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graphics & method for modifying Toposolid

graphics & method for modifying Toposolid

The new Toposolid in Revit 2024 may have some new developments that are advantageous, but the work flow and graphics when editing points on a Toposolid are terrible and major hinderance to design and production. 

 

When editing a Toposurface in 2023 and prior, as points are added/modified contour lines between points are shown in real time, based on Site Settings. The background visibility is dulled, but detail lines, images, etc. that may be used as reference are still easily visible. 

 

When modifying a Toposolid in 2024, as points are added/modified, contour lines are NOT shown in real time, but folding lines are shown triangulating between points. When placing points, Revit wants to snap to these folding lines. The background visibility is dulled much more, such that detail lines, images, etc. are dulled to the point where they are barely visible and very difficult to use as reference. 

 

The only way to see contour lines is to exit out of edit mode to see the results. With Toposolid Revit even more aggressively makes contour lines between points in close proximity at curves, creating contour lines that go across curves at multiple points rather than following an intended path. Having to go in and out of edit mode to see contour lines is very time consuming and disruptive to productive work flow. 

 

The Folding Lines are generally meaningless. There's no point in showing them, anywhere. They maybe there for Revit to do whatever it needs to do in creating Topography, but we do not need to see them and have no use for them. That Folding Lines are visible in edit mode, and Revit want to snap to them, is absurd. We need to see the contour lines as points are added/modified, not Folding Lines. 

 

Toposolid editing is also much slower than Toposurface because Revit is constantly triangulating between every point in real time. Adding multiple points along contour lines has now become painfully slow. With Toposurface, multiple points could be added very quickly and contour lines generated instantly. There's even an add-in called Auto Clicker which allows you to move the the cursor along a path and points are added by setting an auto click interval, instead of clicking for every point. This is not possible with Toposolid because the response time is so slow. 

 

It's annoying AF that Revit is constantly making multiple contour lines between points in close proximity at curves rather than following an intended path. But there's a method to force Revit to do what you want by adding points that are +.1 or -.1 adjacent to points that are intended to define contour lines. It's a lot of extra tedious work, but it gets contour lines to behave. Since contour lines are not visible in real time when editing Toposolid, you have to go in and out of edit mode, and it makes the process even more tedious and slow. 

 

When Autodesk bought Site Works from Eagle Point Software, and renamed it Site Designer, it had some very functional and efficient tools for site grading. such as Feature Lines. then Auto desk decided to discontinue it. These tools were adopted from Civil3D and intended for use by Architects. So it is possible that efficient & effective site grading tools can be developed. 

 

Revit needs to be function in a manner that supports the way Architects work. Topography has always been lacking in functionality. One of the most basic functions of topography is site grading, and it's been made even more disfunctional with Toposolid. Autodesk has done a major disservice to it's customers by not provided an easy and efficient manner to grade a site with contour lines, cut/fill, etc. 

61 Comments
mpukas
Collaborator

Toposolid cannot be cut by a linked model. It's best practice for a project to have a model for the building(s) and a separate model for the site. The two (or more buildings) are linked. The building footprint is cut out of the topo. Previously with a building pad, now with a void form. Usually the building footprint is to the exterior of foundation walls and bottom of slab or crawlspace. When the site file was linked into the building file, walls and structural foundations had graphic priority over the topo, and would hide the topo hatch. So if a foundation wall and/or footing was below the pad, it still appeared graphically correct. So not with Toposolid. Toposolid has to be cut around all footing and foundations walls, even below slabs, to appear graphically correct. This is another large extent of work to be done, when buildings on sloping lots have footings at varying depths and sizes. Several different void-sweeps have to be made to follow the building structure. 

lukeXYUDP
Explorer

In theory I like the new topo solid tools, however when in edit mode, all the contours disappear behind the fold lines like you said. This makes it really difficult to visualize the changes being made...

scenesketcher
Contributor

Just to drop a breadcrumb here for anyone struggling with Toposolid visibility issues, there is a new Toposolid category in Visibility/Graphic Overrides (keyboard VV) that helps a lot. Unchecking  "Folding Lines" hides the triangulation and keeps the contours. If you want to draw subdivisions to delineate features from an underlying image, set Toposolid Transparency to 100%. Also drawing speed is improved and memory consumption is reduced by setting the view display to hidden line or wireframe.

lukeXYUDP
Explorer

Hey @scenesketcher, even with my folding Lines turned off in Visibility/Graphic Overrides, the folding lines are still visible while in edit mode, covering up the contours until exiting edit mode. Am I missing something? 

mpukas
Collaborator

@lukeXYUDP I do the same as you've described, and topo lines are not visible when editing toposolid. When in edit mode, everything else is made half-tone and makes any background graphics, underlayments, etc. extremely hard to read. 

scenesketcher
Contributor

@lukeXYUDP With folding lines (mesh) visibility suppressed, I see only contour lines in Modify | Create Toposolid Boundary, Modify | Toposolid > Edit Boundary, and Modify Create Sub-Division Boundary.  In Modify | Toposolid Add Point, Add Split Line, and Pick Supports, both mesh and contours show. Since the later edits deform the mesh, I can understand the rationale to show folding lines for these operations.

