I just posted a similar post in the AutoCAD MEP, so if it looks familiar that's why.
I work for an electrical contractor. We currently do most of our work in traditional AutoCAD. The reason for this is because we receive our files in that format. I believe that a lot of architects are using Revit (I have no proof of this, it's just a guess), but when the electrical engineer/consultant work their content in, it's flattened to 2D, and there's no intelligence. Just lines, circles, text and blocks.
Are there any electrical contractors out there in the same position that have made the transition to Revit and found that they seldomely use AutoCAD anymore? I'd love to hear from you, if you exist. What in your opinion is the biggest reason for an electrical contractor to transition to Revit? What's the best wall? All in "sink or swim" ... or slowly transition?
We are early in the process of developing our Revit capabilities and intend to maintain our AutoCAD expertise. We have one design build project underway in Revit one construction project schedule to start soon.
Yes. I guess there's not too many out there.
My company basically dove in. I was brought in from the field. I had some previous experience with CAD, and learned Revit. First project I did was conduit layout for installation in a small parking garage under a park using AutoCAD MEP. First Revit project was a design/build 3 floor office building. Next was a new middle and high school with shared extracurrirular building space, a construction coordination job. Revit is a great tool for both design/build work and coordination modeling. I would much rather use Revit than AutoCAD MEP. So much easier to manage the project in Revit.
I too am working for an electrical contractor and am the "Revit Guy." A large problem I seem to be running into, as being a predominantly AutoCAD based user in prior years, is the learning curve to Revit. I've done the dance of taking the classes, and I would consider myself "intermediate" in terms of renderings, coordination, and detailing with the electrical side of things (If you can master a rolling offset, you automatically earn the intemediate title...). I however, have a ways to go in terms of generating a full scale electrical document from Revit. Title blocks, views, annotations are all user friendly, but generating panel schedules for existing loads... Different story. I came across an article that has gained a lot of views, and hopefully it will help in your consideration for adopting BIM full time.
The biggest problem here is having 100% backing from members who dont realise that Revit is NOT AutoCAD with better 3D. The hours used learning and setting up families and standards can get obscene. With jobs needing to be done quickly and efficiently, and also within a certain budget, my firm starts to doubt the effectiveness of Revit and I start to do the same of my own skill. If you can have your team behind you completely and have them realise its not a "go to a class and be the Revit Guy" you will be in great shape. Sorry if this is long-winded, it's my first post.
part contractor part consultant here, We dont have Revit MEP but I do for home use and am in the process of learning the prog as I see it as a big thing in the next year or so. TBH though I cant see the smaller M&E firms / contractors running with it until its forced down there thoats....they hardly even have a CAD prescence.
My main concern is producing actual drawings that are up to the kind of standard we've been delivering for years which including the scehematics. Ive not got too far with MEP yet so I'll reserve judgement for a while until i get to grips with it (may be some time yet!)
Couple of things I have noticed though are the detailing of wiring and switching that you can generate automatically from Revit. It's ok for most power circuits but for the lighting I'm finding it doesn't show in a way that I and most other engineers in the UK are familliar with....i.e. showing lights on the same circuit connected as different switched banks...Revit seems to want to just show all lights circuited together and the switching arrangement is not fully detailed.
No evidence of LCM's in family libraries or how you would detail the circuits/flex runs to luminaires or switching arrangement....surly this must be relevant these days?
Circuit charts not shown as 1L1, 1L2 1L3 etc as uk standard but as 1,2,3....with phases shown in side columns.
i'm sure there are work arounds or solutions to these but until I present these and generate drawing sheets that reflect what we are producing now in CAD then it's a hard sell to get the firm to invest.
I have worked for five different electrical engineers (with different firms) and they all have their own style and approach to project design and development. Which I completely respect, I know this helps them to assure accuracy and thouroughness in their engineering process. The 'look' of the drawings is a big part of their means and methods, which makes changing to Revit MEP more difficult for them (I think). Working with Revit MEP you definately have to be willing to conform to it's structure and be willing to accept drawing that look different, and possibly convey the information a bit differently.
I find it challenging to know how much time and effort to invest in developing company standards for the 'engineering' aspects of Revit MEP, when we don't have an in-house EE. We will have to work with an engineering firm that has their own standards for managing design elements, like load calculation, for our design build projects. Still need to know the program well enough to deliver the goods. In the mean time I spend a lot of personal time working out issues.
I've been hanging out at ACAD MEP for a while but just started Revit MEP, and our design/build electrical contracting firm is behind it 100%. That's challenging because we just got thrown into a project assist with an electrical engineer on a $45M electrical project where everyone is to be on Revit. I feel overwhelmed at the moment.
Use those resources around you on that project! I find Revit the better choice for managing projects, regardless of 3D/BIM capabilities. The best way to learn is by doing. Admittedly a $45M project is a pretty high dive to jump off of, but it can be done. Good Luck!