AutoCAD MEP 2009

Content Tools Tutorial

April 2008

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Contents

Chapter 1

Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
Extracting the Project Datasets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Working with Metric Content . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Getting Started with this Tutorial . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Creating a Tutorial Profile and Tutorial Shortcut . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 About the Content Builder . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Understanding Parametric and Block-based Parts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Getting Started with the Content Builder . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Exploring the Block-Based Building Environment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Exploring the Parametric Building Environment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 About the Catalog Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Understanding Part Definitions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Understanding Part Sizes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Getting Started with the Catalog Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

Chapter 2

Using the Content Builder . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Lesson 1: Creating a Block-based MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 1: Creating a 3D Model and Schematic Symbol for a Block-based MvPart . . . . Exercise 2: Defining Catalog Information and Behavior for a Block-based Part . . . . . . Exercise 3: Assigning Names, Views, and a Preview Image to a Block-based MvPart . . . . Exercise 4: Assigning Connectors to a Block-based MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 5: Testing a Block-based MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lesson 2: Modifying a Block-based MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 1: Adding Part Sizes for a Block-based MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 2: Modifying the Behavior and Property Information of a Block-based MvPart . Lesson 3: Creating a Parametric Fitting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 1: Specifying the Part Configuration of a Parametric Fitting . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric Fitting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 3: Assigning Connectors to a Parametric Fitting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 4: Adding Part Sizes to a Parametric Fitting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 5: Generating a Preview Image and Defining Insertion Behavior for a Parametric Fitting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 . 15 . 21 . 23 . 27 . 33 . 39 . 39 . 41 . 46 . 47 . 49 . 56 . 60

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v

Exercise 6: Validating and Saving a Parametric Fitting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lesson 4: Creating a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 1: Specifying the Part Configuration of a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 3: Assigning Connectors to a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 4: Adding Dimensions to a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 5: Adding Part Sizes to a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 6: Generating a Preview Image and Defining Insertion Behavior for a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 7: Validating and Saving a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lesson 5: Modifying a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Exercise 1: Modifying the Connectors and Dimensions of a Parametric MvPart . . . . . . Exercise 2: Copying a Parametric MvPart to Create a New Part Size . . . . . . . . . . . .

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. 66 . 69 . 69 . 72 . 77 . 80 . 84 . 87 . 90 . 92 . 92 . 94

Chapter 3

Using the Catalog Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 97
Lesson 6: Exploring the Catalog Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 97 Exercise 1: Opening a Part in the Catalog Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 97 Exercise 2: Creating a New Part Catalog . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 Lesson 7: Working in the Catalog Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104 Exercise 1: Creating a Part in the Catalog Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104 Exercise 2: Adding a Size to a Part in the Catalog Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 107 Exercise 3: Adding Web-based Content to a Part Catalog . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109

vi | Contents

To add the Global content pack to your AutoCAD MEP installation at any time. Each chapter consists of a series of lessons. rerun the installer. Chapter 3 shows you how to create and modify catalogs using the Catalog Editor. You can create and modify part catalogs to meet your needs using the Catalog Editor. and an AutoCAD MEP (Global) user profile. Extracting the Project Datasets You must extract the project files (referred to as datasets in this tutorial) in order to complete any part of this tutorial. you can extract the files again to reset the project to its original state. and select the Add or Remove Features option. To derive the most benefit from these process-based lessons. with each lesson building upon the preceding one.txt file to download the ZIP file and extract its contents to your hard drive. You can search My Documents\Autodesk\MyProjects to see if the Content Tools dataset has already been extracted. To extract the project files. This tutorial shows you how to use both the Content Builder and the Catalog Editor. using examples of real-word parts. complete the lessons in a chapter from start to finish. For more information. If you edit any of the project files. Chapter 2 shows you how to create parts using the Content Builder. To rerun the installer. open the Add or Remove Programs dialog in the Control Panel. Working with Metric Content This tutorial requires that the Global content pack be installed as part of the AutoCAD MEP installation for your workstation. 1 . The Content Builder lessons and the Catalog Editor lessons are grouped separately so that they can be used independently of each other.Introduction 1 The Content Builder tools included with AutoCAD MEP provide you with a powerful environment in which you can create and modify parts. for example. Locate the tutorial ZIP file for your language. refer to the online AutoCAD MEP installation guides.com/autocadmep-tutorials.autodesk. metric templates. Follow the steps in the corresponding readme. the English language version of the tutorial files is english_tutorials_AutoCAD_MEP_2009.zip. The Global content pack is made up of metric content. open your browser to the following URL: http://www. and click Change/Remove. The parts you create and the libraries of common industry parts provided with AutoCAD MEP are stored in part catalogs. You can follow the workflow presented in these lessons when creating your own parts and part catalogs.

right-click My Documents on the desktop. and examine the value for Target. When you select an APC file. and click Set Current. Therefore. IMPORTANT Use the Content Tools Tutorial Profile shortcut for every tutorial session. click the Profiles tab. 10 Under Catalogs. you define the Content Tools Tutorial profile as your default profile. the tutorial catalogs are your default part catalogs. 6 For Description.apc. Use the AutoCAD MEP 2009 shortcut for every design session. 4 In the Options dialog. 2 | Chapter 1 Introduction . and click OK. you must use a set of metric catalogs and related drawings provided exclusively for the tutorial. 5 In the Add Profile dialog. for Profile name. While you might be accustomed to using imperial units in your day-to-day work. Creating a Tutorial Profile and Tutorial Shortcut Create a tutorial profile 1 Launch AutoCAD MEP 2009. it is strongly recommended that you store all tutorial-related content in the tutorial catalogs. 7 Click Apply & Close. To ease switching between the tutorial catalogs and the design catalogs. In the Select catalog file for Multi-view Parts dialog. select Content Tools Tutorial. you are selecting a part catalog from which parts can be selected during layout. 11 Specify the Tutorial Pipe Catalog as the default Pipe catalog: ■ Select the file path for the current Pipe catalog. the lessons in this metric tutorial cover all of the same tasks necessary for you to create custom content using either metric or imperial units. 2 In the Workspaces dialog. Specify the tutorial catalogs as the default part catalogs for the new profile 9 Still in the Options dialog. enter Content Tools Tutorial. enter This profile uses tutorial catalogs as default part catalogs. click Properties. When you create the tutorial profile. When you create the tutorial shortcut. and click Browse. NOTE The Windows XP default location for My Documents is C:\Documents and Settings\<user name>\My Documents. and click Open. when you launch AutoCAD MEP using the tutorial shortcut. click the MEP Catalogs tab. The tutorial catalogs are provided to keep your tutorial content separate from the content in your other catalogs. To identify its location on your computer. 3 Click Format menu ➤ Options. and click Browse. select any workspace from the list. ■ Select Tutorial MvParts Catalog.Getting Started with this Tutorial To use this tutorial. The APC file is the standard file format for part catalogs in AutoCAD MEP. specify the Tutorial MvPart Catalog as the default Multi-view Part catalog: ■ ■ Select the file path for the current Multi-view Part catalog. you define the tutorial catalogs as your default part catalogs. and click Add to List. the following exercise instructs you to create a Content Tools Tutorial profile and a related desktop shortcut. As you work through the lessons in this tutorial. 8 On the Profiles tab. browse to the following folder: My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial MvParts Catalog.

and press Enter. Create a tutorial shortcut 22 On the Windows® desktop. Next. you create a workspace that displays the menu you need for this tutorial. 26 Right-click (Content Tools Tutorial Profile shortcut). enter Content Tools Tutorial. ■ 12 Click OK. and click Paste. 13 Click Window menu ➤ Pulldowns ➤ CAD Manager. browse to My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial Pipe Catalog. 16 IMPORTANT Whenever you start AutoCAD MEP to work with this tutorial. Create a tutorial workspace Workspaces are user interface configurations that you can customize for specific tasks. 18 In the Options dialog. select Content Tools Tutorial as your initial workspace in the Workspaces dialog. click Save Current As. and click Rename. 14 On the Workspaces toolbar. 25 Enter Content Tools Tutorial Profile. and click File menu ➤ Exit. 19 Select the appropriate AutoCAD MEP profile. and click Properties.apc. right-click. and click Copy. Click Save. and click Open. Select Tutorial Pipe Catalog. Change back to the AutoCAD MEP profile for your standard shortcut 17 Click Format menu ➤ Options. This action displays the CAD Manager menu on the menu bar. and verify that the Multi-view Parts and Pipe catalogs are the part catalogs you require for your design work. right-click the shortcut for AutoCAD MEP 2009. 23 In the location where you want to place the new shortcut. 24 Right-click the shortcut name. click the Profiles tab. Creating a Tutorial Profile and Tutorial Shortcut | 3 . The workspace displays the CAD Manager menu that you need for the tutorial. 20 Click the MEP Catalogs tab.■ In the Select catalog file for Pipes dialog. for Name. and click Set Current. 15 In the Save Workspace dialog. 21 Click OK.

30 In the Welcome dialog. verify that Current profile is Content Tools Tutorial.27 In the Target field. 4 | Chapter 1 Introduction . 33 At the top of the Options dialog. and verify that the Multi-view Part and Pipe catalogs are the tutorial catalogs. 28 Click OK. Use the AutoCAD MEP 2009 shortcut for every design session. 31 In the Workspaces toolbar. select Content Tools Tutorial. As you work through the exercises in this tutorial. and click OK. 35 Click OK. 32 Click Format menu ➤ Options. these catalogs hold the accumulated part families and individual part sizes you create and modify. the tutorial catalogs are set as your default Multi-view Part and Pipe catalogs. and the value must be enclosed in quotation marks. click the Close button. As you enter the value. and change the value of the /p switch to “Content Tools Tutorial” as shown. The Content Tools Tutorial shortcut is created and tested. The value you enter must be the exact name of the profile. use the left arrow key to scroll to the left. When you launch AutoCAD MEP using this shortcut. 34 Click the MEP Catalogs tab. Test the shortcut 29 Double-click the Content Tools Tutorial Profile shortcut. take care to avoid modifying any other target information. IMPORTANT Use the Content Tools Tutorial Profile shortcut for every tutorial session. IMPORTANT The /p switch is the profile control for the shortcut.

and the elbow is dynamically built to match. You associate the part to a catalog. you can specify the diameter and the radius. A model is defined in terms of the size. For example. Parameters are defined by individual values. For example. Parametric parts enable you to create a single 3D model for a part family that can be represented in multiple part sizes. You define a parametric part by creating a 3D model of the part and assigning variables (parameters) to control its shape and size. junction boxes. content is used to represent real-world parts. Parametric Parts Parametric parts give you the flexibility to create parts that are dynamically sized according to size parameters. and crosses. Each piece of content represents a part family. except for the diameter and elbow radius. you specify values for the part’s parameters. and build content. Parametric parts enable you to define millions of parts through a single model. depending on the number and the type of its parameters. The Content Builder enables you to create and modify part families and individual part sizes. that contains a collection of part sizes. It is an integrated package of 3-dimensional (3D) modeling tools and 2-dimensional (2D) drafting and drawing capabilities that helps you to conceptualize. lists of values. In AutoCAD MEP. tees. and the position of the features that comprise the part. When you use the Content Builder. where only the features change in size based on the overall part size. When you create a parametric part for an elbow fitting. About the Content Builder | 5 . how the parts are used in AutoCAD MEP. you create a single 3D model of a round elbow. To determine what type of part to create. such as a 150 mm x 100 mm rectangular floor register or a 25 mm conduit 13-hole square junction box. you need to understand how each type is defined. or tanks. design. It is recommended that you create parametric parts for equipment and fittings that have simple designs and that require many part sizes. a round 80 mm elbow looks the same as a round 160 mm elbow. When you insert the elbow in a drawing during layout. and the part is dynamically built to reflect the specified shape and size. and you add connectors to the part so that it can connect intelligently to other AutoCAD MEP objects and transfer information when it does. or calculated values based on equations. and what type is best suited for different kinds of parts. and you assign parameters for the diameter and the elbow radius that change in size as needed. such as air terminals. Understanding Parametric and Block-based Parts You can create 2 types of content using the Content Builder: parametric parts and block-based parts.About the Content Builder The Content Builder is a content creation tool included in AutoCAD MEP. When you add a parametric part to a drawing. such as fittings and equipment. This is also the case for fittings such as elbows. an air terminal can have numerous sizes that all share the same geometric features. the shape. you build 3D models of parts.

and the unique representation of the fixed-size part is added to the drawing. It is recommended that you create block-based parts for equipment and fittings that have complex designs and that require only a few part sizes. Each part size is associated with unique 3D model blocks for which you specify basic information. you select a specific part size. In the example shown.Block-based Parts A block-based part is defined as a part whose geometry is based on individual AutoCAD® blocks. the software gives you access to the appropriate building environment: parametric. connection points. a gas air handling unit and an electric air handling unit typically are different not only in shape and size. and a toolbar. Because of the fundamental differences between the units. size. 6 | Chapter 1 Introduction . block-based. you cannot use a single 3D model to represent both units. each part size of the air handling unit is associated with unique 3D model blocks. motor control centers. or pumps typically includes unique parts with their own geometric features. or either. Getting Started with the Content Builder When you start the Content Builder. The Getting Started dialog has a part catalog list. but also in the placement of connection points and the types of connectors required. and properties such as manufacturer or material might differ. the Getting Started dialog is displayed. You use this dialog to select a part catalog and a specific part with which to work. When you add a block-based part to a drawing. Shape. such as view representations and connector placement. Equipment such as air handling units. Based on your selections. For example. 2-dimensional (2D) block representations are generated automatically for each part size. a part catalog browser.

and air inlet and air outlet connectors assigned to the Duct domain. IMPORTANT When selecting a part catalog. such as Duct or Cable Tray. Getting Started with the Content Builder | 7 . such as pipe. an air handling unit belongs to the Mechanical domain. only the New Parametric Part icon is available. For example. When selecting a part to create or modify. both the New Block Part and the New Parametric Part icons are available. The list reflects only those part catalogs specified on the MEP Catalogs tab in the Options dialog. a power connector assigned to the Conduit domain. if you select a chapter in the MvPart catalog. but can have a drain connector assigned to the Pipe domain. however. you can specify a different domain for each connector.Part Catalog List You select a part catalog from a list of installed catalogs. Part Catalog Browser The part catalog browser organizes the parts in a catalog in a hierarchical tree view that you can navigate by expanding and collapsing the different levels (chapters) in the tree. if you select a chapter in a component catalog. For example. Each catalog represents a group of parts for a specific domain. An MvPart must belong to a single domain. the software detects the type of part catalog you specified and guides you with activated icons to the appropriate building environment. However. it is important to consider the type of part you want to create or modify.

This environment features 2 modes: Wizard and Tabbed. a tooltip provides a brief description of the associated function. part connectors. the AutoCAD® blocks used to represent each part size. The Wizard mode steps you through defining the following: part behavior. (New Parametric Part) Opens the parametric building environment for part creation. you create new block-based parts or add new part sizes to existing part families. a preview image to assist during part selection. If you position the cursor over a tool. Exploring the Block-Based Building Environment The Content Builder uses the block-based building environment when you choose to create or modify a block-based part. 8 | Chapter 1 Introduction . ■ In the Wizard mode. and the part that you select: Icon Description (New Block Part) Opens the blockbased building environment for part creation. (Modify Part Size) Opens the appropriate building environment for modifying an existing part size. (New Chapter) Adds a new chapter (folder) to a selected catalog or to an existing chapter. (Add Part Size) Opens the appropriate building environment for adding a new part size to an existing part family. the chapter. (Delete) Removes the selected part from the appropriate part catalog and the part catalog browser. individual part sizes. and property set information.Toolbar The toolbar gives you access to the parametric and block-based building environments. The following tools are activated based on the catalog.

and assigned property information. Behavior tab In Lesson 1 of this tutorial. assigned blocks and names. preview image. you modify block-based parts. You can modify the values on one or all of the tabs in any order. In Lesson 2. you use the Wizard mode to create a block-based MvPart.First dialog in the wizard ■ In the Tabbed mode. Exploring the Block-Based Building Environment | 9 . you use the Tabbed mode to modify the block-based part. part connectors. Tabs are available for part behavior.

