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Mudah belajar archicad 16


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Mudah belajar archicad 16

  1. 1. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 The ArchiCAD BIM Concept
  2. 2. GRAPHISOFT® Visit the GRAPHISOFT website at for local distributor and product availability information. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 The ArchiCAD BIM Concept Copyright © 2013 by GRAPHISOFT, all rights reserved. Reproduction, paraphrasing or translation without express prior written permission is strictly prohibited. Trademarks ArchiCAD® is a registered trademark of GRAPHISOFT. All other trademarks are the property of their respective holders. Credits The following ArchiCAD project is used in this training material: NHS Office Complex, Los Angeles, California, US Architect: PAAstudio, US
  3. 3. Contents Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 The ArchiCAD Interface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Navigate Around the Floor Plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Navigate in 3D . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 The Virtual Building Concept . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 The Documentation Workflow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Selection Methods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53 Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Construction Aids . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 3
  4. 4. Contents 4 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  5. 5. Introduction Introduction Welcome to the ArchiCAD Training Series! This Guide is part of the ArchiCAD Training Series, which currently includes the following materials: • Vol. 1, The ArchiCAD BIM Concept • Vol. 2, Basic ArchiCAD • Vol. 3, Intermediate ArchiCAD • Vol. 4, Advanced ArchiCAD • Vol. 5, Using Teamwork You are now reading Vol. 1, "The ArchiCAD BIM Concept" a hands-on training to familiarize you with the modeling and documentation concepts of ArchiCAD. This guide is meant for new ArchiCAD users and prospects as well as students and teachers. This guide is also suitable for using as BIM Curriculum "Exercises" - for Hands-on Practice in universities where ArchiCAD is taught to students. Lecturers who would like to use this guide as a BIM Curriculum should visit the educational sites of the GRAPHISOFT website ( where, after registration, they will be entitled to obtain a full set of training materials suitable for seminar lectures. Contents of this guide: Training guide e-book: The PDF guide includes detailed explanation of every step, with several screenshots. ArchiCAD project file: The pre-set training file will help your learning process. Pre-set project views help you to navigate between different steps thus you can focus on the core knowledge. Movie clips: Narrated movie clips are available on the YouTube channel for GRAPHISOFT ArchiCAD ( providing step-by-step instructions for each step of the training guide. The ArchiCAD YouTube Channel can also be accessed from the Help menu of ArchiCAD. Enter the name of this Training Guide in the search field to locate the related videos. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 5
  6. 6. Introduction You must have ArchiCAD 16 or later version installed on your computer to use this guide. This e-book and the movie clips were made with the English language version of ArchiCAD. For your conveniance we recommend you to download and use the same version for practicing. If you do not have ArchiCAD yet, please visit to obtain a free ArchiCAD installer: • If you are a student, a teacher or a representative of a school, register and download a fully functional Education Version of ArchiCAD for Students and Teachers. • If you are a professional architect, register and download a fully functional 30-day trial version of ArchiCAD. Projects saved with this TRIAL version can be automatically upgraded to FULL versions upon purchase of a commercial license. Please contact your local distributor for purchasing commercial ArchiCAD licenses. How to use this training material? • Install the required ArchiCAD version • Open the PDF Guide • Open the related movie clips from the GRAPHISOFT ArchiCAD Youtube Channel • Follow the instructions given in the PDF guide and the videos. We hope you will find this training useful and wish you success with your future ArchiCAD projects! Good Luck! The GRAPHISOFT Team 6 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  7. 7. The ArchiCAD Interface The ArchiCAD Interface Please extract the “The ArchiCAD BIM” archive file into your computer and move the “ArchiCAD Studio Lessons” folder into your “ArchiCAD 16” folder. To start exploring ArchiCAD we will open an example file first. Let’s start ArchiCAD by clicking on the application icon. First we encounter a dialog box, in which we can choose between creating a new project or working on an existing one. We’ll do the latter, so we click on the “Open a Project” radio button. Then in the second section of the dialog box we select “Browse for a Solo Project”. Choose “Standard Profile 16” for the Work Environment and click on “Browse”. In the browser dialog box, we locate and open ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 7
