What's New in BricsCAD V18

Below is a brief description of the enhancements and new features. Click on the hyperlink keywords for a detailed description.

Please read the BricsCAD Release Notes with the latest changes (new features, improvements and bug fixes and development features).
You can find ReleaseNotes.htm in the Help subfolder of the BricsCAD program folder (e.g. C:\Program Files\Bricsys\BricsCAD V18 en_US\Help\en_US)

Important notes

New in V18.2

AIDIMSTYLE command: creates Dimension Styles based on the properties of selected Dimension, Tolerance or Leader entities.

BLADE command: opens the advanced environment for editing and debugging LISP applications. Short for BricsCAD LISP Advanced Development Environment.

BoundaryColor user preference: controls the boundary highlight color.

Profile Recognition in BIMIFY: if solids are auto-classified as Column, Beam or Member and their profile matches a definition in the profile library, a link to the profile is added to the BIM properties.

BIMRECALCULATEAXIS command: Recalculates the axis of linear building elements and repositions it back on the center line of a linear element.

BMUNLINK command: breaks the connection between a component insert (e.g. a Window) and a 3D solid (e.g. a Wall) retaining the opening.


Commands for creating centerlines and center marks:

Following related system variables were added:

LAYOUTMANAGER: Added option to copy layouts.

MBSTATE:  system variable (read only) reflects the visibility state of the Mechanical Browser panel.


PDF UNDERLAY CACHE: A multi-resolution persistent image cache is used to display attached Pdf underlays, enabling (very) fast zoom and pan operations. The highest cached resolution is 5000 x 5000 pixels. Still, when zooming in very close, the display of the Pdf underlay will become pixelated. So a hybrid modus can be used which switches to real-time generation of crisp Pdf underlay display when zooming in very close. The initial generation of the image cache may take a few seconds, from then on processing gets (very) fast, and remains like that in subsequent sessions.


PDFCACHE: System variable that controls how pdf caching is applied

Profile Dialog: When a new profile is defined by picking a profile in the model, it is detected whether the profile has a predefined shape and saved accordingly in that case (instead of the default Custom Shape).

Profile Library: Added profiles of Australian Steel standard.



SmLispGet supports rib and miter features. Miter feature has unclassified faces, while rib has Top and Bottom. Added to SmLispGet new options for rib feature: RibControlCurve, RibProfileRadius, RibRoundRadius.

SMCONVERT command has the new option, which allows to recognize a control curve of a rib feature.



In-place editing of text is supported now. The TEXTED setting controls the text edit behavior:

TEXT STYLES and DIMENSION STYLES: Text Style and Dimension Style toolbar controls are now acting on active selection set.


VLIDE: New Visual Lisp Integrated Development Environment. The VLIDE command opens the LISP Development Environment for editing and debugging LISP applications.


New in V18.1

BricsCAD core application

DWG 2018 BricsCAD V18 supports the DWG 2018 format.

CIVIL 3D enabler makes it possible to load, save, display and snap to objects created with AutoCAD CIVIL 3D.

BRICSYS 24/7: Chapoo is being rebranded and becomes Bricsys 24/7. Chapoo commands are obsolete and are replaced by: CLOUDACCOUNT, CLOUDDOWNLOAD, CLOUDLOGOFF, CLOUDLOGON, CLOUDOPEN, CLOUDPROJECT and CLOUDUPLOAD.



The Manipulator widget makes manipulation of selected entities straightforward and predictable. Use it to rotate, move, mirror or scale entities along an axis or plane. Dynamic dimension input allows for precise control. Keep the Ctrl-key pressed while starting an action to manipulate a copy of the selected entities.

The Manipulator system variable controls when the widget becomes available:

0 = not displayed

1 = display Manipulator whenever entities are selected

2 = display Manipulator if left mouse button was pressed longer than ManipulatorDuration.



Section clip property can be set different per viewport.

Section views can be printed in clipped state.

Insert clipped views by drag and drop from the Content Browser onto layout sheets.


NAVIGATE command: Allows to walk or fly through models using the well-known approach used in computer games.

CLEANSCREENON command: Maximizes the graphics screen by temporarily hiding document tabs, dockable panels, toolbars, the ribbon, the command line, the status bar and the menu bar.

CLEANSCREENOFF command: Unhides the temporarily hidden user-interface items.

LOCKUI system variable: Allows to lock the location and size of toolbars and dockable panels. Press Ctrl to temporarily override the locking and move items. A LOCKUI toggle button is available on the Status bar.

MTEXT command: Numbered and bulleted lists are supported.

