Create Custom Object Components (ArchiCAD Insights Tutorial)

21 Jul, 2008 By: Laszlo Nagy

Learn how to customize object components in ArchiCAD.

Editor's note: This tutorial courtesy of ArchiCAD.

In this tutorial, we will create a custom object component, in this case, a custom door panel for a kitchen base cabinet. For an overview of the Custom Component feature, see Custom Components in ArchiCAD Help.

We placed the CABINET BASE 2D 10.GSM file onto the floor plan. Here is how it looks in 3D:

Base cabinet in 3D.

Creating the Geometry
Create an elevation or interior elevation line on the floor plan in front of the cabinet. The line should be parallel to the face of the cabinet because we want to get an orthogonal elevation view of it.

Plan view.

Go into the (interior) elevation view.

Measure the size of one door panel. (Use the Measure tool, the Tracker or the Coordinate Box.) This size will be your custom panel size. Our example is 599 mm wide by 629 mm high.


Go back to the floor plan, and using slabs, draw the geometry of one door panel. In our case, we will create a sort of a prairie style panel. Assign them the pens and materials you wish to see in 2D/3D.

Door panel.

Note: When creating a panel which is to be mirrored (as in this case) you need to model and save the left panel. This is important when the geometry of the panel is non-symmetrical. Model the panel, the mullions, and the glass. When creating the panel, remember that the panel should have enough width on its right side for the door knob.

Select all elements just drawn.

Use the File / Libraries and Objects / Save Custom Component menu command to save these elements.

The Save Custom Component command.

In the appearing Choose Component Type dialog box, select Custom Object Component from the dropdown list and click the Choose button.

In the appearing File dialog box, specify the name and location for the library part file to be saved.

Applying the new panel

Select the cabinet object on the floor plan, and go to its Settings dialog box.

In the parameter list, select Custom Panel for the door parameter.

Select custom panel.

Click the right-pointing arrow to the left of the door parameter name, and from the appearing list of parameters, find the Custom Panel Name parameter. Click the right-pointing arrow in its value field, and select the value Cab Door Prairie Style (unless the value is automatically selected by ArchiCAD).

Click OK to accept changes and go to the 3D window to see the result.

Finished custom cabinet.

About the Author: Laszlo Nagy

More News and Resources from Cadalyst Partners

For Mold Designers! Cadalyst has an area of our site focused on technologies and resources specific to the mold design professional. Sponsored by Siemens NX.  Visit the Equipped Mold Designer here!

For Architects! Cadalyst has an area of our site focused on technologies and resources specific to the building design professional. Sponsored by HP.  Visit the Equipped Architect here!