selection sets

Navisworks Quick Tips

I’ve been focusing a lot on documenting Navisworks procedures at work of late, for whatever reason Navisworks seems to be seen as some black magic witchcraft software package that no one wants to admit that they don’t entirely understand how to drive.

I sat in on a Navisworks session at the Revit Technology Conference last week just to see what others were up to and there was a surprisingly large turn out. The content presented was very much in line with my previous Navisworks articles and quite a few attendees seemed to be new to how

Helpful Tips

So based on that, I have two quick tips for Navisworks users, the first is selecting elements with a mouse click. When selecting elements in Navisworks, you might be selecting faces of elements or even the entire file rather than the whole element.

You can change what you select when clicking by heading to the Home tab on the ribbon and then heading to the Select & Search panel. Click on Select & Search and you will now see a drop down box.


You can then choose what you want to select with your mouse clicks. If you want to select individual elements, you will want to choose First Object.



The second tip is about the data that you export to Navisworks from Revit. You may remember in my Navisworks 101 series that I spoke about improving your clash detection with selection sets. To create really powerful selection sets, you need the data to drive them but you need to make sure that you’re exporting that data in the first place.

To correctly export Revit parameters to Navisworks you need to make sure you have the option Convert element properties checked – by default this setting is turned off.

You can find this option in two places. The first is Navisworks itself. Head to the application menu and select options.


In the options dialogue box, in the left hand sidebar find File Reader and then select  Revit from the list, then from the options in the right hand window, check Convert element properties.


You can also find this setting in the Navisworks exporter addin within Revit itself. Simply head to the Addins tab on the ribbon, then from the External Tools list choose Navisworks 201xright_circular-32Navisworks Settings and then check Convert element properties

The difference between the information you get in Navisworks when you change this setting is chalk and cheese.

With the setting unchecked


With the setting checked


As you can see, checking this setting will export additional parameters and properties related to the element including material information, associated level, shared parameters and much more.

Having this information available within Navisworks will allow for more accurate selection sets to allow for better clash detection results as well as time lining and quantities.

Turning Off Light Sources in Navisworks

A common question I receive at work is “How do I turn off these pesky light sources in Navisworks?”

The answer? Quite easily.

First, select one of your lighting fixtures, from the selection tree, expand out the lighting fixture element, finding the light source itself.

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Once you have selected the light source, if you check the properties window, you will see that the material of the light source is named “Default Light Source”

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If you check a few more lighting fixtures, you will see that this is the same for all of your lighting fixtures, so all you need to do is create a simple selection set and turn the light sources off.

To create a selection set, go to the find items window, and then input Material -> Name -> = -> Default Light Source as per the screenshot below. Once you have done this, select Find All

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Then it’s as simple as clicking hide

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