Set up the material database

Tekla PowerFab
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Set up the material database

Tekla EPM contains a variety of different materials, which are stored in the material database. These materials are the foundation of all material calculations in Tekla EPM, so adjusting the material database according to the needs of your company is extremely important.

You can also add any materials that you need to the material database. Note that you can also add material items that are not steel, from equipment and consumables to office supplies. Tekla EPM accepts a variety of property formats used to assist with material calculations for weights, pricing, and surface area for coating.

You can view and manage the materials that have been added to the material database in the Shape / Grade / Size Maintenance dialog box. You can both add new materials, and modify, deactivate, or delete existing materials.

Note that when you add new materials to the material database, the materials still need to be added to the pricing database separately. The pricing database is where Tekla EPM looks for the material dimensions and lengths for combining materials. For more information, see Set up pricing.

If you add dimensions for shapes by importing, remember to check the material database for dimensions that do not have complete properties. You can easily find any dimensions with incomplete properties by creating a zero weight report. For detailed instructions on creating material reports, see Create material reports.

To start managing the materials in the Tekla EPM:

  1. Click the Maintenance ribbon tab.

  2. On the menu, select Shapes/Grades/Sizes.

The Shape / Grade / Size Maintenance dialog box opens. See the structure of the dialog box in the following image:

(1) The shape list shows all shapes in the material database. You can see the shape abbreviation, the description of the shape, the number of material grades and dimensions, and whether the shape is activated or not. When you select a shape in the shape list, you can start managing its dimensions, grades, and abbreviations.

For more information, see Manage shapes.

(2) Use the navigation tree to filter which shapes are shown in the shape list. You can expand the categories in the navigation tree by clicking the + signs on the left side of the categories. For example, if you only want to show shapes that have material grades, click + on the left side of Has Grades, and select Yes.

(3) On the Dimensions tab, you can add new dimensions, modify dimension properties, add alternate dimensions and grade overides, show where particular dimensions are used in Tekla EPM, and delete unnecessary dimensions.

For more information, see Manage dimensions.

(4) On the Grades tab, you can add, modify, or delete grades, and add grade substitutions or grade redirections.

For more information, see Manage grades.

(5) On the Shape Abbreviations tab, you can add new abbreviations for shapes. By adding shape abbreviations, you can ensure that Tekla EPM recognizes any shapes that you import, even if the imported shapes do not use the Tekla EPM standard abbreviations.

For more information, see Add, modify, and delete shape abbreviations.

(6) When you have selected a shape, you can see the material group, weight calculation method, and cost calculation method, and the cost display units here. If necessary, you can change the cost display units.

For more information, see Change the display units of prices.

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