January – June 2014
ArchiCAD Training – Coaching Call – January 16, 2014
Thank you for visiting the Best Practices Course website. The video lessons are available for members only. If you are an active member and would like to watch the ArchiCAD training video on this page, please login to the website. If you are not currently a member, please visit the following pages for more information and to sign up for the Best Practices Course, the QuickStart Course or for the Best Practices ArchiCAD Coaching Program. Eric Bobrow, Creator of the Best Practices Course
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 ArchiCAD Training Session Notes

Drawing walls and snapping to boundary lines Window>Palettes>Control Box has options for off-set or multiple off-set. For creating a perpendicular wall with a wall that is not at a 90 degree angle, move your wall cursor over your existing wall edge until you see an orange dot. Click on the orange dot to make a reference for the operation then move your cursor to find your perpendicular line and will also show you a parallel line. You can use the Intersect button to clean up your final corner. For an interior wall the shift key will give you snap lines associated to your grid. You can constrain the mouse to a particular angle by going to Options>Work Environment>Mouse Constraints and Methods. Then you can use the Shift Key to lock to a specific angle. You can also go to the perpendicular snap. 0:03:00
Conceptual design. Best practices for presenting different floor plan options for conceptual design. ArchiCAD doesn’t have a good tool for doing multiple versions of a building and control it. You can copy the same thing over next to each other and have the same elements but on different layers for your different schemes. Or you could have multiple files with the info copied in from the same starting point then develop the different versions then you could have both files open to show the client. Or you can use hot-linked modules referencing in an external file with some building data and you can choose which one you want to bring in. You could have part of the building in several different versions developed in a separate file and switch which version you are referencing in while the rest of the project remains the same. If you want to keep the different plans in the same file then find a way to separate out the total square feet for each. In separate files you have total control. You can copy data from one file to another once you choose which option you want to move forward with. 0:16:34
Elevation problems showing clear glass when creating them as glass walls. Make your walls glass. You can see through them in 3D. In elevation they are not transparent. Go to Elevation Settings>Model Display>Transparency and turn in on. This is also accessible by selecting the marker for the elevation and make your edit. 0:24:20
Migrating an older project into AC 17. Removing an old template in the older file and using a new template. When migrating in an older project into ArchiCAD 17 AC tries to create building materials for composites that come in with the older project. The issue is that if you have composites that you are not using AC creates a bunch of materials you don’t need and it gets messy. Purge all the unused composites before you move the project into 17. The issue with removing an old template and replacing with a new one is that a project structure cannot be brought in from one project to another. The view map and layout book cannot be brought from one project to another. You can use attribute manager to bring layer names, building materials, etc. You can copy the layout book structure but not the book itself. If your project is still early enough then copy your model into your nice template. Then you are in your new template with the old model. There is no single right answer if you are trying to work on an old file in a new version. 0:30:10
Copying from one file to another There is a simple part and a complicated part. The simple part is if you have multiple stories and you want to get it all over to another file, turn on and unlock all layers, and then draw a marquee around the entire thing using the THICK marquee tool in the info box. Then copy. This copies all visible elements on all stories. Then go to your other file and paste. Watch out for stories being the same. Also when you bring it in it will place things on the same layers. If those layers don’t exist they will be added. Manage that process. Clean up if need be. An alternate approach before AC 17, if you change the layer names in the source file before you copy it then when you paste it everything will drop into those layers. This can be tedious. In AC 17 now we have the option to go to layers and delete a layer and move all the elements that use that layer onto the correct new layer. 0:38:20
How to purge a file Options>Element Attributes>Attribute Manager allows you to do some global reworking of attributes. There is a button for Purge Unused. But in a working project you don’t want to do this because it might delete layers you haven’t used yet but will at some point in the project. Purging is perfect when you want to migrate a file so you only move what you need. Make a copy of the original old file, then in the copy do your purge and cleanup and save it. Use this saved copy to migrate to the new AC version. 0:45:00