  8. 8. The ArchiCAD Interface the NHS OFFICE.pla project file from the “ArchiCAD Studio LessonsDemo filesNHS OFFICE” folder. If you are running ArchiCAD 16 Student version, a message appears warning you that you have to convert the project into EDU format. Click on the "Convert to EDU" button. Since we are opening a so-called archive project that contains all the external elements used in creating the project, we are asked how we wish to handle these elements. For the time being we ignore this and keep all the project elements in the archive file; so without changing the radio buttons simply click “Open”. The project file opens. Let's take a closer look at the ArchiCAD interface. This application was designed by architects for architects. The easy to 8 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  9. 9. The ArchiCAD Interface understand graphical interface and the visual feedback will help you to quickly get familiar with the program's capabilities. The central part of the interface shows the Floor Plan of our project. At the bottom of the screen, a set of icons help to navigate in this view, and set the drawing scale and zoom factor. To the left, the Toolbox contains all the tools necessary to build the 3D model and complete the documentation. To the right, the Navigator lists all aspects of the project – here we can jump from story to story or to different 3D views, sections, elevations and details. At the very top, the Menubar lists all the available commands, logically grouped. Commands for File operations, Editing and Viewing functions can be selected from the corresponding menus. Since Design and Documentation are separate processes in architectural practice, tools and commands supporting these processes are also located in separate menus. Commands in the Options menu regulate basic settings and the Work ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 9
  10. 10. The ArchiCAD Interface Environment. The Teamwork menu supports collaborative work, and the Window menu sets the visibility of the toolbars and palettes. The Standard Toolbar contains some of the commands and functions available from the menus. It can be found right below the Menubar and can be fully customized. (The whole user interface can be arranged into so-called schemes to fast-track repetitive work, but this is outside the scope of this training guide). The Info Box shows the current settings of the selected tool or the characteristics of the selected element. (Try it by selecting a different tool from the Toolbox. Look at the changes in the Info Box.) Changes in the Info Box are immediately reflected in current settings or the attributes of the selected element. The Info Box can be resized (similarly to all boxes and palettes) to reveal more information than in the basic settings. 10 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  11. 11. Navigate Around the Floor Plan Navigate Around the Floor Plan Let’s take a closer look at the Floor Plan. From the icons at the bottom of the Floor Plan, let’s select the “Increase Zoom” icon. The cursor changes to a magnifying glass. Let’s draw two corners of a rectangle around the upper right entrance area of the building. After the second click, you will see a zoomed-in view of the Floor Plan in the main window. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 11
  12. 12. Navigate Around the Floor Plan Try the other icons for Panning, Reducing Zoom, Fitting in Window the contents of the Floor Plan, or switching between Previous and Next Views. There is an even faster way to navigate in all views. With the cursor in the main window, press the mouse scroll button to pan around the Floor Plan in real-time. Remember to keep the scroll button pressed! Rolling the scroll button away from you will zoom in and rolling it toward you will zoom out in real-time. In these cases, the cursor position will act as the center point of the projection. This technique will let you move from one location of the Floor Plan to another very quickly. Try it! 12 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  13. 13. Navigate in 3D Navigate in 3D In ArchiCAD, every building element is instantly represented in 3D as well. Naturally this sample project includes not only the 2D documentation but the entire 3D building model as well. So what does our sample project look like in 3D? The 3D model can be shown in an axonometric or a perspective view. We’ll try an axonometric view first. To access the 3D representation of our building, go to the 3D section in the Project Map of the Navigator and double-click on Generic Axonometry (as shown below). ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 13
  14. 14. Navigate in 3D As a result you will see something like this: Within the 3D view, the real-time navigational tools (Zoom-In, ZoomOut, Pan) function exactly as on the Floor Plan. Use the scroll button of the mouse to move from one part of the image to the other. Select a view where the building more or less fills the main window. There are two fundamentally different ways of navigating in a model ArchiCAD: Orbit and Walk. Let's see how they work. From the bottom Toolbar select the “Orbit” icon. The cursor changes to a little orbit sign. Click and keep the left mouse button pressed and move the mouse around to view the building from all sides. While in Orbit mode, real-time Zoom and Pan can still be used. Try them both to explore the whole model. To get out of Orbit mode, press “Esc”. 14 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  15. 15. Navigate in 3D There is an even more exciting way of getting around the building. In order to see this, let’s double-click Generic Perspective from the 3D section of the Navigator. The result is something like this: In this view Orbit, real-time Zoom and Pan work as we have seen already. The only difference is that here they affect the camera position rather than the projected image. Let’s try and move around a little. For a different way of exploration, let’s get into first-person “shooter” mode by selecting the “Explore” icon at the bottom toolbar. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 15