CONTENT BROWSER: Blocks contained in drawings in a range of user-selected folders can be drag-and-dropped into the current drawing. The same insertion and alignment options are available as those applied when drag-and-dropping blocks from the Block Explorer, which, unlike the Content Browser, is not dockable... Dimension styles can also be drag-and-dropped into the current drawing.

VIEW TRANSITIONS are now animated, making it easier to keep one's bearings during view switches.

LAYOUTMANAGER command: Manages layouts through a dialob box. A button has been added to the left of the Model and Layout Tabs. The Layout manager dialog makes it easy to add, delete, activate, find or rearrange layouts.

CENTERLINE - CENTERMARKS Display and editing of center line and center mark entities is supported, creation not yet.

EDITABLE ROLLOVER PROPERTIES - Click a property when the rollover tips display to edit the selected property.


DWGCOMPARE command: compares a selected drawing with the current drawing during a comparison session. The ENDCOMPARE command must be used to exit the comparison session. During a comparison session, New, Modified and Missing entities are displayed using dedicated, user-configurable colors, and their DiffType is displayed in Properties Panel and Rollover Tips, only while the DwgCompare session is active. In the Structure panel all differences are displayed in a dedicated section. Note: default.cst configuration file should be used for optimal result.

KEEPME command: During a comparison session, both variants of modified entities are displayed. The KEEPME command allows easy visual merging of drawings, it keeps selected entities and discards the matching variants. When no more differences are listed in the Structure panel, the merge is complete.

FACE CAMERA property: Block definitions have a new 'always face the camera' property, in order to rotate inserts about their Z axis and making sure their local Y-axis is kept parallel to the current view direction. The feature is handy to apply to e.g. images of trees or persons, the fact that it applies to blocks means that it can be used for all types of dwg content. The property can be controlled using the newly added 'Face Camera' property column in the Block Explorer.

IMPORT command: Supported PMI (product and manufacturing information) for the following file formats: ACIS, CATIA V5, NX, Pro/E / Creo, SolidWorks, XCGM (Communicator license is required). PMI annotations are imported as graphical elements grouped in blocks.


REPORT PANEL: This is a separate dockable panel now which is opened by the REPORTPANELOPEN command.


THUMBNAIL CACHE: thumbnail images generated for the Content Browser block library panel are cached now, enabling instant switching between drawings containing thousands of blocks.

BRICSYS 24/7: Chapoo is being rebranded and becomes Bricsys 24/7. Former Chapoo- commands are obsolete and replaced by Cloud- commands.


Modeling the design

BIMWINDOWCREATE command: Creates a fully parametric window based on a closed contour.


3D Rooms. Rooms now detect their 3d boundary and can optionally be displayed as a 3d solid in the model. The room volume is listed in properties.

Room stamps can be moved using one grip point.

Room stamps are based on a template drawing, which allows to customize their appearance.


Parametric arrays now enable to control the number of elements by a parameter. Parameters in the copied objects are also available on the array. This allows to create parametric stairs, curtain walls, etc. See commands ARRAYPATH, ARRAYPOLAR and ARRAYRECT.


BIMDRAG in copy mode now places multiple solids, and has a repeat option like the COPY command.


Structural modeling toolset

Linear solid recognition: Linear solids are elongated solids on which a constant cross section, called profile, and a linear extrusion path can be detected. Typical examples are columns, beams, railings, pipes, ducts, etc. This recognition is tolerant for clippings and openings.

BIMAPPLYPROFILE command: Applies a profile to a line or replaces the profile of a linear solid.

BIMLINEARSOLID command: Creates linear solids based on the line command.

BIMPROFILES command: Opens the library of profiles which is included in the installation.

The axis lines of linear solids can be displayed.

BIMOSMODE allows to specify snapping to axes of linear solids.

BIMMULTISELECT: select all linear solids with coplanar/parallel axis with the given input linear solid. If the input is a face of such a solid, the output are the faces at the same side of the linear solids with coplanar/parallel axes. Ctrl-widget has three options: all coplanar axes, axes that are coplanar and parallel, all parallel axes.

BIMDRAG is specialized for linear solids. On all side faces of the extrusion, a move or copy operation on the entire solid is performed. On the start and end faces, BIMDRAG executes a pushpull operation.

BIMCONNECT is specialized for linear solids. Linear solids can be connected with option smooth cut or planar cut. With smooth cut one solid is fully extended to connect to all the other solid's faces. With planar cut the solids are cut with straight planar cuts.

BIMSUGGEST allows to select 2 solids, analyze their connection, find and present similar situations in the model where the same connection can be applied. The user can toggle suggestions, the command applies the connection to the selected locations. At present, connections created by dragging one solid or its individual plies into the other solid are supported for wall-slab, wall-wall, beam-wall, column-slab.