PatrickGSR94
Enthusiast

@scenesketchercan you elaborate on this a bit more?  I just tried 2024 for the first time today and am appalled that contour lines disappear when trying to edit points on the toposolid.  I see no way to have the contour lines remain visible while editing.  I personally see no reason to see the mesh lines at all.  They've always been available to turn on for toposurfaces, but I've literally never used them.  I need the points, and I need the contour lines visible.  Have you found a way to do that?

 

If I modify a toposolid, the mesh appears and contour lines go away.  If I type VV, the mesh goes away and contour lines come back, and the folding lines subcategory is already turned off.  But when I hit OK, still being in Modify mode, the contour lines once again go away and mesh lines come back, until I finish my editing work.

scenesketcher
Contributor

When I edit toposolid points in dark mode, I see faint contours if there is
a sub-division underlying the area I am modeling. I haven't found a way to
modify edit mode graphic appearance. I did notice that split lines show
clearly as part of the mesh. As a workaround, you could experiment with
using them to set boundaries for point edits.

It's more trouble, but you can always bring in the calvary by using Blender or Rhino. Either to make an underlying image with contours or shape the model. There are YouTube videos that show how to use Blender to convert a mesh into a stack of contour slices.

PatrickGSR94
Enthusiast

ughh ridiculous.  We just need to see the darn contour lines on the site, and see what happens to them when adding or changing point elevations, DURING the editing process.

lukeXYUDP
Explorer

@PatrickGSR94 That has been my experience as well. Fully Agree, we really should be able to see contours during editing. Also really missing the ability to align points.... 

jimmy6U695
Explorer

Just started working on modifying topo after having upgraded a large, topo-intensive project to 2024.  Was excited about working with toposolids.  Now I regret upgrading becuase adjusting the topo is a such a pain.  Nightmare.  Think twice about upgrading, especially if your project is topo-intensive.  I am finding that I have to do a bunch of prep work with detail lines and text so I know where to place new points and to do my own preview of what the contours will be.

 

I'll share some positives:

  • when adding points - ability to choose reference and basis of elevation.
  • Can snap to points on the toposolid
PatrickGSR94
Enthusiast

@jimmy6U695did you convert the toposurface to a solid?  As I understand it, toposurfaces remain in upgraded projects, with the old toposurface tools still available, unless the surface is converted to a solid.

 

This has GOT to be addressed in the 2024.1 release.  The whole process just sounds miserable.

jimmy6U695
Explorer

@PatrickGSR94 the old surface still exists, but the tools to work with it are no longer there.  If you upgrade to 2024, you HAVE TO work with the toposolid.

mpukas
Collaborator

Autodesk has made editing/modifying Toposolid a complete nightmare. When in Modify mode, points cannot be copied, only added by using Add Point; the elevation of the last point added is not saved, so if you tab out place point or Modify and want to add another point it has be re=typed in; points cannot be aligned to a surface, so when you create a floor or roof for a driveway you cannot align points to the under side of the element; using the align command kicks you out of Modify mode; point selection is lost when changing views; contour lines are not visible in edit mode, but folding lines are, which is pointless when editing topography. 

 

Autodesk has really F'd this up and it needs to be fixed ASAP. What we've been given is absurd. 

jimmy6U695
Explorer

I gave up on 2024.  The majority of my projects are in the mountains, where working with topo is almost a daily occurrence.  I tried it on a project, but I've cut my losses on the time I spent and I'm back to a previous version.  

r.grandmaison
Explorer

Does anyone know how to access the old "Site Settings" dialog box in Revit 2024? I'm needing to adjust the contour display elevations and I don't see the little arrow on the "Model Site" panel label anymore!

theoFCP36
Community Visitor

Back to 2023 just because of large scale topography manipulation. 

 

Cutting voids into a Toposolid might seem simple, but it's the addition of/fill that is the issue.  Pads used to automatically cut/fill...  Serious time spent on the software to achieve the same results, so they've gone backwards to develop software to save time.

 

Please fix this Autodesk! 

brucegund
Advocate

Just spent couple of hours copying footings and floors from the building model to the site model just so that I can cut them from the site so that it reads correctly. Now have to figure out a way to hide the duplicate floors, footing, walls etc. in the site model as well as the building model. This is too much work in order to get view correctly in drawings. Toposurfaces worked perfect. Toposolids need to work the same way. Cannot ask structural to create floors, footings, walls in a site model....

Fix ASAP!

Thanks, Bruce

Mark_Engwirda
Collaborator

@mpukas that's a great post, all of your points are truly relevant, it is very hard to understand this topic has only 12 votes so I think this topic has been buried over time under a lot of other newer posts.
I was looking to see if anyone had posted about the contour lines not being visible while in editing mode and I see you have already mentioned it.



FTBD
Community Visitor

I too have found this toposolids upgrade extremely frustrating and time-consuming and I'll be reverting back to Revit 2023 until a fix for this comes out. Please fix ASAP Autodesk!

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