Topics to discuss in the Residential Advance 2 Course at Chief Academy


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We need more attributes (name value pairs) for Cameras, Callouts and Construction Lines:

  • x_position (exists for Callouts)
  • y_position (exists for Callouts)
  • angle (needed for all three) 

These attributes will make it possible to create Smart Labels that currently are either not possible or require complex scripts.


North Arrows need an angle attribute so exterior walls can be labeled with their direction of exposure (N xx W, etc).  This is useful for Energy Calculations. 


I've been using some special CAD Blocks and Scripts to automate a lot of Labels, etc.  Some things are just not possible without additional attributes.  For example:

  • automatically labeling an Elevation View with the Quadrant Bearing needs the view's Camera angle


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Mono Slab Foundations with Stem Walls.  Typically in my area we build most homes with Slab Foundations.  However, they are more like Stem Wall Foundations with a Slab.  Since they are all poured at the same time the actual detail is different than either which Chief creates.  What is really needed is a way to specify the depth of the footing into grade so that a "Stem Wall" is automatically created between the Slab and the Footing.  The interior face of the stem wall should align with the interior face of the footing and there should be a 4" chamfer like the current Monoslab Foundation. 


The attached pic is pretty typical of how Monoslabs are done.  There's a formboard on the exterior but the footing extends out "offset amount" below the bottom of the formboard. 


A few tweaks to the Monoslab Dialog could make this much easier and if it also recognized the Terrain and Stepping parameters it would be really great.


Also, since we already have the ability to specify rebar, etc --- can we get those things added to the "Auto Detail" tool --- Maybe depending on the Scale of the Cross Section  There's a lot of extra information in the Default Foundation Specification Dialog which is only available to the Materials List.  It would be nice if we could have access to it for details and annotion.  In reality, all we have access to is the Stem Wall (very limited) and nothing for the Footing or Slab. 



Typical Slab Footing.JPG

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Wall Defaults - added information for structure / foundation:

  • Anchor Bolt Size and Spacing
  • Shear Panel Nailing (nail size and spacing for edges and field)
  • Top Plate nailing (nail size and spacing)
  • Hold-downs and other Simpson Connectors

Along with the above the ability to have these things added to sections and/or details automatically.


This functionality should be extended to all Structural Connections

  • Walls to Floors
  • Walls to Roofs/Ceilings
  • etc.

Most of this information is available in building codes and tables that can be copy/pasted into the Layout.  In some cases we would get specifics from Structural Engineers but IAE we should be able to specify the defaults and have them automatically added to our Sections via "Auto Detail".  Having these things in the model would of course make them available to the Materials List - but it would also provide a much more automated way of getting them into the ConDocs.


While we can create Custom Fields for any of this information and include it in Schedules - with the default information in the Exterior / Interior Wall Defaults: none of that can currently be automatically added to the Sections.  


As I stated above, we have tables that we can use to specify standards for most ot these things - but it's becoming much more common for building departments to require them in details rather than just as notes and tables.


Please consider the "Auto Detail" tool as a way to get and use this data.  Wall Sections and Details are a huge time consuming part of our work.

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