Friday, April 27, 2007

Is Revit Hard to Learn?

The first thing I hear when I tell someone that I use Revit is “Really… I heard it is great… But” and then the second part that always follows is “Is it hard to learn”. The simple answer to that question is No but it depends on what you have already learned. If you have never used any type of CAD program then I believe that it would be the easiest program to learn. If you had AutoCAD or ADT background then I believe it will be a little harder because of all the bad habits, shortcut keys, customization, and workflow that we learned along the way. It took me months to stop using the space bar as enter or the escape key.

Some of the differences are:
Layers – Revit has none since you control objects (Doors, Windows, Plumbing Fixtures, and many other categories) It is great to be rid of all of those layers. No longer do you turn off one layer and something else goes off that you did not intend.

Shortcut Keys – Revit also has some but you can not easily alter them like in AutoCAD. This is good because it was really annoying when I went to another co-worker’s computer and I could not do simple commands since they changed them. Shortcut Keys also are not as needed in Revit since the layout of commands are easier to get to.

Customization - As I mentioned before you can not customize as much as in AutoCAD but it is really a good thing and this is the quickest thing you get over.

Workflow – This is the biggest difference and too much to explain effectively. Basically, in AutoCAD you draw in 2D, ADT you almost draw in 3D but very difficult to use, and in Revit it is very easy to do work in 3D but sometimes you need to decide what is worth the time to do 3D and what you can just do more quickly in 2D. The power in the workflow comes from things like the details knowing where they are on sheets and the keys renumbering themselves when they get moved and automatic scheduling of anything you want to schedule.

So what about Learning it?
Basic Commercial buildings are easier to learn on then Basic Residential buildings but it is all fairly easy to learn either way. Revit was designed for Architects by Architects so the program controls revolve around Architecture and thus makes it much more user friendly. AutoCAD was designed for mostly machine drafting and then for some reason became the basis for most architects.
The problem with the learning curve comes from when you want to add a lot of detail to the interior and exterior elevations. If you try to do this all in 3D you will have to invest a lot of time. When first starting, I would suggest creating your floor plans and schedules dynamically and then using the dynamic elevations as an underlay and draw 2D linework over it. Then turn off the dynamic element and you will have a clean elevation. Once you have a couple projects done then try experimenting more. Make every project better then the one before it and never stop pushing the limit of the program. It seems limitless, so keep pushing until you find that limit and then tell Autodesk if you did find one. I have found things that could be improved but not anything that stops me from getting a great end product.


Anonymous 5/11/2007 5:31 PM  

I need training so I can use this Revit software that we already have

Anonymous 5/11/2007 5:32 PM  

Is this software for real or is it actually a money scam?

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