Adding data to the model

BIMCLASSIFY now offers many more types and a dialog box to select a classification type. Classification types are grouped into four categories: core, architectural, structural, and building services.

Xrefs are supported as BIM objects. They can be classified and have a spatial location. The structure tree has an option to display the exploded contents of xrefs.

IFC import: many more ifc types are supported. Windows from imported ifc files are parametric and associative.

BIMATTACHSPATIALLOCATION has an option to automatically detect, create and assign buildings and stories.

BIMIFY runs automatic classification and spatial location assignment for the entire model.


Documenting the design

DATAEXTRACTION now supports ply quantities and materials.

BIMSECTION has an option to create interior elevations. Input is a room, output are a volume state bimsection entity for each wall segment and one for the floor plan. The bimsection entities have new types 'Interior Elevation' and 'Interior Floor Plan' and as such their callouts can be fully customized separately from other section types.

BIMSECTIONUPDATE accepts a room as input. In case interior elevations are attached to it, they will all be generated into a single file. This file is named by room name and room number.

A room now has a property 'Interior Elevations', values can be On or Off, to control visibility of the corresponding interior elevation bimsection entities.

IFCIMPORT command: Many more IFC types are supported, and IFC import is certified by BuildingSmart for Coordination View 2.0 exchange. Windows from imported IFC files are parametric and associative. Import of custom properties.

BIMPROPERTIES command: Custom properties can be assigned to building elements. A properties dialog is available to create, edit and delete property definitions, and to organize properties in property sets. A default set of IFC2x3 properties is available.

DESIGN TABLES: Design tables of parameters are supported now. The new DESIGNTABLE command allows importing .csv files containing sets of available parameter values. Drop-down lists with the parameters values from the tables have been added to the Mechanical Browser and parametric component properties. The -DESIGNTABLEEDIT command allows to edit design tables.

DMCOPYFACES command: allows copying a set of 3D solid faces forming a feature (e.g. hole, rib or protrusion) to a new position on the same or another 3D solid.

BMBALLOON command: creates associative balloon entities for assembly components in Model Space and for their generated views in a Paper Space layout. Each balloon contains an index of the component in the associated BOM-table created by BMBOM command.

BIMTAG command: Creates associative tags in generated BIM section drawings for the corresponding building entities in a 3D BIM model. The command can be used on section viewports in a Paper Space layout only.

BMEXPLODE command: Creates an exploded representation of an assembly by moving all components to make them visible, stores it in a new block and inserts the block in the Model Space at a user defined loacation. Table-style and Manual modes are offered in command options. Drawing views can be generated from exploded representations of assemblies with the possibility to place BOM balloons on them using the BMBALLOON command.

ASSOCIATIVE ARRAYS: Allows to specify expressions for parameters of associative arrays created by ARRAYRECT, ARRAYPATH and ARRAYPOLAR commands. Expressions can be set in the array properties grid or via ARRAYEDIT command.

EXTENDED ASSOCIATIVE ARRAYS: Added a possibility to assign an expression for a parameter of a dimensional constraint (both 2D and 3D) associated with an entity which has been put into an associative array. Together with expressions used at arrays properties this opens a way to create fully parametric arrays. Expression can be assigned to a nested parameter using the Mechanical Browser panel, array properties or new 'Link to parameter' option of -BMPARAMETERS command.

MECHANICAL BROWSER: Arrays listing has been added. New context menu item 'Link to parameter' has been added for the parameters of arrays and components.


SMASSEMBLYEXPORT command: Performs batch processing of assemblies with sheet metal parts. It traverses assembly structure and for every component met recognizes encapsulated sheet metal design, saves unfolding to .dxf files, creates HTML summary report on the assembly.

SMEXTRUDE command: Creates sheet metal parts from polyline by extrusion, converting every linear segment to a flange, arc to bend; hard edges in flanges are converted to bends automatically.

SMFLIP command: Swaps sides of a selected flange so that reference faces are on the other geometric side of the flange. Optionally shifts the flange over the thickness of the sheet metal part.

SMRIBCREATE command creates associative Rib form features on sheet metal parts from 2D profiles. The feature is updated automatically when its defining profile is changed.

SETTINGS dialog contains per-drawing values to initializes Sheet Metal Context on its creation. This allows to create template .dwt files with preferred values, i.e. thickness, bend radius, relief parameters. Introduced setting to control color of reference side of flange feature which remains to be fixed during thickness change.


Select option allows selection of solids nested in components.

VIEWSECTION command: New "Sectionable" property has been added for mechanical components. Components for which the property is off appear non-sectioned in the section views.  





















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