Magnifying or Scaling down a model

Applies To
Area:Modeling Solutions
Original Author:Bentley Technical Support Group

Sometimes, we want to create a new model by magnifying the lateral and vertical dimensions of an existing model. For example, take a model which is 20m along X and increase it to 30 m while retaining the same proportions for the bays. Or, it could be the other way too – we may want to scale down the plan dimensions of an existing model.

The procedure involves using the tool in the GUI called Structure Wizard.

Start STAAD Pro and create a new Analytical Model. Go to Geometry > Structure Wizard in the ribbon menu,

  Fig 1 Entering the Structure Wizard window from the STAAD.Pro ribbon menu

Once inside the Structure Wizard, click on the “Model Type” drop-down list and choose “Import CAD Models”. Double click on the “STAAD Model” icon.

Fig 2 Menu for importing a model from a pre-existing STAAD file

Select the existing STAAD file containing the model that you wish to magnify. Click the right mouse button in the drawing area and choose Scale. Or, go to the Edit menu and choose Scale.

Fig 3 Dialog box for scaling up or scaling down a model inside Structure Wizard

Enter the magnification factor. Let us say, we want to magnify the model 1.5 times in the X direction. Click on OK. The drawing will be updated to display the magnified model. For scaling down, we need to specify a factor less than 1 in the box for the appropriate direction.

Next, go to the File menu and select “Merge Model with STAAD Pro Model”. The magnified/shrunken model should now appear in the main drawing window of the program. Using the dimensioning tools of the GUI, make sure that the dimensions look right. Save the file and close it.


Fig 4 Transferring the model from Structure Wizard to the Modeling mode of the STAAD.Pro GUI

The procedure we have followed so far generates only the scaled up or scaled down values of the Structure geometry - Joint coordinates, Member incidences, Plate element incidences and solid element incidences. The remainder of the data – properties, supports, loads, analysis instructions, design commands, etc. cannot be brought in with this method.

So, we now have to adopt the steps required to bring in that data from the original model. Since the new model is supposed to be a scaled up or scaled down version of the original model, only the Joint coordinate data is different between the two. All the remaining data is identical between the 2 models. So, it is merely a matter of copying and pasting that information from the original file into the new file. This can be done very easily using a text editor like the STAAD editor (from the Edit menu, choose Edit Input Command File) or Notepad.

The quickest way to do this is from a Microsoft Windows Explorer screen. Click once on the first file to select it. Go to the File menu of Windows explorer. Choose "Open With ..." and choose Notepad. Repeat these steps with the second file. So, you now have both files open in Notepad. Copy and Paste the relevant data. Save and close the new file. This completes the exercise.

Next, open the new file in STAAD.Pro and make sure there are no errors or warnings.