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Nuts & Bolts A Blog Dedicated to All Things SDS/2

The Nuts & bolts Blog serves the SDS/2 community by sharing information of interest to our users.
What you'll find here:

JUL 25

Industry News Roundup: July 25

This week’s news resources:

Researchers are examining which bridge designs and materials are the most eco-friendly. See what they discovered at Civil + Structural Engineer Magazine

Abstracts are now being accepted for the 2015 SSRC Annual Stability Conference held in conjunction with NASCC: The Steel Conference March 24-27. Get more information and sign up at Modern Steel.

Steel and recycling could come together to make this skyscraper that grows as its residents recycle. See how it might come together at Huffington Post.

Watch Virginia's Gilmerton Bridge's replacement using accelerated bridge construction methods in this video over at Modern Steel

In case you missed our latest blog post:

AISC's BIMsteel Workshops are a great way to learn to take advantage of new opportunities for automation and efficiency in the structural steel industry. Learn more in our blog post

JUL 23

AISC BIMsteel Workshops Coming to a City Near You

This summer and fall, AISC is offering free BIMsteel Workshops in cities across the U.S. as a part of the organization’s BIMsteel Interoperability Initiatives for the Structural Steel Industry.

As the construction industry changes, collaborative delivery methods like Integrated Project Delivery, Design-Build, and Design-Assist become more common, and the need for data and knowledge exchange is growing. Automation and efficiency are at our fingertips in the structural steel industry, as we embrace technological advances of software, machinery, and robotics. 

These BIMsteel Workshops and other BIMsteel initiatives “aim to help the industry take advantage of these opportunities by developing new processes and improved methods of data transfer and sharing such that we achieve the potential this new era promises,” according to AISC’s website.

AISC’s website has all the details about the BIMsteel Workshops — including dates, an agenda, and registration information.

JUL 18

Industry News Roundup: July 18

This week’s news resources:

Quality structural steel engineering is key to a project's success.

“A good structural engineer understands the insides of a built structure; it comes from experience, by doing things from scratch and knowing how the built environment behaves and having a feel on the size of the structural elements and their behavior.” Find out more at Big Project Middle East.

This enormous steel-framed bunker is the centerpiece of Mitsubishi Power Systems' new gas turbine testing facility. Learn more about the project and how steel made it possible at Modern Steel.

AISC is offering a four-part webinar series “Fundamentals of Connection Design” beginning on July 31. The first two sessions will focus on the fundamentals, while the last two will concentrate on shear connections. Learn more and find out how to register on AISC's website.

In case you missed our latest blog post: 

We're heading to Nashville next week for the 2014 HydroVision International conference! Read more in our blog post

JUL 17

Design Data headed to Nashville for HydroVision International next week

Next week we’ll be packing our bags and heading to Nashville, Tennessee, for Hydrovision International 2014.

Now in its 20th year, Hydrovision International is the world’s largest hydro event with conference with more than 3,000 attendees and over 300 exhibitors.

The HydroVision International Conference and Exhibition offers attendees countless opportunities to network, share best practices, meet with product and service providers, talk to influential hydro decision-makers and more.

For the first time, we’ll be at Hydrovision International to exhibit our SDS/2 software and how it can benefit the hydro industry. We’ll be in booth #1344, so if you’re at the conference stop by and check us out.

Not registered for Hydrovision International 2014? There’s still time to register on Hydrovision International’s website.

JUL 11

Industry News Roundup: July 11

This week’s news resources:

At nearly 400 feet tall, the crane used to construct the new Vikings Stadium in Minneapolis is the third largest. See how these builders delivered the crane in about 70 truckloads and will have 11 days to erect it. See it come together on the Vikings website.

This 18-story building opened up 7,000 square feet of rentable space without altering its footprint. Learn how they pulled it off on ASCE’s website.

Yesterday, Chicago's Clark St. Bridge turned 85! Learn more about the historic bridge at Modern Steel.

In case you missed our latest blog post: 

See how MWD Steel Fabrication, LLC uses SDS/2 in their steel detailing and fabricating projects in our latest blog post.

2014 SDS/2 Users Group Registration

Registration for the 2014 SDS/2 Users Group conference is NOW OPEN! Check out the conference schedule and register now!


