Revit 2017 Steel Connections and SA Shapes




Since the introduction of the new Revit 2017 steel connections, users no longer have access to the content generator extension as they did before.

Currently sections supporting the new steel connections are available that cover the content of only a few countries: South Africa is not among these yet. By default Autodesk included the library C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2017\Libraries\South Africa\Structural Framing\Steel\AISC 14.1. Note: “AISC“ is the acronym for “American Institute of Steel Construction”. While this library does support the new steel connections, it is not the most convenient library for the South African Structural community.

Instead we recommend the British Standard be used to enable the new Revit steel connections: C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2017\Libraries\UK\Structural Columns\Steel\British Standard\. The majority of sizes for the South African steel sections to be found in the Red Book (used by SA Structural Engineers) can be found in the British Standard both for Beams and Columns. As the codes for the steel shapes are identical, the shapes map correctly from Revit to external programs like Autodesk Advanced Steel. Local Structural Engineers are happy using these sections as they recognize the steel sections.

When I investigated the H sections I found small discrepancies (for some codes the British Standard were marginally larger in some cases). If such sections are used in design and analysis, care must be taken to use an appropriate factor of safety, as specifying the same code to a South African supplier will result in a less conservative construction than the design stipulates.

To readily inspect the available sizes, import the TXT files for the section type catalogues in Excel.

They will be in the same directory as the families: C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2017\Libraries\UK\Structural Columns\Steel\British Standard\.

These small discrepancies notwithstanding, the workaround nevertheless enables a South African to use the new Revit steel connections to great effect, especially those companies that design and build (vertically integrated).

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