In the browser. You can use the standard AutoCAD® view commands to change the direction in which you view the model. As you define your part. ■ ■ ■ ■ The part browser and the modeling area are resizable windows. In Lesson 3 of this tutorial. and you can drag a window to a new location on your screen. Feature-specific menus are available when you right-click a part feature in the browser window. and specifying part options.Exploring the Parametric Building Environment The Content Builder uses the parametric building environment when you choose to create or modify a parametric part. you use the environment to create a parametric MvPart. you use the parametric environment to create a parametric fitting. 10 | Chapter 1 Introduction . saving an existing part as a new part. The modeling area is displayed on the right and gives you full view control over a part model. a modeling area. a status bar. such as those for saving the part. ■ The part browser is displayed on the left and provides an organized view of the features of your part. This environment features a part browser. a toolbar. new features are nested in a hierarchy under the appropriate folder. and a series of feature-specific shortcut menus. you can show as much or as little detail as you want by expanding or collapsing the folders. About the Catalog Editor The Catalog Editor is a standalone utility with Windows® Explorer-like navigation that provides a central location for viewing and working with part catalogs and part data. validating the part. You can drag a corner of a window to change its shape and size. In Lesson 4. The toolbar provides quick access to important Content Builder commands. The status bar at the bottom of the part browser provides information about whether the part has been validated successfully. generating a preview image.

XML file: The extensible mark-up language (XML) file stores the part sizes and additional part properties that define the part. including the part data. Understanding Part Definitions | 11 . Each part type chapter contains a unique part family. such as the 600x600 mm Square Faced Ceiling Diffuser. Depending on your design project. A part is defined by several files that store the part information: DWG file: The drawing (DWG) file stores the model geometry that defines the appearance and enables the display of the part. which stores individual part sizes. you can do the following: ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ Browse through available parts Create new catalogs and chapters Populate new catalogs with existing parts Copy and paste. fittings. which helps to identify the part during part selection. A part catalog typically is organized into chapters. pipes. conduits. such as Diffusers. BMP file: The bitmap (BMP) file stores the preview image of the part. such as Mechanical. and plumbing fixtures. and then into part type-specific chapters. cable trays. the MvParts catalog is grouped into domain-specific chapters.Part catalogs contain the information required to define a part in AutoCAD MEP. Understanding Part Definitions Objects in AutoCAD MEP that are defined as parts include ducts. Using the Catalog Editor. For example. or drag and drop. either you or your CAD manager might want to browse or modify the details of a part catalog. such as Air Terminal. equipment. part data between catalogs Reorganize a part catalog by renaming chapters and moving parts Create a new part from an existing part Add sizes to parts Add custom properties to parts Edit part data in Microsoft® Excel Add web-based content to a part catalog This tutorial shows you how to perform many of these tasks in the Catalog Editor. which are groups of related parts.

An entire row across multiple columns defines the related parameters of a specific part size. 12 | Chapter 1 Introduction . Parameters of the part are stored in the XML file using 4 storage types. the part cannot be defined and is not available during part selection. the tree view in the left pane shows the chapters and parts in the current catalog. which is provided with the software. The definition files are located in subfolders of the following folder: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Autodesk\ACD-MEP 2009\enu\Aecb Catalogs\Global. Getting Started with the Catalog Editor Open the Catalog Editor when you want to view and work with part catalogs and part data. In the left pane. and a preview window. copy. the associated data is displayed in the right pane in a table format. you can browse the catalog as well as add. Constants: Each parameter is stored as a separate value that remains the same for all of the part sizes. Understanding Part Sizes To understand how individual part sizes relate to the definition files of a part. delete. Each storage type has unique characteristics that determine how the size parameters are used to define the part. Calculations: Each parameter is stored as a formula. Values are calculated based on other values specified for the part size. When you click a chapter or part. The Catalog Editor window is divided into 2 resizable panes and has a menu bar. You can explore the part definition files in the catalogs included in the Global content pack. paste. Each parameter list is independent and can have an infinite number of values. you need to understand how the part data is defined in the XML file. a toolbar. Constant Lists: Each parameter is stored as a separate list and can be used in combination with other lists of values to define multiple part sizes. All parameter columns must have the same number of values.Each part family in a catalog contains references to the associated definition files. When you open a part catalog. Basic Table: Each parameter is stored as a separate column. If a file is missing. and save part data.

you will explore the Catalog Editor in more detail.In Lesson 6: Exploring the Catalog Editor on page 97. Getting Started with the Catalog Editor | 13 .

14 .

0. Creating the model block at an insertion point of 0. and connectors. where you define the catalog information.0 ensures that each view block generated from the model aligns to the respective side of the 15 . you must draw a 3D model block for each new part size of the part family you want to create. views. You begin the lesson by creating a 3-dimensional (3D) model for the air handling unit and saving the model as an AutoCAD block. You save the part size models as AutoCAD blocks. This exercise shows how to create a 3D model and a schematic symbol for a block-based air handling unit MvPart.Using the Content Builder 2 The Content Builder tools included with AutoCAD MEP provide you with a powerful environment in which to create and modify part families and individual part sizes. Finally. You then create a 2-dimensional (2D) schematic symbol block to represent the part. you launch the Content Builder. behavior. This section of the tutorial introduces you to the types of parts you can create using the Content Builder and the working environments in which you build parts. All 3D model blocks for the individual part sizes and the schematic symbol for the part family must be saved in the same drawing file. Following these guidelines ensures support of the part in AutoCAD MEP and for rendering. you can create block-based MvParts. name. You should also create a 2D schematic symbol block that represents the part family. This lesson shows how to use the Content Builder to create an air handling unit MvPart. The exercises in this lesson are designed to be completed in the order presented. where each exercise represents a separate phase in the creation process. To support automatic generation of view blocks by the Content Builder. shading. such as air handling units and other complex equipment. Lesson 1: Creating a Block-based MvPart Using the Content Builder. and hiding in 3D model views. you use the Content Builder to validate and test the part.0 on the standard AutoCAD world coordinate system (WCS) orientation.0. use the SW isometric view and AutoCAD solids to create the model block at an insertion point of 0. Next. Exercise 1: Creating a 3D Model and Schematic Symbol for a Block-based MvPart Before starting the Content Builder to create a block-based part.

and examine the value for Target. polylines. click Format menu ➤ Point Style. therefore. deselect to turn off dynamic UCS. (You can save one or more symbol blocks in the same drawing file. select Tutorial Air Handling Unit L01 E01. enter 90. When creating a 2D schematic symbol for a block-based MvPart. TIP To make your point style match the points shown in the illustrations in this exercise. or you can assign the same symbol block to all part sizes. The symbol block provides a schematic representation of the part size for use in plan views. select Set Size in Absolute Units. For Point Size. Adding AutoCAD point objects in the center of the connections allows you to use Node object snaps to select the connection points when assigning connectors. you need to maintain a common insertion point. 3 Add duct connection points: . right-click My Documents on the desktop. You must save the symbol block in an AutoCAD drawing file. every part has a schematic symbol that you add to your schematic design layouts. Dataset My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial Air Handling Unit L01 E01. all associated blocks are part of one object. arcs. such as lines.dwg Create a 3D model of the part size 1 Click . Using the Content Builder. When you insert the MvPart in a drawing. the same symbol block is used for all part sizes in a part family. 2 Compare the model in the drawing area to the illustration below in preparation for adding AutoCAD points to help locate connectors. and click Open. 16 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . Generally. This ensures that valid connections can be maintained between the schematic symbol and the connecting schematic lines. and ■ On the application status bar. click Properties. you can use any drawing command to make the geometry for the block.) The Content Builder scales and wraps the symbol block with a bounding box of the 3D model. and select click OK. browse to the My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools folder. The Windows default location for My Documents is C:\Documents and Settings\<user name>\My Documents. You should create all of the geometry using basic AutoCAD entities. and circles.dwg. you can assign a different symbol block to each part size.model block. Typically. To identify its location on your computer.

Click on the Shapes toolbar. ■ ■ Exercise 1: Creating a 3D Model and Schematic Symbol for a Block-based MvPart | 17 . you create an air handling unit with all connectors. Use osnaps to select the center of the right power connection. and use osnaps to select the intersection of the supply air duct connection. ■ 5 Add electrical connection points: ■ ■ Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Left. Changing to a 2-dimensional (2D) view makes adding points to the connections easier and ensures the correct orientation of connecting segments. and use osnaps to select the center of the left power connection. in this lesson. Click View menu ➤ New UCS ➤ View. so that you can fully test the part in an AutoCAD MEP drawing. 4 Add pipe connection points: ■ ■ Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Front. ■ ■ NOTE Only one connector is required to make a valid part. Use osnaps to select the midpoint of the return air duct connection. Click (Point) on the Shapes toolbar.■ Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Bottom. However. Click View menu ➤ New UCS ➤ View. and use osnaps to select the center of the drain connection. Click on the Shapes toolbar.

10 For Color and for Linetype. verify that layer 0 is specified for Layer. 6 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ SW Isometric. select all of the objects. select ByBlock. see the AutoCAD Help. 7 Click View menu ➤ New UCS ➤ World to set the coordinate system to World before making a block. For more information about using coordinate systems. and for Lineweight. 18 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . select ByLayer.■ Use osnaps to select the center of the control connection. This helps to ensure display control for the part size. 8 In the drawing area. 11 Press Esc. 9 On the Properties palette.

17 Under Settings. This identifies the view block for easy retrieval. draw a selection window around all of the objects in the drawing The dialog closes temporarily while you select objects for the block. and Z are all set to 0. 16 Under Objects. enter Roof Top AHU HG350-HG400. These units are used for the part when the part is added to a drawing. establish a naming convention for model blocks that includes the part family and the part sizes. click area. 19 Click OK. This keeps the selected objects in their original state. Including “model” in the name ensures automatic generation of 2D view blocks. The location of the insertion point directly affects the placement of the part size when you add the part to your drawing. and press Enter. This name identifies the part family and part sizes (HG350 and HG400) represented by the model block. For example. verify that Millimeters is selected for Block unit. Y. 18 For Description. . select Retain. enter AHU HG350-HG400 model.12 Click Format menu ➤ Blocks ➤ Block Definition. 14 Under Base point. the dialog reopens. For more information about the Block Definition dialog. which you can use to associate a hyperlink with a block definition. NOTE The Block Definition dialog contains a Hyperlink button. 15 Under Objects. verify that X. 13 For Name. you can link to an existing file or a web page. When you press Enter. TIP To facilitate part identification. The base point (insertion point) is used as a reference for positioning the block upon insertion. such as a part specification sheet on a manufacturer’s web site. see the AutoCAD Help. Exercise 1: Creating a 3D Model and Schematic Symbol for a Block-based MvPart | 19 . The model block is saved in the current drawing.

therefore. You can have one or more model blocks in a single drawing file representing each part size in a part family. 28 Under Settings. enter AHU HG350-HG400 symbol. and Z are 0. TIP Name the symbol block “symbol” to have the Content Builder use the symbol block as the source for generating the 3D symbol in schematic views. and press Enter. select Retain. therefore. 25 Under Base point.0 for the first corner point.Create a 2D schematic symbol for a block-based MvPart 20 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Plan View ➤ World UCS. enter Roof Top AHU HG350-HG400 symbol. you created a 3D model and a schematic symbol for a block-based air handling unit MvPart. and press Enter. This identifies the symbol block for easy retrieval. and close the drawing without saving. . you should maintain a common insertion point. 20 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . ■ ■ 22 Press Esc.500 for the second corner point. 24 In the Block Definition dialog. 30 Click OK. Y. for Color and for Linetype. Each part size requires a unique 3D model block. select ByBlock. The symbol block is used as a 2D representation of the part size. 26 Under Objects. Use a naming convention that represents the part family when you save the symbol as a block. 23 Click Format menu ➤ Blocks ➤ Block Definition. click Enter. Enter 0. Next. 31 Click File menu ➤ Close. all associated blocks are part of one object. and press 27 Under Objects. Select the rectangle. When you place the MvPart in a drawing. for Name. verify that Millimeters is selected for Block unit. select the rectangle that you added for the symbol block. The base point (insertion point) is used as a reference for positioning the block upon insertion. Verify that layer 0 is selected for Layer. The insertion point for the schematic block should be the same as the 3D model block that it represents. where you define the catalog information and behavior of the MvPart. 21 Draw the symbol view of the part: ■ ■ ■ Click (Rectangle) on the Shapes toolbar. 29 For Description. you launch the Content Builder. you should draw the symbol block to represent the 2D symbol of the modeled object in plan view. and verify that ByLayer is selected for Lineweight. Enter @1000. It is automatically scaled to the size of the 3D model so you need only draw a small rectangle as the shape you want to see in a top view of a schematic representation. On the Properties palette. verify that X. The symbol block is saved in the current drawing. In this exercise.

Exercise 2: Defining Catalog Information and Behavior for a Block-based Part This exercise shows how to launch the Content Builder and define the catalog information and behavior for the air handling unit MvPart. 2 Click CAD Manager menu ➤ Content Editing ➤ Content Builder. and examine the value for Target. select Tutorial MvParts Catalog. You define the part behavior of a block-based MvPart by specifying the type. and method of insertion for all part sizes of the MvPart.dwg Launch the Content Builder and add the new part to the MvPart catalog 1 Click . 3 For Part Domain. Exercise 2: Defining Catalog Information and Behavior for a Block-based Part | 21 . Dataset My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial Air Handling Unit L01 E02. 4 In the tree view. This drawing contains the completed 3D model block of the air handling unit. If the CAD Manager menu is not available. layer key. click Properties. click Window menu ➤ Pulldowns ➤ CAD Manager Pulldown. The Windows default location for My Documents is C:\Documents and Settings\<user name>\My Documents. and click (New Chapter). To identify its location on your computer. browse to the My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools folder. subtype.dwg. select Tutorial Air Handling Unit L01 E02. right-click My Documents on the desktop. and click Open. select Multi-view Part.

for Name. and press Tab. enter Tutorial Air Handling Unit. DWG file. and click OK. and click OK. and BMP file (if a preview image is assigned). enter Air Handling Units. The description specified for the part family is displayed during part selection. Be sure to click the New Block Part icon. see Creating a Tutorial Profile and Tutorial Shortcut on page 2. IMPORTANT When you select the MvPart Domain. NOTE The name specified for the part family in the New Part dialog is used to name the files that define the part in the catalog: the XML file. For information on how to specify the tutorial catalog as the default MvPart catalog. The block-based building environment is displayed. 6 With the Air Handling Units chapter selected in the tree view. click (New Block Part). 8 Accept the default description. both the New Block Part and the New Parametric Part icons are activated.NOTE If the Tutorial MvParts catalog is not available. 5 In the New Chapter dialog. 7 For Name. it has not been specified as the default MvPart catalog for the current profile (the Content Tools profile). 22 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder .

You can assign the same view block to multiple view directions. Do not specify an insertion behavior. select a type that is similar to the part sizes. click [. and a Preview Image to a Block-based MvPart | 23 . such as the ability to assign flow annotation to an HVAC part size. The part type defines unique characteristics and behaviors for part sizes. Selecting a layer key that matches the part type ensures the best possible layering of part sizes. you can specify a unique name for each part size. 10 For Layer Key. you should specify a descriptive part size name for easy part identification. The layer key list reflects the set of layer keys currently assigned in your drawing. It is used for part selection in the MvPart Add dialog. You can add multiple part sizes. Unassigned view blocks display as empty fields. select Air Handling Unit. AHU Commercial Roof 400x400 model. Type refers to the main category for the part family. 12 Click Next. You also assign to the part family the 2D symbol block you created previously for generating a 2D symbol for each part size. you assign additional information to the MvPart. Next. Subtype is the subcategory for the part family. 11 For Subtype. including a name and views. and then generate the missing view blocks for all part sizes. The subtype can be used as a filter method for part selection in the MvPart Add command. Exercise 3:Assigning Names.. and click OK. bottom. left. view blocks. depending on part symmetry. View blocks that display in red have been assigned a name based on the 3D model block. you should select or enter a descriptive subtype name for easy identification. The part size name typically reflects the actual size of the part (such as dimensions for width and height) or the total output (in L/s or cfm). Part Size Names If you create several part sizes. however. therefore. for example. and a preview image to the air handling unit MvPart. You can assign a predefined view block or generate the missing view blocks using the Content Builder. you launched the Content Builder and defined the catalog information and behavior for the air handling unit MvPart. The Content Builder generates the 6 standard AutoCAD view blocks (top. proceed to the next exercise. Exercise 3:Assigning Names. front. and a Preview Image to a Block-based MvPart This exercise shows how to assign a part size name. Therefore.. select AirHandlingUnits. enter electric fired. The part size name is also used in the part catalogs and appears as the object name when using tooltips. NOTE View blocks can be generated for multiple part sizes at one time. therefore.]. based on the previously selected layer standard and layer key style. it is useful for grouping similar parts. Types are predefined by the application and cannot be modified. such as front and back. View Blocks View blocks are generated and assigned by default for part sizes assigned a 3D model block that have names ending in “model”. Each topic is introduced below. 13 With the Content Builder still open.Views.Define the behavior of the air handling unit MvPart 9 For Type. they are missing a defined block. In this exercise. right.Views. The views determine how the individual part size is displayed in your drawing. and back) from the 3D model block.

