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Scale families

Scale families

Give us the opportunity to scale a whole family or parts of it by a scale parameter!

Workaround with nestet plantings should NOT be the state of the art?!?

18 Comments
andresmontemayor
Enthusiast

I have a plant that has a 3D geometry, a family to show the symbol in plan and another family to show it in elevation.

It's not possible to control parametrically the size of each family separately for different sizes.

 

The OOFT "height" parameter will scale all of the elements in the family including the family that represents the plan symbols. So if I have a palm tree that's 45' high, I will have a 3D geometry that's 45' high, an elevation symbol showing the palm 45' high and a plan symbol showing the palm 45' wide.

 

It would be nice to be able to control them separately or be able to control the scale of elements through a parameter. I know it's not as easy since it's meant to keep us from simply scaling objects such as toilets like it was done in CAD but in this instance it's very limiting and forces us to have a drawing for every size of every type of tree.

Tags (4)
cgaither
Enthusiast

This is already possible through Dynamo, and is one of the simplest operations you would ever use that tool for (which means it's still harder than anything you would do inside of Revit). It's also possible by simply using your 3D model in the other views rather than a symbol.

CAD/BIM advice: In most applications, symbols are meant to represent an object or condition that either cannot be accurately represented with linework, or does not have enough design relevance to justify drawing its linework. This is contrast to an actual drawing or model, which is used to convey detailed information about an object or condition. If you need an accurate representation of your tree... use a drawing, not a symbol.

andresmontemayor
Enthusiast

Thanks for your response.

 

I will look into doing it in Dynamo but the idea is that this SHOULD be a simple family such as a door or a window that is easily modified by changing its type. I'm talking about a simple plant family which is the building block of landscape design, it should be part of the native Revit elements. It does not serve our purpose to use our 3D model in other views, we need a more detail representation in elevation and in plan (for documentation) while it's still a simple 3D representation (we can't model every single different species of tree, we usually have an outlined shape)

 

I appreciate your advice and we might be talking about the same thing. What I mean by symbol is actually a drawing, just like you use a door with the swing at 90* as a symbol in plan view and when you change the size, it changes in elevation in plan view. The thing about doors, or windows, or other elements is that you CAN adjust the width and height, you can't with plants.

cgaither
Enthusiast

Then for now Dynamo is your best bet. That functionality would be nice, and should have it's own discipline/API/UI within Revit.

 

The Dynamo variables I would set and use for this would be PlanScaleFactorX, which would be tied to the width value change and ElevationScaleFactorY, which would be tied to the whatever value(s) you choose on the outline in the elevation view. Once you've successfully tied the elements to the variables, generating a forumla shouldn't be too difficult. Best of luck!

VitorBIM
Enthusiast
Sometimes you just need a scalable family without any paremeters to be used inside in your project.
I got a reaaaaaally hard time converting 2d blocks from cad and making them scalable inside Revit, which I just needed them to be scalable.

What would be done in just two minutes converting the lines from AutoCAD inside Revit and checking a box "scalable", takes almost three hours to be done in revit converting the lines and creating parameters for them.
Tags (1)
smbrennan
Collaborator

I agree. For me, these families are most Generic Annotations the model categories. We do a lot of detailing and sometimes we want to scale specific areas down where it's a bit more cluttered. 

syman2000
Mentor

When it comes to scaling object, Revit require user to edit the profile and scale profile line. Another way to scale is to create family with parameter. It is quite tedious to constantly edit profile or create parameter. Revit need a simple way for user to add scale functionality to Revit family or in-placed objects.

Tags (3)
LyleHardin
Advisor

Same here. We are trying to make familes (like the default Revit Electrical Outlet) that we can insert into a model.

In a 3D view, it will be an actual 3D object, but in 2D views it will show up as a symbol that will remain the same 'paper space' scale no matter what the view scale is. We want to do this with industrial motors, rope pulls, switches and many other items. 

zhaohui.chen5TEA7
Enthusiast

this should be a basic function.

zhaohui.chen5TEA7
Enthusiast

Proper scalability is definitely required, not only an overall scale but also need X, Y, Z scale for both 2D and 3D elements.

 

One excuse of not provide scalability is that Revit is for modelling real world objects, such as a room. You can not scale a room with columns etc all scaled up. But this is not always the case. There are scale requirement for 3D objects for sure, especially when designing these objects, for example, a statue, you may want to scale it, and maybe even scale it differently in X,Y,Z directions.

 

In Revit the only element category can be scaled is "Planting". This is definitely not enough. At least Generic Model should have scalability (X,Y,Z).

 

For 2D stuff like Detailed Items, Generic Annotations, etc, scalability should be a must too.

 

As a design tool, Revit should help people being creative, not stop them doing so.

