Model Merging in MicroStation

standalone design

Create a standalone design file by copying each external reference file to its own model in the master design file.

Clearwater, Florida, USA — Axiom recently announced a new release of RefMerge for V8. This latest release adds an optional merging method that leverages the ability of MicroStation V8 to store any number of design and sheet models within a single design file. Now, with RefMerge for V8, users can create standalone design files by copying each external reference file to its own model in the master design file. This new method maintains the power of MicroStation reference file attachments (with their setting and display capabilities), but the reference file attachments point to the internal model rather than the external reference file.

Why the new method?
RefMerge, for over a decade, has provided its users with a fast, reliable method of generating standalone output files by merging the elements from both the master and reference files into a single design file.

The merged output files are ideal for:

  • Adding design files to document management systems that don't support MicroStation reference files.
  • Sending design files to service bureaus for plotting.
  • Transmitting design files to clients.
  • Archiving design files.

But, even with all the above, there were still situations where merging elements into the same model did not provide the ideal solution. Let's take the example of a 3D model referenced in a 2D sheet. When copied into a 2D sheet, a true 3D element would have to be dropped to the simple flat 2D elements that define its outline. Using RefMerge's new method however, the full 3D model, as a 3D model, is merged into the output file. The reference file attachment is then changed so it points to the new internal 3D model with no loss of information and no reduction in rendering graphics quality. In addition, the composite file created with this new method maintains a logical separation of geometry, just like it did before the merge. In other words, because it's still a reference file attachment, you can still manipulate the display of all related data with a single command.

Regardless of the method chosen to merge files, RefMerge can be configured to run on a single design file or any group of design files in batch. RefMerge is safe to use. It always creates new output files, leaving important project files unchanged. Since RefMerge doesn't alter the original files, a project snapshot (a view of the current state of the project) can be created anytime during the day — even when users are actively working on a project!

RefMerge has a large number of options that enable users to easily customize the name and output location of merged files as well as a complete set of options for controlling the merging process, if anything unusual is needed.