The list of 3D model blocks reflects the blocks in the active drawing.Preview Image Every part family has a graphical preview image that helps during part selection. 24 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . select AHU HG350-HG400 symbol. typically a shaded model view of one of the part sizes in an SW isometric view. Add a new part size and assign a schematic symbol 1 If you have not already done so. but missing a block. Typically. Any view block assigned a name based on the 3D model block. and press Enter. you create an image using visual styles before using the Content Builder. Using the Content Builder. 4 For Symbol Block. complete the previous exercise. you assign a preview image to the part family. View blocks are assigned by default when the 3D model block name ends in “model. enter AHU HG350. and press Enter. The preview image should be a representative image of the part family.” Assigned view blocks with associated blocks display in black. 3 Double-click the value for Part Size Name. A new part size is added to the part family. displays in red. and a new row appears in the table. 2 On the Blocks & Names page. but you can also use the Content Builder to generate a preview image based on the 3D model. The same preview image is used for all part sizes of a part family. and press Enter. All unassigned view blocks display as empty fields. for Model Block. select AHU HG350-HG400 model.

click Generate Blocks. and a Preview Image to a Block-based MvPart | 25 . Exercise 3:Assigning Names.Views. Assign views 5 To create the missing view blocks for block names that display in red.The list displays the blocks in the active drawing that can be used to generate a 2D symbol block for each part size.

you named the MvPart and assigned the views and the preview image for the part.. 12 With the Content Builder still open. NOTE The symbol block is used in Isometric mode and is displayed as a 3D boundary box of the model block with 2D symbology to represent the part itself. however.. Verify that you have selected a preview image for the part family.bmp. The new part size is updated with the generated view blocks. information is missing on this page. click Select a previously drawn image. and browse to the following folder: My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Handling Units Datasets. Verify that each part size has a defined name and that all view blocks display in black. 10 Select Tutorial Air Handling Unit L01 E05. proceed to the next exercise. and select Open.View blocks are generated and named based on the associated 3D model block. you add the connectors to the part.]. If Next is unavailable (shaded). 26 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . Next. 6 Click OK. In this exercise. 7 Click Next. 11 Click Next. View block assignments are defined based on the standard display representations and view directions. Generate a preview image 8 On the Image page. you can change them as needed. 9 Click [. If Next is unavailable (shaded). information is missing on this page.

IMPORTANT The size and shape of every connector for a part size can be different. select Rectangular. and click Add Duct Connector. You can define one or more connectors for each part size of an MvPart. select Out. select False. Generally. and size. For each connector. This prevents the connector from making valid connections with unsized segments. a part has at least one connector. However. the number of connectors must be the same for all part sizes of an MvPart. For Unsized. enter Air Supply. 3 In the Part Family Connector Properties dialog. When you add or delete a connector from a part family. right-click the part family (Tutorial Air Handling Unit). For Flow Direction. specify a value for each of the connector properties: ■ ■ ■ ■ For Name. Defining connectors allows the part to be connected intelligently to other AutoCAD MEP objects in a drawing. 2 In the tree view of the part family and sizes. you can create a part that has no connectors. shape. complete Exercise 2 and Exercise 3 in this lesson. system type. Add duct connectors 1 If you have not already done so. however.Exercise 4:Assigning Connectors to a Block-based MvPart This exercise shows how to add connectors to a block-based MvPart. all part sizes are updated. you can assign unique part properties. such as domain. Exercise 4:Assigning Connectors to a Block-based MvPart | 27 . For Shape.

NOTE The connector domain is predefined based on the type of connector selected and cannot be changed in the dialog. The domain is defined once for the part family and remains the same for all part sizes. 4 Click OK, and in the tree view, expand Air Supply under AHU HG350 to see the values you specified. 5 Repeat steps 1 and 2 to add a connector named Air Return that has a flow direction of In.

The values are assigned to Air Return. Add piping and electrical connectors 6 In the tree view, right-click the part family, click Add Pipe Connector. 7 In the Part Family Connector Properties dialog, specify a value for each of the connector properties:
■ ■ ■

For Name, enter Condensate Drain. For Flow Direction, select Out. For Gauge, verify that Undefined Gauge is selected. This allows connections to all gauge types. For Unsized, select False. NOTE The connector domain and shape are predefined based on the type of connector selected and cannot be changed in the dialog. The domain and shape are defined once for the part family and remain the same for all part sizes.

28 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder

8 Click OK.

The values are assigned to Condensate Drain. 9 In the tree view, right-click the part family, and click Add Conduit Connector. 10 In the Part Family Connector Properties dialog, specify a value for each of the connector properties:
■ ■

For Name, enter Power 1. For Unsized, verify that False is selected. NOTE The connector domain and shape are predefined based on the type of connector selected and cannot be changed in the dialog. The domain and shape are defined once for the part family and remain the same for all part sizes.

Click OK.

Exercise 4:Assigning Connectors to a Block-based MvPart | 29

11 Repeat previous step to add 2 more conduit connectors named Power 2 and Controls.

Define additional properties for the connectors 12 In the tree view, under the part size (AHU HG350), right-click Air Supply, and click Edit Placement. A properties palette and drawing area are displayed.

30 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder

and press Enter. enter 1500.-1. Visual confirmation Exercise 4:Assigning Connectors to a Block-based MvPart | 31 . and for Height. You can also enter X. ■ ■ ■ For Rotation. click Edit Placement. TIP When defining the direction for connecting components to be drawn. For Width.Z values to indicate direction as provided in the table for the normal direction or flow direction. Click OK. enter 0.0. There are graphics shown on the model to visually confirm placement values such as position and normal direction. On the properties palette.13 Specify the connector properties: ■ ■ On the properties palette. ■ 14 For each remaining connector. and use osnaps to select the node at the air supply connection point. for Connection Type. The connector position is updated in the model. you can either select 2 points or specify the direction and a single point. double-click the value for Normal. select Slip Joint. right-click the connector in the tree view. enter p (Position). The connector information is displayed in the drawing area. and use the information in the table below to define the remaining connectors. To specify the location of the connector. verify that 0 is specified. enter 450.Y.

1 0 300 1400 -1.0.Power Power Condens. 32 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder .0.0 -1.Connectors Return Air Name Air Return Drain Power Power Con1 2 trols Con. and click Finish.0 0 node of left power connection node of right power connection node of controls connection Normal 0.1.0 -1.0 Rotation Width Height Diameter Nominal Diameter 0 0 0 20 25 63 63 25 15 Click OK. click Next.1 2 trols ate Drain t ra e hedd t ra e hedd t ra e hedd t ra e hedd Connection type Position slip joint node of return duct connection node of condensate drain connection 0.0.0.

you added connectors to finish building the part. and location of connection points on a part size in your drawing. This exercise shows how to test a part size in a new drawing started from the Aecb Model drawing template. Exercise 5:Testing a Block-based MvPart After you build an MvPart. In this exercise. 5 Click the path for Multi-view parts. Exercise 5:Testing a Block-based MvPart | 33 .apc. pipe. click File ➤ Save. Lesson 2 shows how to add properties to your part. and conduit segments to test the part. You can test part sizes in an existing drawing or create a new drawing to be used solely for testing. and you should be able to continue to draft the run. Testing the connection direction vectors is important as well.NOTE Additional properties are optional and can be added after the part has been created. click the MEP Catalogs tab. shape. IMPORTANT The Global profile uses design catalogs instead of tutorial catalogs as the default catalogs. 16 Save your drawing using one of these methods: ■ (Recommended) To save the drawing with a different name from the dataset. which allows you to reuse the dataset. all view representations. and click OK. and click Save. If the connection positions are not assigned correctly. 6 Select Tutorial MvParts Catalog. you can use the predefined display configurations to test the part representations. Specify the directory in which to save the file. enter a unique name. Next. Switch to the Tutorial MvParts catalog Next. Switch to the Global profile 1 Click Format menu ➤ Options. You then verify that the default direction of the compass lets you lay out the AutoCAD MEP objects in the correct direction away from the part size. you specify the Tutorial MvParts catalog as the default MvParts catalog. To overwrite the dataset with your changes. click Browse. click File ➤ Save As. ■ 17 Click File menu ➤ Exit. 3 Select the AutoCAD MEP (Global) profile. you test it in a drawing to verify the insertion point. If you have built multiple part sizes. 2 In the Options dialog. you test the air handling unit MvPart to verify that it can be used in AutoCAD MEP drawings. and each connector. the connectors might appear as graphical objects floating in space. A valid connection should be made. and click Set Current. To do this test. they match the model block geometry of the part size. and draft a run. When you start a drawing from a drawing template. Connectors are shown as graphical objects representing the size. 4 With the Options dialog still open. click Open. If the connection positions are assigned correctly. In this exercise. and browse to the following folder: My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial MvParts Catalog. This method keeps the dataset in its original form. you connect a valid AutoCAD MEP object to every part connector for each part size. it is important to test each part size. you verify the connection position of each connector by using Add grips to draw segments from the connection points. click the Profiles tab. so the custom Tutorial Air Handling Unit is available for part selection. You need to use design catalogs so you can add duct.

34 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder .. and click Open.. Test the duct connectors 13 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ SW Isometric. Tutorial MvParts Catalog ➤ Air Handling Units ➤ Tutorial Air Handling Unit.00. and click the Add grip for the return duct. select the air handling unit that you want to test. and specify a second point to end the duct segment. 15 In the Add Ducts dialog. and press Enter again to end the command. the dataset for this exercise then click . 12 Press Enter to accept the default rotation of 0. 16 In the drawing. 10 In the Add Multi-view Parts dialog. for System. 14 Select the air handling unit. 9 Enter mvpartadd.dwt. 8 In the Select template dialog..Insert the MvPart in a drawing 7 Click File menu ➤ New. move the cursor down. If you want to use . the air handling unit you completed in the previous exercise 11 In the drawing area.. Tutorial MvParts Catalog ➤ Air Handling Units Datasets ➤ Tutorial Air Handling Unit L01 E05. select Aecb Model (Global Ctb). select Return. click to specify the insertion point for the air handling unit.

such as size and shape. 19 Repeat the process you just used to draw duct segments from the supply duct connection. Exercise 5:Testing a Block-based MvPart | 35 . select Supply. 18 Press Enter to end the command. In the Add Ducts dialog. for System. are determined by the connectors to which you connect the segments. When you draw segments using Add grips.17 Verify that you can continue to draft the duct run by adding more duct segments. some of their properties.

select Standard. for System. 23 Verify that you can continue to draft the conduit run by adding more conduit segments. and click the Add grip on one of the power connectors. 21 In the Add Conduits dialog. TIP Zoom into the connection points to make it easier to select the connectors using MEP snaps. select Generic Threaded Steel. 24 Press Enter to end the command. 27 In the Add Pipes dialog. and for Routing Preference.Test the power connectors 20 Select the air handling unit. and select a second point to end the conduit segment. 36 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . move the cursor to the left. Test the pipe connector 26 Select the air handling unit. select Standard. and click the Add grip for the pipe connection. 25 Use the process you just used to add conduit segments to the other power connection and to the control connection. for System. 22 In the drawing.

28 In the drawing, move the cursor to the right, and select a second point to end the pipe segment. TIP Zoom into the connection points to make it easier to select the connectors using osnaps. 29 Verify that you can continue to draft the run by adding more pipe segments.

The pipes are displayed as 2-line due to their diameter and the configuration of the Condensate Drain system. 30 Press Enter to end the command. 31 Turn on the disconnect markers, and verify that the connections are valid:
■ ■

Click View menu ➤ Show Solution Tips. Verify that disconnect markers are not displayed where the segments join the air handling unit. Click View menu ➤ Show Solution Tips to turn off the markers.

Test the display configurations 32 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Top. 33 On the drawing window status bar at the bottom of the screen, click MEP Design, and select Mechanical - Duct - 1-Line from the list. 34 Verify that the air handling unit is represented in the Mechanical - Duct - 1-Line top view as assigned. 35 Repeat the preceding 2 steps to verify the display of the part using the other display configurations.

Test the isometric view 36 Change to the Mechanical - Duct - 2-Line display configuration. 37 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ SW Isometric.

Exercise 5:Testing a Block-based MvPart | 37

38 Verify that the full 3D model block of the air handling unit is displayed.

39 Click View menu ➤ Hide.

40 Click File menu ➤ Close. 41 At the Save changes prompt, click No to close the drawing without saving it. 42 On the MEP Catalogs tab in the Options dialog, change the Multi-view Parts catalog for the current profile (the Global profile) back to the default design catalog (C:\Document and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Autodesk\ACD-MEP 2009\enu\Aecb Catalogs\Global\MvParts\MvParts(Global).apc). 43 Click File menu ➤ Exit to end the AutoCAD MEP session. In this lesson, you inserted the air handling unit in a drawing that was started from an AutoCAD MEP template, and you tested the connectors and the display representations of the part size. Testing every

38 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder

connector is necessary to ensure that the part size can connect intelligently to other AutoCAD MEP objects. Testing the display representations of the part size is necessary to ensure that the correct part representations have been assigned to each of the predefined display configurations. If testing produces undesirable results, you should modify and retest the appropriate part sizes to ensure that they work correctly in AutoCAD MEP drawings. After you test each part size in a drawing to verify the insertion point, the view representations, and the connectors, you can use the part family in layouts. Next, you add part sizes to the part family.

Lesson 2: Modifying a Block-based MvPart
As your design develops and parts change, you can add new part sizes or modify existing part sizes using the Content Builder. When you add a new part size, the Wizard mode of the block-based building environment guides you through defining new part sizes. When you modify an existing part size, the Tabbed mode of the block-based building environment allows you to change only what you need to change. For each part size, you can change the 3D model block, the schematic symbol, the part behavior, the view blocks, the preview image, the connectors, and the property information. You use the same procedures that guided you through creating a block-based part to modify it. This lesson shows how to modify the behavior and the property information associated with the air handling unit you created in Lesson 1. It also shows how to add part sizes to a part family. You add one part size using the geometry of the existing air handling unit. You add a second part size, which has unique geometry, using a new model block.

Exercise 1:Adding Part Sizes for a Block-based MvPart
Pieces of equipment, such as air handling units, typically consist of a group of unique parts with their own geometric features. Shape, size, connection points, and properties like manufacturer or material can differ. When fundamental differences exist in the geometry of 2 air handling unit part sizes in the same part family, you cannot use a single 3D model to represent both units. To add a new part size for a unique air handling unit, you need to create an individual 3D model block for the new part size. You can create one or more part sizes from a single model block when the part sizes have the same geometry. In this exercise, you create 2 new part sizes. One part size uses the same model block you used in Lesson 1. The second part size uses a new model block, which is supplied in the dataset that accompanies this exercise. The recommended method for creating multiple part sizes for a part family is to create all of the geometry for all of the part sizes in one drawing, and then use that drawing to create all of the part sizes at once in the Wizard mode of the block-based building environment. Because this tutorial covers the creation of part sizes in separate exercises, a variation of this workflow is used: The 3D model and the schematic symbol for the new part size are added to the source drawing file for Tutorial Air Handling Unit L02 E01. You can use this method if you need to add part sizes with different geometry to an existing part family. However, you must be sure to add the geometry of the new part size to the source drawing file of the part family in the part catalog. Add a part size for the air handling unit 1 Start the software using the Content Tools Tutorial Profile shortcut. If the software is already started, if necessary, set current the Content Tools Tutorial profile using the Profiles tab in the Options dialog. 2 Click CAD Manager menu ➤ Content Editing ➤ Content Builder. 3 In the Getting Started dialog, verify that Multi-view Part is selected for Part Domain. 4 Expand Air Handling Units Datasets, and select Tutorial Air Handling Unit L02 E01.

