There’s been a lot of talk recently about scaling families in Revit. This was perhaps first stirred up last year by Marcello Sgambelluri in a blog post that stated, contrary to popular belief, that families could indeed be scaled. This was followed by various posts from others (including , Kelvin Tam, and Paul Aubin). This topic also came up in a couple of classes at RTC Australasia last month, with detailed step by step processes discussed. I’ve listed links in chronological order to some of the articles:

Scaling Revit Families

Scaling the Classical Order of Columns in Revit

Spline Sailing

Class 34: S M L XL How to Scale A Family

Planting Columns

Tuscan Rig

Planting Tips

Scaling Profiles

 

Whilst this might be quite new and exciting for some Revit users, I believe that its various uses are quite limited. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s amazing what the Revit community can achieve when we put minds to it! I have to say though that I wouldn’t want Revit users at my work implementing these techniques in 99% of our families. They can go for it on that other 1% though!

betterRevit, summing up the size of things…

 

Tagged with:
 

7 Responses to Bigger or Smaller?

  1. [...] that somebody beat me to it. That someone is Mark Cronin, who I chatted with in Auckland at RTC. He wrote a summary of resources that you’ll find useful, techniques that capitalize on new features as well as [...]

  2. Hey, Mark, it was a pleasure to meet you at RTC AUS in Auckland. Hope to see you next year in Melbourne.

    Nice summary about the recent blog articles about scaling families. I just posted a ‘tweet’ about this post.

  3. Mark Cronin says:

    Hi Alfredo, it was great meeting you at RTC too. I think that’s one of the best aspects of RTC, the opportunity to meet Revit experts in person, especially after years of reading their blog and forum posts (I, and I’m sure other readers, really appreciate the effort you put into helping other Revit users)!

    Thanks for the comment, I really struggle getting enough time to write detailed posts, so summaries and links is the easy way out for now…

    Yes, I’m sure I’ll see you next year in Melbourne, or maybe even at AU if I make it there again.

  4. Jay Zallan says:

    I think you miss the boat conceptually.

    Without people breaking through limited and often incorrect assumptions of what, in this case, Revit can do: those “99%” would be creating content with limits that are totally unnecessary.

    The only thing limited is your viewpoint that these methods are limited or limiting.

    Rather they are liberating!

    Perhaps this is a bit confrontational to group-think mentality, but that’s OK; debate is important.

    Not everyone needs to know everything and a majority of project team players may not need to build scaling-families themselves, but they all do need them (read as “NEED”)

    Finally, to say this is only important for “1%” is an ignorant statement with no basis in fact or statistics; whether Architecturally, Technologically or Sociologically.

    • Mark Cronin says:

      Hi Jay, thanks for your comments, but I think you miss-interpreted my post completely!

      These are new and exciting techniques, and people such as Marcello (and the others mentioned in the post) really are breaking the preconceived boundaries of what can be done in Revit! Without this desire to keep pushing the limits of the application we would all be worse off and this was meant to be reflected in the post in the sentence – “I think it’s amazing what the Revit community can achieve when we put our minds to it”.

      “The only thing limited is your viewpoint that these methods are limited or limiting.” – Exactly the opposite, these scaling methods could easily lead to unlimited (read as uncontrolled) variations of a family that, for example, may only be manufactured in specific sizes. A bit of an extreme example, but a possibility…

      “Finally, to say this is only important for “1%” is an ignorant statement with no basis in fact or statistics; whether Architecturally, Technologically or Sociologically.” – Firstly I didn’t say it was important for only 1%! The sentence read; “I wouldn’t want Revit users at my work implementing these techniques in 99% of our families”.

      OK, so I guesstimated that maybe 1% of the families in typical real world projects that I’m involved with would benefit from the kind of scaling methods discussed. Most families are predefined building elements with real world sizes and scales that I wouldn’t want users to be able to alter, and that’s not even considering other categories such as annotation families, etc. This observation is obviously heavily dependent on the kind of projects, discipline and sector, etc, that you are involved in. I’m sure some projects would benefit from a larger percentage of scalable families, but not my typical projects (unless I’m really missing something?)!

      Yes, the concept can be applied in many ways but that wasn’t the focus. One of the points of the post was to reaffirm that some limits exist in Revit for a purpose. I certainly don’t want Revit users being able to scale a product such as a bath, a real object from a manufacturer with specific dimensions. The rubber duck that floats in it though is fine, make it as big or as small as you want! OK, so maybe if you have lots of rubber ducks in a bath my 1% is really out!

      Aside from a few families in a typical project, I think that direct scaling is an option that we don’t want to provide in the majority of families, unless there is good reason. This comment is not meant to detract from the brilliance of the breakthroughs that are being made, it is meant to simply clarify that not all breakthroughs are going to be really useful in all of our mainstream projects!

      I’m sorry if in my haste to get a post out (not being as thorough with my wording as I should have been) led you to get the wrong end of the stick. I am in awe of the true Revit gurus that are capable of making Revit do things that it is not intended to do. I am even more appreciative of them sharing the knowledge, as these techniques often filter down to be extremely valuable in every day families and projects. The point of the post was that perhaps not all new and exciting developments in Revit are going to be as life changing as others…

  5. Peter in Maryland says:

    Limited scaling – yet another reason why revit just sux … I’m running out of numbers, counting those reasons.

    Scaling should be more available, especially with line-based detail components. The only example that revit programmers seem to be able to imagine is the chair example – however, if each of the dimensions (x, y, and z) could be scaled independently, it would be a very useful tool (sometimes the chair needs to be just a little narrower, so scale x to 0.9). If I link those parameters together, then I can scale the whole thing up or down proportionally.

    I don’t need MamaDesk to ‘protect me’ from designing something outside the standard lines.

  6. […] Revit Families: Bigger or smaller? […]

Leave a Reply to Jay Zallan Cancel reply