January – June 2014
ArchiCAD Training – Coaching Call – February 27, 2014
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 ArchiCAD Training Session Notes

Stories and wall heights with sloping residential roofs. How to construct your model for good 3D, section, and plan views. First check under Options>Project Preferences>Construction Elements and uncheck both “Legacy Options.” This will create some automatic cleanup with walls and slabs. You can do further clean-up using Building Materials priorities. You can edit a composite wall’s materials by selecting it, right clicking, choose Edit Selected Composite, and make changes in the Composite Structures window. To create a New Composite Floor structure go to Options>Element Attributes>Composites and select New and name it. Define a plywood floor and size it, insert a skin for airspace or framing and size it, and insert skin for gyp board and size it. Make sure your components are correctly placed as core and finish type. Now if you place the new composite floor, the walls will automatically clean up to it. If this is an exterior wall then the top wall will stop at the top of the slab and the bottom wall will rise to the top of the slab allowing the exterior sheathing to cover the outside of the slab. If a wall and slab do not clean up properly, select both and go to Building Materials and adjust their priorities by dragging the one that is to be the strongest below the one to give way. The materials in use will be in green in Building Materials. 0:03:23
Merge Elements Select a wall and roof, right click, select Connect>Merge Elements. This does not group elements but has them relate to each other with how they trim. Use this for cleaning up roofs and walls. Building material hierarchy can be used to a great advantage to get sections to look correct. 0:46:00
Files from AC 16 to 17 If you work on files in 17 that began in 16 they will have additional building materials that can be deleted in Building Materials and replace with one or two materials. You will also need to import the standard building materials from AC 17 template. Go to Options>Element Attributes>Attribute Manager and select Open, go to ArchiCAD 17 folder>Defaults>ArchiCAD Residential (or Commercial) Template. Then select all and Append (do not Overwrite) to add them. 0:55:23
Window and door heights when using composite walls with stretched skins. You can choose to set the window height in relation to the sill or header, or to the story depending on how you construct your model. 1:03:16
Mesh based on a grid at 1 meter intervals is complicated. How to take that mesh and create contours from it. How to bring in surveyor data. To look at the texture map click the imported terrain and click on the custom texture to see what it is made of. You can look at how the texture is defined Options>Element Attributes>Surfaces (Materials before AC 17). This has information about the surface material. You can set the origin under Design>Align 3D Texture>Set Origin. You can create your own surface texture this way by grabbing something from Google Earth or an aerial photo and place it on a slab or mesh. How to then simplify this? There is no tool in AC to do this. You can create a slab with the same height and draw it around your project then look at in 3D. You will see where it intersects your terrain. If you want to get that line, duplicate the mesh, cut it with Solid Element Operations with the slab and then you would have that contour line in 3D view then look at it top down and copy it into plan view. You can continue to do this by changing the height of the slab and finding each corresponding contour line. To do all of this, start with a copy of your mesh and the slab and put them on a separate layer, do the SEO and then view top down, change view to Internal Engine, choose Hidden Line and you will see the contour line. You are in 3D so you can’t trace it here, but you can use the Flat Marquee tool, draw a box around it and copy a drawing with edges. Then paste into the plan view. You can then trace over this with a spline line and transfer it to a mesh. To import surveyor date go to Design>Place Mesh from Surveyors Data and find the file, define it, then place it. You need a raw text file from the surveyor to do this. 1:11:14
How to create contour lines starting from a dwg file from a surveyor. It is often best to set the mesh to have its starting point around the lowest level of the site as opposed to sea level to have a manageable mesh thickness. You can place a pdf of the surveyor map over your plan. You may need to adjust the scale to match them up. With a dwg you can snap to it but you can not on a pdf. To begin, put them on a separate layer and hide everything else. Begin a mesh by making it on the correct layer, set it’s height. Go to Options>Project Preferences and set your project location information altitude to the 0 level of your project (what it is compared to sea level). Now you can set your height in the mesh tool relative to sea level. Then go in a draw a box of mesh around your project then view in 3D. Set your heights at the corners of your mesh based on the surveyor data. To put in a contour line, select the terrain with the mesh tool highlighted click a series of points to approximate the contour line and click twice on the last point outside the mesh and Add New Points. It is important to START on the INSIDE of the boundary of the mesh to create the contour line. If you start on the boundary it will modify the boundary which you don’t want to do. This doesn’t have to be super accurate until you get right next to the structure. Now you select the new line by pressing on any point in the line to go to Mesh Point Height and set them to a constant height of whatever the surveyor line height is and Apply to All. You can do the same thing with a dwg and you can magic wand the points but the dwg will have too many points usually. Redrawing the contour lines is usually faster with fewer points. Important that off to the side can be general and more defined with detail as you get closer to the building. 1:40:09
Regrading. When a civil engineer makes adjustments to topography and you have to redraw your mesh. Model your initial terrain to have first. Then create a copy of that mesh and edit it for the redraw. You can do cut and fill calculations by comparing the two meshes. 2:05:50
Terrain Modeling in Best Practices Course Material Terrain Modeling in Best Practices Course>Modules 10-15>Week#12 Site Survey and Topography Modeling>12-1 through 12-6. 2:13:05

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ArchiCAD Training – Coaching Call – February 27, 2014

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  1. ThomasDowner
    10 years ago

    Great session on composite walls with the new AC17 materials settings. I haven’t started using 17 on existing projects due to having to deal with the materials issue. Your demonstration in Thursday’s coaching call made the process much less intimidating. Thanks
    Tom Downer