically improve your productivity and minimize errors by updating your existing blocks to include fields. In addition to automatically updating textual data as changes occur, hyperlinks enable you to quickly open the sheet that is referenced by the callout and zoom to the appropriate view.

The process for automating callout data is very similar to automating block label data. However, unlike view label blocks, you can assign multiple callout blocks to your sheet set. You will need to update the default value of the attributes to include fields. If you have multiple callout block definitions, you will need to repeat this process for each one. If you combined your callout blocks into a single dynamic block, then you will only have to add fields to that one dynamic block definition.

1. Open the drawing that contains the callout block from your source library. The callout block might be its own little DWG file or it might be a block definition within another drawing, such as a template.

You will need to edit the Default for each of the attribute definitions. A typical callout block would include attribute definitions for the view number and sheet number. Your block might include additional information as well, but these two are the most common. The method you use to update the attribute definition depends on whether the block is stored as its own drawing or as a block definition within a drawing. You can use any method (BATTMAN etc.) that you want. However, you want to ensure that you are editing the attribute definition NOT just the attribute value in the block instance. How do you know the difference? The attribute definition says “Default,” whereas the attribute value says “Value.” NEVER insert a field in an attribute “Value.” It may appear to work properly, but if the instance was updated to include a field and the definition wasn’t, the next time someone erases the block instance and reinserts it, the field data will no longer be there.

 

2. If your callout block is stored as its own drawing, skip ahead to step 3. If, however, your callout block is stored as a block definition within your drawing, insert and explode the callout block. (Alternate methods include BATTMAN or the Block Editor. If you are editing a dynamic block, you should use an alternate method because exploding will lose the dynamic block parameters and actions). When you explode a block with attributes, the attribute values are replaced with the attribute definitions.

 

3. Double-click on the attribute definition representing the view number.

4. In the Edit Attribute Definition dialog box, right-click in Default and select Insert Field.

 

5. In the Field dialog box, select the SheetSet Field category, the SheetSetPlaceholder Field name, the ViewNumber Placeholder type, specify an appropriate format, select Associate hyperlink, and then choose OK. Using the SheetSetPlaceholder field in your callout block enables you to define block attributes for fields that are not associated with any particular sheet or sheet set. Associating a hyperlink will enable you to click on the inserted callout block to open the associated sheet and zoom into that particular view number.

 

 

6. Select the same attribute definition that you just edited, right-click, and choose Properties.

7. In the Properties window, set the Preset property to Yes. Since AutoCAD will enter the attribute value for you (via field data), you do not want to prompt the user to enter the information as you would have done using traditional attribute definitions. Setting the Preset property to Yes will prevent AutoCAD from asking for a value when the block is inserted.

 

8. Repeat steps 3-7 to add a field to the attribute definition for the sheet number using the SheetNumber placeholder type.

9. Redefine the callout block using the Block command (not necessary if you use BATTMAN or the Block Editor) and save the drawing.

That is all it takes to make your old callout block(s) smarter! Now you need to assign your callout block(s) to the Callout blocks property in your sheet set.

1. In the Sheet Set Manager, right-click on the sheet set title and choose Properties.

2. In the Sheet Set Properties dialog box, select Callout Block and choose the button to access the Select Block dialog box.

 

 

3. In the Select Block dialog box, navigate to file that contains your updated callout blocks. As mentioned previously, your callout blocks might be defined in their own drawing (DWG) or template (DWT) files or they might exist as block definitions within a larger drawing or template file.

4. If your callout blocks are individual drawings, select the option: Select the drawing file as a block.

-Or-

If your callout blocks are definitions within a drawing or template, select the option: Choose blocks in the drawing file and then select the appropriate block definitions.

You can assign any number of callout blocks to a sheet set.

 

5. Choose OK to close each of the dialog boxes and accept the changes.

Now you’re ready to test it out!

1. In the Sheet Set Manager, select the Sheet List tab.

2. Open a sheet to which you want to add a callout.

3. Select the Sheet Views tab. This tab displays all of the sheet/layout views created by the Sheet Set Manager.

4. Right-click on the view that you want to reference in your callout and choose Place Callout Block. The first time you do this, the Place Callout Block cascading menu option may display the option to Select Blocks. You can choose the Select Blocks option and then select all the callout blocks that you want to be available from the Sheet Set Manager. Subsequent access to the Place Callout Block cascading menu will display all the blocks that you selected.

 

5. Select the callout block you want to insert and place it on the sheet. The view and sheet numbers should automatically display in the callout.

6. Hover the cursor over the callout block and press Ctrl as you select the view or sheet number. If you select the sheet number, AutoCAD will open the appropriate drawing sheet. If you select the view number, AutoCAD will open the drawing as well as zoom into the appropriate view.

Now that your drawing is using field data, it is CRUCIAL that you do NOT edit those attribute values using traditional methods. For example, if you want to change the view number or sheet number on the callout, it might be very tempting to double-click on the callout block and enter the number for the Value of that block instance. If you do that, the intelligence you gained from fields is gone.

Unfortunately there is no way to prevent users from making this mistake, so it can only be avoided through education! If you see a field in a drawing (text with a grey background), never edit it! That data is being read from somewhere else and you need to edit the source, not the attribute value! In most cases that source data should be edited in the Sheet Set Manager. Since a callout is reading the view and sheet numbers from an existing view/sheet, you need to change the view or sheet number on the View List (Sheet Views) or Sheet List tab. Do not forget to REGEN your drawing to ensure it displays the most current field data.

By the way, if you are familiar with sheet set view categories you may wish to use different callout blocks for different types of views. For example, you might have a view category called Elevations that points to one set of callout blocks and a view category called Sections that points to a different set of callout blocks. You can use the Sheet Views tab to assign callout blocks to different view categories.

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

Albuquerque ATG Customer Appreciation Event

 

Albuquerque ATG Customer Appreciation Event

On behalf of ATG USA, you’re invited to a Customer Appreciation Event on Thursday, September 6th. Join your ATG Account Executive as they say thank you for your years of loyalty to us. Complimentary drinks and apps will be provided. This event starts at 5:30 PM and will run until 7 PM at the Parq Hotel, Apothecary Rooftop Bar Lounge & Bar- 806 Central Ave SE in Albuquerque.  We look forward to seeing you there. Please RSVP to your Account Executive or email sprince@atgusa.com

 

 

 

On behalf of ATG USA, you’re invited to a Customer Appreciation Event on Thursday, September 6th. Join your ATG Account Executive as they say thank you for your years of loyalty to us. Complimentary drinks and apps will be provided. This event starts at 5:30 PM and will run until 7 PM at the Parq Hotel, Apothecary Rooftop Bar Lounge & Bar- 806 Central Ave SE in Albuquerque.  We look forward to seeing you there. Please RSVP to your Account Executive or email sprince@atgusa.com

 

Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com.

Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.