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At Rill Architects we run ArchiCAD on macOS. If you work at Rill, this is your stuff. If you don't, but you work in ArchiCAD, you may find something interesting. Anybody else, I don't know.
Standards Archive

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I have added a division to the side bar for standards. It is a very narrow, highly refined subset of the standards category. You can't change this stuff.


They aren't architectural elements.

They interfere with the display of other dashed line elements such as soffits.

The footing line right next to the furring wall line looks ridiculous.


Define the footings using details on the assembly types page. Show them on the structure plans, and call them out by type.

Send PLT files to the plotter using PlotFlow. Some day, we will be able to run it on the server. Currently, everyone has to run it locally.


One or two check plots may be sent directly to the plotter. Any more than that takes forever, during which time you can't do anything else in PM. Usually, create PLT files. Always create PLTs when giving drawings to anyone else.


I've created a new category here called 'Workflow'. In it I am placing howtos for the various project stages.

This category is so special that it has its own division in the sidebar to the left. (If it's not a link, it's not done yet.) Refer to it often.

Superseded by this.


With the Stevens project, we have started incorporating wall types, and other assemblies, into the construction documents.

Wall types are very circumscribed details showing what a wall is made of. Once you have the types defined, you are able to use very brief notations in other details to specify the walls. They are more accurate and easier to maintain, because they are only drawn once.

Use detail windows for assembly types. Details must have unique IDs, which is OK in this case because the types should have unique IDs too. Here some examples of names and IDs I used for Stevens:

W1 : 2x4 partition (Wood #1)
W2 : 2x6 partition (Wood #2)
WB1 : 2x6 Wall with brick veneer (Wood & Brick # 1)
CS1 : 10" Concrete with 8" Stone (Concrete & Stone #1)
F1 : Strip footing (Footing #1)
F2 : Pad footing (Footing #2)

For scale, I have found that 3"=1' (4) is good for walls and 1 1/2"=1' (8) is good for footings.

As I have developed these drawings for Stevens, then for Prill, I have been creating modules of them at 3 Resources : Modules : Assembly Types. For your projects, merge each drawing you need into a detail window. You can, of course, modify these for your needs. As you create new assemblies, save modules! By definition, these drawings will be simple and broadly useful.

To call out wall types in wall sections, use the detail tool with "Assembly Marker JAM81".

Like This

In AC9, the keyboard shortcuts are part of the Work Environment. They are stored at 3 Resources : Work Environment : RND Profile.

Keyboard shortcuts are customized at Options | Customize | Keyboard Shortcuts, Tools tab. The settings are saved in a preferences file called Archicad 8.1 Lasting.Prefs. The local version of this file is located at home : Library : Preferences : Graphisoft : Archicad 8.1.0 vn, where n is the current version.

Ours are fairly highly customized, and it's a burden for everyone to change them by hand. To save you the hassle, we keep a copy of the preferences on the server. (Quit Archicad before doing this, or no worky.) Simply copy the file from 3 Resources : Archicad Program Files : Good Archicad Prefs X : Graphisoft : Archicad 8.1.0 v1 : Archicad 8.1 Lasting.Prefs, and write over your local prefs.

Oops, it's not that simple. It used to be. For some reason, in AC8.1, a permissions issue has developed with Archicad 8.1 Lasting.Prefs, making it hard to copy. (The other prefs are OK.) Here is the workaround:

Duplicate the file in place. (Drag and drop it in the same window while holding down option.) You get "Archicad 8.1 Lasting.Prefs copy". Drag this file to your local prefs folder. Delete the old one. Rename "Archicad 8.1 Lasting.Prefs copy" to "Archicad 8.1 Lasting.Prefs."

Launch Archicad, and all should be well.

This is the official announcement.

At this moment there are 8.0 and 8.1 project templates in the zTemplate folder; kindly ignore the 8.0 ones until Monday.

Feel free to review these posts:

8.1 General

New Composites

Copy Transformations

Satellite Library

Print Marquee Area

...along with any others that strike yer fancy.

I've added a module for Site Plan info to the Modules folder (in 3 Resources). It contains all the elements for contours, boundaries, notes, etc. I did not include separate note stuff for the 120 & 240 Note layers, but you'll probably live. N.B.: 8.1 only!

For AC8 projects, save PLC files on the hotel instead of on your local disk. This is a change.

The reason: In PM, you will need to link views from a PLC. A PLP won't work, and I wouldn't recommend it if it did. If the PLC is local, the layout book won't be able to find the drawings when opened from any other machine.

This change does not effect AC7 projects.

I have instituted 3 new standard layers. All three are used to hide things in the Structure plan that show in the A1 Plans, to help clarify the Structure.

+A Wall Mask: Fills matching the background color of the walls, to give a solid poché (sp?) effect. Formerly these were on an A WALL layer. Hiding these in S1 Structure keeps them from appearing in front of Structure elements.

A Deck Rail: Railings, posts, newels. Formerly these were on A Deck2. You may leave such elements there if they don't interfere with the Structure.

A Stair Rail: Railings, posts, newels. Formerly these were on A Stair2. You must use this layer. Note that the stair lines should display and remain on A Stair2.

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