Improve Information Sharing Through Tekla and Revit Integration

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Tekla and Revit users can exchange geometric, textual, and numerical data through seamless platform integration. Find out why this integration can help your team achieve better project outcomes by improving collaboration and efficiency. 

As our ways of working in the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry evolve, so do our modeling tools. Project teams who integrate Tekla and Revit can transform stakeholder collaboration and efficiency throughout the project lifecycle.  

Trimble’s latest upgrades enable common project workflows and interaction for project stakeholders using these two applications. The preferred integration method for these teams is the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) format. 

IFC 3D Modeling Format  

IFC is a common 3D modeling format that enables the seamless exchange of geometric, textual, and numerical data between platforms. Since both Tekla and Revit fully support the IFC standard, IFC provides a common language for inter-team communications. 

For example, many architects prefer to produce design intent models using Revit. When engineers using Tekla use IFC to import these models, the system brings, not only the drawing geometry, but other key data in text and numerical form. 

By importing via IFC, engineers can convert generalized components into modifiable Tekla objects. They can then add details such as beams, columns, rebar, connections, and other technical details. 

Autodesk offers multiple Revit plug-ins to improve data exchange with IFC. The ideal approach for converting Revit models to Tekla objects is to select IFC 2×3 Coordination 2.0.  

Preparing Revit Model for Tekla 

An important first step when working with an imported Revit model is to align the model’s base origin. Tekla makes it straightforward to reset the model’s base points at 0,0,0 where needed. 

Another helpful Tekla tool is change detection. Change detection identifies what’s been changing in any model, but it’s especially helpful for imported models.  

Tekla instantly highlights changes using colour coding. Users can then overlay two versions of a model and quickly identify and reconcile any differences. 

Working With IFC Objects in Tekla 

When converting IFC objects within Tekla, simply select Manage>Convert IFC Objects. Most engineers prefer to choose the conversion as extrusion option. This creates modifiable details that enable teams to diagram specific component types and connection methods. 

Tekla users can also toggle imported reference models on and off to work with specific Tekla objects. For example, they can hide the reference model to concentrate on adding specified steel components or add rebar to the model. 

Using these techniques, engineers can avoid duplication of effort by starting from an existing conceptual model, and then adding the structural details needed to produce a truly constructible model. 

Layers are a popular Revit feature. Tekla users can also view or hide those layers after importation to focus on specific sections within the model.  

Even if the Revit drawing doesn’t include layers, Tekla users can zoom in on specific objects and then read the imported textual and numerical data for those objects.

Then, instead of filtering by layer, Tekla users can use the imported data as a filter. Simply choose Template>Copy Category>Apply to View and then filter the object(s).  

Engineers can take a General Arrangement (GA) drawing and import a reference drawing. They can then overlay them within the Tekla model with colour coding to identify clashes or different levels of detail. 

Exporting From Tekla 

To export a file from Tekla into IFC, simply choose File>Export in IFC, choose Same Coordination View, Output File, select either Selected Objects or All Objects, and then apply the appropriate xyz base point.  

If the intended Revit user isn’t interested in connection details, users can filter them to reduce the file size. Then, in Revit, the user can either link or open the IFC model. 

Tekla users can also export their Tekla model as a Revit file directly instead of using IFC by using the Export to Revit extension. Simply choose Filename and then select All or Selected Objects. 

Although an IFC conversion is generally preferable, some Tekla users use this option for a quick, one-time export of the entire model at once.  

Other Tekla File Sharing Tools 

The Tekla BIM Publisher is another automated tool for exporting models to other platforms. Along with IFC, BIM Publisher can support 3D, DWG, and CIS/2 file formats. Offices can automate this task to run overnight to save bandwidth on these large files. 

Trimble Connect has a number of integration features and functions for teams. Its license now comes standard with Trimble software applications. It provides another way for stakeholders who work with Revit to access Tekla models. 

Collaboration, Efficiency, and Constructible Models 

Today’s integration between Tekla and Revit is transforming the AEC industry by enabling collaboration, efficiency, and genuinely constructible models. The results are enhanced coordination, accurate clash detection, optimized construction sequencing, and streamlined documentation.   

Why not contact BuildingPoint to discuss how integration between Tekla and Revit can empower your AEC professionals to harness the strengths of both platforms to deliver better project outcomes for your stakeholders? 



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