How to Avoid the Annoying Warning When Deleting an Equality Dimension

Say you’re adding windows to a facade.  You temporarily create an equality dimension to get them spaced nicely but when you go to delete it, an annoying warning pops up asking if you want to keep the elements constrained or not.

If you don’t care, you can just hit enter to select okay, but if you want to get rid of the EQ constraint, you have to interrupt what you were doing to click the unconstrain button.

Instead, as soon as you click EQ to line up the windows, you should click it again to turn it off.  Then when you hit delete, you’ll get no distracting warning.  And your windows will still be nicely arranged the way you want them.

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How to Source a Product From a Printed Photo

This isn’t a Revit trick but it’s so handy I just have to share it.

Say you need more information about a light fixture but all you have is a print-out with a photo – no links, names, model numbers, or any other identifying information.  You can try to describe it to google, but with the zillions of products available, it’s like finding a needle in a haystack!

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Unhelpful Print-Out

Next time you’re in this situation, try making a scan of the image (if you’re starting from an anonymous digital file rather than a print-out, you can skip this step).  Crop out any extra white-space.  The goal is to get an image file that looks as close to the original photo as possible, so in this case I painted white over the asterisk my boss added.

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Original Scan

The resolution was really poor, so I wasn’t sure if it would work.  Also I accidently painted a white line across the whole picture.  If I’d noticed it in the moment, I would have corrected it but it didn’t end up making a difference.

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Cropped and Cleaned Up Version

Now comes the magic.  Go to Google Images and click the camera icon in the search bar to search by image.  Upload your cleaned-up version.

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If the picture you have is available anywhere on the web, Google will find it for you!

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Google Search Results

This search gave me the name, model number, price, and also bigger versions of the lamp in the same style.  Five minutes after my boss handed me the paper, I sent her an email with a link to the product info!

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Product Website

Once this method led me to a SketchUp model on the 3D warehouse, saving me hours of modeling time.  Give it a try for yourself, and if you have any cool stories, please share them in the comments!

How to Crop a CAD Drawing after Importing It

If you’ve just imported a giant .dwg file with drawings all over the place and you only need to see one area, you might be wondering how to crop your imported drawing to a more manageable size.

Unfortunately there’s no easy way to do this.  You can crop the whole view with a crop region, or draw a masking region to hide the parts of the .dwg you don’t want to see.

Alternatively you can select the import and click Query to hide individual components within the file, but there’s no way to select multiple objects at once with this method so it only works if you have just a few things to hide.

In some cases, your easiest option is to create a new .dwg where you delete all the stuff you don’t want to see.