Converting Elements Into Morphs

7m 9s

In this course, Josh Bone will demonstrate methods for creating optimized models using ArchiCAD 21.

We will demonstrate methods on how to create granular models that can enable you to extract more views from the model for documentation which will reduce errors and omissions as a byproduct.

When you are done with this course, you'll know how to find ways to leverage the BIM from the early design phases through design into construction.


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So you can convert any element into a morph with an ArchiCAD. Now one thing I do is I go out to the Trimble Warehouse a lot and access manufacturer specific content that I want to reference and pull into my models from an ArchiCAD, so let's do that. Right now I'm gonna go in to my Google Chrome, I'm going to search Trimble 3D Warehouse and then the 3D warehouse. This is where I can access all the SketchUp content. From here, I'm looking for a specific element. For example, if I want to show a specific car or component that's a water fountain, a feature that I want to show in my model that I do not want to take time to create, we can very easily go back in and take water fountain.

And let's show an option there on a water fountain and you'll see that we have thousands, we have over a thousand water fountains that we can access here that we can pull into ArchiCAD. Now, each of these have some of these are manufacturer specific, there's a number of things that you can look at here and you can leverage.

Especially in a design stage to just talk about having a water fountain in place, this is something that you can go in and click and access and use. And once you see this element here and it's the element that you're looking for you can go in and you can download that. And I'm going to click here, accept the above terms, and I'm going to use the SketchUp version. You'll see there's a number of options here that you want to pick up and use. ArchiCAD is fully compatible with exporting and importing SketchUp files.

So we can go back in we can pick up SketchUp 2016 model, we can pick up a 2014 model. As I look at this now maybe that's not the one I want to go to. Let's come back over here again and as we wanna go back and look at some of the other fountains based on size or shape and we can search through the list here. Typically, you can see previews, maybe there's an issue today with their website but I like this, this is the one I want to use. So I'm gonna take this go to download, and I'll just take here in these different file formats.

If I have specific version of SketchUp that I'm using, I can do so. I'll just take right now I use the SketchUp 2016 that's what's loaded on my machine. And now by doing that the fountain.skp has been downloaded. And if I want to pull that into ArchiCAD and access this, the morph tool applies to this. That's why I want to show you this. I hit F2 to go back into plan in ArchiCAD and we want to go back in now and we want to reference that element in.

I go to external content and I want to go back in here and I want to place this SketchUp file, I want to go to merge. And you'll see that SKP is one of the file options that I have. So again, just to clarify we went to file, interoperability, merge, we're looking for an SKP file, I'll go to my downloads I'll look at my fountain01 here and I'll hit open. And I can come back in and I can place that fountain here in the plan view.

Now it's importing that in as an SKP file. The way this will come in right now into ArchiCAD is as an object and I can drag this object, I can rotate the object, I can do a number of things with this. And I can start to change how this is displaying and I can set up a number of options here with the object but I have a lot of limitations in how we want this to display. So as we start to look at this now if I click okay, let's go back and look at this in a 3D view I'll hit F3 on my keyboard to bring this up.

And here is the fountain that we brought in from SketchUp as we merge that in. Now I do not have the ability to edit this as an object but we can take this object now and as we convert this by right clicking on this, we'll go to convert, selection to morph, and once I've converted this to a morph now I have the ability to edit this and control this in different ways.

One thing that this has done for me over the years is in a number of elements that I bring in especially cars they do not reflect well in the plan view of ArchiCAD and the models tend to be very heavy. By taking those objects that came in, converted from an SKP file if I convert them to a morph and then I save them back as an object it reduces polygon counts and it streamlines the weight they show in reflect and plan.

This element right now I converted this to a morph and once I converted this to a morph I can go back in and I can edit and I can change points and all the same commands apply that we had previously we can start to adjust and we can push and pull each segment, we can manipulate that. But once we've done that to clean this up now and simplify this, we can always go right back here under file, we can go back in here and we can save this as an object. If I go back under file pull down menu under libraries and objects I can go save selection as, I can save this as a new object.

That's going to look at the top view of the selected elements, we can do this from plan or from the 3D view and as I click okay now I'll make sure this is embedded 'cause I only want to use this fountain, this is my new fountain. Now embed that into this file, so when I get ready to come back to this file in weeks, months, years from now and before using a newer version of ArchiCAD this will be embedded into this.

And as we're saving this now from a morph back to an object previously I didn't have the ability to change very many parameters. But from converting that to a morph, back to an object, now when I go back in and I look at the object, the object is going to be much cleaner so let's go and place that object. Right now this has been converted and this is what happens frequently within ArchiCAD. The objects are so heavy due to all the polygons that will take that down, we'll delete that out and if I go to the object tool here, as we converted this back, you'll see from here I can now go back in and edit the surfaces.

And I can start to edit this object and have control over the different components here that I did not have control of previously. So I can go back and change the wood surface and all the surfaces that were created and pulled in from the SKP file. I now have the ability to edit those along with materials and pins and colors.

And we can drop this back in now and as we want to adjust that or change that, we can do so. And now that's a simple object we can pull back in that's going to be cleaner and we can edit, we can simplify. Again, this is a great tool to use for a number of components that we bring in from the Trimble 3D Warehouse to convert the elements to a morph and then save them back to an object, reduces polygon size and simplifies the object and gives you more control on the parameter settings to adjust those elements as you bring them in.

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From the course:
ArchiCAD Intermediate Level Training

Level 2

Duration: 7h 4m

Author: Josh Bone