Thursday, July 22, 2010

Tips for Getting Started in Building Information Modeling (BIM)

I’ve been learning, training and creating high-value projects in BIM for several years and I’m often asked for a few pointers on getting started in a BIM Project. There are many pointers and you will create your own as you go ahead. I’ve listed few of them below.

  • Plan your project, visualize your process, workflow, and desired outcome. Begin with the end in mind.
  • The first project you do in BIM is about a change in processes. You got onto BIM to leverage technology to help you alter the way you approach design and construction. Don’t expect BIM to have the same workflow as it did for you in CAD.
  • Your first project will help define your project standards. Make sure that you start storing your standards in one centralized space. Write down your thoughts, save created libraries etc.
  • Put the mason’s hat on. Model the building as it will be built.
  • No need to model every bit in 3d. Use your BIM software to get the essential dimensions and building form correct. You can then embellish the model with 2D details.
  • Start with the broader elements like walls, openings, roofs, etc. Work your way down to a comfortable level of detail.
  • Model correctly from the beginning so you don’t have to fix things later
  • If you are still in early phase of design and do not know the exact wall type, use generic walls to capture your design intent; changing these later will be simple.
  • Get information into the project as soon as it is known
  • Not everybody likes 'Change'. Select your team that will persist in your first attempt.
  • BIM’s single-model environment forces a much higher degree of team communication between all consultants. Plan for it and be prepared.
  • Adding a BIM expert to your first few projects can take them forward faster. Ask for help or at least look for it online.

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