Master Revit Title Blocks with These Four Expert Tips

Title Blocks are essential sheets of information in your project that display details about your company, the client, the project and revisions. In the November From AutoCAD to Revit webinar, I shared my favorite tips and tricks for converting AutoCAD Title Blocks into Revit Title Block Families. First, we’ll go through the steps for actually converting title blocks from AutoCAD to Revit.

How to Convert an AutoCAD Title Block to a Revit Title Block Family

Title Blocks in Revit are families. There are two ways to do this conversion and I’ll walk through both. There’s not really any pluses or negatives to either one; both take just about as long, and you come up with the same result. A quick overview of both methods:

  1. The first method is to import a CAD Title Block to a new Revit Title Block Family and then use lines to trace the Title Block. You then add Labels on top of the text and remove the CAD shape when done.
  2. The second method is to Explode the CAD Title Block. Then, select the lines and text, and change them to Company Standard types. If this method is used, you can copy the lines and text in order to paste them into a fresh family. This removes the possibility of the CAD shape being inserted in your new family.

Method #1

So, here’s how Method #1 works. First, I import in this CAD Title Block. Then, using the line tool, I trace over the CAD shape. Once you have all your lines how you want it, you create a label (without getting too far into labels, it’s basically like information that we’re going to show here), and add something like a Sheet Name. Once done, select okay, and zoom out. Make sure the shape is centered, then lock it in there with the Sheet Name and so on. Repeat these steps again and once you’re done, I’ll select the CAD shape and delete it. Now, I’ll have a finished Title Block, ready for me to insert into any of the projects.

Converting AutoCAD Title Blocks

Method #2

So, the other way to convert AutoCAD Title Blocks to Revit is to explode the AutoCAD Title Block. You then select the lines and just convert them; simply change them over to your company standard. If this method is used, you can copy the lines out of that family and put it into a fresh new family. If you leave it as is, you could possibly have the old CAD stuff that’s kind of lingering into that family that just doesn’t make your family look good, or may increase the file size. And, then you’ll want to come in, and change all of your text to Labels (basically that means just placing Labels over the text), and removing your text when you’re done. You can also put your image in there, for your company logo and so on.

Another way to convert AutoCAD Title Blocks

So, now that you know how to convert Title Blocks, here are four of my favorite tips and tricks for working with Title Blocks in Revit projects.

Tip #1: Use Sheet and Project Information Labels

Revit Labels are used to report Project and Sheet information. Here are some examples.

Sheet Info The information listed on sheet labels use instance parameters, meaning they are unique and can be changed per sheet. Here are some common sheet info labels you might find on a Revit Title Block:

  • Sheet Name
  • Sheet Number
  • Scale – If you have multiple views that have multiple scales it will show “As indicated” in your scale. This is hard coded but a shared parameter can be used to allow the user to type in data.
  • Approved By
  • Designed By
  • Checked By
  • Drawn By
  • Sheet Date
  • Appears in Sheet List – Check Box
Scale - Multiple scales will show "As indicated"

Project Info – Information listed on Project Info use type parameters, which will change all sheets that reference this data. Here are some common project info labels you might find on a Revit Title Block:

  • Project issue date
  • Client Name
  • Project Address
  • Project Name
  • Project Number
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ACAD2Revit Title Blocks Project Info
Project Info

Tip #2: Create Key Maps

Key Maps are very useful for projects with full floor plans that need to be broken up to show on sheets or areas that are not in scope. There are two ways to create Key Maps and both have benefits and drawbacks.

Key Map View Key Map Family
 What is it? A scaled View with regions A Generic Annotation Family nested into the Title Block Family
Benefits
  • Quick to set up and place on sheets
  • Quick to turn on or off regions in View
  • Less complicated
  • Not locked down in same place on sheets
  • Can insure that the Key Map is in the same place on all sheets for consistency
  • Easy to turn one region on and off
  • Easy to share with consultants
  • Can have multiple Key Maps for different scales and/or different buildings
Drawbacks
  • One will need to be created for each area, which can be a lot to manage
  • Very open to user error
  • Will need to create custom regions and text
  • Hard to share with consultants to maintain consistency
  • Takes longer to create
  • Can create more visibility parameters in the Title Block Family
  • More complicated
  • May be stuck to one area of the Title Block

With a Key Map Family, two of the biggest benefits is that the Key Map is always in the same place on all your sheets and it’s easy to share with consultants. Your consultants will likely just go in and grab your Title Block and use your Title Block as their son the same project. With a Key Map Family, they’ll have the same Key Map that you use. However, Key Map Families take longer to create. In my example in the video, it probably took me two to three hours to create that.