  16. 16. Navigate in 3D The appearing dialog box explains how movement can be controlled (very similarly to FPS computer games). If you are sure you have the controls right, click 3D Explore and start flying inside the building and navigating around. Walls will not stop you in this “game”, but to get the hang of it you should try to use the doors. To get out of Explore mode, just click into the 3D view. 16 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  17. 17. The Virtual Building Concept The Virtual Building Concept So how is it possible that we’ve seen a single Floor Plan, yet we could explore the whole building right away? To explain, let’s see a short introduction of GRAPHISOFT’s Virtual Building Concept also known as Building Information Modeling or BIM. Let’s double-click on 0.1 floor in the Stories section of the Navigator. Instantly we get back to the initial Floor Plan. You can adjust the content to the Floor Plan window if it is necessary by clicking on the symbol Zoom (Fit in Window) One fundamental concept of BIM is that the 3D model is made of real building components like walls, beams or slabs. Let's take a closer look at the ArchiCAD walls as an example. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 17
  18. 18. The Virtual Building Concept Let’s double-click on the Wall tool in the Toolbox. The dialog box for the Wall settings appears. In the first section we can specify the geometry of the wall, including height and shape information as well as its vertical position. 18 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  19. 19. The Virtual Building Concept In the second section we can set how the wall will be represented in 2D view such as the Floor Plan or a section. We can set the attributes of the wall (or rather its representative symbol) to control its display. Here the structure of a composite wall or other view-dependent characteristics can be selected. In the next section we can determine how the wall should look in 3D views. Surface materials and textures can be specified here. In the last section we can link different properties that are necessary to build bills of material for this type of wall. In list type views, the wall behaves as a group of basic building components that forms this composite structure. The point is that the wall we either draw on the Floor Plan or place in 3D in a perspective view is not merely a 2D symbol or a collection of parallel lines or just a 3D shape. It is all that and much more: it is an environment-sensitive building block of the Virtual Building that knows how to present itself within the different aspects of architectural documentation. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 19
  20. 20. The Virtual Building Concept What does that mean in practice? Let’s make some changes in our Virtual Building and see what happens. First of all let’s change the current Wall settings to this: Set the wall height to 13'-1" under Geometry and Positioning. For the Cut Fill (which is going to be the representation of the composite wall 20 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  21. 21. The Virtual Building Concept structure on Floor Plans and sections) let’s select the “WallBr.+Rig.Ins+C.Block+Fur” structure. To do this click on “Cut Fill” under Structure section of Floor Plan and Section. Now click on the little arrow icon on the right and a list of available composite structures comes up. In the Model section let’s click on the little chain icon on the right. Click on one of the surface material buttons. The list of available surface materials ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 21
  22. 22. The Virtual Building Concept comes up. Select “Brick-Common Bond” from the list. All three surface material settings (wall exterior, interior and edge) will be updated. 22 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  23. 23. The Virtual Building Concept After changing the settings, let’s click on “OK”. Back on the Floor Plan let’s zoom in to the wall on the right side of the lobby area and select the Inject Parameters tool from the Standard Toolbar. The cursor changes to a little syringe. This tool injects the current settings of the active design or documentation tool to existing elements. When we move the cursor above the wall we zoomed in on, the wall will be highlighted, showing that it is selected for the injection. Let’s click anywhere inside the wall body. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 23
  24. 24. The Virtual Building Concept The wall changes instantly, showing the composite structure we selected in the Wall dialog box. Now let’s see what happened in other views of the Virtual Building. First, let’s select and double-click 04 D_D Section from the Sections/ Elevations part of the Navigator. 24 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  25. 25. The Virtual Building Concept The section opens instantly. On the right side of the Lobby’s first floor we see the wall we have just modified. It shows the structure we have just selected for it. Now let’s select Generic Axonometry or General Perspective from the Navigator and select a view that shows that particular part of the project. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 25
  26. 26. The Virtual Building Concept As you can see, the wall now shows the surface material that has been set in the dialog box. One of the major advantages of the BIM concept is that non graphicalinformation, such as quantities, element inventories and schedules, can be automatically extracted from the 3D model. Let’s check if all aspects 26 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  27. 27. The Virtual Building Concept of the Virtual Building really are covered: double-click Wall List in the Element Schedules section of the Navigator. Instantly, an interactive list appears of all the walls placed in the project so far. We can quickly find the wall on the first floor that we have just modified. Here some parameters (like the height or the composite ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 27
