Import OrthoGraph I files
into ArchiCAD

As OrthoGraph I is a native BIM app by design, you can handle several BIM properties, such as hierarchical location structures, openings and other elements, walls with attributes etc.

All this complex BIM data can be exported into IFC and DXF files with a simple tap, and can be used in several CAD and BIM software platforms.

Now take a look at importing OrthoGraph I files into ArchiCAD via IFC and DXF files.

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Importing OrthoGraph I files into ArchiCAD, via IFC

OrthoGraph I can export your measurement and drawing results into an IFC (Industry Foundation Classes) format. The IFC files can then be sent via e-mail or uploaded to Dropbox or Box for further CAD or BIM use. This format will store your survey data not as drawn lines and symbols, but building elements. What is more, everything will be stored conveniently on layers for better editing, and the properties that you recorded in OrthoGraph I, will be retrievable if you read the file into a compatible program.

In the following, we’ll see how OrthoGraph I files import into ArchiCAD, what adjustments can be done on the models, and how they can be further used. The following test was made on ArchiCAD 18.

Data that you can export via IFC: Walls, openings, objects, hotspots, measurements, layers, BIM properties

Data that you cannot export via IFC: images (photos) and labels, annotations. These data, however, can be exported into PDF so they can aid your further CAD works.

  1. Importing the file

Simply go to File and Open. In this dialog box you can go to Settings to set up your import preferences, but it is not necessary. Browse for the IFC file and hit Open. While the model loads, a dialog box will ask you how you want to treat the objects of your OrthoGraph I model. If you want to store them within ArchiCAD, hit Embed Library. If you want to save your objects into a designated folder on your PC, hit Linked Library and set up a folder for your objects to be saved. Your import is now complete.

  1. About layers and rooms

Every OrthoGraph I model you import via IFC will open up with layers locked. You have to unlock the layers in order to be able to edit the model. Once unlocked, clicking on an element will allow you to see which layer they are currently on.

  1. Checking BIM properties

Every element that you record in OrthoGraph I will transform as a building element – you are not drawing symbols, but walls, doors, windows, etc. This means that the properties you record in OrthoGraph I are completely retrievable in ArchiCAD. Right click on the object you are interested in, click Selection Settings. In the dialog box you should look for Tags and Categories to trigger a dropdown menu. Among the IFC properties you’ll see the properties you recorded in OrthoGraph I.

  1. Managing IFC properties

If you want to have access to all the IFC properties of the model, instead of finding them one by one, open File, File Special, IFC 2X3, IFC manager. The IFC manager will allow you to access all the elements in your model. Click on the element you need, and find the part that says Orthograph_properties. Open the dropdown menu for your properties.

  1. Editing the model

As OrthoGraph I creates a BIM model, all the elements will be recognized by ArchiCAD as building models. That means that you can modify the elements as they were ArchiCAD objects, alter walls, extend or trim them, add ceiling, slab, etc. You can snap further objects to elements imported from OrthoGraph, making further CAD work easier.

Try all these functions today
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OrthoGraph I IFC import to ArchiCAD

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Importing OrthoGraph I files into ArchiCAD, via DXF

OrthoGraph I can export your measurement and drawing results into an industry standard DXF format. The DXF files can then be sent via e-mail or uploaded to Dropbox or Box for further CAD use. These 2D plans contain all walls, doors, windows and objects, and also the measurements that you made. Each room and the measures can be exported to layers that simplify the planning in any CAD system that reads DXF format.

In the following, we’ll see how OrthoGraph I files import into ArchiCAD, what adjustments can be done on the models, and how they can be further used. The following test was made on ArchiCAD 18.

Data that you can export into DXF: Walls, openings, objects, hotspots, measurements, layers

Data that you cannot export into DXF: Ceiling heights, floor heights, images, textures, annotations. These data, however, can be exported into PDF so they can aid your further CAD works.

  1. Importing the file.

Go to File, Open, and browse the desired DXF file on your PC. Once started to import, ArchiCAD will ask you which layers of the OrthoGraph I model you want to import. Leave it all on, and hit OK. Then, you have an option to change background color to better visibility. Once you made your choice, the program imports the model.

  1. About OrthoGraph’s layers

OrthoGraph I allows you to export DXF in two different ways – Single Layer or Separate Layer. Single Layer will put all your rooms, walls, objects and openings on one layer (although giving them separate colors), Separate Layer on the other hand will make rooms and objects appear on different layers. In any case, the default grouping is something like this:

OGLOCATION_ROOM – this is where you find the walls of your rooms

OGOPENING – this holds your openings, doors and windows

OGOPENINGDATA – this shows the measurements of your openings as blocks

OGOBJECT – this is where you can find the objects you put in

  1. Appearance of the model

OrthoGraph I is a BIM application. Whenever you draw a line, the program will assign a thickness to it, and the line will appear as a wall piece. That means that when you export into DXF, the walls will be represented with two lines, showing both sides of a wall. These “walls” appear as blocks, so you cannot select one side of the wall without selecting the other side, too. Doors and windows work similarly; clicking on a door will also highlight the door jamb, opening direction, etc.

If you need to clean up the drawing, you might want to explode the drawing from blocks into lines, so you can adjust them. Use the Explode command on the area that you want to modify. Exploding the drawing will allow you to do much more with the drawing.

Try all these functions today

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