Tekla Structures – Parts

Introduction               In Tekla Structures, we use the term parts to refer to the basic components of a model. These

are the building blocks of the physical model. For structural analysis purposes, we use the term members to mean load-bearing parts.

The main concrete parts are:

•     beam

•     polybeam

•     column

•     pad footing

•     strip footing

•     panel

•     slab The main steel parts are:

•     beam

•     curved beam

•     orthogonal beam

•     polybeam

•     column

•     twin profile

•     contour plate

In this chapter

This chapter explains how to create and modify parts using different materials and profiles. It

also includes a general description of part properties and an overview of part commands. You can find step-by-step instructions for all these commands in the online help.

We assume that you have read Chapter 1, or have comparable knowledge of Tekla Structures. Before you start to create parts, you need to create grids, views, and points, as explained in Chapter 2,

This chapter is divided into the following sections:

Assumed background


3.1 Part properties



Every part has properties which define it (e.g. material, profile, location, etc.). This section describes the basic part-specific properties. Use the part properties dialog box to view or modify the properties of a part.

You can use part properties in filters. For example, you can select, modify, or hide parts based on their properties. You can include part properties and user-defined attributes in drawing and report templates.

Filtering by properties
In reports and drawings
Name The name of the part is user-definable. Tekla Structures uses part names in reports and drawing lists, and to identify parts of the same type, e.g. beams or columns.
Finish                          Finish is user-definable. It describes how the part surface has been treated, e.g. with anti-
corrosive paint, hot galvanized, fire retardant coating, etc.

Class                           Use Class to group parts. To display parts of different classes in different colors, click View >

Representation > Object Representation… and select Color by class in the Color list box.


Tekla Structures contains standard, parametric, and user-defined profiles.

Standard profiles When you first start Tekla Structures, the profile catalog contains standard, environment-specific profiles. The properties of these library profiles conform to industry standards, so you should not edit them. You can add profiles to the profile catalog. See The profile catalog in the online help.

Parametric                  Parametric profiles are partly user-definable, they have a predefined shape, but you determine

profiles                       their size by giving one or more parameters. You can use parametric profiles to closely “model”

profiles that are standard in specific environments, but do not exist in the Tekla Structures profile catalog. Parametric profile names have specific prefixes and include dimension values. These are described in Appendix A, Parametric Profiles If you want to define alternative prefixes for parametric profiles, see Customizing parametric profiles in the online help. Dimension values in parametric profile names are separated by standard separators -, X, /, or *. If you want to define additional separators, see XS_PARAMETRIC_PROFILE_SEPARATOR and XS_USER_DEFINED_PARAMETRIC_PROFILE_SEPARATORS in the online help.

User-defined              You can also create your own profiles and save them in the profile catalog. For example, you

profiles                       could create a user-defined profile pitched, with different cross sections at the beginning and end

of the profile. You can also define cross sections. To create user-defined cross sections, you pick the points which define the cross section corners. To create your own profiles, see Sketching and using cross sections
and Adding a standard (fixed) user-defined profile in the online help.

Selecting a profile

To select the profile of a part, click Select… next to the Profile field in the part properties dialog box. The Select Profile dialog box appears.

fl) Standard profile C2J Parametric profile
All profiles and details You can select a profile from the tree which lists profiles contained in the profile catalog. Profiles are grouped in the tree according to rules (such as profile type) which you can define and modify. Only the profile types that are relevant to the material of the part are shown. For more information on how to modify the profile catalog and rules, and how to associate profile types with materials, see The profile catalog and Working with rules in the online help.
If you select a parametric profile, enter the profile dimensions in the Value column.

If you select the Show all profiles checkbox, Tekla Structures includes all the profiles in the profile catalog in the tree. To see all the properties of profiles, select the Show details checkbox.

For user-defined profiles Tekla Structures also displays cross section information.

When you have selected a profile, click Apply or OK.

can also:
Use the Profile name list box in the Select profile dialog box to select a recently used profile.

Enter a profile name in the Profile field in the part properties dialog box. Parametric profile names must be in the format shown in Appendix A, Parametric Profiles.

Using standardized values for profile dimensions
You can define standardized values for the dimensions of parametric profiles in the industry_standard_profiles.inp file in the ..\environments\*your_environment*\system folder.

To use these values, in the Select profile dialog box, select a parametric profile for which you have defined standardized values and select the Use industry standardized values only checkbox. You can select the profile dimensions from a list box in the Value column.

You can edit the industry_standard_profiles.inp file using any standard text editor (for example, Notepad). Use the following format:

•     Profile and profile subtype

•     Parameters separated by spaces

•     Units for each parameter

•     Standardized values for each parameter (own row for each dimension combination)

Example                      In the following example we define standardized combinations of dimension values for a C


C h*b*t
h b t
mm mm mm
75 35 5
75 35 6
75 35 7
100 40 7
100 40 8
100 40 9
The material catalog contains standard, environment-specific materials. You can add, modify, and delete materials and grades.

Defining the material of a part

Select…                       To select the material of a part, click Select… next to the Material field in the part properties

dialog box. The Select material dialog box appears. You can select the material and grade from the tree, which displays all the materials in the material catalog.

Aliases and                To include aliases for material grades in the tree, in the Select material dialog box, select the
details                         Show aliases checkbox. Aliases are alternative names. For example, they can be former names,

or names used in different countries or standards. Tekla Structures automatically translates aliases into the standard name when you select a material grade. To see all the properties of materials, select the Show details checkbox.

Analysis                      The Analysis tab contains information on the properties used in structural analysis, including
the modulus of elasticity, Poisson’s ratio, and thermal dilatation coefficient.

Design                        The Design tab contains information on design-specific properties, such as strengths, partial

safety factors, etc.

User attributes           Use the User attributes tab to view or modify the user-defined properties of materials. For

example, this tab could contain the maximum grain size, porosity, or surface quality class of a concrete material type, or country-specific properties.

When you have selected the material for a part, click Apply or OK.

T You can also enter a material name in the Material field in the part properties dialog box.
To modify the material catalog, see The material catalog in the online help.
User-defined attributes

User-defined attributes provide extra information about a part. Attributes can consist of numbers, text, or lists. The following table explains what you can use attributes for:

Attribute Can be used…
Comment In part and weld marks in Tekla Structures drawings, or in projects.
Shorten When drawings of the parts are created, Tekla Structures decreases the true length of the part by this value. This is useful when creating assembly drawings of bracing bars which should always be under tension.
Camber In part marks in Tekla Structures drawings.
Prelim mark To obtain preliminary marks for parts in reports. To assign part position numbers to preliminary marks, click Drawings & Reports > Numbering > Save Preliminary Numbers when you number parts. To check the preliminary mark of a selected object, click Tools > Inquire > Object.
Shear, Tension, and Moment To save reaction forces for AutoDefaults. See Auto-Defaults settings and Reaction forces and UDL in the online help. You can enter forces separately for each end of a part.
Locked To protect objects from being accidentally changed. See Locking objects in the online help.
User field 1…4 User-defined fields. You can change the names of these fields and add new user-defined fields. See Adding properties in the online help.

Connection code

When importing information on connection types into Tekla Structures. You can then use the connection codes as rules in AutoConnection and AutoDefaults. Each end of a part can have a different connection code.
For more information on defining attributes using the objects.inp file, see Adding properties in the online help.
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