Improvements in Trimble Connector

Tekla Structures
Tekla Structures

Improvements in Trimble Connector

Tekla Structures 2021 introduces several improvements to overlay models used with Trimble Connector. You can now view changes between two overlay model versions, and work with overlay model objects in new ways.

Managing and comparing overlay model versions

You can now have different versions of the same overlay model, and select which version is shown on top of the Tekla Structures model. You can also compare two versions of an overlay model to see which changes have been made.

Viewing and managing overlay model versions

A Versions section has been added at the bottom of the Trimble Connect - Models dialog box. Here, you can see all versions of the selected overlay model. The name of each version consists of the version number, the date and time when the version has been uploaded, and the creator of the version.

If the latest available version of an overlay model is not shown, is shown next to the model name in the Trimble Connect - Models dialog box. The symbol is also shown next to folders if the latest version of any overlay model in those folders is not shown.

To take the latest version of an overlay model into use, click .

Comparing changes between two .tekla or .ifc overlay model versions

To start comparing two model versions, set two versions of an .ifc or a .tekla model visible in the Trimble Connect - Models dialog box.


You can only compare two versions at a time. If you set a third model version visible by clicking next to the model version, the oldest visible version is hidden automatically, and the comparison is updated to show the differences between the two visible versions.

The changes are shown as colors in the model.
  • Added objects = green
  • Modified objects = yellow
  • Deleted objects = red
  • Existing objects that have not been modified = gray

When you compare two model versions, you can:
  • Define the properties to be compared by clicking ... in the Versions section. In the Comparison sets dialog box that opens, you can define which properties are compared, and create and save the properties as comparison sets for future use.

  • Set up comparison tolerances to define how precisely the properties are compared. To do so, click .

  • Review the changes in the Changes list, which opens automatically when two model versions are visible. The changes are color-coded, so you can see what has happened to model objects between the model versions.

  • If you have selected the Select objects in the model and Zoom to selected check boxes at the bottom of the Changes list, you can select a row in the Changes list to select and zoom into the corresponding model object.

  • See which object properties have changed by clicking the corresponding row in the Changes list. This opens the Property details side pane, where you can review all of the object properties. Note that the side pane may not show changes in object rotation or location.

Comparing changes between overlay model versions in other formats

When you compare overlay models in other formats, such as .dgn or .dwg, the model objects are color-coded according to the changes that have been made.

The newest version of an object is shown in green, while the previous version is shown in red. If the object is the same in both versions, the object is shown in yellow or orange, depending on the selected object rendering option.

You can switch between different rendering options on the View tab to better see the changes and overlapping objects. The same structure is shown below with two different rendering options.

With the Components wireframe option:

With the Components rendered option:

Creating clip planes on overlay models

You can now create clip planes using overlay model objects. Use the Clip plane command on the View tab, or press Shift+X on the keyboard. For more information, see .

Selecting assemblies in overlay models

You can now select assemblies and sub-assemblies in overlay models. Remember to activate the Select assemblies selection switch in the Selecting toolbar. For more information, see Select assemblies, cast units, and nested objects.

Inquiring overlay model objects

You can now inquire the properties of overlay model objects and assemblies. To do so, select an assembly or an object in an overlay model, right-click the object, and select Inquire.

Note that the properties that are shown when you inquire overlay model objects are not the same as when you inquire Tekla Structures model objects. The number of shown properties can differ depending on the overlay models and model format.

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