I was preparing a short discussion for our local Revit user group meeting (LUG) to cover detailing with Revit. While not an expert at detailing as an architectural person by any means I have spent a fair amount of time working with acad details and microstation too...the following applies to AutoCAD detail files specifically but most will apply to Microstation as well.
This list was also assembled assuming that "you" are not abandoning the acad files in favor of Revit only based details. These tips will help you keep the details portable and useable in either application.
First, stay focused on your goals and choose common ground that helps you achieve them. Avoid statements that start with; "I can't..." We can't..." "I won't...."
Font and Dimension Tips:
- DON'T use a width factor other than (1) in AutoCAD text styles (Revit now supports width factors in text and dimension styles but may not import them initially)
- DON'T use custom symbols that aren't also present in the TTF font.
- DON'T use a custom leader routine and/or custom arrows/terminators
Project Mgmt and General:
- DO use a TTF font in AutoCAD OR
- DO use Revit's shxfontmap.txt to map shx fonts to a TTF font in Revit)
- DO use the dimension leader object in AutoCAD
- DO use a standard arrow or dimension terminator
- DO make sure that blocks with attributes follow these rules too
- DO put details in a project specific location and don't move them
- DO Import and link details and check the "current view" option
- DO consider a separate detail project if you are dealing with a large multi-building project
- DO manage them in "one" place, for consistency (AutoCAD since that's what were talking about here)
- DO use a detail specific layer structure to manage lineweights more easily if required
- DO make sure your details are located near 0,0 (origin)
- DO use custom programming routines to automate changes these tips require
- DO make sure drafting views use the same scale as the imported detail
If you follow these "rules" you will find that you can, nearly always, import a detail "as is" and minimize rework on libraries that will likely remain available for both applications. (stay dwg that is)
- DON'T move the details once linked
- DON'T explode details (change them in Acad, if you want to keep them useable for both)
- DON'T put multiple details on one AutoCAD file. One detail per dwg file (added per Brenehan)
- DON'T have temporary details and sketches off to the side of your AutoCAD detail file (added per Brenehan)
- DON'T import cad Details that have attached xrefs (added per Brenehan)
All for now...