Tip #3: Include Revision Schedules

When building out your Title Blocks in Revit, you may want to include a Revision Schedule to show a history of your edits and deltas on the project. Whether you’ve used Schedules or not, Revision Schedules are very easy to set up and understand. First, go into the Review tab and right there, you’ll be able to add a Revision Schedule. A dialogue box will appear and you’ll indicate what parameters you want to use and what fields you want to put in there, like a revision sequence, revision number, description, date, etc. Watch this short video clip above for a special bonus tip about how to change the heading in your Revision Schedules!

Tip #4: Use a Sheet for Your Starting View

There are a couple advantages for using a sheet for your Starting View on your Revit project. On your sheet, you can use a Custom Title Block to show detailed information of your project like building name, client name, project address, project status, and project issue dates. You can also include visual information like dropping a pin location of your project address from Google Maps. Using Shared Parameters gives you flexibility in sharing interesting details about the project, such as what current template was used or what Revit build number was used.

Looking for more information about Title Blocks? Check out the full Q&A transcript below from the November 8th From AutoCAD to Revit webinar.

Webinar Q&A

How do you create a company logo for Revit?

A company logo is created simply from an image file. When you’re in Revit, you can just go to insert and you go to image, and insert whatever image that you want. There’s the types of images, select open. And basically just place it in there, size it to the way you want it and you’re ready to go.

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The stock Revit Title Block is super wide – my company’s AutoCAD Title Block is 1/2 as wide. Any issues with modifying the stock Revit Title Blocks to make it narrower?

There are no issues with modifying out of the box Revit Title Blocks. What they do is they give you some sizes to go off of.  You can either modify one of these sizes or you can come in here and just pick a new size. But basically what they give you on these sizes. is that the sizes, they give you a border of the size of the paper. So, no issue with modifying any of these. Let’s see what the new size is. There you go. You can just come in here and change whatever size you want. So if you need that to be a 30, you just push it out just like that. There you go, you got 30 inches there. And you just modify it there, so there’s no problems with that.

Can you link Excel spreadsheets to the Revit information on the title sheet?

Linking Excel spreadsheets. That’s a question that always come up, now. Yes, but not so easy. There are things that you can do with Dynamo. With doing that, you can link that in with Dynamo. There are other third-party software and add-ins you can link Excel spreadsheets in. I know our U.S. CAD Revit tools has little bit of that. Not as powerful as Dynamo, but again, Dynamo is very open too. So, so yes, you can.

Why is the Revit build number important?

I have seen issues come across where one user in the office is on an older build number not version number, so they’re both in 2016, but this one user is older and the other two users are newer, and it will become issues there. Not so much as corrupted files, but there some known issues out there, with different build numbers.

Are title sheets best kept as a separate family, so you can load it into a project template? Or, should a project template be all inclusive (title sheet, sheets, standard details, etc)?

Title sheets are best kept as a separate family. If you are a consultant and you’re changing your Title Blocks all the time, like MEP Structural or anything like that, then keep your Title Blocks out of your family. I don’t think– I mean even if you have, like, 10 of them, I don’t think it’ll completely slow down your template or anything like that. But as far as architects? Architects are going to play use just a handful of Title Blocks. And I would probably suggest just to having those Title Blocks loaded into your template. So you’ll have them.

Is Dynamo an Autodesk software?

Yes, Dynamo is an Autodesk software. I believe that Revit 2018 comes with it loaded in as a player, as a Dynamo player. So, it is already installed with ’18.

If I make a modification to the original Title Block, what’s the quickest way to refresh all the Title Blocks in the project like you can do in AutoCAD?

If you do make a change to the original Title Block, if its lines, graphics wise or anything like that, basically just coming in here and selecting on your Title Block, and editing that family, and making any change you want to change here. I’ll make a visual change here. Make any kind of change right here. Save that change. Load it back into your project and then overwrite the existing version, and all these changes will be on all of the Title Block.

What tips & tricks did you find most useful for building out your Revit Title Blocks? Leave us a comment below!

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