BIM stands for Building Information Modeling, and in laymans terms it is like a database with information of all kinds of aspects of a (3D) building. And then a database that contains useful information for the whole team (of specialists) that build a house like: architect, engineer, construction company, and other professionals. It’s a standard developed since 1970’s in the UK, and in 2019 it became the international standard ISO 19650. In 2002 software developers (like AutoDesk) started to implement the BIM model. The ISO defines BIM as: Use of a shared digital representation of a built asset to facilitate design, construction and operation processes to form a reliable basis for decisions. And now, year 2020, the BlenderBIM addon makes it possible to implement this standard in Blender.

Think of it like this: In Blender we have a collection, and in the collection we have some objects, objects have a location, materials, etc. But these objects don’t have things like warranty, durability, project leader, price, description, global ID, Condition, Manufacturer, Documents, etc. When we install BlenderBIM we have all that, and other tools (I probably not yet aware off). Next to that, there is a bunch of other addons related to BIM like: ladybug Tools via Sverchok, ArchiPack, BlenderGIS, and also standalone software outside Blender.

So, if every member of the team (or if every specialist) has access to this database, they can better collaborate and work as a team. That all is pretty interesting. (And I wonder if it’s an idea to use this BIM model for other purposes like Game Builders. There are custom attributes and properties, etc.)

More information about BIM

There is quite some information out there about BIM, here a few links:

And more information specifically about the BlenderBIM addon.

How the BlenderBIM addon works

In short: You install the addon as usual, and you find settings under several places in Blender. First, you find settings in the Properties Panel > Scene Properties. Those settings are more like the project settings. Secondly, you see settings in the Properties Panel > Object Properties. And under the object properties you find the specific settings for a part of the house, like a wall, a door or doors, etc.

We are not there yet. You find also settings in the mesh data, materials, and in the N-Panel. But Most are optional. What is important to start with, is that you have a project that has a spatial tree and you start with that from within the scene-tab in the properties panel. To get started I recommend this simple start-guide: BlenderBIM beginners tutorial: my first BIM project

After that, I suggest to watch this playlist on YouTube:

Where to download the BlenderBIM addon

You can download the BlenderBIM addon here.

Installation is like any other addon: Download the .zip file. And in Blender you go to Edit > Preferences > Addons, and there you navigate to the .zip file you just downloaded, and press install.

Relevant addons

Mesh Source

Mesh Source

Convert mesh into Python source code