  28. 28. The Virtual Building Concept structure of the wall) can be changed again. These changes will be reflected in all views (Floor Plans, sections/elevations or in 3D). Let’s get back to the initial Floor Plan again (double-click 1 Floor in the Navigator). Zoom out in order to see the entire Floor Plan. Having a Virtual Building also means that we don’t have to set up complicated layer sets for the different stories within the project. Stories, sections and elevations are just separate views of the virtual building model. In ArchiCAD, the Navigator window makes it easy to toggle between different views and representations of the BIM model. 28 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  29. 29. The Virtual Building Concept In the Navigator, double-click on the different stories (2 Floor, 3 Floor, etc. in the Stories part) and on the different sections in the Sections/ Elevations part or in the Details part. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 29
  30. 30. The Virtual Building Concept 30 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  31. 31. The Virtual Building Concept All these views are merely derivatives of the Virtual Building. Any number of them can be generated and they are all linked together, so if anything changes in one view, not only is that particular view modified, but the changes are also reflected in all the views throughout the entire project. This is a huge advantage compared to the traditional 2D drawing based documentation method where coordination of the drawings had to be done manually. It is not just more productive but also more reliable, as it reduces the risk of coordination issues to the minimum. Let's see how we can work with the different views linked to each other. The revolutionary Virtual Trace technology in ArchiCAD allows you to see and compare two different views of the BIM model. Return to the Floor Plan of the 0.1 floor. Right-click on 06 East Elevation in the Navigator and choose “Show as Trace Reference” from the context menu. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 31
  32. 32. The Virtual Building Concept The elevation appears on the referred side of the building Floor Plan. 32 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  33. 33. The Virtual Building Concept The “Trace” icon becomes active in the Standard toolbar. Click on the small arrow next to the “Trace” icon and choose “Drag Reference” from the menu. Drag the elevation view to the right. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 33
  34. 34. The Virtual Building Concept Arrange the Floor Plan so that the windows on the first floor of the building become clearly visible next to the Floor Plan view. 34 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  35. 35. The Virtual Building Concept Now zoom in at the right side, to have a closer look on the windows. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 35
  36. 36. The Virtual Building Concept Select one of the windows on the Floor Plan. Change its size to 7'x11' in the Info Box. Click on the “Rebuild Reference” command in the “Trace” menu. 36 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  37. 37. The Virtual Building Concept Now you can see how the elevation follows the changes. Now select “Switch reference with active” command in the “Trace” menu Now choose “Fit in window”. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 37
  38. 38. The Virtual Building Concept As you can see, the layout changes automatically according to the active view. Zoom in to the area of the modified window, select it on the elevation view and reset the size to 5'x8'. Choose the “Switch reference with active” command again to return to the Floor Plan. Press the “Esc” button to deselect the window and finally switch off the Trace button. 38 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  39. 39. The Documentation Workflow The Documentation Workflow Of course the job is far from done, even if a substantial amount of information can be entered and stored within the Virtual Building. Architectural documentation, however, includes many interpretations of the same view of the building. For example, for a given story of the building, we’ll have to generate one construction plan, one reflected ceiling plan, one plan for the floor finishes, one structural plan, one plan for the furniture, and so on. Not to mention all the communication with all the professions we’ll have to collaborate with: the structural engineer, the electrical engineer, HVAC, plumbing, etc. all need different documents from us. ArchiCAD supports the documentation workflow with so-called views. So far we have only utilized one part of the Navigator, the Project Map part. Let’s click on the icon to the right of the Project Map. This is the View Map part of the Navigator. As you can see, this part lists plans instead of stories. Of course a plan can show a floor or a section or a detail. Double-click on 1 Floor in the RCP folder of the Construction Documentation section of the View Map. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 39
  40. 40. The Documentation Workflow The Reflected Ceiling Plan of the ground floor is shown instantly. How is this plan different from the Floor Plan we have worked with up till now? One difference is obvious: we see the tiles of the reflected ceiling and the lighting elements. These must have been on a layer that was switched on when changing to the views of the RCP folder. (Layers are like vellums of old times, layered on top of each other. If we pull one out of the stack, it will be invisible. Elements that have common characteristics – like exterior walls, interior walls, furniture, etc. – should be placed on a common layer, so that their visibility can be regulated together.) 40 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  41. 41. The Documentation Workflow The other significant difference is only visible if we zoom in to the interior of the building. Doors are shown with their openings only (as is usual on a reflected ceiling plan). There are six differentiating factors for a view. • One is the Layer Combination, which determines which layers must be switched on or off for that particular view. Here, layer combinations were set up and named in advance. The one that is used here is aptly named “Reflected Ceiling Plan”. • The other factor is the Scale of the drawing. For instance, plans that are submitted to the municipality for approval have a smaller scale than construction documentation. In ArchiCAD, objects like doors, windows or other custom elements are scale–sensitive, that is, their 2D representation depends on the current scale of the drawing. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 41
