Revit notes, keynotes and detail notes

Generally with notes I like all the information to be on the drawing that you are reading, so keynotes should have legends associated with that sheet. You shouldn’t be scrabbling through a set of drawings to find the keynote legend. Drawings should be stand alone.

Also, I like notes to explain 1/ What something is, and why you are doing it that way. I’ve had builders change a detail as they thought it was a better way than what you proposed. So note- Do this, and 2nd part of note – because I want this to happen, or this performance. So when a builder decides to do something a different way, you can ask, does it achieve I want this to happen, or this performance ? If it does, all well and good, if not, then why NOT? Make it so it does.

I find structural detailing extremely terse, just “DO THIS” with no explanation, and I’ve seen some great cockups as the builder has tried something different and not met the performance requirements of a detail.

So generic notes just say “DO THIS” and I like to add ” BECAUSE”. I have found that this method works for me. I’ll do it the other way if I have to, but under protest.

Keynotes tend to be “DO THIS”.

The problem with individual notes is that they take a long time to write, and each are different. In trying to automate and speed up processes it would be nice if there is a method to do “DO THIS” but be able to add “BECAUSE”.

This is the appeal of Brian Mackey‘s method below where you combine a note with comment. The note is generic and you can tailor your comment which is appended to the note.

Plan Notes with Revit Pure process

I have used Revit Pure notes at a preliminary stage of a project with 6 Steps To Create Efficient Plan Notes In Revit

I found these “sort of” worked with simple repetative notes and with a schedule on the side to show the notes with the number key. Especially on small plans, you can colour the note numbers to make them stand out and make the drawing easier to read. So it has its place. As I had repetitive notes I could filter the schedules to reflect which drawing they were on. A bit of a pain when I went to change them though as I had to go and re-select the note in the schedule after altering it. So good process for setting up, a nuicence for altering (unless I’m doing it completely wrong).

On sheet you have note numbers and schedule relating to those notes
Can also have different families for different colours (can make for finishes codes as well) to highlight different items to schedule. This one used for security

Intelligent Details & Notes by Brian Mackey

I’ve just watched an AU Presentation on Creating Intelligent Details in Revit with Brian Mackey

His setup is very appealing, although it will take some time to setup and you need a concistancy of working in one project office to get an office standard. If you are freelancing not as easy but I like the notes setup associated with the process as you can add comments to refine the basic notes.

This method, of adding comment to the tag so that you can add instance additional note is very handy. I like this. I think it can be used with model stuff as well as intelligent detail’s notes.

Go into Tag family and add “comments” parameter (or create your own) to label properties
load modified into project and select an instance of the tag, in this case an DB and add text to the “comment” parameter, it will show up in this instance only

Revit Key Notes & PyRevit

I’m a little anti Key notes after working on a couple of projects where they put the keynote number on one drawing and the keynote legend on another drawing. Its really irritating trying to use that process as you are constantly flicking between drawings to try and understand what is being read. A bit like reading a newspaper with codes where you constantly have to look to a legend page to ascertain what the article is about.

Bloody easy for designers to use but massively frustrating for builders and anyone using their drawing set. Adding keynotes by sheet is definitely a method I would use.

Altering the keynote file is fiddly. Opening it in say notepad and adding a new line, saving it and then reloading the keynote file is a bit of a tedious method, that is where PyRevit Keynote Manager comes in.

PyRevit Keynote Manager is playing up at the moment and I can’t open it but it allows you to add another keynote from inside Revit and save it back to the Keynote file. That is handy.

Unfortunately the structure of the keynote file is set in place so you cannot add a comment to the end of it.

Or can you? No, I tried making another parameter in Keynote Tags category and it wouldbn’t let me. So limited to what is there.

End comment

Its good to revisit some of these productivity items, text is a bit of a biggy. I am pleased with finding out about adding comments to Tags, that makes it easier to add an addendum to a generic tag to make it more specific.

I’ll have to try doing his scheduling, but that will mean building detail items that can then be scheduled. A task for another time.

I’ve noticed PyRevit is getting awfully buggy with R2015 which is a pain. One of my favorite features, Patterns is banjaxed which is a shame as well as a few of the other commands. Still a great add-in.