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Thread: Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

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    Question Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

    Hi there. I currently write the CAD Standards for my facility and a couple of others, but, our corporate overlords are going to be (finally) requiring BIM deliverables on projects (from largest now to smaller renos later)... so I'm becoming involved in that as well.

    I was just wondering if there are any design firms (or heck, facilities) currently working with an end user in existing spaces, and how you're working with them.

    Do you check out models from an ftp? Do all contractors work on a central server, and who would it be controlled by... the owner or a gc or a 3rd party?

    Do you have problems with coordinating Revit versions across disciplines?

    I've got a few things in mind as to pitfalls that I'd like to avoid, but, obviously this is new for me, so I'd be happy to hear anything about your work with your clients and how I can help to make this an easier implementation for everyone involved... making sure I've got a working model, and making sure that all of the contractors have access to up-to-the-minute models, etc.
    Melanie Perry @MistresDorkness
    Archibus System Administrator
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    not all who wander are lost
    (missing MEP/FP and Revit)

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    Administrator RobertB's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

    I'll try to address your issues as you brought them up.
    1. Up to this point, our BIM projects have been on new buildings. However, the building owner (or rep) is usually attending the early BIM meetings while we discuss the project's BIM goals. They really need to be there so that a clear picture of what they want in a BIM is given to the team.
    2. This process really depends on the architect in most cases. Some still use FTP as a transfer station. Other clients have a distributed server system, but in many cases the consultants are still on the outside looking in (IOW, downloading static models weekly). The control of the distributed system has been either architects or general contractor.
    3. There really is no choice. The teams needs to address the issue upfront. Decide to upgrade the project when the new software comes out at an agreed upon point. This means that the team members will need to have different versions of the software installed when they are working on multiple projects where some of those projects have sluggards. A different issue is the decision to use 32-bit or 64-bit software. IMHO, everyone should be using 64-bit, but sometimes IT hasn't kept up. There is nothing worse than having the architect use 64-bit and some of the consultants stuck at 32-bit. This is a recipe for doom.
    4. There should be an in-place agreement among all team members to perform a Detach from Central, Purge, Detach all links, and Audit before posting their models. This reduces file size for the entire team. Yes, it takes some time before the upload occurs, but if it doesn't happen before upload, the larger file size will negatively effect downloads multiplied by the number of consultants downloading the models.
    5. Avoid linked DWG files where possible.
    6. The entire team should read the whitepaper on Revit performance and agree to use the suggestions to the extent possible. (Many folks using Revit just don't know how to optimize performance so this should be a must-read for new teams.)
    Hope this helps.
    R. Robert Bell
    Design Technology Manager
    S P A R L I N G
    Opinions expressed are mine alone and do not reflect the views of Sparling.

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    Default Re: Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

    My biggest issue with standards from clients is that they are constantly changing and most of the time the client doesnt even follow their own standard. In the end if you come up with a good standard and want it to be followed consider creating a template and or content that you would give to the architect, contractor and/ or engineer. If you create it they will be more likely to follow.

    I attended a CAD standards for BIM session at AU, and basically it was just everything that you need to change in order to MAKE Revit conform to the national cad standard. At the end of the session I asked if there was anybody (national cad standard or third party) that was developing a template for free or sale that would match the standard. The answer was no... In the end it would take several days and possibly even weeks for someone to tweak a Revit template to match the national cad standard, and when you have your own internal standards along with other client standards the chances of taking that much time to set up a project before you even start designing, drafting etc is a bit much.....

    Ok, off of my soapbox and onto your questions/ statements.

    Generally our deliverables are still cad or just the Revit model. We work with UC, CAl State, K-12 and local government projects and have not been asked for a model that meets a standard. I would not object to one but again if you can provide a template to start from it would be easier to follow.

    As Robert mentioned we are still working in a somewhat static/ disconnected world. The reality of it is that working over terminal server or some other client through a wide area network (WAN) is not practical. We tried to do this for a few internal projects and found that the screen lag requires that every time you move or pick something you have to leave the mouse in place for several seconds in order to see the dimension or what you are actually picking. This was based on using dual dedicated T1s between the offices, so I assume that things would only get worse when going over the general internet. In the end we upload our model to an FTP site, the consultants download it and visa versa. I know this is not a true BIM/ IDP method but it is the best we can do at the moment.

