Sunday, 22 November 2015

Practical Uses of Dynamo BIM

Following on from last week’s blog on Dynamo BIM I have had a number of requests on what are the practical uses of Dynamo BIM.

Dynamo is so powerful its uses are endless. In this blog I’ll describe some practical examples where it can be used. 

Some basic uses of dynamo are listed below

Renumbering objects

Often rooms or doors/windows need to be renumbered. This can be a time consuming task and you have the risk of errors been made during renumbering. This process may need to be done numerous times during a project.

A dynamo program can be written to automate this task. Any time renumbering needs to be done you just run the program again

Extract Coordinate Data

One function I’ve always wanted to do is extract coordinates of pile or column locations and place them in a schedule. You can’t do it with native Revit but you can with Dynamo or buy an expensive plug-in. The table below shows the extracted id and xy coordinates of objects using dynamo

Import/Export data to and from external programs such as Excel

This is a really useful function with Dynamo. I don’t know how many times I have needed to communicate directly with Excel. Exporting schedule data to excel allows third parties to change data then that data can be reimported back into Revit. When the data is imported not only will it update the schedule it will also  update the geometry due to Revit’s Bio-directional nature.

We work a lot with facilities teams. With the ability to import data from Excel we have a method for importing data from the facilities software. Saving time on a person having to do it and reducing the risk of errors.

Adding Elements in Revit

You can use Dynamo to add or edit elements. Do you need to add columns or grids in Revit, this can be done using dynamo. Alternatively data for the positions of objects can be read in from an external program such as a spreadsheet.

Using Maths, logic & Formulas

For the more advanced users dynamo has a full range of features for complex calculations and maths. With nodes such as the formula node

Conditional operators such as if, while and loop functions.

 The above example shows walls within a certain tolerance are coloured. On the left the original model and on the right the model after the Dynamo program is run.

The above example places floors and framing at different levels defined by the user

The above are just some sample uses of Dynamo. You can mix and match all the above functions to solve multiple problems in Revit or just to automate repetitive tasks.

Siscín will run Dynamo BIM workshops around Ireland and the UK.  If you would like to find out more contact us at

If you have any questions on anything in this blog or any other blog please feel free to contact me at

Dan Deery is the managing director of Siscín. Dan has over 20 years in the construction industry and has been using BIM since the mid 90’s. He also worked as a programmer for a CAD software company. Siscín  specialise in BIM Consultany. training & visualisation and animation for the Infrastructure, Engineering, Construction, Facilities and Architectural industries. Check out our Website

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