Dimensioning rule properties

Tekla Structures
Tekla Structures

Dimensioning rule properties

The following table describes the options and their settings in the Dimensioning rule properties dialog box. This dialog box can be opened by selecting View creation in a Drawing Properties dialog box, selecting a view row and then clicking View properties > Dimensioning > Edit rule.

If you have selected Integrated as the dimension type, the Dimensioning properties dialog box will be displayed instead.

Dimensioning rule properties



What is dimensioned

Sets the dimensioning type:

  • Overall dimensions creates dimensions for the bounding box of the objects you select in the Measure from list.

  • Edge shape creates dimensions for the edge of the object selected in the Measure from list.

    By selecting the Visible faces option, dimensions will be created only to faces that are visible in the drawing view. The other option All faces dimensions all faces. All faces is the default value, and it will be used if the dimension settings file does not contain any value for the new setting.

    For sandwich walls, the default setting Cast unit / Assembly may not give the desired result with Edge shape. Then you can dimension the internal and external layers separately according to the part name.

  • Secondary parts creates dimensions for the secondary parts of a cast unit or an assembly.

  • Holes creates dimensions for the holes of the objects selected in the Measure from list. The hole dimensions are combined according to the Combine on one line setting.

    NOTE: The Holes dimensioning type does not dimension bolts, you need to use the Integrated dimensions to get the bolt dimensions.

  • Recesses creates dimensions for the recesses of the objects selected in the Measure from list. The hole dimensions are combined according to the Combine on one line setting.

  • Distance to grid creates dimensions from the grid line to the bounding box of the object selected in the Measure from list. This setting works only when the grid lines are visible.

  • Filter can be used to dimension anything that can be filtered. It is often used when dimensioning embeds. For example, you can dimension bolt locations after you have created a filter for bolts.

    When you select Filter from the What is dimensioned list, a list is displayed where you can select the filter. The filter is a drawing view filter and you need to create it beforehand to be able to use it here.

Dimension line location and linking

Controls on which sides of the cast unit the dimensions will be created.

  • Dimension line locations are rotated together with the drawing view if the view is manually rotated.
  • When selecting both sides, top and bottom or left and right, the objects will be dimensioned on the side that is closest to the object.

  • When only a part of the cast unit is selected for the rule, one of the check boxes will be dimmed and you cannot select it.

  • When you have selected one vertical and one horizontal dimension line, the linking check boxes in the corners are activated, and you can link the perpendicular dimension lines. The check boxes are dimmed by default.

  • You can select objects for dimensioning from the whole cast unit or only from one half of the cast unit. If you do this, objects in the other half will be ignored in dimension creation. The default value is the whole cast unit.

Place dimensions inside

When you select this setting, the dimensions can be placed inside a cast unit, assembly or part.

This is only visible for the dimensioning type Filter dimensions.


Orients the dimensions along the sloped edge of a part. Another possibility is to create horizontal or vertical dimensions.

  • This option is visible only when the dimensioning type Filter or Edge shape is selected.

  • When Filter is selected, there are two settings available for orientation.

    The first setting places the dimensions along the sloped edge:

    The second setting places the dimensions horizontally and vertically:

  • When Edge shape is selected, there are three settings available for orientation. First two settings work in the same way as the first two Filter settings. The first setting is the default value. The third one creates both dimensions:

Minimum length for skew section

Defines the minimum length of skewed sections when dimensions are still created for skew sections. The default value is 300 mm. For example, when you use the value 500 mm and the skew section is shorter than 500 mm, the dimensions are not created along the skew section, but horizontally and vertically instead.

Start point

Defines where the origin points for the dimensions are:

  • The default values are left for the Horizontal and bottom for the Vertical dimension.

  • The setting marked with symbol chooses the nearest edge as the dimension origin, for every dimension separately. In the example below, the object is closer to the right edge, and so the horizontal dimension starts from there.

Vertical = Horizontal

Often the settings are similar for both directions, and when this option is used, only vertical settings need to be set.

Close lines

Defines whether the dimension lines extend to the other end of the cast unit or assembly or not . The dimension lines extend to the other end by default.

Dimension to

Defines which points of the selected objects are dimensioned:

  • Both ends is the default.

  • If you select the center point setting and the object is a custom part (=embed), Tekla Structures will use the component insertion point, which is not always in the center. For other objects, the actual center point will be used.

Round holes

Defines whether the round holes will be dimensioned by center point or diameter :

  • This option is visible only when Holes or Recesses is selected.

  • The diameter is the default value.

  • Currently, round holes are identified only by cut part profile (prefix D). If you create the round hole using round chamfers, for example, the hole will not be dimensioned.

