How are the CAD models organized?

The Short Answer

The CAD files are organized using professional-grade layering, naming, and organization conventions, which help separate foundational items (ceiling, floors, walls, etc.) from architectural features (e.g. windows, doors, etc.), making it easier to edit the parts you care about most. We also aim to use best practices when organizing geometry so that it is easy to take advantage of the features people most in our supported programs, but every person's workflow is different, and we can't customize our model organization to individual workflows without very large commitments of volume. We are, however, very happy to hear your feedback and make changes that can benefit all users. 

The Long Answer

Layers

The number at the beginning of the named layer (e.g. 1_, 2_, 3_) will help group together items of similar stature. The number behind the name (e.g. L1, L2) will indicate what level the item is located on (first floor or second floor).

Here's an example of a commonly layered model that has two floor levels:

Here is an example of disabling layers and how it can reveal/disable certain aspects:

In the above image, the ceiling layer is enabled as visible; in the image below the ceiling layer is disabled (or not visible).

Geometry Organization

In our supported file formats, model geometry is organized so that you can work with key surfaces independently, as if you had made it from scratch. This allows you to edit and manipulate the model using standard tools in that program:

In Revit, geometry is typically even more structured, in that walls are not just arbitrary geometry called "Wall," but an actual family. This is what allows for more advanced features like being able to generate construction drawings, generate cost estimates, etc. Revit support in Canvas does support this added structure, but you may find that there are more fields that are empty, generic, or defaults. This is because we only have your scan data to work with, which does not capture things like wall thickness (which is assumed using construction standards) or material properties. Here are a few examples:

We do aim to use best practices when organizing geometry so that it is easy to take advantage of the features people most in our supported programs, but every person's workflow is different, and we can't customize our model organization to individual workflows without very large commitments of volume. We are, however, very happy to hear your feedback and make changes that can benefit all users. 

For more information on how to use and manipulate layers within your CAD program, we encourage you to reach out to the customer support teams for the software you use directly (for example, AutoCAD or SketchUp)

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