Converting ArchiCAD models to Revit 2015 projects via IFC – Method 1

Feb 02

This post explains the process of converting ArchiCAD projects to Revit 2015 via the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) file format to enable manipulation of the modelled elements from within Revit.

A bit about IFC
The IFC translation process is still a work in progress. The various parties involved (there are many) have made leaps and bounds in the last few years, but it is not (nor should it be) a full translation of a working model from one system to another. It is about getting useful data from one system to another. How you intend to work with that data will determine which translation process you use?

What do you want to do with IFC?
From within ArchiCAD, there are a number of ways you can export the file depending on whether you require the modelled elements to be editable within Revit and the data contained within the elements to be retained (method 1), or if you require the modelled elements precision to be exact (method 2). This blog will be showing the process of method 1 to allow the Revit User to manipulate the model from within Revit as well as using the data brought through.
If you plan on using the ArchiCAD model as an underlay (i.e. you are linking it in) you will be more interested in method 2 which will be covered in a later blog.

ArchiCAD to Revit - Method 1
Ensure you are using the latest Revit IFC translator and ArchiCAD add-in for Revit as below:
Close down Revit 2015.
Download and install the “IFC 2015 enhancement” Revit add-in from the Autodesk Exchange website; this ensures you are using the latest Revit IFC import/export capabilities.
Download and install the “ArchiCAD Connection for Revit 2015” Revit add-in from the Graphisoft website.

You will need to register on the above websites if not already registered.

From within ArchiCAD, export the IFC using standard settings as below:


Open Revit 2015, go to the add-in tab and convert the IFC file using the “Improved IFC Import” button:

Error messages may turn up, especially messages about unjoining elements; there are no viable choices so just accept all (i.e. don’t cancel!). A dialog will appear showing if the conversion was successful, hit OK and now you can view your converted Revit model.

Note that system elements (walls, floors, roofs etc.) are editable within Revit (push/pull, change properties, swap out etc.) whereas other families vary in their edit-ability.

Then test, test and test some more. There are no guarantees that there will be an accurate and/or complete translation. So make sure you are satisfied with the results.

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