Lesson 2: Modifying a Block-based MvPart | 39

and click Next again to accept the preview image for the part family. 14 Specify a symbol for each new part size: ■ ■ For AHU HG400. and click OK. and press Enter. the individual part sizes are associated with a part family in a catalog to build a library of parts. The 3D block and the symbol block were created in the exercise drawing. select AHU HG400. 10 Verify that AHU HG700 is specified for the Part Size Name parameter for the third part size. select AHU HG350-HG400 model for Model Block. All 2D views are generated for the 3D model block. select AHU HG700 model for Model Block. 15 Click Next. 12 In the Views dialog. 11 Click Generate Blocks. 13 Repeat the previous 2 steps for part size AHU HG700.The 3D model and the schematic symbol for the part size you are adding is stored in the source drawing for this part. In this environment. 9 Click . 40 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . For AHU HG700. and press Enter. You work in the block-based building environment of the Content Builder to define part sizes based on the 3D model blocks you created previously. enter AHU HG400. 5 Click (Add Part Size). select AHU HG700 symbol for the Symbol Block parameter. 6 Click Next to accept the part behavior that you defined in Lesson 1 for the part family. select AHU HG350-HG400 symbol for the Symbol Block parameter. and press Enter. 8 Double-click the Part Size Name parameter for the second part size. for Part Size Name. and press Enter. 7 Click (Add Part Size). All part sizes within a part family are defined as the same type and are placed in your drawing with the same behavior.

All part sizes in the part family use the same preview image. you must use the same name for both the parameter and the property. the size and location of the connectors are the same for each part size. 16 On the Connectors tab. Next. The shape and domain of a connector can be changed for the entire part family only. a list. Insert each air handling unit in a drawing started from an AutoCAD MEP template. and test the connectors and display representations of the part size. the data storage. Exercise 2: Modifying the Behavior and Property Information of a Block-based MvPart This exercise shows how to change the insertion behavior of a block-based MvPart and add property information to the part. edit the placement and the connection types of the connectors for the 2 new part sizes: AHU HG400 and AHU HG700. You can add custom properties to any property set in a drawing. you were able to create an air handling unit in Lesson 1 without specifying information on the Properties tab. Therefore. the data type. Testing the display representations of the part size is necessary to ensure that the correct part representations have been assigned for each of the predefined display configurations. or even the paint color. You assign connectors to the part family and specify the shape and domain for each connector. Property information is optional. the units. To ensure that the parameter is recognized. and click (Modify Part Size). select Tutorial Air Handling Unit L02 E02. The preview image helps to identify the part during part selection. the size and location of connectors can change for each part size. view representations. You can store property values as a table. For this air handling unit MvPart. you need to test it in a drawing to verify the insertion point. You can assign a custom property parameter to a property set to enhance a schedule. Using the Content Builder. You can also create custom property sets based on new parts you create and custom parameters you add to the parts. Custom properties can be added for information such as the manufacturer. Custom property information can help you to identify the part during design and can be used to enhance schedules. The part is saved in the catalog with the new part sizes. 17 Click Next. you add a custom property parameter to a part and specify the description. all part sizes have the same number of connectors predefined with a shape and domain. or a calculated value. Testing every connector is necessary to ensure that the part size can connect intelligently to other AutoCAD MEP objects. Use the same values you used for the AHU HG350 part size in Lesson 1 in Exercise 4: Assigning Connectors to a Block-based MvPart on page 27. therefore. You can add custom properties for a part family or for an individual part size. and connectors. however. 18 Test each part size in a drawing. you modify the insertion behavior and property parameters of the air handling unit you created in Lesson 1. and click Finish to accept the properties assigned to the new part sizes. you added 2 new part sizes for the air handling unit. the cost. After you build an MvPart. In this exercise. verify that MvPart is selected for Part Domain. Exercise 2: Modifying the Behavior and Property Information of a Block-based MvPart | 41 . a constant value. 3 Expand Air Handling Units Datasets. and the visibility. 2 In the Getting Started dialog. Modify the insertion behavior of the part 1 Click CAD Manager menu ➤ Content Editing ➤ Content Builder.

when creating an equipment schedule. 4 Change the layer on which the part is inserted when added to a drawing: ■ On the Behavior tab.. it will be placed on the Z-Equipment-G layer. you can manage layers more effectively if you place all mechanical equipment on the same layer.) Select EQUIP. (You might need to click the button twice for the dialog to populate.The Content Builder opens in the Tabbed mode for part modification. 42 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . and click OK..] button for Layer Key. click the [. ■ When you added the part to a drawing. When working with complex drawings. For example. turn off all layers except the Z-Equipment-G layer to simplify your selection of equipment for the schedule.

Add property information to the part family 5 Click the Properties tab. you can use the property set information to enhance schedules that you generate during design. In the Property Editor dialog. you can specify custom data to use as property set information for each part size. click Edit Properties. 6 With the part family (Tutorial Air Handling Unit L02 E02) selected. Exercise 2: Modifying the Behavior and Property Information of a Block-based MvPart | 43 . In turn.

9 Under Manufacturer. The parameter values are displayed. select Values. and click (New). select Custom Data 1. enter Carrier. 8 In the New Parameter dialog. 10 In the list on the toolbar. double-click the value for Manufacturer. enter Manufacturer for Name. A new parameter column is added in the Property Editor dialog. Click OK.7 In the list on the toolbar. 44 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . and click the field directly beneath the current field. verify that Constant is selected for Data Storage. select Parameter Configuration. 11 In row 1. and click OK.

select Parameter Configuration in the list on the toolbar. 14 In the New Parameter dialog. Exercise 2: Modifying the Behavior and Property Information of a Block-based MvPart | 45 . select Values. select Table for Data Storage. and click (New). Select the part family in the tree view. All part sizes are assigned the same custom property. 15 Under Weight. and click Edit Properties. 13 In the Property Editor dialog. The parameter values are displayed. and enter a new attribute value. 16 In the list on the toolbar. and then click OK. click the value. NOTE You can also edit the values of custom properties on the Properties page. A new parameter column is added in the Property Editor dialog.The custom property is added to the part family. select Custom Data 2. Add property information to a part size 12 Select AHU HG350. enter Weight for Name.

double-click the Weight parameter. The features you define in the model determine the flexibility you have to create multiple part sizes. and enter 954. the Content Builder is a unique building environment that does not support many standard AutoCAD commands. Tips for Using the Content Builder ■ ■ Use the order of the folders in the part browser as a guide to the steps involved in the creation process. Before you begin using the Content Builder to model a parametric part. The Content Builder generates views of your parametric part. You can use AutoCAD object snaps to assist in object selection. It is also important to notice the relationships between the different part sizes you want to create. Each parametric part represents a unique part family. read the following tips. You should look at the entire part you want to create. Lesson 3: Creating a Parametric Fitting This lesson shows how to create a tee fitting using the parametric building environment in the Content Builder. You added a second part size. In row 2. In this lesson. Next. You should analyze the catalog hierarchy to determine the best place to add a part family. When you create a parametric part. Although the Content Builder uses some of the tools you might be familiar with in AutoCAD. and enter 996. ■ ■ 46 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . The part is saved in the catalog with the new part sizes. which has unique geometry. you open the parametric building environment and create a parametric part. Do not use the AutoCAD EXPLODE command.17 Assign a weight to each of the part sizes: ■ ■ ■ In row 1. double-click the Weight parameter. Exploding a part deletes the part definition from the catalog. You added one part size using the geometry of the existing air handling unit. In row 3. The AutoCAD MVIEW command does not create associative views of your part. 18 Click OK twice. you added 2 new part sizes for the air handling unit. You also used the Tabbed mode of the block-based building environment to modify the insertion behavior and property parameters of the air handling unit you created in Lesson 1. and determine the relationships to establish between the different shapes. you define the features of a part and how they are associated to one another. using a new model block. decide how to break it down into simple shapes. double-click the Weight parameter. and enter 1146.

4 Verify that the Tutorial Pipe Catalog is selected. you can often use a single constraint to define the shape of more than one feature. The part configuration defines the characteristics and the behavior of the part and is required to save the part. and click (New Chapter). Exercise 1: Specifying the Part Configuration of a Parametric Fitting | 47 . see Creating a Tutorial Profile and Tutorial Shortcut on page 2 before beginning this lesson. To ensure that the part can be validated and saved correctly. delete the last constraint and consider using a dimension or a different constraint combination. 3 In the Getting Started dialog. Dimensioning small features first might restrict overall size. part type. 2 Click CAD Manager menu ➤ Content Editing ➤ Content Builder. The part configuration is defined once for a part family and remains constant for all part sizes.Tips for Modeling a Parametric Part ■ Use work planes to control the UCS orientation. define larger features that have an overall bearing on the model. Some constraint combinations may distort unconstrained features of the model. 5 In the New Chapter dialog. or the position of part content. for Part Domain. There are 4 required components of the part configuration: part description. Use a minimum number of points. Using the AutoCAD UCS command does not associate the current plane with your part. a definition is provided. you should define the part configuration before starting to model the part. You can add a chapter to a catalog or to another chapter. the first folder in the part browser is the Part Configuration folder. select Pipe. your model shape is less likely to become distorted. enter Tees for Name. Reusing points is less confusing and helps in constraining the model. Parts must be added to catalog chapters. be aware that calculated values are not available in the part Add Size filter. AutoCAD dimensions are not parametric and cannot control the size. Use both constraints and dimensions. part domain. which are equivalent to catalog folders. To minimize distortion. Dimension large features before small features. Add constraints as needed to define the model shape. Use Content Builder dimensions. and click OK. Launch the Content Builder and open the parametric building environment 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. When the parametric building environment opens. If you have not yet created a Content Tools Tutorial profile. As each component of the part configuration is introduced in this exercise. By determining model dependencies before applying constraints. When using calculated values for model parameters. Define shape before size. the shape. Use a minimum number of constraints to avoid distorted models. By applying constraints before dimensions. and part subtype. Delete or undo a dimension if the model shape is distorted. Catalog chapters organize and store part families and individual part sizes. ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ Exercise 1: Specifying the Part Configuration of a Parametric Fitting This exercise shows how to specify the part configuration of a parametric part. If that happens.

and click OK. enter Tutorial Tee for Name. The parametric building environment is displayed. The part description applies to the part family and is displayed during part selection. the part description is the same as the part name unless a different description is entered. 48 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . By default. 8 Accept the default part description. 6 Click (New Parametric Part). and the New Parametric Part icon is available. By default.The Tees chapter is added to the tree in the part catalog browser. and press Tab. the Tees chapter is selected. 7 In the New Part dialog.

you specified the part configuration to define part behavior of the parametric tee. the type. The part domain displays the value you selected for Part Domain in the Getting Started dialog. and select Tee. a model consists of various features that have specific relationships to each other and that define the behavior of the parametric part. 10 Double-click Undefined (for part type). In the Content Builder. cable tray components. and the subtype are displayed. such as duct components. Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric Fitting This exercise shows how to create a 3D model for a parametric tee fitting. You can modify features to refine and improve your parts over time. 12 Click (Save Part Family) on the part browser toolbar to save the part family. pipe components. The values for part description and domain cannot be changed in the part browser. fan. Dataset Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric Fitting | 49 . You can select a subtype from the list or define your own subtype. while others require an extrusion or path. IMPORTANT You must use the Save Part Family icon on the part browser toolbar instead of the Save command on the File menu in order to save the full set of files that defines the part in the catalog. 11 Double-click Undefined (for part subtype). The part description displays the value you entered in the New Part dialog. the domain. conduit components. or tank) is helpful during part selection. or MvPart components. Some represent visible geometry. The list of predefined subtypes depends on the selected type. expand Part Configuration. The part type (such as elbow. The domain defines the family of parts. and some help you to position geometry precisely on a part. The list of predefined types depends on the domain you selected for the part. In this exercise. damper. tee. Next. The part subtype can be helpful during part selection because it allows you to filter a large group of parts of a similar type. Some features require that you create simple shapes or points. and select Special.Specify the part configuration 9 In the part browser. The part description. The part subtype is a category within the part type. you define a work plane on which to begin modeling your parametric part. A model is the graphical representation of a parametric part.

The Create Work Plane dialog is displayed. and press Enter. You do not need to keep your model geometry within the 750 x 750 square to construct a valid model. open Content Builder. expand Modeling. and press Enter. 3 In the Create Work Plane dialog. 7 At the Pick end point prompt. and click Add Geometry ➤ Line. Work planes provide a defined place in space from which to build a model. (Modify Part Size).375.375. 8 Press Enter to end the command. click Top. 5 Right-click Top Plane. 50 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . 6 At the Pick start point prompt. Add geometry 4 In the part browser. A work plane is an infinite plane related to one or more features of a model. expand Work Planes. enter 375.To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. and click Add Work Plane. and in the Getting Started dialog. browse to Tutorial Pipe Catalog\Tees Datasets\Tutorial Tee L03 E02. The Top Plane is created in Work Planes and is represented by a 750 unit x 750 unit square in the modeling area. enter 0. and click OK. The actual work plane has no boundaries. Click Establish a work plane 1 In the part browser. The square is displayed to help you visualize the work plane. 2 Right-click Work Planes. You must use at least one work plane to add parametric geometry.

therefore. expand Top Plane. In subsequent steps.0. The location of the line was selected for ease of modeling. The geometry of your model is displayed in the same order you created it. TIP Creating the model using 3 line segments instead of 2 gives the model more flexibility for modification in the future. entering a start point of 375. make the center point a fixed point: ■ ■ In the part browser. the second point is the center point.375.375 and an end point of 750.A line is added halfway across the middle of the 750 x 750 square to represent the X axis orientation for the part. 10 Repeat steps 6 through 9 to add a final line from 375. this line is referred to as segment 1. Right-click the second Point 2D. this line is referred to as segment 3. you could change the angle of one or both branches to an angle other than 90 degrees. In subsequent steps. For example. and click Fixed. In subsequent steps. 11 To help control parametric resizing. Expand Geometry. 9 Repeat steps 6 through 9 to add a second line. ■ Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric Fitting | 51 . this line is referred to as segment 2.375 to 375.

13 At the Select first geometry prompt. expand Constraints. each of which is constrained by 2 points. 16 In the part browser. the Content Builder displays messages that indicate the degree of freedom remaining in the part. 15 Repeat steps 13 through 15 to add a perpendicular constraint between segments 2 and 3. and click Add Constraints ➤ Perpendicular. select the X that marks the point. rather than the center of the point itself. and click Add Dimension ➤ Horizontal Distance. TIP For best results. select the left point of segment 1 as shown in the illustration below. Add dimensions 17 Use dimensions to set the length of the tee segments: ■ ■ In the part browser. and their remaining movement is restricted to a collinear path. (You might need to zoom in to see the change in color. Use care when selecting points. Coincident constraints were created when you added the 3 line segments. right-click Top Plane. At the Select first geometry prompt. select segment 1 in the modeling area. When you add constraints.) Add constraints 12 In the part browser. A rule of thumb is to use a minimal set of constraints and dimensions to achieve the parametric behavior required for your part. 52 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . Using fewer than the maximum number of constraints is adequate for most parts. ■ At the Select second geometry prompt. 14 At the Select second geometry prompt. The center of the point might be too close to other model geometry for you to select it cleanly. NOTE By constraining the part in this way. the color of the center point changes to green to indicate that it is a fixed point. zooming in and out as necessary. select the fixed point in the center of the model. Notice that 2 perpendicular constraints have been added to the existing coincident constraints. The degree of freedom is the maximum number of remaining constraints you can apply to the model. only the outermost points are free to move. select segment 3.In the modeling area. right-click Top Plane.

Neither the location of the profile in the modeling area nor the size of the radius is Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric Fitting | 53 . Dimensions are added for the 3 tee segments. you make the tee a 3D model that represents a valid part. right-click Top Plane.■ In the modeling area. By adding the cylinders. select a point outside the work plane. Add profiles 19 In the part browser. you add circular profiles to use in creating cylinder shapes for the tee. 18 Repeat step 17 to add a horizontal dimension to segment 2 and a vertical dimension to segment 3. Next. enter 75 and press Enter. The circular profile is added so that the profile geometry can be applied to tee segments in a later step. and enter 250 for the dimension value. and click Add Profile ➤ Circular. 20 At the Select center point prompt. select a location for the dimension similar to that shown below. The free point on the end of segment 1 moves to adjust to the new length. 21 At the Select radius prompt. Enter 250 for each of the dimension values. The part length resizes because the dimension controls the actual length of the line.

under Top Plane. 23 In the part browser. The second circular profile is added. you hide the dimensions to simplify the selection of model components as you complete the 3D model.critical to this process. select the larger of the 2 circular profiles. expand Dimensions. select segment 1 in the modeling area. 22 Repeat steps 20 through 22 to add a second circular profile with a radius of 50. 24 Right-click LenA1. 25 Repeat the previous step to hide the dimensions for LenA2 and LenA3. right-click Modifiers. press Enter to accept the same profile for the end of the path. 54 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . 29 At the Select end profile prompt. and click Add Path. 28 At the Select start profile prompt. the tee will support resizing of the cylinders. Next. and click Visible. As a completed parametric part. Add modifiers 26 In the part browser. 27 At the Select path geometry prompt.

