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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Flip Flop - Revit Familiy Tip

Repost: http://insidethefactory.typepad.com/my_weblog/2009/10/flippity-flop.html

Reading other blogs I always enjoy posts that shine light into some dark Revit recess. The posts explain something that might not be self evident at first glance Well here is a very old feature I recently crossed paths with.

When creating editing 3D families there is a tool available called "Control"


The icon shows the control we all know from Doors and Windows and sure enough these families have these controls inside.

When you press the tool you get more contextual items:


What do all these do? Whats the difference between Single and Double? A flip is a flip is a flip right?

Not quite. As the icons subtly communicate the Single flips behave more like Rotate. They flip the element around its origin 90 180 degrees with each click.

The Double flips cause a behavior more like mirror - they flip it across the reference axis (vertical or horizontal).

Below is a test family with all of the controls and what they do.


Here is the family in a project with 4 instances after the controls were pressed:


Now that we see what it does I see some opportunities to improve clarity:

  • Rename the commands to more accurately reflect the behavior. e.g. replace the novel "flip" with the tried and true mirror / rotate. (BTW this is already done in the contextual menu for doors where we find "flip hand" and "flip facing")
  • Consolidate the two single flips into a single command as they both rotate.
  • Make the in window controls match the icons which better communicate the behavior


Source: Flip Flop


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