  42. 42. The Documentation Workflow • • • 42 The third factor is the Structure Display. This function allows us to display construction elements in various ways depending how we define the components of elements. We can choose one of these options: • Entire Model • Without Finishes • Core Only • Core of Load-Bearing Elements Only The fourth factor is the Pen Set. We can define different line weight to the different color. The following factor is the so-called Model View Options Combination. These settings control the behavior of ArchiCAD elements beyond merely toggling visibility on and off. These combinations were also set up and named in advance. The one for ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  43. 43. The Documentation Workflow reflected ceiling plans can be viewed when selecting “Document/Set Model View/Model View Options” from the menu. • The last factor is the Renovation Filter. We can provide visual feedback on the status of each element at a particular stage of a renovation project. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 43
  44. 44. The Documentation Workflow A view is defined by these factors, plus the current zoom and the dimensions, as shown in the Properties part underneath the Navigator. In the Quick Options part just below it, you can change these settings for the current project representation. Click on any of the buttons and see what changes occur on the Floor Plan when the settings are changed. Note that the current quick option settings are not saved to the views automatically. For this you have to open the view settings dialog and there launch the Get Current Window’s Settings command. 44 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  45. 45. The Documentation Workflow Now that we know how to navigate in the model and in the project, let's see how we can construct new elements. Let’s close the example file. Select “File/Close” from the menu. Choose "Don‘t save" in the "Save changes" dialog box. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 45
  46. 46. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry ArchiCAD is flexible in creating new elements. If you prefer you can work without any constraints; however, many editing and construction aids are available to help you to work precisely. In this part we’re going to learn some basic methods for the accurate placement of elements. Let’s select “File/New” from the menu. A dialog box appears. We’ll use a template with the basic settings for our own project, so let’s browse for the “Curr_project_template.tpl” file located in the “ArchiCAD Studio LessonsDemo filesStartup files” folder. When found, choose “Standard Profile 16” as the work environment and click “New”. If you see the “Library manager” palette after opening the template file it means that you have to load the required object libraries for your new project. For the“Curr_project_template.tpl” file you have to load the subfolders of the “ArchiCAD Library 16” folder, which is located in the ArchiCAD 16 installation folder, and the “Student.Lib” folder from “ArchiCAD Studio LessonsDemo files”. To load the folders, select the 46 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  47. 47. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry Add button at the top of the dialog box. Choose the appropriate folder, then the “Choose” button. After adding the two folders, click on “OK”. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 47
  48. 48. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry Let’s place a a single straight wall segment on the Floor Plan first. Activate the Wall tool in the Toolbox by clicking on the Wall icon once. Note how the Info Box changes to reveal some of the most important attributes of the wall we are about to place. The placement method we’ll choose is the Single Wall as seen in the Info Box. Click somewhere on the Floor Plan. While drawing the wall we already have two helpers for data input: Guide Lines and the Tracker. During a drawing action, guide lines show different angles in pre-set increments (currently 45°). When the cursor comes near the guide line, it snaps to the line enabling precise data input. Try and move the cursor around and see other guide lines coming up. The Tracker shows current cursor position relative to the starting point of the action. As a default it shows either polar (radius and angle) or Cartesian (X and Y) coordinates. A right-click with the mouse during the 48 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  49. 49. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry action brings up a context-sensitive menu where the preferred coordinate-type can be selected. You can also enter data into the Tracker. Move the cursor so that the wall is near horizontal. The cursor snaps to the 0° guide line. As you move the cursor along this line, only the Distance value changes in the Tracker. Press “D” on the keyboard. The Distance field is highlighted and a new value can be entered. Let’s enter “6000” and press “Enter” on the keyboard. The wall is finished and it’s exactly 6 meters long. Of course, if we don’t snap to a guide line, the distance and angle values can be set one after the other (by pressing D and A respectively), or we can operate with X and Y values (by pressing X and Y on the keyboard). An Enter finalizes data entry. Now let’s take a closer look at the wall. Move the cursor along the wall. The intelligent cursor technique is one of the major innovations of ArchiCAD. The cursor shape changes according to its position in the model - for instance, it takes the form of a checkmark, hammer, or mercedes-sign. We see the cursor changing its shape to a mercedes-sign when finding one of the sides (a bold one when finding the Reference Line of the wall, meaning the line we actually drew during data entry) and to a check-mark ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 49