In this exercise. 32 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ SW Isometric to view the 3D model. 30 Repeat steps 27 through 30 to add a path to segment 2 using the larger of the 2 circular profiles. You added lines to represent the segments of the tee. 31 Add a path to segment 3 using the smaller of the 2 circular profiles. Next. you created a work plane and added geometry for a non-reducing tee. Swept paths are added to segments 2 and 3 to complete your 3D model.Using the circular profile. applied constraints and dimensions to achieve the parametric behavior required for your part. and added cylinder shapes to create a true 3D model. a path is swept along the first segment. 33 Click (Save Part Family) on the part browser toolbar. Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric Fitting | 55 . you add connectors and define the parametric sizing behavior for the part.

Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. You also restrict the sizing behavior of the model by defining relationships among the connectors and the tee segments that make up the part. open Content Builder. 2 In the part browser. and the dimension is added to the appropriate profile. select a location near the larger of the 2 circular profiles. 6 At the Pick dimension position prompt. NOTE The location of Connector 1 determines the X axis of the part at the time of insertion. Click Add connectors 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. 56 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . 7 Repeat steps 2 through 5 to add a connector to the endpoint of segment 2 with a connector number of 2. and click Add Connection. 5 Press Enter to accept 1 as the connector number. (Modify Part Size). and in the Getting Started dialog. NOTE Connector 2 uses the same circular profile as Connector 1. and select the connector location. and select a location near the smaller of the 2 circular profiles for the dimension location. the software does not prompt you to select a dimension location.Exercise 3:Assigning Connectors to a Parametric Fitting This exercise shows how to add connectors to your 3D model. right-click Connections. therefore. Connector 1 is added to the endpoint of segment 1. 4 Hover the cursor over the endpoint of segment 1 until a circle displays at the connector location. browse to Tutorial Pipe Catalog\Tees Datasets\Tutorial Tee L03 E03. 8 Add Connector 3 to the endpoint of segment 3. 3 Move the cursor over the model to view the valid connector locations.

and click OK. respectively. Because you added all connectors. and press Enter. Save the part 9 Click on the part browser toolbar. and click [.Connectors 2 and 3 are added in the modeling area (and in Connections in the part browser). right-click Connections. 14 Repeat the process you just used to specify a Butt Welded connection type for Connector 2 and Connector 3. D1. select Butt Welded. click Uncheck All. right-click Model Parameters. Next. 12 In the Connector Properties dialog. 17 Double-click the description for LenA1. enter Length of Segment 1.]. and click Edit Connections. LenA1. Configure the connectors 11 In the part browser. 13 In the Connection Types Selection dialog. under Modeling.. Exercise 3:Assigning Connectors to a Parametric Fitting | 57 . 15 Click OK. 10 Because you have not yet configured the connectors and the part sizing behavior. D2. select Undefined for Type. LenA2.. and LenA3 are the lengths of the 3 segments. Refine the descriptions of the model components 16 In the part browser. you edit the model parameters to refine the descriptions and restrict the sizing behavior of the part. and click Edit. 18 Edit the descriptions for LenA2 and LenA3. and you have the option of making the part available for use in piping layouts. the part is validated as a tee. Each parameter of the model is displayed for editing. you refine the descriptions for the segment length parameters for clarity. under Connector 1. and D3 are the diameters of the 3 connectors. click No to keep the part hidden. First. entering Length of Segment 2 and Length of Segment 3. The connector types are defined.

all 3 of the connectors are restricted to the same size. and press Enter. most equations are numerical values that represent the current size in the model. functional description for each parameter is helpful when adding part sizes. LenA1. You can modify the numerical values in the Model Parameters dialog to rescale the model according to the size restrictions you defined. 20 Double-click the equation value for LenA2. enter LenA1. and the remaining parameters are sized automatically. as the length of segment 1 changes size. By making D3 equal to D1. Any equations that remain as numerical values can be “sized” using a table of part sizes. and 150 for LenA3.Having a clear. this means that you can define a size combination for D1. 22 Click Close. 200 for LenA1. enter D1. 21 Modify the Equation values by entering 125 for D1. In your model. the length of segment 2 changes size to match. you restrict the sizing of the tee segments. The equations for both D1 and D3 are numerical values based on the profiles you used to model the part. and press Enter. double-click the Equation value for D3. 19 Still in the Model Parameters dialog. D2 is an equation that is set equal to D1 because you used the same profile for connectors 1 and 2 when you modeled the part. By making LenA2 equal to LenA1. Restrict the sizing behavior of the part By default. Next. and LenA3. 58 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder .

click (Save Part Family). Assigning equations to the parameters of the model. and click Visible to turn off visibility. right-click one of the Circular Profile nodes. 25 Under Dimensions. Hide the profiles and profile dimensions 23 In the part browser. The circular profiles and associated dimensions are hidden. you edited descriptions to clarify the function of each parameter.The model rescales using the new equations. 27 On the part browser toolbar. Through the exercises in this lesson. 26 Repeat the previous step to turn off visibility for dimension D3. 24 Repeat the previous step to turn off visibility for the second circular profile. Adding dimensions to the model. right-click D1. you added connectors to your part and configured the connector properties to complete a valid model. In the Model Parameters dialog. you have been introduced to 3 methods for controlling a model: ■ ■ ■ Applying geometric constraints to the model. 28 In the validation message box. Exercise 3:Assigning Connectors to a Parametric Fitting | 59 . click No to keep the part hidden and prevent the part from being used in layouts. under Top Plane. In this exercise. Only the finished model is displayed. and click Visible. You also used equations to restrict the sizing behavior of the model. Next. you add part sizes for the tee.

and they cannot be edited. Notice that more parameters are associated with the part than were evident in the Model Parameters dialog. Also. and click Edit Configuration. 3 Scroll to the right to view all of the parameters. open Content Builder. 60 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder .Exercise 4:Adding Part Sizes to a Parametric Fitting This exercise shows how to add part sizes to the parametric tee you created. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. (Modify Part Size). You can resize this dialog as needed. By default. Using a table for data storage requires entering parameter values in a table where each row represents a specific part size. NOTE The D3 and LenA2 parameters that you set using equations in the Model Parameters dialog are assigned a value of Calculation in the Size Parameters dialog. 2 In the part browser. Click Edit part sizes 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. are the common size names. The nominal diameters. If you change the data storage value for an actual diameter parameter. To modify parameters with calculated values. browse to Tutorial Pipe Catalog\Tees Datasets\Tutorial Tee L03 E04. the value of Data Storage for the D1 parameter is Table. The Size Parameters dialog is displayed. ND2. such as ND1. The actual diameters. such as D1. you should specify the same data storage value for the corresponding nominal diameter parameter. and in the Getting Started dialog. right-click Size Parameters. 3 nominal diameter parameters (ND1. and ND3) have been added because the part is a pipe fitting. you need to use Model Parameters. are the true outer diameters of the pipe. One non-graphical parameter required for this part has been added: PrtSN (part size name).

and D3 is False. Add part sizes 10 For the 4 part sizes. clicking New adds a new cell to the list. enter the following values for ND1 and for D1: Part Size Name 1 2 ND1 Value D1 Value 100 150 110 160 Exercise 4:Adding Part Sizes to a Parametric Fitting | 61 . Visible parameters are available during part selection. D2. NOTE The Table and List data storage types activate the (New) icon. and click (New) on the Size Parameters toolbar. clicking New adds a new row.4 Select Table for Data Storage for LenA1 and for LenA3. When List is selected. 9 Repeat step 8 to create a total of 4 rows. part selection is based on nominal diameter values. 6 Select Values in the toolbar. 7 Click (Autosize column text) on the Size Parameters toolbar. When Table is selected. By making the actual diameters invisible in the part filter. 5 Note that the value of Visible for D1. This resizes the columns to accommodate the length of the text display. 8 Select row 1.

CEL2. 12 In row 4. and CEL3 (Connector Engagement Length).Part Size Name 3 4 ND1 Value D1 Value 200 250 225 280 To add a value. double-click the LenA1 value. and LenA3 values are edited to specify various segment lengths for the part sizes you are creating. 11 In row 1. double-click the field. enter the value. Notice that the ND2 and ND3 values are updated to reflect the new ND1 values. Because LenA2 is a calculation that is set equal to LenA1. Notice that the LenA2 value is updated to reflect the new LenA1 value. and then select a different field.00001 for CEL1. double-click the LenA1 value. and select a different field. enter 300. changing the size of LenA1 causes the same change to LenA2. Because ND2 and ND3 are calculations that are set equal to ND1. changing the size of ND1 causes the same change to ND2 and ND3. 13 Repeat the process you just used to enter LenA3 values of 200 in row 1 and 300 in row 4. The LenA1. The D1. enter a value of . LenA2. Next. you edit the segment lengths. enter 200. 62 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . D2. 14 For all 4 of the parts. and select a different field. and D3 values are edited to specify various connector sizes for the part sizes you are creating. You can also use the Copy and Paste commands on the context menu.

click (Generate Bitmap). NOTE When you add a fitting to a drawing. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. 16 On the Content Builder toolbar. such as SW isometric. you generate a preview image for the tee and define the part insertion behavior. Exercise 5: Generating a Preview Image and Defining Insertion Behavior for a Parametric Fitting | 63 . The placement point is a location on the model that is used as the insertion point for the part when it is added to a drawing during autolayout using the Add Pipe command. 15 Click OK to add the part sizes. Insertion behaviors for a parametric fitting are defined by the trim lengths and a placement point. In this exercise. Next. therefore. click No to keep the part hidden and prevent the part from being used in layouts. you do not specify a layer key for a fitting during the part creation process. 2 On the part browser toolbar.NOTE The software does not permit a value of zero. browse to Tutorial Pipe Catalog\Tees Datasets\Tutorial Tee L03 E05. (Modify Part Size). the layer is determined by the connecting objects. The same preview image is used for all part sizes of a part family. The trim lengths define the distance that a connecting segment is trimmed in order for the fitting to be placed in the run. 17 In the validation message box. and in the Getting Started dialog. you created 4 part sizes. click (Save Part Family). From a single 3D model. The preview image is helpful in identifying the part when you select the part for insertion in a drawing. You can create as many part sizes as you need for the systems you design. open Content Builder. Click Generate a preview image 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. you added part sizes for the tee. Exercise 5: Generating a Preview Image and Defining Insertion Behavior for a Parametric Fitting This exercise shows how to generate a preview image for the tee and define the part behaviors that determine how the tee is added to a drawing. A preview image is a bitmap (BMP) image that is generated based on a specified view direction.

64 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . 8 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Top. 6 In the Options dialog. and in the confirmation dialog. click (Options). Define trim lengths 5 On the part browser toolbar. If you create your own bitmap image. you can click Browser in the Bitmap Preview dialog to navigate to the image. in the Value column. 7 Click OK. and trim length points are displayed on the model in the modeling area. under Generate View. Autolayout Data is added to Modeling in the part browser. click the SW Isometric view. to generate a preview image using NOTE Alternatively. 4 Click OK. click OK again to confirm setting the connection type of all connectors to the value of Connector 1. you can create an image of the part before using the Content Builder.3 In the Bitmap Preview dialog. select Auto Layout Flag.

11 Specify the trim length for segment 1: ■ At the Select start of trim length 1 prompt. NOTE For best results. 12 Repeat steps 9 and 10 to specify the trim length for segment 2. expand Modeling. and the endpoint of segment 3 for the end. Add a placement point 14 In the part browser. select the fixed point in the center of the model. This is the location at which connecting pipe segments would intersect if they were extended along their logical paths. 13 Add a trim length for segment 3. right-click Layout Data. For the start of the trim length. right-click Layout Data. selecting the fixed point in the center for the start. select the fixed point in the center of the model. Use care when selecting points. rather than the center of the point itself. select the endpoint of segment 2. expand Autolayout Data. The placement Exercise 5: Generating a Preview Image and Defining Insertion Behavior for a Parametric Fitting | 65 . and click Add Trim Length. zooming in and out as necessary. For the end of the trim length. and click Select Placement Point. ■ At the Select end of trim length 1 prompt. select the endpoint of segment 1.9 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Plan View ➤ World UCS. Trim length lines are displayed between the selected points. select the cyan circle that surrounds the fixed point at the center of the model. A placement point is displayed at the selected location. 15 At the Select a placement point prompt. 10 In the part browser under Modeling. If Autolayout Data is not visible in the part browser. select the cyan circle that surrounds the point. The center of the point might be too close to other model geometry for you to select it cleanly.

you should perform a visual inspection of each part size using the Parametric Object Viewer. These part behaviors determine how the tee is added to a drawing and must be defined for any fitting you create. You must correct all errors before you can save the part and add it to a drawing. browse to Tutorial Pipe Catalog\Tees Datasets\Tutorial Tee L03 E06. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. you generated a preview image for the tee using the SW isometric view. 2 In the part browser. 16 On the part browser toolbar. open Content Builder. and in the Getting Started dialog. After verifying that each part size appears sound. Validation checks the model and detects any errors that make the part unusable or invalid. Exercise 6:Validating and Saving a Parametric Fitting After you complete your 3D model. and click Edit Values.point is used as the insertion point for the tee fitting when it is added to a drawing during autolayout using the Add Pipe command. right-click Size Parameters. You also defined the trim lengths and the placement point of the tee. 17 In the validation message box. 66 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . select row 1. you must validate and save the model. In this exercise. (Modify Part Size). Click Preview part sizes 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. This preview image is used during part selection for all of the part sizes in the part family. click (Save Part Family). 3 In the Size Parameters dialog. and click (Preview Part). click No to keep the part hidden and prevent the part from being used in layouts.

select a point on the ViewCube in the upper right corner to inspect the 3D model dynamically from various viewpoints. 4 Click (3D Orbit) to view the model using 3D orbit navigation. Exercise 6:Validating and Saving a Parametric Fitting | 67 . 6 Select SW Isometric from the list of views. 7 With the Parametric Object Viewer open. and then continue to inspect the model using 3D orbit navigation. 5 In the Parametric Object Viewer.The Parametric Object Viewer opens with the tee displayed. select row 2 in the Size Parameters dialog. The next part size is displayed in the Viewer.

you generated a preview image for 68 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . repeating this process until all of the part sizes appeared sound.TIP Click to zoom to the extents of the model. 11 Click OK to close the Size Parameters dialog. If the validation check had detected errors in your model. you specified the part configuration for a tee fitting and created a 3D model of the part. 9 Repeat steps 7 and 8 for the remaining part sizes. 8 Inspect the model from various viewpoints to verify that the model appears sound. make the necessary modifications. 10 Click Validate the part 12 On the part browser toolbar. You would review the errors. error messages would be displayed in the Part Family Validation Results dialog. Warnings in the Part Family Validation Results dialog do not make the part invalid. After you finalized the model. If errors had been detected in your model. you would make the necessary modifications and inspect the part sizes again. If your inspection revealed problems. 14 Click Close. 17 Click File menu ➤ Exit. and the status bar is updated as shown below. to close the Parametric Object Viewer. click (Save Part Family). 13 Click to view the results of the validation check. repeating this process until validation was successful. A message box gives you the option of making the part available for use in piping layouts. this would have been indicated on the status bar. Click to resume 3D orbit viewing. and perform another validation check. You added part size information to the model to enable your single 3D model to represent multiple part sizes. 16 Click Yes to make the part available for use. including connectors and dimensions. click (Validate). The part is validated. In this lesson. such as segments that joined improperly. Save the part 15 On the part browser toolbar.

