Friday, April 11, 2008

Fake Dimensions - Update

For those who have asked, Daniel Hurtubise has graciously provided a sample faux dimension. Once loaded into the project, the faux dimension is a Detail Component.


post started an interesting discussion with a fellow Revit user (No, it was not Daniel Hurtubise) about using fake dimensions. My friend does not work in the design community, he works for a GC that also self-performs and they use Revit. Is opinion is that you should never "fake" anything, anytime. In a perfect world, where fees reflect the amount of work that goes into creating and documenting a design, I would agree.

But we don't live in that perfect world and sometimes design team members need to be creative in order to save time (and money) without sacrificing accuracy and detail. Take the example below. A detail could be created for each option, but if conditions changed, each detail would have to be updated. Creating a detail like what is shown that utilizes a table to represent different conditions or options, is a time saver. If those values in the table need to be adjusted, they are adjust once in this single detail, rather than in a detail for each option.

I am not suggesting that a design team use fake dimensions to override dimensions of a room, rather then changing the actual locations of objects to get the correct room dimensions. What I am suggesting that you do need the ability sometime to use a different dimension value. With Revit 2008 and prior, we did not have a built in option in Revit 2009, the development team has now provided us with the ability to override dimension text.

I would like to hear what you think (including Daniel Hurtubise).


I just started teaching an Introduction to Revit class at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kansas and a student who is taking a similar class at KU in Lawrence, Kansas asked me if it was possible to either override or fake a dimension in Revit. The answer is:

Override dimensions: No. Revit does not have a method that allows you to override a dimension. The parametric nature of Revit requires that dimensions be accurate.

Fake Dimensions: This is definitely possible.

Why use a Fake Dimension?
1. For one, you may want to be able to add descriptive text when the length may or may not be important.
2. You may have a project that you need to break up to place on multiple sheets. If your plans have an overall dimension, those will not display because when you crop a view, you will lose that overall dimension. With the fake dimension family, you can add an overall dimension, even though the view has been cropped.

The downside to this is that you are using a fake dimension, which requires you to manually enter a dimension value, be it a text string, numerical value or combination of both.

I'll upload the fake dimension family as soon as I figure out how to do that.

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