Autodesk Revit: Detail Lines explained

In this Autodesk Revit tutorial we are going to take a look at Detail Lines. If you’d like to watch the video version of this tutorial first, simply click in the box below….



Your Revit project will be composed of predominantly 3D model elements. However there will be a need to embellish certain views with 2D Detail elements including Lines. Take for example the following example. Here is a single storey building….




Let’s say we need to create a view showing a fire escape route. This is an typical scenario where the use of Detail Lines would be appropriate. Switch to the “Annotate” menu (1) and select “Detail Line”…





The ribbon menu instantly changes to give you all the tools you need to work with Detail Lines- namely:-

  1. The Draw palette: Gives you a choice of polygons, arcs and single-segment Detail Lines
  2. Line Style drop-down selector: Gives you access to all the current Line Styles available in your project



Moving down to the Options Bar, you have some settings to help you place your Detail Lines….





  1. Chain: Create multiple Detail Lines one after another without the need to keep activating the Detail Lines tool
  2. Offset: Create your Detail Lines a set distance away from your cursor pick points
  3. Form curved fillet junctions between two Detail Lines.
Now before we actually draw out our fire escape route using Detail Lines, I want to show you how to create new Detail Line styles. Let’s create a new Line Style that we can use for our escape route path. Switch to the “Manage” menu (1, below) and activate the “Additional Settings” drop-down (2, below). Now choose “Line Styles” from the drop-down (3, below)…



The Line Styles dialogue box now opens…..





“Lines” is the main category- and Line Styles are a Subcategory. So we need to create a new Subcategory. Go ahead and hit “New” in the “Modify Subcategories” area of the panel (see above). Give a name to your new Line Style. I’m going to call mine “Fire Escape Route”….




Our new Line Style appears in the list. Go ahead and select it by clicking on it’s name (1, below)…





We can change it’s line eight (2, above), it’s colour (3, above) and the pattern used for the line (4, above). I am going to use the settings above to create a nice red, wide dashed line to denote our fire escape route. So with our new Line Style in place, go back and activate “Detail Lines” and ensure you select our new Line Style from the drop-down selector…..





We can simply click in our Floor Plan view to draw out the fire escape route….


Detail Lines are drawn to scale, the same at the model elements. So if we co ahead and change the View Scale, the Detail Lines stay coordinated with the model. It also means you can measure and dimension them. So in our example we could accurately measure the length of the fire escape route.

Key Points

  • Detail Lines are 2D “detail elements”
  • They are drawn “full size” and scale with the model
  • You need to “Duplicate with Detailing” to have them copied at the time of view-duplication
This tutorial is taken from "The Complete Beginner's Guide to Revit Architecture" FREE online course.
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Posted in Autodesk Revit.