A connector is dependent on the model feature to which it is attached. After successfully validating your model. which are summarized below. only one part can exist in a drawing. The model is defined in terms of the size. The part configuration defines the characteristics and behavior of the entire part family. Validation checks the model and detects any errors that make the part invalid. domain.the part by taking a snapshot of the model. To better conceptualize the size and the shape of the part model. You specify the type and subtype of the part to establish basic part behavior. The individual drawings are associated with a part catalog to build a library of parts. You can then add other sizes. and subtype) were introduced in Lesson 3 and are reviewed in this lesson. Exercise 1: Specifying the Part Configuration of a Parametric MvPart This exercise shows how to specify the part configuration of a parametric MvPart. you used the Parametric Object Viewer to perform a visual inspection of each part size. you define the shape and size of each connector when you add it to the model. You must correct all errors in order to successfully save the part and add it to a drawing. 3 Add connectors to the part. type. You can restrict how the features of the parts fit together. you define constraints and dimensions that determine how your part is built. you generate a preview image for the part by taking a snapshot of the model. 7 Validate and save the part. the shape. The 4 components of the part configuration (description. create a schematic symbol. you also create a schematic symbol. to a dimension to create individual part sizes. For MvParts. In this environment. you must validate the model and save the part. You work in the parametric building environment to create single parametric parts. After you finish the model. you specify the insertion behavior that controls how the part is placed in a drawing. following the same workflow you used to create a parametric tee fitting in Lesson 3. that are parametrically combined to define the part. Dimensions are used to define the default size of a parametric MvPart. therefore. 5 Add individual part sizes to the part. You create models of 3D parts and use them to dynamically generate 2D drawing views of your parts. Lesson 4: Creating a Parametric MvPart This lesson shows how to create a parametric air terminal MvPart with the Content Builder. and you validated the model to check for errors. You add model dimensions to define the overall size of the model. Lastly. You build your part from blocks. and is required to save the part. This lesson expands upon the concepts and work processes introduced in Lesson 3. This enables a single 3D model to represent multiple part sizes. you saved the part and made it available for use in drawings. You also specified the insertion behavior that controls how the part is added to a drawing. After you defined all required part information. Adding dimensions and other part size information to the model defines the part sizes that can be dynamically generated from the model. Lesson 4: Creating a Parametric MvPart | 69 . and the position of its features. In order to use the part in a drawing. such as a list of values. 4 Add dimensions to the part. You add connectors to the part to enable the part to intelligently connect to other AutoCAD MEP objects in your layout. and define the insertion behaviors of the part. 6 Generate a preview image. or features. 2 Create a 3D model of the part. 1 Specify the part configuration.

By default. and click OK. 2 Click CAD Manager menu ➤ Content Editing ➤ Content Builder. and click OK.Launch the Content Builder and open the parametric building environment 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. for Name. You can add a chapter to a catalog or to another chapter. Parts must be added to catalog chapters. The part description applies to the part family and is displayed during part selection. enter Air Terminals. 70 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . which are equivalent to catalog folders. Be sure to click the New Parametric Part icon. Catalog chapters organize and store part families and individual part sizes. The Air Terminals chapter is added to the tree in the part catalog browser. the part description is the same as the part name unless a different description is entered. IMPORTANT When you select MvPart for Part Domain. see Creating a Tutorial Profile and Tutorial Shortcut on page 2 before beginning this lesson. 8 Accept the default part description. for Part Domain. 6 Click (New Parametric Part) to create a parametric part. enter Tutorial Air Terminal for Name. and press Tab. 5 In the New Chapter dialog. and click (New Chapter). 3 In the Getting Started dialog. both the New Block Part and the New Parametric Part icons are activated. 4 Verify that Tutorial MvParts Catalog is selected. 7 In the New Part dialog. If you have not yet created a Content Tools Tutorial profile. select Multi-view Part.

11 Double-click Undefined (for subtype). and select Diffuser. You can select a subtype from the list or define your own subtype. 10 Double-click Undefined (for type). or tank) is helpful during part selection. The part subtype is a category within the part type. The part type (such as elbow. respectively. and the subtype. The types that are available on the list depend on the domain you selected for the part. The part description. cable tray components.The parametric building environment is displayed. Specify the part configuration 9 In the part browser. the domain. the type. The subtypes that are available on the list depend on the part type you selected. Exercise 1: Specifying the Part Configuration of a Parametric MvPart | 71 . expand Part Configuration. conduit components. The part subtype can be helpful during part selection by allowing you to filter a large group of parts of a similar type. The values for the description and the domain cannot be changed in the part browser. pipe components. The domain defines the family of parts. and select Air Terminal. or MvPart components. such as duct components. tee. are displayed. fan. You defined the domain as MvPart in the Getting Started dialog and the description as Tutorial Air Terminal in the New Part dialog. damper.

(Modify 5 To add a work plane for the bottom face of the diffuser. and then you add the smaller features. 13 In the validation message box. click No. you begin by defining work planes on which to create the geometry of the model. and in the Getting Started dialog. and click OK. To avoid distortion in the model. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. open Content Builder. you create work planes on which to begin modeling the geometry of the parametric MvPart. In this exercise. right-click Work Planes. select the top work plane for the reference work plane. and click Add Work Plane. The Offset Bottom work plane is created below the Top Plane work plane. click Top. Next. 4 In the Create Work Plane dialog. and click OK. browse to Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Terminals Datasets\Tutorial Air Terminal L04 E02. 6 Click Offset. Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric MvPart To model a parametric part. enter Offset Bottom for Name. right-click Work Planes. You then create profiles and apply modifiers to define the shape and the default size of the part. expand Modeling. Each parametric part must have a defined part configuration in order for the part to be saved in a catalog for use in drawings. Add work planes 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. The Top Plane work plane is created. 3 To add a work plane for the top face of the diffuser. you specified the part configuration of the parametric air terminal MvPart to define the part behavior. 2 In the part browser. and press Enter.12 Click (Save Part Family) on the part browser toolbar. Click Part Size). enter 300 for the offset distance. you model the larger features first because they have more impact on the overall size of the part. 7 In the modeling area. and click Add Work Plane. 72 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder .

9 In the part browser. and click Add Profile ➤ Rectangular. Add geometry 11 To create the top face of the diffuser. 10 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Top. click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ SW Isometric. expand Work Planes. which includes the default constraints of the rectangular profile. and click Add Profile ➤ Rectangular. When you select a work plane in the part browser.8 To view both work planes. A rectangular profile for the top face is created and is added to Top Plane in the part browser. 12 In the modeling area. A Constraints node. right-click Offset Bottom. in the part browser. specify opposite points for the first corner and the second corner of the rectangle. is also added to Top Plane. 13 To create the bottom face of the diffuser. the work plane is highlighted in the modeling area. Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric MvPart | 73 . right-click Top Plane. in the part browser.

right-click Top Plane. 21 Select the existing point in the center of the top-face rectangular profile. 74 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . 18 In the modeling area. 16 In the modeling area. NOTE When you add constraints. select a point near the center of the top-face rectangular profile. 20 To ensure the alignment of the top and bottom faces. select the point in the center of the top face. specify the pairs of geometric constraints: ■ For the first pair. and click Add Geometry ➤ Point. A rule of thumb is to use a minimal set of constraints and dimensions to define the shape and achieve the parametric behavior required for your part. A Constraints node. and then select the right edge of the top-face rectangular profile. and then select the left edge of the top-face rectangular profile. is also added to Offset Bottom. The model of the top face is updated to the specified constraints. Add constraints to align the faces 15 In the part browser. and click Add Constraints ➤ Equal Distance. specify opposite points for the first corner and the second corner of the rectangle. ■ The model of the top face is updated to the specified constraint. 17 In the part browser. The degree of freedom is the maximum number of remaining constraints you can apply to the model. in the part browser. select the point in the center of the top face. which includes the default constraints of the rectangular profile. right-click Offset Bottom. and click Add Geometry ➤ Point Reference. A rectangular profile for the bottom face is created and is added to Offset Bottom in the part browser.14 In the modeling area. and press Enter. the Content Builder displays messages that indicate the degree of freedom remaining in the part. right-click Top Plane. For the second pair. 19 Repeat steps 17 and 18 to constrain the upper and lower edges of the top face.

Exercise 2: Creating a 3D Model for a Parametric MvPart | 75 . using the reference point in the center of the bottom face. 22 Substituting Offset Bottom for Top Plane. repeat steps 17 through 19 to constrain all 4 of the edges of the bottom face. The model of the bottom face is updated to the specified constraints.A reference point is added to the Offset Bottom work plane. Apply the modifiers 23 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ SW Isometric.

and click Add Transition. select a corner point of the profile rather than one of the edges. TIP To select the bottom-face profile while the transition modifier is displayed. select Blind. and click Add Extrusion. and click OK. for Type. select the top-face rectangular profile for the start profile. and for Distance.The modeling area is changed to a 3D isometric view. enter 25. right-click Modifiers. 25 In the modeling area. A transitional box is created to represent the diffuser. 27 Select one of the corner points of the bottom-face profile. and a transition modifier is added to Modifiers in the part browser. 29 Select Flip. in the part browser. 76 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . 28 In the Extrusion Modifier dialog. 26 To add the lip of the diffuser. 24 In the part browser. right-click Modifiers. making it easier to view the modifiers as you add them. and select the bottom-face rectangular profile for the end profile.

4 To add the flex duct connector to the top face of the diffuser. select Node. in the part browser. 3 In Drafting Settings ➤ General. The air terminal has a single connector on the top face of the diffuser to provide a connection point for flex duct. TIP If the Top Plane node is not visible in the part browser. you modeled the top and bottom faces and the transition geometry of an air terminal MvPart. Add a connector 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. use the Node osnap to select the center point. 31 In the validation message box. After adding the rectangular profiles for the top and bottom faces. 2 Right-click Object Snap on the application status bar. you added a reference point and applied constraints to align the faces. 30 Click on the part browser toolbar. and click Settings. You added a transition modifier to model the diffuser box and an extension modifier to model the lip of the diffuser. you define its default size.The lip of the diffuser is created. right-click Top Plane. Exercise 3:Assigning Connectors to a Parametric MvPart This exercise shows how to add connectors to the parametric air terminal MvPart so that it can be used to create intelligent networks. and then press Enter. click No. you configure it by assigning a connection domain and type. Click Part Size). you add connectors to the model. enter 30 for the radius. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. 5 In the modeling area. When you add this connector to the model. Select the point in the center of the top face of the diffuser. (Modify Exercise 3:Assigning Connectors to a Parametric MvPart | 77 . The shape of the connector is determined by the shape of the modifier to which the connector is attached. and click Add Profile ➤ Circular. Next. In this exercise. expand Modeling and Work Planes. and click OK. and in the Getting Started dialog. open Content Builder. After you add the connector. browse to Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Terminals Datasets\Tutorial Air Terminal L04 E03.

right-click Modifiers. and click Add Extrusion. and click Add Connection. right-click Top Plane. 12 Select the center point of the top of the flex duct connector. select the circular profile for the first geometry. and press Enter to accept the default value for the connector number. You are prompted to select the connector location. 6 In the part browser.A circular profile for the flex duct connector is created and is added to Top Plane. 9 Select the circular profile on the top face. and the top and bottom of the flex duct connector. for Type. select Blind. 10 In the Extrusion Modifier dialog. enter 25. The geometry for the flex duct connector is created. As you move the cursor around in the modeling area. 7 In the modeling area. 8 In the part browser. in the part browser. it snaps to 4 possible locations for a connector: the top and bottom faces of the diffuser. Click OK. right-click Connections. and select the point in the center of the top face for the second geometry. and for Distance. 78 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . and click Add Constraints ➤ Concentric. 11 To add a connector. A concentric constraint is added to the Top Plane Constraints.

NOTE Connectors are assigned an undefined type by default. and so on. Connector domains are dependent on the specified shape of the modifier to which the connector is attached..]. select Duct.NOTE The default connector numbers are assigned in ascending numeric order. 18 In the part browser. and click [. Configure the connector 14 To define the domain and the type of the connection for the connector. the second connector is 2. Exercise 3:Assigning Connectors to a Parametric MvPart | 79 . The first connector is 1. 15 In the Connector Properties dialog. Connector types are dependent on the connector domain. You can model connections for MvParts in any order.. select the current value. and click OK twice. expand Size Parameters. expand Connections. and click Edit. in the part browser. right-click Connector 1. according to the order in which the connectors are added to the model. 19 Right-click D1. 16 For Type. and click Edit. select Slip Joint. 17 In the Connection Types Selection dialog. An undefined connection type creates a valid connection between all types of connectors when inserted in a drawing. clear Undefined. A diameter dimension (D1) is added to the model (and to Size Parameters in the part browser). 13 Select a location above and to the right of the model to place the dimension for the diameter of the flex duct connector. for Domain. A connector is added to Connections.

Add model dimensions 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. you add part sizes for the parametric air terminal MvPart you created. double-click the value for D1. click Modeling ➤ Modifiers. enter 100. 3 To make it easier to add dimensions to the top and bottom faces. (Modify 80 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . 23 Click (Save Part Family) on the part browser toolbar. 24 In the validation message box. click No to keep the part hidden and prevent the part from being used in layouts. Next. and the height of the lip that is placed in the ceiling grid. browse to Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Terminals Datasets\Tutorial Air Terminal L04 E04. and press Enter. and click 22 Click OK twice. you added a flex duct connector to the air terminal MvPart and configured the connector properties to complete a valid model. or a calculation to create an individual part size. the height of the transition. You began by creating a circular profile on the Top Face work plane and adding an extrusion modifier to create a cylinder to represent the flex duct connector. This exercise shows how to add dimensions to specify the lengths and widths of the diffuser faces. Click Part Size). and in the Getting Started dialog. Repeat this process for each modifier. the height of the flex duct connector. 21 In the Edit Values dialog. and click Visible to turn off visibility. 2 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ Top. Exercise 4:Adding Dimensions to a Parametric MvPart Dimensions are used to define the default size of a parametric MvPart. open Content Builder. You can then add other sizes by changing the dimension value to a list or table of values.20 In the Size Parameters dialog. (Edit) on the toolbar. a constant value. click the value for D1. right-click a modifier. in the part browser. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. In this exercise. You then added a connector to the cylinder and defined the domain and connection type for the connector. You add model dimensions to define the overall size of the model.

you can define a constant dimension. the model display is updated to show only the profiles. Alternatively. select the points at the upper-left and upper-right corners of the top face. you can choose not to add a dimension and use the default value based on the actual size of the geometry. right-click Top Plane. and click Add Dimension ➤ Distance. and click Add Dimension ➤ Perpendicular Distance. Exercise 4:Adding Dimensions to a Parametric MvPart | 81 . 5 In the modeling area. 6 To add a dimension for the length of the top face. The value of LenA1 is a default value based on the model geometry. and select the top edge of the top face for relative line. The modifiers have been turned off. 7 In the modeling area. 4 To add a dimension for the width of the top face. right-click Top Plane.In the modeling area. select the upper-left and lower-left corner points of the top face for the geometry. in the part browser. the parameter and its value are not displayed during part size selection. in the part browser. and specify a location to place the dimension. When no dimensions are added. A length dimension (LenA1) is placed in the model and is added to Model Parameters in the part browser. NOTE For constant parameter values.

and use object snaps to specify the upper-left and lower-left corner points again to specify the default value. 10 To dimension the modifiers. right-click each of the modifiers. Length dimensions (LenA3 and LenA4) are placed in the model and are added to Model Parameters in the part browser. and the modifiers have been turned on. A length dimension (LenA2) is placed in the model and is added to Model Parameters in the part browser. in the part browser. the model is displayed in a 3D isometric view.8 Specify a location to place the dimension. The value of LenA3 and LenA4 are default values based on the model geometry. 82 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . The value of LenA2 is a default value based on the model geometry. In the modeling area. 9 Repeat steps 4 through 7 to add height and width dimensions to the bottom face on the Offset Bottom plane. and click Visible to turn on visibility. 11 Click View menu ➤ 3D Views ➤ SW Isometric.

in the part browser. and click Add Distance. and specify a location to place the dimension. and specify a location to place the dimension.12 To define the length of the flex duct connector. Exercise 4:Adding Dimensions to a Parametric MvPart | 83 . A length dimension (LenB2) is placed in the model and is added to Model Parameters in the part browser. select the flex duct connector extrusion modifier. 14 To define the height of the lip. 16 Click (Save Part Family) on the part browser toolbar. A length dimension (LenB1) is placed in the model and is added to Model Parameters in the part browser. right-click Model Dimensions. right-click Model Dimensions. in the part browser. The value of LenB1 is a default value based on the height distance of the modifier. 15 In the modeling area. The value of LenB2 is a default value based on the height distance of the modifier. and click Add Distance. 13 In the modeling area. select the lip extrusion modifier.

a constant value. It also shows how to create unique part size names using calculations. and in the Getting Started dialog. Each part size name is generated using a calculation (a formatted string of parameter values and text). browse to Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Terminals Datasets\Tutorial Air Terminal L04 E05. Click Part Size). select Values from the list. To change these values you must edit the model. select Table for the LenA1. 84 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . Changing the data storage type of these parameters to Table allows you to add a table of sizes for the lengths and widths of the top and bottom faces of the diffuser. a table of values. such as a list of values. you use a table of values to create individual part sizes. you added model dimensions to define the overall size of the air terminal model. click 1 in the table. 2 To add part sizes. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. Parameter values can be added as a list of values. open Content Builder. 4 On the toolbar. click No to keep the part hidden and prevent the part from being used in layouts. Next. NOTE Calculated values set in the model cannot be edited in the Size Parameters dialog. and click (New) on the toolbar. you can add other sizes. In this exercise. After you add the overall dimensions. This exercise shows how to use a table to add parameter values to the air terminal model to create individual part sizes. right-click Size Parameters. The parameter values are displayed. for Data Storage. to a dimension to create individual part sizes. or a calculation. Add part sizes 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. You can also create unique part size names. LenA2. LenA3. and click Edit Configuration. (Modify 3 In the Size Parameters dialog.17 In the validation message box. 5 To add a new part size. Exercise 5:Adding Part Sizes to a Parametric MvPart You can create individual part sizes by adding parameter values to your model. and LenA4 parameters. in the part browser.