Customer Spotlight: MWD Steel Fabrication, LLC

MWD Steel Fabrication, a steel fabrication and detailing company based right here in Lincoln, NE, employs SDS/2 to meet the needs of its customers. MWD has worked on all kinds of projects in the Midwest, including jobs in the industrial and commercial industries. Check out their online project gallery and see some of the work made possible with SDS/2.

Recently, MWD helped fabricate the main staircase in SAC Federal Credit Union’s brand new headquarters in Bellevue.

We’re proud to be an integral part of MWD’s business and to help them deliver high quality products with extreme accuracy. BIM has been a huge driver for MWD’s ability to drive down costs, increase efficiency and eliminate design interferences for its customers, and we’re excited to be a part of their success in these areas.

Make sure to head to the MWD Steel Fabrication’s Facebook page to see the projects their working on, including models built in SDS/2 and more!


Creating Custom Buttons for Parametrics, Reports, and Advanced Selection

Creating custom buttons to your toolbar that run Parametrics, Reports, and Advanced Selections is done easily in SDS/2 version 7.3.

To create a custom button, first access your Toolbar Configuration in Modeling by going to the Options pull-down menu and selecting Toolbar Configuration. 

Next, you will need to create a Custom Launcher by clicking Launcher Manager, open the tab corresponding to which type of launcher is to be created (Parametrics, Reports, Advanced Selections), and select Add.

In the Launcher Edit window, specify the Button text which will make up a text button, specify the Hover text which will pop up when your mouse is hovered over the button, specify the Script which is the Parametric, Report, or Advanced Selection file that is to be run when the button is clicked. Small icon and Large icon are optional fields used to specify picture buttons that can be placed on the toolbar instead of a text button. Once OK is clicked, the Hover text specified will be shown in the list of available launchers.

To add a custom button to your toolbar, close the Launcher Manager, choose Parametric Launchers, Report Launchers, or Selection Launchers from the Command Group: drop-down menu, and drag the button to the desired location on your toolbar.

JUN 27

Industry News Roundup: June 27

This week’s news resources:

Our own Doug Evans recently spoke with the folks at GeoSpatial Stream about SDS/2’s productivity and interoperability. See how SDS/2 adds intelligence to crane modeling, and much more on the GeoSpatial Stream website.

American Institute of Steel Construction member Structal-Bridges has launched its blog, sharing expertise on the bridge construction industry. Learn more and find out where to find their blog at Modern Steel.

Bluebeam's Sasha Reed tells us what lean manufacturing can teach us about improving the design review process. Read it at Building Design Construction.

In case you missed our latest blog post:

Voortman optimizes the range of its True Hole and Contour Cut Technology. The change makes it possible to cut high quality holes in even thicker plates with the same amperage. Read the details in our blog.

JUN 25

Voortman introduces optimized hole quality with Xtensive Hole Performance

Design Data partner Voortman is well know for being a leader in the steel fabrication and plate processing industries because its unique technologies and innovations.

One of these technologies is Voortman’s True Hole technology with Hypertherm® HyPerformance series and Contour Cut with Kjellberg® HiFocus series, which will virtually eliminate taper on any inner contour or hole. 

Voortman has just announced that they have further optimized this technology to combine with the motion capabilities of Voortman machines to cut perfect holes. 

The True Hole range of Hypertherm is also extended, decreasing the amount of consumable changes caused by range limitations and also enabling users to cut high quality holes through thicker plates with the same energy use.

Head over to Voortman’s website to learn more and see the extended true hole range’s affect on different plate thicknesses.


The Connector publication contains news about the structural steel industry and related events, customer spotlights, as well as information about SDS/2 and Design Data.

Delivered via e-mail, The Connector gets this important information straight to Design Data’s customer contacts. This format allows these customers to easily route our newsletter throughout their business, so all SDS/2 users can benefit from the valuable information it contains.

SDS/2 Software Provides Framework for
Detroit Medical Center Heart Hospital

When the new $78-million, 190,000-square-foot Detroit Medical Center Heart Hospital opens in early 2014, Design Data's SDS/2 software will have played an important role in the six-story project.

Meeting the project's challenges required collaboration between Harley Ellis Devereaux (HED) — the project's structural engineer — and Douglas Steel Fabricating Corporation — the project's fabricator — via SDS/2.

Using SDS/2, Douglas Steel automatically designed connections for each beam, brace, column and framing condition, which enabled HED engineers to validate the connection capacities against the required values.

To learn more about how HED and Douglas Steel successfully used SDS/2, read the full article in the March 2013 issue of Modern Steel Construction.