What’s new in simplebim 5.0?

Dec 03, 2015 by Jiri Hietanen

Simplebim® 5.0 is here! This major new version brings you model merging, support for IFC4 and many other improvements. Update your simplebim now and watch the new getting started tutorials to learn more about simplebim 5.0.

Model Merging
With simplebim 5 you can merge multiple IFC files. A typical model merge in other applications produces just an ‘overlay’ of the different models. In simplebim we go one step further and you can merge also the containment structure, type objects, groups and other resources. The result is a truly merged model with one unified set of resources. If you for example have multiple IFC models each containing one building storey of the same building, you can use simplebim to create one IFC model that has a single building with your building storeys. You can use all the tools in simplebim for validating and copy-editing the merged model, and finally you can export the merged model into a new IFC file.

If you for example want to create one IFC file for quantity take-off you can first merge the architectural and structural models. Then you can trim the model to contain a unique set of objects, e.g. decide if you want to use the architectural or structural columns in quantity take-off. You can validate the merged model against the requirements of the take-off application (e.g. naming of properties) and your project (e.g. naming of building elements). If you find issues you can copy-edit the merged model in simplebim either manually or automatically using templates, or communicate issues using BCF. Finally you export a new IFC file that serves as a clean, quality controlled single source of information for take-off.

Model Placement Editor
What if your models don’t fit nicely on top of each other? No problem. With the Model Placement editor you can move and rotate your models to a absolute placement or relative to other models. You can use known values or pick points from the models for precise placement. Let’s say you merge multiple building storeys from separate IFC files into one building, but all building storeys are at zero elevation. With Model Placement editor you can easily move the storeys to their correct elevations.

Importing and exporting IFC4
The current mainstream version of IFC is IFC2x3 and most applications support this version. However, IFC4 is coming fast and we want you to be ready for the new version. When you work with simplebim there is hardly any difference between working on a IFC2x3 or IFC4 model.

Value Combiner Workspace
With the Value Combiner Workspace you can combine values from multiple properties into one. Let’s say you need to deliver an IFC file where the number of the building storey and the name and number of a space must be combined into one property using a specific pattern, like ‘[storey number| – [space name] ([space number])’. With simplebim you can keep all 3 properties separated in your modeling application and you can validate and copy-edit each property separately in simplebim. Finally, when you are ready, you use Value Combiner for creating the combined value and export the required combined value to IFC. This is the most effective and fail-safe way for reaching the goal.

Group Editor Workspace
IFC has a sophisticated system for type objects and groups. With the new Group Editor workspace you have precise control over the groups and their properties (yes, groups and type objects can have properties of their own). You can easily delete groups and type objects you import form IFC and create new ones. Try this; drag and drop a property (like Space Name) from the Properties palette on top of a group category (like IFC Group) in the Objects palette. This will create a new group for each value of the Space Name and assign the space objects to the new groups accordingly. You can also drag and drop objects from 3D on top of a group to assign those objects to the group. You can also automate creating groups using templates and even use rule-based groups in templates for assigning objects to your groups.

Other improvements and bug fixes

  • Faster IFC import and export
  • Improved quantities using the Basic Quantities tool
  • Improved Quick Select in 3D palette. We added for example the Model -quick select for selecting all objects from the same model as the picked object.
  • New clean look and feel in the user interface
  • New set of Getting Started Video tutorials
  • Unified installer for 64 and 32bit versions
  • If buildings or building storeys have a geometry of their own this geometry is now shown in the 3D window.
  • Bug fixed in setting the model unit using a template
  • Bug fixed in copying value to the clipboard from the Properties Palette when the palette is showing an object group or an ad-hoc collection of objects.
  • Bug fixed in deleting child groups, i.e. groups that are members of another group.