Repeat this step again to add a third part size. and then paste the values in the desired parameter of your part. and then paste (Ctrl+V) the selected values in the desired parameter of your part. 9 In the Model Parameters dialog. and click OK.A part size row is added to the Edit Part Size dialog. and press Enter. and enter the values shown. select the list of values you want to add. and LenA4 parameters. double-click the LenA1. TIP You can cut and paste values from other part families using standard Microsoft® Windows cut and paste functionality (Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V). You can also cut and paste values from the Catalog Editor. Exercise 5:Adding Part Sizes to a Parametric MvPart | 85 . 6 For each part size.5*LenA4. right-click WPOf1. The LenB1 parameter has a storage type of constant. expand Model Parameters. The model is updated with the new parameters values. 7 Double-click the LenB1 value in row 1. select the size parameter you want to copy (Ctrl+C). LenA2. and click Calculator. and click Edit. Click OK. therefore. 8 In the part browser. enter 100. LenA3. the LenB1 parameter is updated for all part sizes. to add the size of the transition between the top and bottom faces. Open another part in the Content Builder. You can also create a list of values in Microsoft® Excel. LenB1 is the height of the flex duct connector. Enter 0. Click Close. double-click the Equation value for WPOf1.

Under Insert Variable. 12 In the Calculation Assistant dialog. double-click the value cell of the PrtSN parameter for 1. right-click Size Parameters. and click Edit Calculations. select LenA2. and click Insert. select LenA1. 86 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . select 0. and click Insert. and enter x at the end. The Calculation Assistant dialog is displayed. in the part browser. define the part size name: ■ ■ ■ ■ ■ For Precision. Click the value for Part Size Name. and enter mm Louver Face Ceiling Diffuser. 11 In the Size Parameters dialog. Under Insert Variable. Click the value for Part Size Name.10 To specify a unique part size name.

Exercise 6: Generating a Preview Image and Defining Insertion Behavior for a Parametric MvPart After you complete the model. Exercise 6: Generating a Preview Image and Defining Insertion Behavior for a Parametric MvPart | 87 .13 Click Evaluate to see the result. You added one row of values to the table for each part size you wanted to add. click No to keep the part hidden and prevent the part from being used in layouts. you created individual part sizes by adding table-based parameter values to the air terminal model. including insertion method. In this exercise. 15 Click OK. custom sizing. 14 Click OK. You also specified calculated values to create unique names for the individual part sizes. and layer key. you generate a preview image and specify options that define additional part behaviors. you also create a schematic symbol. For parametric MvParts. The part size name value is updated for each part. 16 In the validation message box. and click (Save Part Family) on the part browser toolbar.

draw the symbol relative to a unit scale of 1. You can also enable the Custom Part Sizing Flag to allow the creation of custom sizes that do not exist in the catalog. 2 To create a preview image. (Modify 3 In the Bitmap Preview dialog. its position on the Z axis in the World Coordinate System (WCS) is high above the WCS origin. on the toolbar. you select either the Anchor To Part or the Break Into Part option. such as SW Isometric View. 88 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . under Generate View. draw the geometry for the schematic symbol using AutoCAD lines as shown. click a view. how to assign a schematic symbol to the part. open Content Builder. which is the default view for the plane. Generate a preview image 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. and in the Getting Started dialog. for the preview image of the part. draw the symbol 10 mm x 10 mm in size. click (Generate Bitmap). expand Modeling. For example. 4 Click OK. 6 Right-click Symbol and Annotation Plane.This exercise shows how to generate a preview image for the MvPart by taking a snapshot of the model. This allows you to view all the available preview images for the part before selection. and how to specify insertion behaviors and other advanced options for the part. Insertion behaviors for a parametric MvPart are defined by specifying whether the part anchors to or breaks into another part. Assign a schematic symbol 5 In the part browser. 7 To the right of the model. browse to Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Terminals Datasets\Tutorial Air Terminal L04 E06. This changes the view direction to Top (plan) view. and you can specify a layer key for the part. Predefined images must be 200 x 200 pixels and saved with 256 colors. Although this makes the plane visible in the drawing area. When creating a parametric MvPart. Click Part Size). You can select both options to be prompted when placing the part in a drawing. To ensure that the symbol size is correct when inserting the part into a drawing. You can also click Browse to navigate to and select a predefined bitmap image. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. TIP As you select a view. so you might need to zoom out to view the plane. right-click Symbol and Annotation plane. and click Visible. the preview image window in the dialog is updated. and click Set View.

16 In the part browser. expand Autolayout Data. click (Options). 10 Select the geometry of the schematic symbol. Define insertion behavior 12 On the Content Builder toolbar. select the center of the flex duct connector. You also inserted and assigned an existing 2D AutoCAD block as the schematic symbol for the part. using osnaps. which is filtered from the selection set.. 8 In the part browser. 14 For Layer Key. 17 In the modeling area. 13 In the Options dialog.NOTE You can also insert AutoCAD blocks into the modeling area to use as the geometry of the schematic symbol.. 18 Click on the part browser toolbar. right-click Design Blocks. expand Symbol and Annotation Plane. you generated a preview image for the air terminal MvPart. This preview image is used during part selection for all part sizes in this part family. You are prompted to select a point to use as the insertion point for the MvPart when it is added to a drawing. select Anchor Part. 15 In the Select Layer Key dialog. and press Enter. A placement point is displayed at the selected location. In the part browser. right-click Layout Data. Finally. You can select any geometry except parametric geometry created using Content Builder. a design block that represents the schematic block is added to Design Blocks. and click the [. The part is now ready for validation.] button. select Louvers. 9 At the Select work plane prompt. click No to keep the part hidden and prevent the part from being used in layouts. 11 Enter n (No) to keep the source geometry in the model. and click Add Schematic Block. click the current value. press Enter to orient the symbol along the Symbol and Annotation plane. and click OK twice. and click Select Placement Point. In this exercise. you defined the insertion behaviors and the layer key to use when the part is added to a drawing. 19 In the validation message box. Exercise 6: Generating a Preview Image and Defining Insertion Behavior for a Parametric MvPart | 89 . and press Enter.

90 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . and how to save the valid model. Validation checks the model and detects any errors that make the part unusable or invalid. You must correct all errors before you can save the part and add it to a drawing. A Details button provides a list of warnings and/or errors found in your model. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. select row 1. Preview part sizes 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. After you complete your 3D model.Exercise 7:Validating and Saving a Parametric MvPart This exercise shows how to perform a visual inspection of each part size using the Parametric Object Viewer. Click Part Size). 4 Click (3D Orbit) to view the model using 3D orbit navigation. It also shows how to validate the model to detect any errors that make the part unusable. the status bar displays a description of the validation status. 2 In the part browser. you must validate and save the model. browse to Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Terminals Datasets\Tutorial Air Terminal L04 E07. you should perform a visual inspection of each part size using the Parametric Object Viewer. A traffic light shows green when the part is valid and red when the part is invalid. right-click Size Parameters. (Modify The Parametric Object Viewer opens with the air terminal displayed as a wireframe model in Top view. When you click the Validate icon on the toolbar. and click (Preview Part). 3 In the Size Parameters dialog. open Content Builder. and click Edit Values. After verifying that each part size appears sound. and in the Getting Started dialog.

5 In the Parametric Object Viewer. select a point on the ViewCube in the upper right corner to inspect the 3D model dynamically from various viewpoints. 9 Click Validate the part to close the Parametric Object Viewer. select row 2 in the Size Parameters dialog. 10 Click OK to close the Size Parameters dialog. 8 Repeat steps 6 and 7 for the remaining part sizes. 6 With the Parametric Object Viewer open. repeating this process until all of the part sizes appeared sound. such as segments that joined improperly. The part is validated. you would make the necessary modifications. and the status bar is updated as shown below. 11 Click (Validate) on the part browser toolbar. 7 Inspect the model from various viewpoints to verify that the model appears sound. and inspect the part sizes again. The next part size is displayed in the viewer. If your inspection revealed problems. Exercise 7:Validating and Saving a Parametric MvPart | 91 .

Lesson 5: Modifying a Parametric MvPart As your design develops and parts change. 15 Click Yes to make the part available for use. After successfully validating your model. such as length and width. For parts you created using the Content Builder. For example. You also specified the insertion behavior that controls how the part is added to a drawing. including geometry. You can modify a parametric part using the same procedures that guided you through creating the part. modifiers. 13 Click Close. You added part size information to the model to enable your single 3D model to represent multiple part sizes. you can change the model dimensions that determine the overall size of the model. error messages would be displayed in the Part Family Validation Results dialog. you can change a constant value to a list of values or add custom parameters for enhancing scheduling data. you saved the part and made the part available for use in drawings. Exercise 1: Modifying the Connectors and Dimensions of a Parametric MvPart You can add. and dimensions. part size parameters. you specified the part configuration for an air terminal MvPart and created a 3D model of the part. A message box gives you the option of making the part available for use in duct layouts. You can also change individual size parameters for a specific part size. you can modify parametric parts using the Content Builder. Because the shape of the connector is determined by the shape of the modifier to which the connector is attached. you used the Parametric Object Viewer to perform a visual inspection of each part size and validated your model to check for errors. constraints. 92 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . You can change part behavior. you must change the modifier in order to change the shape of the associated connector. 12 Click to view the results of the validation check. For a parametric part. Save the part 14 Click (Save Part Family) on the part browser toolbar. make the necessary modifications. If errors had been detected in your model. Warnings in the Part Family Validation Results dialog do not make the part invalid. you generated a preview image for the part by taking a snapshot of the model. you can also change the part model. delete. repeating this process until validation was successful. you would have been shown a list of errors. and connectors. and perform another validation check. You would review the errors. profiles. and edit the connectors of a parametric part. After you defined all required part information.If the validation check had detected errors in your model. In this lesson. This lesson shows how to modify the connectors and model dimensions of the parametric air terminal MvPart you created in Lesson 4. After you finalized the model. including connectors and dimensions.

and in the Getting Started dialog. and select a new size. and in the Size Parameters dialog. in the part browser. Add connector sizes 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. and notice the list of available connector sizes for each part size. double-click the D1 parameter. click Add. 2 Open the Tutorial Air Terminal L05 E01 part in the parametric part environment. and press Enter. select row 1. (3D Orbit) to view the model using 3D orbit navigation. Click Part Size). enter 200. enter 125. and click 10 Click (Preview Part). right-click Size Parameters. and click the part browser toolbar. browse to Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Terminals Datasets\Tutorial Air Terminal L05 E01. select a point on the ViewCube in the upper right corner to inspect the 3D model dynamically from various viewpoints. and press Enter. click in the D1 parameter. and click Edit Values. Preview part sizes 9 Select row 1. Exercise 1: Modifying the Connectors and Dimensions of a Parametric MvPart | 93 . 7 Click OK. 12 Keep the Parametric Object Viewer dialog open. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. (Modify 4 In the Size Parameters dialog.This exercise shows how to add a list of values for the size of the flex duct connector on the air terminal MvPart. open Content Builder. 5 In the Edit Values dialog. 3 To add connector sizes. (Edit) on 8 Double-click each of the D1 parameters. 11 In the Parametric Object Viewer. 6 Click Add.

Validate and save the part 16 Click on the part browser toolbar. 17 Click on the part browser toolbar. 15 Click OK to close the Size Parameters dialog. the connector sizes were added for each part size. After modifying the connector sizes. Next. Create a new part 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is the current profile. you viewed each part size in the Parametric Object Viewer. Exercise 2: Copying a Parametric MvPart to Create a New Part Size In the Content Builder. open Content Builder. 13 Inspect the model from various viewpoints to verify that the model appears sound. and the status bar is updated. you added a list of available sizes for the flex duct connector. Dataset To access the dataset that corresponds to this exercise. 2 Open the Tutorial Air Terminal L05 E02 part in the parametric part environment. you can create a new part by copying an existing part and modifying its parameters. In the part browser. 14 Click to close the viewer. you navigate to a part family that is similar to the new part you want to create. You can then modify size parameter values or custom data as needed to create the new part. The part is validated.The next part size is displayed in the viewer. By adding a list of connector sizes to one part size. and validated and saved the part. browse to Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Air Terminals Datasets\Tutorial Air Terminal L05 E02. 18 Click File menu ➤ Exit. Click Part Size). you save the part family with a unique name. In this exercise. (Modify 94 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . Using the Save Part Family As function. and in the Getting Started dialog. you create a new part size for the air terminal MvPart and add custom parameters to the new part. This exercise shows how to create a new part size for the air terminal MvPart and how to add a custom parameter for the finish material of the part.

and click New Chapter. Enter Air Terminals for Name. enter a description of the part. select Material. 9 In the New Parameter dialog. 6 Click OK. enter a unique name. click (New) on the Size Parameters toolbar. right-click Size Parameters. 5 For Part Name. and click Edit Configuration.3 Click (Save Part Family As) on the part browser toolbar. select the Air Terminals chapter. select Tutorial MvParts Catalog. 8 In the Size Parameters dialog. NOTE If you did not create an Air Terminals chapter in Lesson 4. 4 In the Save Part Family As dialog. The new part is opened in the Content Builder. and for Description. Exercise 2: Copying a Parametric MvPart to Create a New Part Size | 95 . and click OK. Add custom parameters 7 In the part browser. and click OK.