  50. 50. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry sign when finding one of the corners. These points and lines will help us construct the model accurately without using coordinates all the time. Note that as you hover over significant points (or lines), guide lines appear and show significant angles. Moving the cursor over one of them and hovering there briefly will make that guide line permanent. Guide lines can be removed by bringing up the context-sensitive menu with a right-click and selecting “Remove all Guide Lines”. Let’s start a new wall at the lower right corner of the existing one. Find the corner first (wait for the cursor to change to a check-mark shape) and click. This time we are going to use the X and Y coordinates, so press “X” and type “0”, then press “Y” and type “10000”. Press “Enter” on the keyboard. A 10 meter long wall is constructed, perpendicular to the existing one. 50 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  51. 51. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry Note that the layers of the composite structure of the walls are joined seamlessly. We’ll start the third wall at the upper right corner of the previous wall and construct it parallel to the first one. In this case, we know that the first wall is 6m long, but that may not always be the case. So if we want to construct a wall of equal length, we’ll have to take measurement in most cases. To do that, we’ll fix the angle of the wall by pressing the Shift key on the keyboard. Note that the angle snaps to horizontal (or vertical, or other pre-defined angles, if near). While you draw the wall, point with the cursor to the starting point of the first wall. When you click, the ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 51
  52. 52. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Data Entry current wall will be just as long as the first one. ArchiCAD helped to take the measurement, instead of you having to make calculations. Let’s finish the rectangle of walls by connecting the upper left corner with the lower left one. Let’s take an axonometric view of what we have produced so far. 52 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  53. 53. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Selection Methods Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Selection Methods To modify an element in ArchiCAD, you have to select it first. There are many ways to do this; let's see some examples. Returning to the Floor Plan, let’s get an overview of selection methods in ArchiCAD. In the Toolbox we have two tools for selection: Arrow and Marquee. Let’s use the Arrow tool first. In the Info Box we see multiple options for the use of the Arrow. First (default) any element that has at least one of its nodes, edges or curves in the selection polygon or rectangle will become selected. The second method means only elements with all of its nodes inside the selection polygon or rectangle will become selected. If we select the last method, selection logic will depend on the direction in which we draw the rectangle. Then we can specify the shape of a selection area (polygonal, rectangle, rotated rectangle). Finally, by switching the “Magnet” icon (“Quick Selection”) on or off, we can specify how to select elements when pointing at them (if the Magnet is ON, we can select by clicking any point within an element, if the Magnet is OFF, we can only select it by pointing to a corner or ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 53
  54. 54. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Selection Methods reference line – where the cursor changes its shape). For the time being, leave the Magnet ON. Let’s hover with the cursor over one of the Walls. Note that after a little while an information box appears near that element with the most relevant data: the type of the element, its structure, base elevation, thickness and the layer it was placed on. Click on the wall to select it. The selected wall will be highlighted. Clicking now to another wall will mean that the previous one is deselected. In order to select multiple elements, keep the Shift key pressed. Select all the walls this way. From the menu, select “Edit/ Grouping/Group”. After this, clicking on one of the walls will select the other ones as well. The grouping effect can be temporarily suspended by switching the “Suspend Groups” icon on the Toolbar ON. Now select the Marquee tool. In the Info Box we see the options for the use of the Marquee tool. The first option specifies whether we want to limit the effect of the Marquee to the current story (simple dashed lines), or use it across all stories (bold dashed lines). 54 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  55. 55. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Selection Methods The other option is the same as with the Arrow tool and specifies the shape of the selection area. We will use the Marquee tool mostly to specify which parts of the model we want to display in 3D (a useful limitation with large projects if we want to work on a small part of it). To see how it works, let’s draw a rectangle with the Marquee tool over only a portion of the four walls we have. With a right-click, bring up the context-sensitive menu and select “Show Selection/Marquee in 3D”. You’ll see the result in the 3D window. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 55
