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  • Tips for Importing Revit files using IFC (and optimizing Solids)

    PVA - Jim

    When importing files from Revit using IFC:


    • Make sure that your collaborator uses the latest version of Revit (2014). This is the version that delivers certified "Coordination View 2.0" IFC files. 
    • You should use the latest version of Vectorworks (2014). This will optimize import file sizes a lot. File sizes will be 50% or less compared to Vectorworks 2013 and earlier. 
    • Be aware that Vectorworks imports wall and slab geometry (or any geometry that has voids) as CSGs with histories. As of Vectorworks 2014 (initial release), there are no built-in optimizations for this. Depending on the precise file makeup, this can make for very large imported files. The script attached to the bottom of this article will make this easier.


    Model issues to be aware of in Revit files imported using IFC:


    • Walls that go more than one floor: Even though this is not, strictly speaking, the way that IFC likes the world to be, Revit often does things this way because of its data structure. 
    • Repeated elements that are not "symbolized": IFC does not strictly support a strictly instanced data-structure like a symbol. It does support a "type", which is a little looser data structure. Often times, if you have many instances furniture with a lot of curved or mesh geometry, these essentially come in as IFCentities, which are non-instanced PIOs. This workflow will improve with future releases.


    Attached to the bottom of this article is a script that will remove histories from all CSG objects in a file. We recommend that you start with an empty Vectorworks file, import the Revit file, and run this script (which should cut a significant proportion of the file size) before you begin doing any Vectorworks drawing or modeling. This script should be run only once, unless you want to remove histories from your Vectorworks solids.


    To run the script:


    1. Download the script file.
    2. Launch Vectorworks and open the desired VWX file.
    3. Select the command Tools > Scripts > Run Vectorscript…
    4. Navigate to the script file removeCSGhistory.txt and open it. 




    Edited by JimW

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