Creation of Stiffener Distribution

Version(s):CONNECT Edition (10.XX.00.XX)
Subarea:Steel Connections
Original Author:Alistair Lobo, Bentley Product Advantage Group


While modelling steel structures, you may need to provide stiffeners to long shapes, may be beams or columns. In such cases, it is very time consuming to provide stiffeners at regular distances one by one. Hence, to mitigate for this time issue and to provide ease in modelling, you can provide a series of stiffeners by using the ‘Stiffener Distribution’ tool.

This document will guide you on how to create, place and control the insertion of multiple stiffener plates in one go with the ‘Stiffener Distribution’ tool.


1) Create a shape in your model where you want the stiffener inserted. For the sake of this case, create a beam in the model. 

2) Now go to Steel > Home > Steel Connections > Stiffener Distribution and click on that tool. 

3) Now it will prompt you to select the shape that you want to insert the stiffener in. In this case, select the beam.

4) Then stiffeners get placed and the Stiffener Distribution dialog box comes up with the ‘Layout’ tab open.

From this dialog box, you can define the stiffener plate layout & parameters.

5) To update your settings from the dialog box in the model, you need to click on the ‘Build Connection’ icon which will then update the stiffener connection details in the shape. 

6) Now in the ‘Connect’ tab, you can choose to connect the stiffeners to the shape by welds and define the weld parameters. 

7) In the ‘Options’ tab, you can control the distribution layout of the stiffeners and set the arrangement according to the requirement. 

8) Lastly, in the ‘Assignment’ tab, you can choose to associate the stiffeners with a display class, area class, part family and description so that you can further use these parameters to classify and categorize the stiffeners in the further course of modelling. 

9) Finally, when you click on OK, the stiffener distribution is created and placed according to the user defined input in the dialog box. 

In this manner, for very long shapes, you can place and control the creation of stiffeners with a single command of ‘Stiffener Distribution’.

See Video