  56. 56. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Selection Methods Back on the Floor Plan, we can make the selection marquee disappear by selecting “Remove Marquee” from the context-sensitive menu (rightclick) or press the "Esc" button. 56 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  57. 57. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Construction Aids Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Construction Aids Let’s place a slab underneath the walls. To do that, select the Slab tool from the Toolbox. The most important slab settings appear in the Info Box. Let’s select the Rectangle placement method and place the slab by clicking first on the lower left corner, then on the upper right corner of the walls. Now, with the Slab tool still selected, let’s press the Shift key and hover with the cursor over different parts of our little model. Note that elements underneath the cursor are highlighted, helping the selection process. Click when the slab is highlighted. The slab will be selected: we are able to select elements without the explicit use of the selection tools. Let’s click on one of the corner points of the selected slab. Aside from the Tracker, another little palette appears. It’s named the Pet palette (because it can be set to follow the cursor like a pet animal) and it gives access to various relevant editing functions. The advantage of this ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 57
  58. 58. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Construction Aids solution is that the required modification tools are always at your hand when you need them. In the upper row: the selected node can be dragged to another position; the selected corner can be filleted/chamfered; the whole outline can be offset; Boolean addition and subtraction with another polygon can be performed. In the lower row: the whole element can be dragged; rotated, mirrored, elevated or multiplied. Let’s select the “Offset” icon. Then press “D” and enter 500 into the Tracker’s Distance field and press “Enter”. The slab outline will now appear around the walls. 58 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  59. 59. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Construction Aids Let’s click now on one of the sides of the slab. This time the Pet palette contains different editing functions in the upper row. A new node can be added to the side; the selected side can be transformed into a curve; a tangent to the curved side can be specified; the sideline can be offset. Explore the possibilities. Once you finished the modifications, make sure that the Slab is deselected. Press “Esc” on the keyboard to achieve this. Finally, before turning to our example project, let’s get to know the Special Snap Points. You may have noticed that when hovering with the cursor over an element, temporary division points appear, to which the cursor can snap. Let’s move the cursor now to the bottom side of the slab. After a short while a little black line shows the halving point of that side. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 59
  60. 60. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Construction Aids The so-called Special Snap Points can show other particular points in addition to halfway points. Let’s check our possibilities in the Toolbar. Clicking the little arrow by the Special Snap icon brings us to the currently valid settings. We can choose among different options: • showing halving points of element sides • showing division points (number of divisions can be set in “Set Special Snap Values” • showing a division point at a certain ratio of the side (as a percentage) • showing division points at a given distance from each other (and the nearest node) Use the “Set Special Snap Values” menu to set values for the division points. I Also there is an option whether the division points should refer to the entire element, or just that portion that falls between intersection points with other elements. 60 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1
  61. 61. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Construction Aids For the time being we are going to use the halving points. They will help us to insert windows into the walls. Let’s select the Window tool from the Toolbox. In the Info Box let’s select the Center “Geometry Method”. Let’s hover with the cursor over the walls and wait for the Special Snap Points to appear. When they do, click on them with the cursor. After the first click, the cursor changes to a little eye. Click toward the exterior. The windows will be inserted exactly at the middle of the walls. Let’s see the result in 3D: select Show all in 3D in the context menu. Now we are all but ready to start our example project. With the Window tool still active, select “Edit/Select all Windows” from the menu. ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1 61
  62. 62. Basic ArchiCAD Techniques – Construction Aids This particular menu item always refers to the currently active tool, so if - let’s say - the Column tool is active, we’ll be able to select all the columns from here. Here, all the windows on the Floor Plan will be selected. Press the “Backspace” or the “Delete” button on the keyboard. All the windows will be deleted. Do the same with the walls and the slab, too, to delete them. We’ll start to build our example project with a clean sheet. Close this file with File/ Close. Choose "Don’t save" in the "Save changes" dialog box. Congratulations! You have succesfully completed this Training Guide! We hope that you have learnt many new and exciting things about the possibilities of BIM and understood how ArchiCAD supports the architectural design workflow. Please check the other volumes of this training series for more details about ArchiCAD. Should you have any questions regarding ArchiCAD or other GRAPHISOFT products, please visit ArchiCADwiki, our online knowledge base: Please feel free to contact GRAPHISOFT and its worldwide partners with further questions at We look forward to seeing you in the ArchiCAD user community. The GRAPHISOFT Team 62 ArchiCAD Training Series Vol. 1