Placing a Tag Outside its Host

Seven times out of ten, you place a tag and you want it to be near that item that you are tagging, be it a door, room, window, whatever.  The tag wants to be near the host, otherwise, what’s the point?  You might as well be placing tags by tossing them in the air and letting them land wherever, like as much confetti.

Two times out of ten, you tag something and there just isn’t enough room for that tag to live there.  So, you enable a leader from that tag.  Excellent.  A nice clean arrow indicating precisely to what item that tag is referring.

Then comes the oddball.  That one time out ten (probably even more rare) that you want a live tag to pull info, AND you don’t want it near the object you’re tagging, AND you don’t want a leader.  The out-of-the-box tags in Revit don’t want you to feel like you can accomdate this.  As soon as you move a tag too far from an item, Revit tells you that you MUST activate leaders and have that connection back to the object in question.

We ran into this situation… and I won’t keep you in suspense, we found a way around it.

Our firm standards for interior elevations indicate that we show the room number JUST BELOW the actual elevation.  We wanted to keep the tag “live” so it was pulling the number from the room, in case the room number changed.  “Dumb” tags are SO un-Revit.  But, every time we dropped the tag down, it asked to turn on the leader, which we didn’t want to do.  How to fix? 

The question really was, how does Revit know if a tag is inside or near the item that’s being tagged anyway?  Opening up the tag itself gave us our first clue.  The only thing in there is lines, text and… some reference planes.  Quickly checking the reference planes indicated that these planes were of the “origin defining” type.  You probably see where I’m going with this.

Turns out, Revit doesn’t care at all where the “graphics” of the tag is at all.  The origin point of the tag is how Revit determines if a tag is inside or near an object.

Solution?  Create a new type that had the graphics droppped down below the origin.  As long as that invisible origin was inside the room, the tag was below the elevation, and it didn’t need a leader line.

rmtag01

rmtag02

This can obviously be applied to any tag type, with even more clever placement being defined by parameters and types.  It doesn’t happen often, but it’s nice to know that you can keep the “automagic” updating and not lose out to the last 10%.

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