ArchiCAD Curtain Wall (ArchiCAD Insights Tutorial)

30 Nov, 2008 By: Attila Major

The Curtain Wall tool enables users to configure, place, and edit elements.

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Members of the Curtain Wall arranged on a Base Surface according to a predefined and editable scheme. (Click image for a larger version)
Editor's note: This tutorial courtesy of ArchiCAD.

The Curtain Wall tool is one of the new features in Graphisoft ArchiCAD 12, which enables users to design and document curtain wall systems. The tool is based upon the new System Technology, which will serve as a foundation for future system-oriented building components.

It is also based upon a flexible hierarchical structure of schemes, physical members, and additional accessories. Users can control and change both the entire system and the smallest detail throughout the entire project.

The Curtain Wall tool enables users to configure, place, and edit an element consisting of Frame, Panel, Accessory, and Junction elements.

To control the whole hierarchy at once, System level settings, which define the overall scheme and configure members on all levels, have been organized into a multi-page settings dialog.

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The Settings page allows user to control and preview primary and secondary gridlines. (Click image for a larger version)

The tool allows creative and flexible solutions to design a unique Curtain Wall elevation. ArchiCAD can select just a column and row of the system, or an individual panel as well. Then, users can change the components of the Curtain Wall.

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Change panel material by selecting it and choosing another surface. (Click image for a larger version)

Curtain Wall tool enables adjoining panels to merge. Select and delete the frames between the panels. ArchiCAD allows freely moving, or rotating the frames as well.

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Merge panels and create arbitrary variations of panel shape. (Click image for a larger version)

Once the basic scheme of the Curtain Wall has been created, users can also freely draw new frames. Just enter EDIT mode, then select the Frame tool and draw a new segmentation.

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EDIT mode allows users to draw new frames. (Click image for a larger version)

To place a window or door on the Curtain Wall, select a panel and change the normal glass panel to an opening.

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Use Panel Selection Settings to place windows or doors. (Click image for a larger version)

Curtain Walls are common structures on contemporary commercial buildings. ArchiCAD will make them the integral part of the virtual Bbilding model, from the design and detailing to the documentation.

Related content:AEC, BIM

About the Author: Attila Major

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