 

 

 

 

 

elmorei
Enthusiast

A decade ago this tutorial appeared on using the "Plants" family to allow nested models and families to be scaled:
https://paulaubin.com/blog/planting-columns/
To my knowledge, this hack is still the only workaround to control the scale of elements within a family.  The community would benefit greatly from:
1: The ability to scale imports parametrically
2: Scalable families, either as an optional Family Parameter or as its own category.

awithersPLMTL
Explorer

The capability to scale planting is currently locked as type based. This is counter to the way plants actually work. If you want to create realistic variations in size, creating multiple types to achieve this is laborious, clunky, and creates problems if changes are needed later. 

 

Given planting families are also the only way to scale family geometry, this means there is no way to scale by instance in Revit (except by importing geometry, eg dwg..) While I don’t have a use-case for this, it seems like a deep limitation, which could preclude certain generative design possibilities.

barringhausa
Explorer

Generic models need to be scalable. Or at the very least there needs to be a new "Scalable Generic Model" family type. 
On a similar note, there should be a separate Logo and Signage family type that has more/better options for modeling text, different fonts. That family should also be scalable.

mhiserZFHXS
Advisor

What are you trying to scale? Generic models aren't scalable because they are model elements. A table doesn't get bigger or smaller depending on what scale your view is at. Its the same size everywhere.

 

And nothing is stopping you from making your own signage family. But again, a sign doesn't get bigger or smaller depending on your view scale. A 6"x4" sign is 6"x4" no matter what.

barringhausa
Explorer

@mhiserZFHXS I think you're misunderstanding. I want to be able to scale an instance of a modeled component, similar to the way Planting families have an embedded scale parameter. I'm not wanting it to correlate to my view scale like annotations do, I want to be able to place an instance of a modeled component at 25%, 75%, 150%, etc. of its modeled size without having to duplicate and edit the family or add a new type to the family. 

 

For example, I have a Planting family of a tree, lets say its modeled to be 10' tall, it comes into a project with its embedded scale set to 1.0000, if I change that scale to 1.5000, that modeled component is now 15' tall. This functionality already exists within Revit, but it is limited exclusively to planting families. I can understand the logic behind not including a scale parameter to most of the family categories, I can foresee the problems that could occur from that, but to not include the option in the Generic Model category, the category specifically made to be a catch-all for anything that doesn't fall into one of the other categories, is a major oversight. 

Same thing with signage, I work in the Industrial market, our clients want to put their branding on their buildings, we have to create modeled versions of their logos and branding. Often they end up wanting that logo placed in multiple places on a project, rarely are those multiple instances all the same size, you might have a 15' logo on the exterior but they want a 5' version of that same logo signage inside their lobby. I should be able to have one family, with an embedded scale parameter that I can place in both of those locations, instead of having to remodel it at a different scale. 

mhiserZFHXS
Advisor

Gotcha, sorry for the misunderstanding.

 

There is still a reason that blanket scaling only works in some situations. To do what you want, you have to modify your families to be parametric in order to change their size. I know you said you don't WANT to do that, but there is good reason it works this way.

 

Revit is designed to be a digital representation of a real world or soon-to-be real world building. Real world things don't just scale the way you are talking about. Back to the my initial table example, when you make a table bigger, the whole thing doesn't grow at an even rate. If I scale it to 1.25 its size to fit more people, then it also gets 1.25 times taller, and all of the individual components, like the legs, get 1.25 times wider and thicker. That's not typically how you'd make a bigger table.

 

This is why most families are parametric, where individual components are driven by parameters that you input. There are ways to link those parameters together, so you could have a custom "Scale" parameter that drives everything else. I'm not sure how complicated your clients logos are, but it should be possible to do this. Not saying it'll be easy, but if your putting these all of your model, it'd probably be worth the time.

 

The other option is to not create such detailed signage everywhere. The only time we place modeled signage is if it'll show up in a rendering. Everything else is just a plain rectangular prism that has text annotations for scheduling, but that text isn't actually modeled.

 

Its up to you how you want to handle that. But I don't there would be much support for incorporating this feature as you're asking for it, as it breaks one of the core functions of Revit.

ottoruano
Explorer

@mhiserZFHXS , here is an example of allowing scaling:

I have a faucet that I want to use from a manufacturer that is a real world object. it was made in meters. 
When the file is imported into a Revit Family type to make it into a family that i can then use in my project, the file comes in gigantic, even though the scale was correctly chose during import. There is a scale button that would be super helpful to allow me to scale the model to the correct size, however, it is disabled. Now, in order to use this object, I have to spend HOURS to create a new object, that is built to be a "real world thing" where the scale command would have made this entire process incredibly easier. 

mhiserZFHXS
Advisor

@ottoruano 

 

Revit should automatically convert metric to imperial or vice versa when you load in a family. Is there something you are leaving out here? Are you importing a non-native file format?

 

And even if it was needed for situations like this, Revit is built with a multitude of guardrails in place in order to cut down on errors. The value of not being able to scale across the board far outweighs the value of needing to scale one thing once in a blue moon. It may seem like a headache every now and then, but it prevent a dozen headaches for every one it causes (generally).

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