How to create a custom steel connection for reuse in Revit 2020



Sometimes you want to create a non-standard steel connection. In Revit 2020 you can create a custom connection manually and reuse this for future connections. Let us look at how this is done.


The first step is to create the connection components like plates and bolts using the tools that is in the Steel Tab in Revit 2020. Thereafter you’ll create a Connection name and add these components to this new connection.


To illustrate this process, I’ve opened the Revit 2020 Sample Structural model that installs with Revit.

Custom Steel Connection - 1 - drawing used

Open the 3D view and below is the connection we’ll focus on.

Custom Steel Connection - 2 - focus on connection

Now go to the Steel tab and create a plate by selecting the Plate tool.

Custom Steel Connection - 3 - create plate

Select the Show Workplane and then the Set Workplane tool. Then in the dialogue box select the ‘Pick a Plane’ option. Select the furthest plane of the column as your work plane to use.

Custom Steel Connection - 4 - select furthest plane

Now draw the profile of the plate you are using. In this example I have draw the plate as in the screenshot below.

Custom Steel Connection - 5 - draw plate profile

Select Finish and set the width to 150 for instance. You might see the extrusion is done towards the back.

Custom Steel Connection - 6 - set the width

Now select the Edit Sketch on the ribbon and select Set Workplane, Pick a Plane and then select the front edge of the column. Click Finish.

Custom Steel Connection - 7 - select correct workplane

The result will be that the plate is in the correct position.

Custom Steel Connection - 8 correct position

The next step is to create the bolts to fix the plate to the column and rafter. Select the Bolt tool. Then select the column and plate. Press Space or Enter.

Custom Steel Connection - 9 - select two items to add bolts

Now pick the plane on which the bolts need to be attached.

Custom Steel Connection - 10 - select plane

Now select the rectangle tool and draw where you need the bolts positioned. The select Finish.

Custom Steel Connection - 11 - select bolt arrangements

The result will look like this.

Custom Steel Connection - 12 - result

Now go through the same process to bolt the rafter and the plate. In this case the result of adding the bolt to the rafter created an error were the coping between the column and rafter has been removed. For this example we’ll ignore the error. The result of our new connection is as below.

Custom Steel Connection - 13 - plate result both ends

We have not finished modelling the connection and are now ready to save this connection and name it.  To do this select both the column and rafter. Then select the Connection Tool on the ribbon.

Custom Steel Connection - 14 - create connection

A generic connection has been created. Select Edit Type.

Custom Steel Connection - 15 - Edit connction

Then Duplicate and give a name.

Custom Steel Connection - 16 - Edit and duplicaate type

Make sure the connection is selected and then select Customise on the ribbon. Name the connection.

Custom Steel Connection - 17 - Customic connection

Now make sure Add mode is selected and then select the components that need to added to the connection. Select Finish.

Custom Steel Connection - 18 - select components


The connection has been created. You can now select the connection, right click and select ‘Create Similar’. On the next connection select both the column and rafter and then press enter or spacebar. The connection will have been added as shown.

Custom Steel Connection - 20 - result

If you want to use this connection in another future Revit project you can open the new project and use the Manage -> Transfer Project Standards tool to transfer the Connection to the new drawing.

Custom Steel Connection - 21 - transfer connection


Using this process, you can create any custom connections and reuse them in the same project or in future Revit project, thus saving time. If you have any further questions please contact us at :