Lighting You can move around the Sun by going to View>3D View Options>3D Projection Settings and dragging the icon of the sun around. This just moves the shaded side around. You can also take the sun down to zero to evenly light everything and move Ambient light up to 100%. This works for interiors too. In Light Works you can light with lamps but this only affect the renderings NOT the Open GL. There is an option to put a light in a room or below the room but this only works in Light Works not in Open GL. You can also look at the Surface in Options>Element Attributes>Surface Settings and boost the Ambient and Diffuse Reflection it will be brighter. They refer to how much light comes off the surface. You can also use Ceiling White. It is super white with an emission behind it to make it look like it is glowing. 0:48:23
Saving a pln as a BIMx file and zipped it. What is the best way to share it via email? Use Dropbox and email the link to the file. The file can be opend by an iPad. The iPad will know to open as a BIMx. 1:00:30
How to delete an object that wont delete. Make sure all layers are on and also check renovation filter to check for the object for deletion. It may be visible from Trace and Reference. Try turning Trace off. 1:07:08
Subtracting ond volume from another. Notching a cabinet with a beam using morphs. Use Design>Solid Element Operations and select the operator and target and subtract. If you don’t want to see the element that did the cutting you can put it on a hidden layer and you will only see the cut element. With morphs make sure to check its solidity. You can not use a non-solid morph to cut with in SEO. You can also use the pencil in the morph pet palette to edit with. Beams will also cut through things by themselves depending on what material it is made from and what the material is of the element being cut. 1:12:00
Selecting wire frames in 3D View>3D View Options Hidden Line is not selectalbe in OpenGL engine. If you want Hidden Line you have to switch to Internal 3D. This is a simpler looking view but you can now switch to Hidden Lines. 1:26:56
Does Mavericks cause an issue with ArchiCAD? Upgrading to Mavericks and ArchiCAD. 1:31:40
Trace & Reference and slowing your file down Trace & Reference makes AC work harder putting one plan over another especially if the plans have different scale settings. If this is the problem then pick a view that is more similar to the one you are working on. 1:32:00
Adjusting drawings in layouts If you want to move a drawing you can select and drag it. If you have the grid snap turned on it will jump large amounts. To turn Grid Snap on or off go to View>Grid Snap. The keyboard shortcut is Shift S. The snap feature is dependant upon the mode. It can be different in the layout book verses the model. 01:34.4
Corner cabinet with backsplash that shows on only one wall You probably can not remove the backsplash within the object. You can use Solid Element Operations to remove part of it. Create a slab to cut the backsplash and put the slab on a hidden layer. You could also draw the backsplash manually. 1:41:00
Placing views on layouts and scaling with text size Size your text to what you want in the dimension and set the scale. In the drawing you can resize it using the drawing settings and the text will resize with the drawing. Change the source view rather than changing the scale of the drawing. 1:47:00
Master Template. Customized interactive legends placed on drawing and layers. Master Template is an extensive set up for starting projects with alot built into it. Layers are different in MT than in standard AC. Prefixes are similar but more detailed. Layers also have a 3D extension so you can turn them on or off easily. “U” layers are used only for particular drawings. 1:51:00
“Hotlink modules can’t be found” Master Template refers to supporting files that are hotlinked in. They will be called missing but you can still function. You can clean it up. This also happens with some of the graphics. You can click Skip All when you get the message of missing files. To fix the missing files, go into External Content>Hotlinks Manager. You can click on Relink and then go to the folder where the files are and relink all the missing files. 2:01:38
Rough openings Open up the window or door settings. In the Nominal sizes and Tolerance panel it gives options for unit size or rough opening. Rough opening is slightly larger to allow for shim space on top and sides. You can switch this to rough opening if you have a masonry opening and the window will have to fit within the rough opening. 2:11:25
Not seeing certain things when you search for them in the library. You will only see elements in the specific tool you are in. If you are in the door tool you will find all the doors available, etc. 2:20:45


ArchiCAD Training – Coaching Call – January 16, 2014

Let us know how you feel... (3 comments so far)

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  1. RajagopalaHathwar
    10 years ago

    Dear Eric
    Please send link to down load.

    • Eric Bobrow
      10 years ago

      Rajagopala –
      I just posted the links for this video as well as the one from the following week. I apologize for the delay in responding – we had some problems with the website, then I went out of town, so I couldn’t take care of it until today.

      • RajagopalaHathwar
        10 years ago

        Thank you sir.