May 23 2014

Data migration, Acad to Revit

Historic Projects/data? Data migration can be a nightmare when transitioning between CAD platforms. We see a lot of projects starting out with Autocad and then being moved to Revit and one of the questions we get asked is how do we move our data as quickly and easy from one platform to another?

Logistically this can be a nightmare, 2d Acad blocks need to be converted in to Revit families of the correct type, room polylines need to be re-created in Revit, data needs to be re-checked and validated and then of course, the complete model then needs to be re-loaded with the new Revit family’s. This can be days to weeks’ worth of work.

What If I said we can take the pain away from this? The Acad data doesn’t even need to have been created with CodeBook!

For this blog I’m going to make the assumption that you are familiar with CodeBook and I’m going to split the workflow into easy to manage chunks.

1)       Getting the Autocad data, you will need CodeBook v12 and Autocad 2014.

2)       Getting the data in to CodeBook, you will need to build a project database from excel so we have a set of rooms to link to Acad, this can be generated quickly from an XLS list of rooms and codes.

3)       Linking CodeBook to the Autocad rooms, once we have created the CodeBook rooms, we now need to link these to the Acad spaces/polylines to identify room boundaries. We will use this to identify which equipment belongs to which room, and use the boundary data to create the Revit rooms later. Once CodeBook has been linked, A synchronise process then needs to be performed.

4)       Adding the Acad items to CodeBook, Now CodeBook is linked to Acad, the next step is to build a CodeBook library from the 2d Acad blocks in the drawing. You will need to select the library editor “add items” and chose the option “From a cad file of plan views”:














This will then create an XLS to which you can add codes to, grp, fix heights ect and batch add to the CodeBook library.

5)       Rename the Acad blocks to match CodeBook, Now we have a loaded equipment library from the 2d Autocad blocks, we have to jump back in to the drawing we loaded from and batch rename them to the new naming structure. This sounds more complicated than it is! This is so CodeBook can schedule to get the positions and rotation data. To Do this select Manage > Rename Blocks > “Using Code” :









6)       After this is complete, save, and then update the designed equipment lists (Home > Update FF&E lists)  CodeBook now has a 2d block in the library, and knows where it exists in the Acad drawing and knows which room this item belongs to.

Close CodeBook and Acad, and Open Revit with CodeBook in Revit mode.

We have everything we now need from the Revit drawings to move this data over to Revit.

7)       Once CodeBook is open and Revit is open, Use the option on the Room Tasks to “Create Revit Rooms and Boundary’s”











This will translate the Acad poly lines in to Revit rooms and boundary’s.

8)       Now we need to convert the equipment in to Revit RFA’s so we chose the option to “Covert Acad to Revit”  from the manage tab, CodeBook will now convert all of the 2d Acad blocks in to 3d faced items based on the parametric data derived from the Acad block. The Revit family type used can be specified based on the class, or the group of each item.












9)       The final Step is them to get CodeBook to place these converted items from the positional data obtained in Acad, We can do this by using the Room Tasks > Load Designed Equipment (level by level)











Now all that’s left to do is Sync and update the FF&E lists. All you’re Acad data now has been ported over to Revit.

The process looks complex, but in the grand scheme of porting over the data manually, it’s much quicker and constant in terms of output results.

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