BIM360 Glue- Coordinating Models in the Cloud with BIM360 Docs

This article and all of it’s content originally appears on the Autodesk ANZ Team Blog. You can can read the full article here- http://blogs.autodesk.com/anztechteam/2018/09/06/bim360-glue-coordinating-models-cloud-bim360-docs/?dysig_tid=ab41828a79e7404c8d27696750a9faba&utm_source=LinkedIn&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=Bonfireshares&utm_content=28250

 BIM360 Glue- Coordinating Models in the Cloud with BIM360 Docs

I spend a lot of my time these days talking about BIM360 and its modules. I also spend a lot of time talking about how we can use our native CAD Files in BIM360 to our advantage to reduce time in converting files and still retaining our meta data from our original authoring application. When talking about BIM360 the topic that comes up a lot is the Preview tag and what it means. If we look at history it was not long ago that a lot of our Next Gen Field modules in BIM360 where also tagged with that Preview label. But not anymore since last month due to great development. Go Team! This is because the tool sets now have quite a lot more features than what they did some time back when they were first released. The only BIM360 module to still have a Preview tag is the Model Coordination (Sold as BIM360 Glue). Does this mean it is unusable? I would argue, hell no! But then I am paid to say that. I will let you make your own mind. From where I stand, those of who know me will know I am always looking at things as if I was doing the drafting / designing and would it help me. This is why I think these tools are still very usefull. Now obviously there are many more features coming for this module, I am sure (not that I have a glass ball only time will tell). In this module there are 2 features, that to me, make a lot of sense even though they are limited in some way for the moment. As we have all seen and read about in the last few months, BIM360 Docs is gaining some real big traction in its use. Being that you can upload files nativity without conversion and view them is a massive feature, that I can talk about to the cows come home. But some of the features include:

  • Internal and External sharing of Data – Both sending and receiving with notifications.
  • Design Review Processes – Creating and managing Design Issues during the design of a project.
  • Document Sets – Essentially the Transmittal Number/Name to group a set of documents.
  • Full Project history for every user on a project. (From a management point of view this is massive)

These are just a few of the features why I would use BIM360 Docs, there are many more. But as BIM360 Docs is the base with BIM360 Glue sold as an add-on to this (which is what you buy to get Model Coordination Module inside BIM306 Docs) we can extend this capability further for:

  • Clash Checking – Viewing Clashes dynamically on fly
  • Model Referencing – Viewing multiple models in project

Take note all models need to have common 0,0,0 base point.

Clashing your Model

Firstly with BIM360 Model Coordination module supports RVT Files and DWG Files only. For you to use these files with the module you need to first go into the Project Admin Area:         Set up a Model Coordination folder to use with this module.   This folder will take all the files in that folder and clash them for you automatically. Take note that this folder can be deactivated and you can specify a new folder at any time. The other thing to know is that this folder is only be created in “Plans” area or as I like to call it the Area above the line. If you see the above screen shot and the one below you see the correlation.  

Once setup, in the Model Coordination module you will be able to see all the clashes against all the models in one matrix / grid view.   The grid view is arranged with the primary models (on the left) being clashed against the secondary model (on the top) and the result you see if the number of clash groups. Take note that each clash group can have multiple clashes. The best part about the clashes and the processing of the clashes is that once it has been setup and run for the first time, every time you upload a new file or a new version of an existing file the clashes are virtually instantly processed. I know in the past processing Clashes in Navisworks could take hours and some configuration in Navisworks. Just to be clear the process of processing clashes in Navisworks still has its place, very much so. But for a quick glance / reference at the current state of a project and how many clashes there might be this is a very quick and efficient way to execute this. If you then click on the results matrix it will load the 2 models and a results pane on the left hand side of the window. Once loaded (after clicking on one cell of the matrix) you can click on the group on the left hand side of the window and it high lights the clashes in your model. As you can see below.       However due to the Preview Tag, this is the current limit of the functionality, for now. But I am sure in time there will be more. We will have to wait and see.

Viewing Selected Model – Loading Merged Models

The second feature that I can see from BIM360 Model Coordination is the ability to load selected models from a project for viewing. Weather it be loading multiple levels of a building or loading selected discipline models for view from a project, this tool will allow you to do this too. In the models tab of Model Coordination you simply tick the boxes next to the models you want to view and then press the View button and the system will load only those selected models.     Another way to explain this, is by using a Navisworks term and appending multiple models together or if we talk about Classic BIM360 Glue we would say Merged Models. As you can see they are loaded in using their common base point and you then see those models all together. There is a feature next each model on the left to turn on and off the visibility too from each model.     For me this is very exciting, as I can’t wait to see what the future holds for this module. The power of BIM360 Docs is only going to get better and better especially when we keep getting more modules to increase the power of the cloud. One last thought for you to think about, if we then include BIM360 Design (Formally C4R) on the BIM360 Docs platform in this workflow, we then have the capability to take those “created/shared packages” and selectivity using a controlled manner, clash all models on a project at the same time. Giving greater insight to a project.     Applied Technology Group is a Platinum Autodesk Business Partner. Founded in North Little Rock, Ark., in 1992 as a local computer services company, ATG has grown to become a leading design technology partner with the purpose of assisting customers in maximizing the value and adoption of advanced technologies so they can perform competitively in the AEC sector. ATG collaborates with customers across the Gulf South, Midwest and Southwest through partnerships with 3DR, Autodesk, Leica, Microsoft and Panzura. Learn more about our company at www.atgusa.com. Autodesk and the Autodesk logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of Autodesk, Inc., and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

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