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Thread: Hey MEP People, where are you on your Revit Journey?

  1. #1
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    Hey MEP People, where are you on your Revit Journey?

    So, the other night went to a "Revit Users Group" meeting in my area. I haven't gone to one of these in a number of years, and I was pretty stoked to chat up some other MEP people and compare notes. I've been quite bullish about Revit at my company and have been the main driver behind pretty much all of our Revit Standards and family development. We've come a very long way and I was hoping to meet some other Revit Nerds from other companies and see what they were doing, out of my own personal interest and also to see what the local competition was up to.

    What I learned really surprised me: no MEP person I spoke to was enthusiastic about Revit. They were still deeply skeptical about it and using AutoCAD imports as much as possible, if not avoiding Revit entirely on small projects by working in AutoCAD using Architectural backgrounds exported from Revit. No one I spoke to was using schedules. No one was using it for electrical coordination. No one was using formulas in families extensively. No one had gotten duct static pressure calcs to work. No one had even heard of gbXML or Dynamo.

    One guy I spoke to was the CAD/BIM manager for a large, well known firm (60 MEP users) and he told me that his company's management refused to trust systems in Revit at all. Evidently they had an "incident" back in 2013 and since then they refuse to use it for electrical coordination or even the totaling of air flows in ductwork. He said that he was working on making their schedules "as dumb as possible, so you can just type information into them manually." I didn't want to even know what he meant by that. I just smiled and nodded... Great idea, guy!

    The whole experience made me feel a little down. I mean, these were the people who cared enough to show up to a Revit Meetup. These were "the enthusiastic people." I fear that the scale of this "people problem" is far larger than I thought. I have guys like this at my own company, and here I realize that it's not just my company that's full of them. It seems like 90% of the MEP consulting industry is like this. I'm just glad that I work in a small enough group that I don't have to contend with a lot of managerial inertia and oversight. It certainly seems that the bigger and older an MEP firm is, the more wary and skeptical they are of Revit. In contrast, I've been able to create whatever I want, show my managers that it works, and then use it. They may gripe that "it doesn't look like CAD", but they can't gripe about the results.

    So I figured I'd cast my net a little wider and post here with the general question: What are you guys up to? What cool features have you recently implemented into your real-world workflow? What do you hope to get up and running one day? What challenges are you facing?

  2. #2
    Mr. Revit OpEd
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    It's just déjà vu all over again...

    First I experienced it with Revit Arch...then Revit Structure...now Revit MEP. Still meeting people waiting for Revit to mature.

    Keep on keeping on, keep swimming...endeavor to persevere.

  3. #3
    The Moderator with No Imagination MPwuzhere's Avatar
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    Meanwhile we are still getting CAD backgrounds from our MEP consultants when we are using Revit and they cannot even produce collaborative plans.

    It's like their workflow is follows: Freeze everything except for the architecture walls, windows, doors and ceilings. Go to work on our stuff. Unfreeze everything before printing, ignore issues.

    Our architect just sent out an e-mail that the "MEP MODELS!" must be updated and to us....both companies are CAD only because they think Revit is an extra expense and not part of their budget.

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    Forum Co-Founder Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    Ive been reviewing a lot of models recently, for a number of firms... Both GC's and Architecture firms.

    Ive seen the full range: One team, with the absolute most WORTHLESS model from an MEP engineer ive ever seen (and to be fair, the DRAWINGS are absolute **** too), and i have a pair of models here from an MEP firm in Florida, and the model (and drawings) are gorgeous. Systems mostly all connected, gravity sloped pipes all actually sloped, electrical all mostly connected and circuited, very nicely done.

    I didnt even know of the firm before (since im not in their neck of the woods) but i might seek them out on the next project i need MEP in Revit for!

  5. #5
    Junior Member WelcomeToAccord's Avatar
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    Exclamation Revit Can Be Better Than ACAD

    I had to work with old AutoCAD MEP 2013 objects, and they were a mess to use and manipulate. I was tasked to change their color to an "existing" linetype that's faded and grey. Since editing the object styles didn't work, I had to change each and every single object's display manually.

    On the other hand, in Revit, I had a stress-free experience that required me to highlight specific objects and change their phase to "existing". Editing the settings for the phases isn't too hard once you know where to look.

    In this instance, Revit was more optimal than AutoCAD. I hope that Revit continues using this example to optimize their entire workflow and workspace, and I wish AutoCAD had optimized their layer options.

  6. #6
    Moderator DaveP's Avatar
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    I'll bet that other firm never, ever in the last five years EVER had an "incident" typing information in manually.
    Necro99 likes this.

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    Forum Addict tzframpton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Twiceroadsfool View Post
    I didnt even know of the firm before (since im not in their neck of the woods) but i might seek them out on the next project i need MEP in Revit for!
    *cough* FAI, Inc. *cough*


  8. #8
    Forum Co-Founder Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    Wouldnt that make you Frampton and Associates Inc, Inc? Or is one of the I's something else?

    And have you changed your mind? Last time we really talked about it i thought you had swore off doing plumbing of ductwork in Revit. Maybe that was someone else.

  9. #9
    Forum Addict tzframpton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Twiceroadsfool View Post
    Wouldnt that make you Frampton and Associates Inc, Inc? Or is one of the I's something else?
    Dang, you got me there. Touché, sir.

    Quote Originally Posted by Twiceroadsfool View Post
    And have you changed your mind? Last time we really talked about it i thought you had swore off doing plumbing of ductwork in Revit. Maybe that was someone else.
    I swore it off for sub-contractor's coordination models and shop drawings. Not for engineering and design. And we can still use native Revit objects for sub-contractor's coordination models and shop drawings if that's by request.

    -TZ
    Twiceroadsfool and cellophane like this.

  10. #10
    Forum Co-Founder Twiceroadsfool's Avatar
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    Cool, cool. Didnt mean that to sound like a dig, btw. I legitimately thought (since you have CAD based MEP modeling as well) that you werent messing with it much, aside from the Fab Parts stuff we talked about. Glad to hear youre still doing both.

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