The Mat parameter has a storage type of constant. You then used the Save Part Family As function to create a new part family based on Tutorial Air Terminal. The part is validated. you begin exploring the Catalog Editor. 96 | Chapter 2 Using the Content Builder . 16 Click File menu ➤ Exit In this lesson. 10 For the Mat parameter. You modified the new part family by adding a custom parameter for the finish material of the part. The parameter values are displayed. and the status bar is updated. double-click the Mat parameter. 13 Click OK. and press Enter. you modified the air terminal MvPart by adding a list of values for the size of the flex duct connector on the part. select Constant for Data Storage. 11 Select Values in the toolbar. 15 Click on the part browser toolbar. Next.A new Mat parameter is added to the Size Parameters dialog. therefore. Validate and save the new part 14 Click on the part browser toolbar. enter steel with baked enamel finish. the Mat parameter is updated for all part sizes. 12 In row 1.

you use the Catalog Editor to create a part. This section of the tutorial introduces you to the Catalog Editor and shows how to create a new catalog. You can add custom properties to parts and add sizes to components. You can access the Catalog Editor from inside of or outside of AutoCAD MEP. It also shows how to open a part in the Catalog Editor and how to create a new part catalog. You can use the Catalog Editor to browse and modify part catalogs used in AutoCAD MEP. and how to add a size to an existing part. In the next lesson. Exercise 1: Opening a Part in the Catalog Editor The Catalog Editor is an external program that you run outside of the AutoCAD MEP environment. add a size to an existing part. This lesson shows how to open the Catalog Editor and introduces you to the Catalog Editor interface. you can copy and modify existing parts and catalogs. Lesson 6: Exploring the Catalog Editor The Catalog Editor is a standalone utility that provides a central location for viewing and working with part catalogs and part data. In this exercise. For information on opening the Catalog Editor from outside of AutoCAD MEP. you open the Catalog Editor from inside of AutoCAD MEP. 97 . Open a part catalog 1 Click CAD Manager menu ➤ Content Editing ➤ Catalog Editor. The Catalog Editor has Windows® Explorer-like navigation. how to create a new part. making it easy to browse through extensive catalogs of parts. see the AutoCAD MEP Help. and add web-based content to a part catalog. Using the Catalog Editor. You can also copy and paste part data between catalogs.Using the Catalog Editor 3 The Catalog Editor in AutoCAD MEP provides you with powerful tools for creating and modifying part catalogs.

and then click the View tab. 2 On the Catalog Editor toolbar. Next. use Windows® Explorer to change the display options for the folder: Click Tools menu ➤ Folder Options. 98 | Chapter 3 Using the Catalog Editor .apc. you open a part catalog. click Window menu ➤ Pulldowns ➤ CAD Manager Pulldown. NOTE If the Application Data folder is hidden. Under Advanced settings. and click OK. for Hidden files and folders. 3 Browse to the following folder: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Autodesk\ACD-MEP 2009\enu\Aecb Catalogs\Global\MvParts. click (Open). the catalogs might be in a different location.If the CAD Manager menu is not available on the menu bar. NOTE If you are using AutoCAD MEP in a network environment. 4 Select MvParts (Global). The Catalog Editor is opened with no part catalog selected. select Show hidden files and folders. and click Open. Contact your network administrator or CAD manager for the catalog location.

You can add. Yellow indicates a parameter attribute. 5 Position the cursor over the toolbar icons at the top of the Catalog Editor window to display tooltips explaining their functions. 6 In the left pane. As you select items. The right pane of the Catalog Editor shows the part data in a table view in its most primitive or “uncompiled” form. the tree view in the left pane shows the chapters and the parts within them. delete. The dimensions shown in the image depict the part parameters defined in the part model. When you open a part catalog. click Basic Table. a toolbar. 8 In the left pane. the associated part data is displayed in the right pane. The right pane shows the detailed part data in a table format. and a preview image window. 9 In the right pane. different background colors differentiate the various types of part data: ■ ■ ■ Gray indicates a parameter name. Exercise 1: Opening a Part in the Catalog Editor | 99 .The Autodesk part catalog (APC) file acts as the master file for the numerous sets of part files that comprise the catalog. and save part data in the left pane. and a rendered 3-dimensional (3D) image of the part is displayed in the preview window. copy. expand Mechanical ➤ Air Terminals ➤ Diffusers. The Catalog Editor screen is divided into 2 resizable panes and has a menu bar. When you select a part in the left pane. scroll to the right to see the parameter names. The availability of the icons depends on your current selection. the right pane is updated accordingly. Each row represents an attribute description or unique value of the parameter. To view part information. White indicates a parameter value. Each column represents a specific parameter used to define the part. The left pane of the Catalog Editor organizes the catalog into a structured tree view that you can navigate by expanding and collapsing the chapters in the tree. For clarity. paste. View part data 7 Double-click 600 x 600 mm Square Faced Ceiling Diffuser_gbm. you can resize the Catalog Editor window as well as the left and right panes.

IMPORTANT Do not accept the default location for Catalog Root Directory. you create a new part catalog. the new catalog will be created within the existing Duct catalog. Create a new part catalog 1 On the Catalog Editor toolbar. enter Tutorial Duct. click (New Catalog). Creating the new catalog as a nested catalog will prevent you from completing this tutorial. and click OK. and they can be used to limit the number of available parts during part selection. and add parts by copying and pasting chapters from another catalog. browse to the My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects folder. 2 In the New Catalog dialog. For Catalog Root Directory. select Duct. enter Tutorial Duct. add chapters to create a catalog structure. To simplify catalog creation and to ensure that you create valid parts. and then modify the part data. Exercise 2: Creating a New Part Catalog You can create custom part catalogs in the Catalog Editor.Notice that the D1 dimension shown in the preview window depicts the D1 part parameter (for the connection diameter) defined in the part model. It is recommended that custom part catalogs be created by someone who is experienced with the Catalog Editor. For Catalog Name. If you do. copy parts from an existing catalog into your new catalog. ■ ■ 100 | Chapter 3 Using the Catalog Editor . Next. For Catalog Description. This exercise shows how to define a new part catalog. define the new part catalog: ■ ■ For Domain. you opened and explored the Catalog Editor. it is loaded into a drawing. If you specify this catalog on the MEP Catalogs tab in the Options dialog. These catalogs can serve as company-specific or project-specific catalogs. In this exercise. select it. This is the name of the Autodesk product catalog (APC) file.

Exercise 2: Creating a New Part Catalog | 101 . Add a chapter to the new catalog 3 In the left pane.■ Click OK. Open a second session of the Catalog Editor Next. and click Insert ➤ Chapter. right-click Tutorial Duct. and press Enter. click CAD Manager menu ➤ Content Editing ➤ Catalog Editor. 4 Enter Round (for the chapter name). click (Open). 6 In the application window. 5 Restore the AutoCAD MEP 2009 application window so it is visible. The Round chapter is added. you open a second session of the Catalog Editor to simplify the process of copying and pasting chapters between 2 catalogs. 7 In the second session of the Catalog Editor. The Tutorial Duct catalog is created and opened in the Catalog Editor.

click Overwrite All Existing Files with New Ones. 13 In the Catalog Editor . 102 | Chapter 3 Using the Catalog Editor . 9 Select Duct (Global). and click Paste. 12 In the left pane of the Catalog Editor session that has the Tutorial Duct catalog opened. right-click Elbows. you might get an overwrite prompt more than once. and click Copy. Customize the new catalog by copying and pasting existing content 11 In the left pane of the Catalog Editor session that has the Duct (Global) catalog opened.File Save dialog. NOTE When you copy and paste a chapter. expand Round. browse to the following folder: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Autodesk\ACD-MEP 2008\enu\Aecb Catalogs\Global\Duct.8 In the Open dialog. right-click Round. 10 Restore the first session of the Catalog Editor. the Catalog Editor copies and pastes the entire chapter. Each time you are prompted. click Overwrite All Existing Files with New Ones.apc. Depending on the regeneration of the catalog. including its part families. and click Open. and arrange the 2 Catalog Editor windows side-by-side for easy viewing.

Depending on the regeneration of the catalog. Exercise 2: Creating a New Part Catalog | 103 . NOTE The speed of your system determines the amount of time needed to copy the Rectangular chapter and to paste it into the Tutorial Duct Catalog in the next step. 15 In the left pane of the Catalog Editor session that has the Tutorial Duct catalog opened. click Overwrite All Existing Files with New Ones. right-click Tutorial Duct. 14 In the left pane of the Catalog Editor session that has the Duct (Global) catalog opened. and click Paste. Each time you are prompted. and click Copy. right-click Rectangular. The Elbows chapter is added to the Tutorial Duct catalog. you may get an overwrite prompt more than once. click Overwrite All Existing Files with New Ones. 16 When you are prompted to confirm the overwriting of files. No hourglass is displayed while the copy/paste operation is in progress. No hourglass is displayed while the operation is in progress.NOTE The speed of your system determines the amount of time needed to copy and paste the Elbows chapter.

This exercise shows how to create a new part based on an existing part in the Catalog Editor. A part catalog can be used in AutoCAD MEP only if regeneration has been completed successfully.File Save dialog. click Overwrite All Existing Files with New Ones. When copying and pasting parts within the same catalog. Copy a part family to modify 1 If the Tutorial Duct catalog that you created in the previous lesson is not already open in the Catalog Editor. 18 In the Catalog Editor . Having unique part IDs for custom parts prevents your new parts from being overwritten when you update the standard AutoCAD MEP content. click OK. You will use it in the next lesson. It also shows how to add web-based content to a part catalog. The catalog is regenerated by updating the APC file. 21 In the Catalog Editor session that has the Duct (Global) catalog opened.The Rectangular chapter is added to the Tutorial Duct catalog. IMPORTANT Be sure to save the Tutorial Duct Catalog. click session. Dataset Use the Tutorial Duct catalog (APC file) you created and saved in the previous lesson. This lesson shows how to work with the Catalog Editor to create a new part and add a part size to an existing part. You use this catalog as the basis for your work in the next lesson. you can copy and modify existing parts and catalogs. to close the In this lesson. unique part IDs are generated for the new parts. You can also add custom properties and sizes to parts. Lesson 7:Working in the Catalog Editor Using the Catalog Editor. click (Regenerate Catalog). Exercise 1: Creating a Part in the Catalog Editor You can create new parts in the Catalog Editor by copying and modifying existing parts. and keep the catalog open for the next lesson. 20 On the Catalog Editor toolbar. open it now. The catalog is located in the following folder: My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Tutorial Duct. 19 In the Catalog Regen dialog. you explored the Catalog Editor and created a new part catalog. 17 On the Catalog Editor toolbar. click (Save). 104 | Chapter 3 Using the Catalog Editor .

7 In the right pane. 6 Enter Rectangular Duct Radius 3W Elbow.NOTE For information on how to open a catalog in the Catalog Editor. and press Enter. and press Enter. 2 In the left pane. see Exercise 1: Opening a Part in the Catalog Editor on page 97 in Lesson 6. and click Rename. A copy of the selected part family is added. Exercise 1: Creating a Part in the Catalog Editor | 105 . 4 Right-click Elbows. and click Paste. expand Rectangular ➤ Elbows. enter Rectangular Duct Radius 3W Elbow. 3 Right-click Rectangular Duct Radius 2W Elbow_gbm. Rename and modify the part family 5 Right-click the new part family (Rectangular Duct Radius 2W Elbow_gbm 1). and click Copy. double-click the current value for Description.

8 Expand Rectangular Duct Radius 3W Elbow. 11 In the Catalog Editor . The parameter values for the part family are displayed in a table view in the right pane. and press Enter. double-click 2.0 (the current value) to make the field editable. and click OK when the regeneration is complete. and select Constants. click Overwrite All Existing Files with New Ones. 9 In the right pane.File Save dialog. scroll to RC (radius of curvature).0. enter 3. 106 | Chapter 3 Using the Catalog Editor . 10 Click (Regenerate Catalog).

use the Content Builder.apc Add a part size in a table 1 In the Catalog Editor. cable tray. NOTE To add a size to an MvPart. TIP To access the new part size during part selection. You can add size parameter values to a basic table or a constant list. and select Calculations. Next. 2 Expand Tees Datasets ➤ Tutorial Tee . Exercise 2:Adding a Size to a Part in the Catalog Editor This exercise shows how to add a size to a part. You can also use the Content Builder to add a size to a fitting. you will notice that the calculated value for the new part has been updated to reflect the change in value for the RC parameter. you add a size to a part. open the Tutorial Pipe Catalog L07 E02 catalog. or conduit. For more information about specifying the default part catalogs for a drawing.Finished Part. you created a new part in the Catalog Editor by copying an existing part and modifying its parameters. If you compare this value to the value for Rectangular Duct Radius 2W Elbow_gbm (the part you copied). and note the calculated value. such as a fitting or a segment of duct. In this exercise. Dataset My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial Pipe Catalog L07 E02\Tutorial Pipe Catalog L07 E02. pipe. be sure to load the modified part catalog in your drawing. Exercise 2:Adding a Size to a Part in the Catalog Editor | 107 . see the AutoCAD MEP Help.12 Expand Rectangular ➤ Elbows ➤ Rectangular Duct Radius 3W Elbow. NOTE For information on how to open a catalog in the Catalog Editor. see Exercise 1: Opening a Part in the Catalog Editor on page 97 in Lesson 6. such as equipment. 13 Scroll to the R (radius) parameter.

4 In the new row. (Regenerate Catalog). click Overwrite All Existing Files with New Ones. 5 Enter the following parameter values: ■ ■ ■ For ND1. 8 When prompted that the catalog regeneration is complete. and click Insert ➤ Row. enter 300. and press Enter. enter 350. A new row is added to the table view. repeat the process you just used to add and configure a new row. click 6 When you finish adding sizes. To add another part size. enter 350. 7 In the Catalog Editor . and press Tab. The part is validated. For LenA3.The data storage types are displayed. and the catalog is regenerated.File Save dialog. double-click the current value for the D1 parameter. To undo one or more changes. enter 300. 3 Right-click Basic Table. click OK. 108 | Chapter 3 Using the Catalog Editor . and press Tab. For LenA1. and press Tab. click (Undo) as many times as needed.

NOTE For information on how to open a catalog in the Catalog Editor. Autodesk i-drop functionality allows you to add content (such as equipment) that is available on the web to your part catalogs or drawings. verify that you have write access to the Tutorial MvParts Catalog folder and its contents. For information about specifying default part catalogs and content locations for a drawing. be sure to load the modified part catalog in your drawing. You can also access manufacturers’ web sites to download parts for your projects. You can drag and drop parts from the web into a catalog through the Catalog Editor. open the following catalog file: My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Tutorial MvParts Catalog. In this exercise. in order to share content. 3 Right-click Tutorial MvParts Catalog.apc. For more information about using i-drop. 4 Enter Fans (for the chapter name). Dataset My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\Tutorial MvParts Catalog\Tutorial MvParts Catalog.NOTE To access the new part size during part selection. Exercise 3:Adding Web-based Content to a Part Catalog This exercise shows how to add web-based content to your part catalogs using i-drop® functionality. see Exercise 1: Opening a Part in the Catalog Editor on page 97 in Lesson 6. 2 In the Catalog Editor. Using i-drop functionality. such as project-specific sites.apc Open a session of the Catalog Editor 1 Verify that the Content Tools Tutorial profile is current. you can create content web sites. You can also drag and drop parts from the web directly into your drawings. and press Enter. navigate to the following folder: My Documents\Autodesk\My Projects\Content Tools\IDropable_SampleParts\MvParts. Add web-based content to the part catalog through the Catalog Editor 5 NOTE Before performing this part of the exercise. you added a size to a pipe part by adding new parameter values to a basic table. 6 Double-click MvPartCatalog. Exercise 3:Adding Web-based Content to a Part Catalog | 109 . Next. and click Insert ➤ Chapter. In Windows Explorer. see the AutoCAD Help. see the AutoCAD MEP Help.htm. you add web-based content from a manufacturer’s web site to a part catalog.

110 | Chapter 3 Using the Catalog Editor .The MvParts sample web page is displayed. 7 Arrange the web page and the Catalog Editor for easy viewing. 9 Click the part image in the right pane. 8 Click SampleTestMvPart ➤ Fans ➤ Direct Drive Fans_gbm.

and drag the part into the Fans chapter of the Tutorial MvParts catalog in the Catalog Editor. 10 Press the Space Bar to activate the control denoted by the (i-drop icon). 11 Click the part image.Web Page dialog is displayed.The Autodesk I-Drop Object -. Exercise 3:Adding Web-based Content to a Part Catalog | 111 .

enter mvpartadd. be sure to load the modified part catalog in your drawing. and click OK when the catalog regeneration is complete.Web Page dialog.The part is added to the Tutorial MvParts catalog. see the AutoCAD MEP Help. 15 Close Windows® Internet Explorer and the Autodesk I-Drop Object -. click (Regenerate Catalog) 13 In the Catalog Editor . 14 If the AutoCAD MEP I-drop dialog is open. click Overwrite All Existing Files with New Ones.File Save dialog. Add the new part to your drawing 16 On the command line. 112 | Chapter 3 Using the Catalog Editor . close it now. 12 In the Catalog Editor. NOTE To access the new part size during part selection. For information about specifying the default part catalogs for a drawing.

and select Direct Drive Fans. 21 Press Enter to end the command. In this lesson. 19 Click to specify an insertion point. you worked with the Catalog Editor to a create a new duct smooth-radius elbow with a unique radius of curvature. Exercise 3:Adding Web-based Content to a Part Catalog | 113 . Finally. expand the Fans chapter.17 In the Add Multi-view Parts dialog. 20 Press Enter to accept 0. 18 Click in the drawing area. The fan is added to your drawing. You also added a part size for a pipe component by adding new parameter values to a basic table. you added web-based content to a part catalog using i-drop.00 as the rotation angle.

114 .

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