Dimension properties

Select and apply dimensions line settings defined in the dimension properties file that has been saved earlier in theDimension Properties dialog box in a drawing. The default value is standard.

If you select Same on all sides, the settings in the same dimension properties file are used on all sides. If you deselect Same on all sides, you can select and apply different dimension line properties for Top, Bottom, Left and Right side.

Measure from

Defines the objects that will be used as the origin point for the dimensions. The available settings are:

  • Cast unit/Assembly: This is the default value. If you select this setting, you have three more settings available:

    • Only concrete/steel parts: For a cast unit, only concrete parts are used, and for steel only steel parts.

    • All parts

    • All parts and rebars

  • Main part: This setting uses cast unit or assembly main part.

  • Part name: If you select Part name, you can define the part name.

  • Filter: If you select Filter, you can use a predefined filter for selecting the objects that you want to use as dimension origin points.

  • Current part: Select Current part when you are dimensioning a single part.
  • Bounding box: Uses the bounding box of an object as the origin point for the dimensions. This option is only available in filter, hole, recess and secondary part dimensioning.
  • Nearest edge: Uses the nearest edge an object as the origin point for the dimensions. This option is only available in filter, hole, recess and secondary part dimensioning.
  • And grid: Adds grid lines to the dimensions. This option is only available for the Overall dimensions, Shape dimensions, Filter dimensions, Secondary parts dimensions, Hole dimensions, and Recess dimensions dimensioning types.

Combine on one line

Creates a rule based on a filter, for example, for embeds (EB_*), and then groups the embeds according to the main part name, so that embeds with different names will get their own dimension lines. The filtered object can be a part, a reinforcing bar or an assembly. The available settings are:

  • All objects (default)

  • By name

  • By position number

  • No

When Holes or Recesses is selected, the Combine on one line option changes to display suitable settings for holes or recesses. The available settings are:

  • All holes (default)

  • Any holes of the same size

  • By cut part name

  • No

Combine only objects that have the same

X or Y coordinate

Z coordinate

Combines only the dimensions of objects that are on the same horizontal or vertical line, or dimensions of objects that have the same Z coordinate. By default, these options are not selected.


The tolerance is the maximum distance between objects when Tekla Structures still considers the objects to be on the same line. 50 mm is the default value.

Preferred combining direction

Sets the preferred direction for combining dimensions if an object can be combined both in horizontal and in vertical direction. X is the default value.

Do not create dimensions shorter than

Defines the minimum length of the dimensions for Tekla Structures to create them. 0 is the default value, which means that all dimensions are created.

Do not dimension holes smaller than

Defines the minimum diameter for the holes for Tekla Structures to create the dimensions.

With this option you can prevent the creation of dimensions for small holes. The distance is the shortest dimension of a hole. If any dimension of the hole is larger than the given value, the hole will be dimensioned in all directions. For example, with value 40, a rectangular hole of 80*30 will get both dimensions 80 and 30. Default value is 0, which means that all dimensions are created.

Component objects

Defines how component objects are dimensioned:

  • By reference points (default) places the dimensioning point to the first insertion point of the component. Only one dimension will be created for each component regardless of the number of parts inside the components.

  • As secondary objects creates separate dimensions for each part inside the component.

Dimension rule properties for spiral beam dimensioning

When you select dimensioning type Spiral beam dimensions, and click Edit rule, a different Dimensioning rule properties dialog box is displayed.

Setting Description

Straight dimensions

Angle dimensions

Angle and radius dimensions

Select predefined dimension properties. If none of the available properties suit your needs, open a drawing, click Drawing > Properties > Dimension, and edit and save the needed dimension properties so that they are available for selecting in the spiral beam Dimensioning rule properties dialog box for the three dimension types.

Examples of dimensions

See below for examples of dimensions created with different settings in the Dimensioning Rule Properties dialog box.

Overall dimensions

Edge shape

Secondary parts



Distance to grid

Filter: Embeds

Filter: Surface treatment

Filter: Bolts

To get the location of every bolt in the bolt group dimensioned, set Dimension to to midpoint :

Filter: Reinforcing bars and strands

Use the midpoint option to dimension each bar in a group:

Start point and end point option will dimension the first and the last reinforcing bar in a group:

If you want to have separate dimension lines for reinforcing bars that are not of the same size, set the Combine on one line to By position number:

To make the rule creation easier, the midpoint setting of the Dimension to option works so that it will create dimensions to start point and end point of the reinforcing bars that are parallel to the view plane:

If you want to get different size of reinforcing bars on separate dimension lines, set Combine on one line to By position number:

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