I work in the window business and we are creating frame families for our windows that have unique extruded aluminum profiles on the jambs versus the head/sill. In our frame family, we are using sweeps to establish the extrusion path and contraining these sweeps to reference planes accordingly. We are then assigning a specific custom profile to each sweep from our product library. The profiles have already been created as .rfa profile component.
The frame family has been tested and flexes correctly once they are loaded into the project, but my question is: How can I extract the following information into a Material Takeoff:
I am not very familiar with creating parameters that are not available by default in the window category. This is a critical component of our business as the Material Takeoff needs to be specific to the profile. I can override this by manually entering the "profile number" into the Material Name field but since the profile Component already has this information, I would hope it could be extracted.
In addition, the length does not appear in the window category either, only the length/width of the frame itself.
Thanks in advance for any insight.
The information about the profile should be a shared parameter of the kind "Family type" = profiles. Then, each type in the window family should have its own profile name assigned to it. This parameter will exist in the family only for information purposes, because changing the profile name in the parameter will not swap the actual section of the sweep in the window.
In the project, we need to create a project parameter that applies to windows, which will be the same shared parameter created in the family. Then, in the material take-off schedule, include that shared parameter as a field, and that will give you the name of the profile that is assigned to each type of window.
As for the length of the sweep, it should be easy to calculate, given that you already have the values for the height and width of the window, therefore you just need to add a calculated value to the schedule, with a formula which calculates the length of the sweep based on the values contained in the Width and Height fields.
Thanks for the response Alfredo.
I guess I'm still a little confused. The "proflle name" I am looking to extract is specific to an individual sweep within a frame family.I have created profiles called Die1.rfa. Die2.rfa etc... and have applied them to their respective sweeps within my frame family.
For example, a given window has 2"x6" profiles dimensions with unique "Die numbers" for each frame member:
These sweeps are constrained to the reference planes I have placed in my frame family and flex correctly. The window frame will have multiple sizes within a project and will be located on various levels. What I am looking for is a Material Takeoff that will give me the Profile Name (i.e Die1, Die2 etc.), Count (no problem), Level (no problem) and Length (problem, see below).
As far as the length goes, I cannot use the frame height/width to find the length of each nested sweep because in some cases the sweep is not continuous (i.e. clips, anchors). I still need to include them in my frame family and it will still count the part but the length will not show up on the Material Takeoff. I guess I figured that there was a way of extracting the length of a nested sweep in a frame family.
I still think that those values of the length of each sweep by profile type have to be manually entered into the window type's list of parameters. Since window sizes are handled by type anyway, not by instance, it makes sense to include the length of each sweep in the window family, because whatever the length of the sweep is, it is going to remain constant per each window type.
Therefore, I would suggest to include shared parameters of Length type in the window family, one per each sweep type in the window, and then add those parameters in the project file. Then, the window take-off schedule will be able to add up all the lengths by each sweep that there are among all the windows of the project.
The way our frame family is set up, each window type (family) can actually be various widths/heights depending on the opening it is being placed in. So adding length parameters that are fixed will not work for us. I need the frame family to be a typical configuration and once placed in the project, I assign it a unique "Mark" to distinguish is from the other sizes. But it would still be the same frame type. My Type 1 window simply describes that is it is a rectangular window with 1" glass and specific aluminum dies at the perimeter, it is not specific to a size.
Not sure why Autodesk doesn't recognize the need for a length field in the Material Takeoff.
Well, if your window families don't have their types named as per their sizes as it is recommended by the guidelines, it is going to be very difficult to get the length of each type of sweep in the project. It is possible in the way I have described it, but only if the window types in each window family are named as per their size.
The only other idea that comes to mind is reporting parameters, but without knowing more information about the families it is difficult to predict whether or not these parameters are going to work.