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March 23, 2020 by AGACAD

Scottish firm’s DfMA-level CLT Revit models benefit greatly from unique BIM software

AGACAD’s Wood Framing CLT solution for Revit® has enabled Carbon Dynamic to reduce costs, improve quality and increase innovation in the design, offsite production and assembly of engineered timber structures.

Client Profile

Carbon Dynamic company logoCarbon Dynamic, a subsidiary of Pat Munro (Alness) Ltd, is a contractor in the Highlands of Scotland with 170 employees, 75 years of history, and deep commitment to social responsibility. The multi-disciplinary firm is known and respected for its civil engineering work, residential and commercial property development, and modular offsite manufacturing.

DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) Spa designed by Pat Munro Ltd using AGACAD Wood Framing addins for Autodesk Revit

Business Need

Cross-laminated timber (CLT) framing is part of Carbon Dynamic’s focus on sustainable construction, especially in bespoke design and offsite manufacture of timber and hybrid structures. Examples are its popular off-grid cabins and pods (like this CLT modular house perched up in the Scottish Highlands) and a spa facility now in the works.

DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) Spa designed by Pat Munro Ltd using AGACAD Wood Framing addins for Autodesk Revit

The company uses BIM, in a Revit® environment, as well as Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA) – a way of optimizing building-element design for faster, lower-cost quality prefabrication and assembly. But they lacked good software for doing all of that efficiently with CLT.

“We did not have a tool that could tackle CLT head on – the DfMA process was clunky, and we were also spending a lot of time preparing models and drawings manually for every project,” says Thomas Woolley, an Architectural Technician at Carbon Dynamic.

“Our requirement was software that was efficient in producing DfMA-level models, that could take our architectural models into the DfMA process without having to export from Revit to IFC to then be loaded into another package. Plus it should help with fabrication drawings and scheduling, ideally all in a user-friendly and cost-effective system,” he says.

Solution

A search of the market led Carbon Dynamic’s team to AGACAD’s Wood Framing CLT solution. They were quickly convinced that it was exactly what they needed.

Wood Framing CLT Revit addon logo | AGACAD

Wood Framing CLT is a Revit add-on that lets users instantly create CLT wall panels, floor panels and roof slabs of any shape or complexity. The software generates views with automatic dimensions for panels or segments as well as accurate bills of materials and shop drawings. Details like connectors, cuts and supports can be inserted based on rules. Updates for changes are in real time.

“The biggest selling point was the automation in modelling. I was amazed to see how a highly detailed and accurate multi-storey could be put together through a well thought out parametric process. In addition, being able to use drawings as templates to set out other drawings is phenomenal and saves a substantial amount of time,” Mr Woolley recalls.

Shop drawings for DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) Spa facility designed by Pat Munro Ltd using AGACAD Wood Framing addins for Autodesk Revit

Results

The new software proved its value at Carbon Dynamic immediately in terms of saving time and enhancing quality, according to the company’s representative.

“After setting up our own custom parameters, I noticed how quickly we were able to model timber and sheathing elements. We no longer had to manually split the CLT panels, which was fantastic,” he says, adding: “Not only can we now produce extremely accurate detailed BIM models and drawings, we can also export exact sheathing and fixing schedules, which improves other departments’ efficiency too. Included tools like Sort Mark, for easily renumbering elements, really help with general organisation. The software has absolutely put us ahead of the game.”

DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) modular Kitchen Unit designed by Pat Munro Ltd using AGACAD Wood Framing addins for Autodesk Revit

Over time, AGACAD’s tools and expert support enabled the Scottish contractor to refine many aspects of its workflow, making processes more efficient than they had ever been, and also to push innovation.

“We recently released a range of standard units that push the capabilities of volumetric offsite construction. We’re able to take eight individual volumetric pods and assemble them into varying configurations. AGACAD has been a great help making this achievable,” Mr Woolley notes.

He said the company continues discovering more ways to get value from the software. AGACAD’s “great initial training, expansive and well-illustrated online resources, and general ongoing support” are a key reason for that.

DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) modular Offgrid Cabin designed by Pat Munro Ltd using AGACAD Wood Framing addins for Autodesk Revit

Shop drawings for DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) modular Offgrid Cabin designed by Pat Munro Ltd using AGACAD Wood Framing addins for Autodesk Revit

DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) modular Offgrid Cabin framing designed by Pat Munro Ltd using AGACAD Wood Framing addins for Autodesk Revit

Shop drawings for DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) modular Offgrid Cabin designed by Pat Munro Ltd using AGACAD Wood Framing addins for Autodesk Revit

Prepared by Bryan Bradley of Textus Aptus.

This client relationship exemplifies the AGACAD ideal of “Building BIM Together!” After 29 years creating AEC technologies, AGACAD today is the developer of the world’s widest range of true BIM (Building Information Modeling/Management) software for Revit® professionals, with 13,000+ users in 130 countries. Its three areas of focus are BIM Content Management & Classification, BIM for Prefabricated Construction, and Digital Asset Inventories & BIM for Facility Management.

For more information, contact us at info@aga-cad.com or +370 618 55 671.


Related client stories:

  • AMV House thanks AGACAD for efficiency and customization gains in its prefab timber homes
  • Bela calls AGACAD metal framing and CNC solutions the “lifeblood” of its building design business
  • U.S. preconstruction expert: “My productivity rose 60% with AGACAD’s framing tools”
  • A-BET gets competitive boost in panelling, framing, BIM to fabrication with AGACAD solutions
  • How do you create a combined duct-pipe hanger?
  • UBS: “AGACAD framing tools let us confidently take on more complexity”
  • Thorson • Baker & Associates: “AGACAD software has given substance to our models”
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    Thank you for your demo request.

    Our customer service will get in touch with you within 24 hours.

    Don’t waste time on reading technical documentation and see that this is the solution for you! Our Expert will frame a part of your project, demonstrate software functionality and share the best practice and efficient way of framing, taking into account your current needs.

    Duration: 1 hour
    Cost: 250$/250€

    Register to start framing with our Expert

    Questions or special requests:

    You will leave the demonstration with:
    - Part of your project already framed;
    - Your questions answered;
    - 14-days software trial;
    - Support during the trial period.

    Thank you for your trial request.

    Our customer service will get in touch with you within 24 hours.

    With a paid trial, which is called an Initial Implementation Plan, our professionals will help you quickly discover how this software will benefit your design process.
    Our BIM consultant will demonstrate software functionality, share best practices, and show the most efficient way of framing your project according your current needs. Plus, you’ll get an extended trial period, sample Revit families and configurations.

    Cost: 750$/750€
    This cost will be deducted from the product price should you decide to purchase the software.

    Register to start a paid trial

    Questions or special requests:

    Initial Implementation Plan includes:
    - Revit project with sample families & configurations
    - Research on your framing standards (1 h)
    - Personal training via online meeting (2 h)
    - 30-day software license and support

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