    There was another AU session about copy/monitor where basically the presenter admitted that copy/ monitor does not work and that they have actually collocated with the architect for one project so that everyone works on the same model. In my mind this is the ideal but also comes with a lot of questions and restrictions. The project has to be large enough to merit the set up and moving people (even if its juts down the street), what happens when (not if) the architect messes up the plumbing system (or visa versa), is the gc going to co locate with the AE team, etc?

    All in all I am waiting for WAN acceleration to catch up with Revit and data transfer speeds to pick up. When that happens then I like the idea of one model in one place with the coordination happening on the fly (not based on what was drawn last week).

    Revit versions is all about communication. Personally I have not seen any issues when migrating up from one version to the next, the only issue is when you try to make a leap between multiple version (3 is the magic number that I have heard, but I haven't tried it). Otherwise when a new version comes out we push a single project into it, give it a few months to let the kinks get worked out and then upgrade almost every other project that we can, even if a project is in CA it still goes up to the next version. There are a few exceptions where the client or a consultant wont or cant go up but those are few and far between (we have 1 out of 30+ active projects that is still in 08). In reality we should write something into our contracts that says everyone has to be able to go to the next version and that it is up to the owner and architect to decide when.

    Something else to think about is that all of your schedules and the like, that you use for managing your facility do not have to be in the model that the architect gives you. The basic parameters should be there so that you can schedule everything out, but you can copy your particular tracking schedules in when you get the final model. This will decrease file size and headache on the AE end and still get you the desired end product. If you do have specific parameters that need to be added to rooms, doors, casework, etc you should spell those out very clearly in your standard. Currently we do not have a hardware set parameter in our casework, just a yes/ no as to whether it has a lock or not. It wouldn't be that hard to change, but we would need/ want to know about it at the beginning of the project rather than half way through construction.

    Currently our Revit/ BIM standards are based on our old CAD standards, but that is slated to reverse sometime this summer.

    Nick
    Project Leader / BIM Project Administrator
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    HMC Architects
    Last edited by RobertB; 2009-02-13 at 02:52 AM. Reason: removed smilies

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    Default Re: Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

    Thanks for the information gentlemen. It is really really appreciated. This has given me a few things to mull over, as well as confirmed a couple of things that I'm worried about going into this.

    I'd love to see this discussion continue with any other input.

    The MEP stuff is my biggest concern coming from the Engineering department here, but, it seems like there will be problems between disciplines working simultaneously together as well as with the 2d mepfp underlays they're currently talking about using with some firms.

    :-/ ~buckling down for a long bumpy road~
    Melanie Perry @MistresDorkness
    Archibus System Administrator
    Technical Editor
    not all who wander are lost
    (missing MEP/FP and Revit)

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    Default Re: Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

    Melanie,
    We are working with a number of owner clients to determine the model delliverable standards which determine which objects get modeled how they are identified and what the level of detail in the objects are. PM me if you would like some more information

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    Default Re: Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

    Robert

    What type of issues can i expect if i have a project were some of my subs are using 32bit apps and some are using 64bit, such as 32bit Revit v 64 bit Revit?

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    Default Re: Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

    Quote Originally Posted by wskene View Post
    Robert

    What type of issues can i expect if i have a project were some of my subs are using 32bit apps and some are using 64bit, such as 32bit Revit v 64 bit Revit?
    We use 32 and 64bit within the same office and do not have any issues. They can even work on the same worksetted file at the same time.

    The only issue you could have is where someone in a 64bit environment creates a file that cannot be opened in a 32 bit environment due to file size. Personally we try to keep our files smaller (120mb or less) just for functionality. 120mb is the theoretical limit for what a 32bit machine can handle, but we have had people working on 150mb files on 32bit and havent had any issues, yet.

    HTH
    Nick

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    Administrator RobertB's Avatar
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    Default Re: Do you have a setup with clients/owners?

    Quote Originally Posted by NKramer View Post
    The only issue you could have is where someone in a 64bit environment creates a file that cannot be opened in a 32 bit environment due to file size.
    That's the issue. We have architectural clients that are using 64-bit and blew past the mechanical engineer's 32-bit barrier with with a 210MB architectural model. Not even counting the other models. <groan>
    R. Robert Bell
    Design Technology Manager
    S P A R L I N G
    Opinions expressed are mine alone and do not reflect the views of Sparling.

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