9 Steps to Creating Fabrication Content

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The Autodesk Fabrication family of tools includes three products that help users extend their BIM workflows to estimate, detail and fabricate better mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) systems. They are ESTmep, CADmep and CAMduct.

With a shared toolset, the Autodesk Fabrication products have features for integrating CAD and BIM. Using these products you can conduct analyses, produce cost estimates, and design MEP parts, components and systems.

Detailed content can be created at LOD400.

Detailing in Fabrication CADmep; image: Autodesk

Before creating content, you should understand how ITM content works in Autodesk Fabrication ESTmep, CADmep and CAMduct. You’ll also need manufacturer information, like specs, cost, images, and others. You’ll also need pattern (CID) numbers. If you need to find them, you can learn how to do that at this Autodesk site or search common pipework, electrical and HVAC pattern numbers.


Learn all about Revit MEP in the “Ultimate Guide to Revit MEP.” Download it for free today.


Creating content for manufacturing follows a 9-step process:

  1. Identify the CID number. This needs to be a valid pattern number existing in Autodesk Fabrication software.
  2. Create the item. If you’re starting a new item, you will need to use the MAKEPAT command. This 15-minute training video describes how to use MAKEPAT. On the other hand, if you’re changing an existing item, create a copy from the Item Folders view, rename it, then edit it to specify its geometry.
  3. Define geometry. In the Takeoff dialog box specify the item’s basic geometry.
  4. Define specification, material and gauge. Specify the options to define the item, including its specification, material, gauge, and other specifics.
  5. Edit the product list. Add the item to the product list by defining the sizes it is available in.
  6. Configure the connectors. If the item has connectors, configure them.
  7. Add an image. A representative thumbnail image will help identify the part in the software’s Item Folders view and the Service pallet.
  8. Add cost information. Information on what the item costs will help the Fabrication software calculate and display costing.
  9. Specify version. To keep track of changes to the item, specify version information.

Three additional tasks may be needed, depending on project requirements:

  1.  Ancillaries. Some items will require that you create and specify ancillaries.
  2. Installation times. You can add Installation Times to the item to enable accurate costing of installation.
  3. Services. You may need to create new services or configure existing services to use your new content.

If you don’t want to go it alone when creating fabrication content, contact Applied Software for a partner to assist you. From Fabrication training to Fabrication services, the experts of Applied Software will help you become the fabrication content champion at your company.


After your content is completed, it can be made available for use in Fabrication ESTmep, CADmep and CAMduct. From there, you can integrate CAD and BIM to estimate, detail and fabricate better MEP systems.


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