Budgets are tight and time to put together a good training program is scarce. Let’s look at the Navisworks 2015 features to help you maximize your efficiency with the current product features. As a past BIM/CAD manager, I know how important it is to prove to your manager that the team is using its program investment to the fullest.
So let’s sharpen our skills with key features in Navisworks 2015: integrated 2D & 3D quantification and takeoff, cloud rendering, Recap improvements, and a few performance improvements.
Integrated 2D & 3D Quantification
Integrated 2D & 3D quantification provides a new method for generating quantities from and alongside a model. It also provides the opportunity to go from highly detailed models to virtually no details while still enabling proper quantity takeoff. This flexibility provides powerful quantification tools to benefit the pre-construction process when using BIM.
2D quantification tools in Navisworks Manage and Navisworks Simulate add more powerful quantification to the coordination model. The introduction of 2D takeoff enabled integrated 2D, multi-sheet files, and 3D quantification for multi-format project datasets. With this feature you can generate accurate quantities for the resources required on your projects using a combination of models and sheets.
The power of the 2D quantification takeoff allows you to mark up line geometry on a floor plan or other worksheet. The markup will then appear as an object in the quantification workbook, displaying properties such as area, perimeter or length. You can trace linear markups to measure a wall or the perimeter of a room, or use area tools to record the extent of a surface, such as a floorspace. You can also place markup pins on 2D sheets to perform a count takeoff.
The Polyline Markup tool lets you measure single or multiple line segments, while the Rectangle Polyline Markup tool lets you measure rectangular line segments. The Area Markup tool lets you measure free form areas which can be useful to measure irregular room or corridors. The Rectangular Area Markup tool lets you measure rectangular line segments, for instance, to measure a room’s wall perimeter. Each rectangle polyline markup that you draw will create a takeoff object in your Quantification Workbook, calculating the length and or perimeter.
Several editing markup tools enhance the management of markups. The select tool lets you select one or more markups that you have made for editing. You can use the CTRL key to select multiple markups, and, once you have selected a markup you can move, delete, or copy it.
If your sheets don’t have a scale associated with them you can use the Custom Scale tool to manually add a scale to your 2D sheet.
With the addition of 2D takeoffs, we made improvements to the Efficient 3D Takeoff. You can now drag parent groupings or an entire selection tree from your Selection Tree window onto an item in your Quantification Workbook.
This enables a single-click takeoff of large quantities of model objects. You can add notes or comments to the objects in the Quantification Workbook and by using the Property Mapping dialog; you can create associations between the object properties in your design files and the takeoff properties in Navisworks.
For a close look at this feature including training, check out On-demand webinar: Using Quantification in Navisworks® for Better Results and the AU class CO5078: Estimating with Navisworks® Quantification.
Another key feature in Navisworks 2015 is cloud rendering. To access this feature, sign into Autodesk 360. If you need to sign up for an account, click on Free Trial and follow the directions. Once you have signed up, you are on your way to taking advantage of virtually infinite computing power in the cloud to create high resolution renderings in a fraction of the time, and without the need for expensive hardware.
Cloud rendering enables you to render images using the Autodesk cloud, allowing your personal computer to save space for other tasks – helping you and your organization work faster and smarter. With this feature, you can render not only in Navisworks, but also in AutoCAD, Revit, and Fusion 360 from any computer.
With Rendering in Autodesk 360, you can:
- Perform solar studies of designs in progress, to understand the effects of insolation and shading during the day.
- Create panoramas, so you and your clients can navigate through the scene interactively.
- Perform illuminance simulations of scenes, to better understand the effects of natural and artificial lighting.
- Apply background environments to rendered scenes.
You can use rendering to see preview images while you develop your project with Autodesk software. For more information, check out Rendering in A360 Webinar: How to Use Cloud Rendering in Navisworks®.
The last feature in Navisworks 2015 that we will look at is integration with the ReCap. ReCap allows you to work more efficiently with point cloud data in your coordination and pre-construction workflows. It allows you to capture and integrate reality data directly into your design process with ReCap Reality Capture software and services. ReCap works with Autodesk suites so you can start your design with accurate 3D data and full photo-quality context rather than a blank screen. More to come about ReCap in an upcoming Beyond Design post.
With the enhanced Navisworks and ReCap integration, you can select between Conversion Mode options which include:
- Project Link – each ReCap project is treated as a single object within Navisworks
- Scans – each ReCap scan is treated as a single object within Navisworks
- Voxels – each voxel (sub-group of points within a 3 dimensional space) is treated as a single object
You will also notice improved performance with Scans and Voxels options. Setting the Conversion Model to Scans or Voxels will allow greater granularity when working with point cloud data. For instance, accurately identify where a clash is located by undertaking clash detection. The Set Interactive Point Size will allow you to determine the display size of points as you navigate through your model. Larger point sizes will give your scans an improved feeling of solidity.
The On Publish Embed Xrefs option allows you to determine how you want ReCap data to be treated when including point clouds in your published NWDs.
The embed Xref option allows you to:
- Disable – turn off the option to include ReCap data
- Have fast access – tour recap data will be viewable as soon as the NWD is opened, your file size will be larger
- Compressed – your ReCap data will need to decompress when you open NWD, but your NWD will be smaller
With these improvements you can handle models much larger than you previously were able to, allowing for new design and construction workflows.
For more information, check out: Building Design Suite Workflow: Reality Capture Using Autodesk Recap and Navisworks®, “ReCap for Construction" with Revit & Navisworks® - ReCap Webinar Series #2/1. These videos will cover workflows with ReCap, Revit and Navisworks.
Additional Performance Improvements
Check out more performance enhancements of Navisworks 2015 here and make sure you are using the current features and capabilities to their fullest potential.
Training resources can be hard to find. Remember, if you are a Subscription Member, you can access the Autodesk Knowledge Network, providing plenty of training classes that will help make your team the best it can be.
Thank you to everyone in our Navisworks community, we appreciate your input. Please keep the ideas coming!