Building Information Models (BIM) are ideal for the construction site. The ability to isolate systems, look at connection points from multiple angles, get part sizes, materials, and specs on the fly – these are priceless tools we all need. At least, they would be if there was any viable way to take a 300 GB design model out into the field on our tablet! The struggle with BIM is that it’s most beneficial for the construction world, but because of the huge file sizes along with the crazy high hardware and software expenses required to work a BIM system, the construction site is the one place we can’t use it!
Welcome to the world of 3D PDF inside Bluebeam Revu!
Yes, you read that right – you can use the Bluebeam system you already own (over 85% of construction firms already use Revu!) to bring all the BIM data you need to the field, on the tablet you already have. Bluebeam has the ability to read and create 3D PDFs from Autodesk Revit and other 3D Modeling systems and include the BIM data right in the PDF. You can use the 3D PDF to spin the model, isolate systems, add notes or comments, and even create new views while having real-time access to all the BIM information you need. Want to see it in action? Click here to watch a short webinar on how 3D PDFs work with Bluebeam.
The biggest benefit to this process is the file size. The 3D PDFs are usually only 3%-5% of the size of the original CAD model. That means you can download them to your tablet, or load from the cloud, and use the model in the field while you’re standing right in front of the issue you’re trying to resolve. Show the trades exactly what the design intent was, or even open RFIs for the architect, right from the tablet, along with photos to show the designers what the issue is and tag them in the correct 3D locations.
This is a brilliant and simple workflow that doesn’t require you to purchase expensive hardware, new annual CAD subscriptions, or learn how to work in highly advanced BIM modeling systems. 3D PDFs can be printed from Revit or AutoCAD systems by anyone who has the Bluebeam CAD version or higher. Bluebeam installs a plug-in to those CAD systems that lets you print fully featured 3D models, with all the BIM data attached, and even include selected Views created in the CAD file. Usually, it’s as simple as asking the architect/engineer to print you a 3D PDF or printing it out yourself if you work with CAD/BIM in the office.
These 3D PDFs can be opened and viewed in any modern PDF package, but Bluebeam Revu is really the ideal package for working with them. It gives you fully-featured markup and view creation tools, as well as the ability to isolate systems, hide walls, and even manipulate the 3D objects within the PDF. You can pivot/pan/zoom the 3D models freely with any mouse, or even with pinch/zoom features on a tablet easily. 3D PDFs are a real game changer for the construction industry and you need to make them part of your everyday construction workflow.
If you want to know more about using 3D PDFs or other construction focused tech processes, please reach out to us!