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Thread: Using nested families to host connectors interesting

  1. #1
    Member evan.dodds's Avatar
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    Using nested families to host connectors interesting

    I've recently become taken with the idea of using nested families to host my connectors after seeing @joseph.peel's mega family.

    I was too lazy to control the orientation with rotation parameters, so I created families (a collar) for each orientation (left, right, back, front, top, bottom)...so far so good... I placed a collar and gave it a family<type> parameter and plopped a connector on it. When I change the collar orientation the connector follows and changes to the correct orientation.

    I found this a little odd after thinking about it for a little bit; how does Revit know how to orient the connector? How reliable is the connector changing to match the orientation of the collar?

    Does anyone else use this method?

    Additional thought:
    Perhaps it has to do with the orientation of the extrusion for the collar? All my extrusions are made so that the 'top' is in the correct orientation (e.g. the horizontal extrusions are hosted to the left/right front/back reference planes). If you made the extrusion for the horizontal collar hosted to the reference level perhaps the connector orientation would be at the top (as per the view cube) of the extrusion.

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  2. #2
    Forum Addict josephpeel's Avatar
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    This is a good idea, because you very rarely need a connector that is not in one of the standard directions. Then you dont need to think so much about what the angles should be. 'Down' is easier than 'Rotation Z = -90"
    Are they all Types of the same nested family? I think that way the connector will always keep the correct hosting face.

  3. #3
    Member evan.dodds's Avatar
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    Each orientation is a separate family with each having a circle and square type that just toggle the visibility of the shape.

    I still suspect that it's because Revit looks for the end side of the extrusions which I hosted the connector to. I recently realized that reference plane direction (i.e. is it drawn from left to right, or right to left) matters in which way is positive for extrusions. I usually mirror the extrusion, but will probably switch to changing the reference plane. Perhaps that is also why the connectors maintain the correct orientation.

    I haven't had the time/bothered to confirm my suspicion though, so it's all speculation still as to how it behaves.

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  4. #4
    Member evan.dodds's Avatar
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    I somewhat lied. Each orientation is a separate family, but then I loaded them into into another family. This was simply to make selecting one of the orientations more "user friendly". This is then loaded into the overall equipment family.

    I also did some testing and the connector is sticking to the 'top' (extrusion end) of the extrusion even if I set it to a negative value.
    Last edited by evan.dodds; August 3rd, 2017 at 07:34 PM.

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