by Fred Ortiz, August 17, 2015

Inventor to Revit: The BIM Exchange Program

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How do I get an Inventor model into Revit? Can I open up an Inventor model in Revit and save it as an RFA file? Can I export an Inventor model to an RFA file? Can I save as my Inventor model to an RFA file? I receive these types of questions from customers on a weekly basis and there is a solution, it’s called the “BIM Exchange Environment” within Autodesk Inventor 2016.

Significant Business Benefits

In Inventor, you can “save as” or “export” a model to multiple file formats including ADSK, DWG, SAT, STEP, etc., but not to an RFA file. An RFA or (Revit family file) is a feature based parametric file that can be directly loaded into a Revit project. Currently, Revit is the industry standard tool for AEC (Architecture, Engineering & Construction) and BIM (Building Information Modeling), and a majority of product manufacturing companies are being pressured into making their products readily available in an RFA file format. By providing BIM compliant models and data, their products are more likely to become specified by architects and engineers during construction planning. This BIM data is accessible throughout the entire lifecycle of a project, preserving a longer aftermarket relationship with their customers, as well as strengthening their relationships with architects, engineers, contractors, and facility owners.

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Unique Competitive Advantage

Other 3D software packages offer tools to simplify model geometry with the ability to export, but only to a neutral file format with limited component metadata. What they don’t offer is the ability to provide connection points when exporting, nor do they have the capabilities to transfer physical and visual characteristics of the model over to Revit. With Autodesk Inventor, the BIM Exchange tools provide a purpose-built workflow that allows users to simplify their models, create a custom user coordinate system, define important connection points, input BIM parameters and export the model to a native Revit format with all physical and visual aspects intact. By providing an intelligent lightweight version of a model to architects and engineers with all the aforementioned features, product manufacturers are able to win more jobs by utilizing their products in Revit projects.

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Inventor to Revit Family File (RFA) Workflow

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In Conclusion

The adoption of BIM is rapidly increasing in North America and globally, and extending throughout all phases of building design and construction. If Revit families have not yet been requested in your companies sector of the industry, they soon will be. Now a days, construction companies are finding extreme value in products with BIM data and simplified levels of geometry that can be easily read in their BIM applications. Neutral file formats do not provide the necessary information they are looking for. The direct connection between Autodesk Inventor and Revit provides a dedicated process to integrate an Inventor part or assembly directly into Revit with BIM compliant information such as cost, size, vendor, and system requirements. Creating better collaboration, better cost predictability, less errors, and ultimately reduced construction costs.

BIM/AEC Interoperability Video

Please click on the video below to better understand Autodesk Inventor’s “BIM Exchange Environment” features and workflow.

Join the Autodesk Virtual Academy community and never stop learning.

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