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Re: Structural Software

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If your first and the most critical item is first cost, look at Risa. I 
have used Risa-2D and, like you observed 3D in another office, and found 
it very logical and easy to use. If wood design is important to you, 
lack of Windows version of Risa is less important.

In the office we use STRAP. It is Windows based (I think the version we 
use is 4th release under Windows) and allows both DXF and Metafile 
transfer. It has all of the features you mentioned. It does not have 
wood design, so if that is a critical feature, we are back to Risa.

One of the features of STRAP to consider is their techsupport. They have 
several people available during office hours to answer questions and for 
a small office it could be very beneficial.

We have their largest package, but for a small office you may consider 
their Light Gauge Designer. (It used to be $1900). This package includes 
all of their (bells and whistles) features and design of structural 
steel, concrete and light gauge to US codes (Canadian, Euro, British and 
others are extra). They have a pretty comprehensive demo on their site.

Even if this is beyond your budget, see if you can "invest" in their 
STRAPIntro. This is a small (12 nodes/35 members) version of their 
complete version and includes steel, concrete and light gauge design. 
Just in light gauge design alone it does more than many commercial 
packages costing $300 to $500, but it will give you an idea of what it 
feels like. 

Regards,
J. 





>
>I'm shopping for the best bang for the buck for structural software.  
I'm a
>one-man-show and have to make the coupons count.
>
>I need 3-D capability, both analysis and design, plus seismic analysis 
and
>design capability.  I also need to be able to DXF in and out between 
both
>Autocad and Microsoft.
>
>I've played with a demo of  Visual Analysis, seen RISA 3-D in a 
client's
>office, downloaded and briefly looked at AVwin Plus, and received, but 
not
>tested, a demo  of Multiframe 4D from Daystar software.
>
>I'd be interested in experiences, and recommendations (both good and 
bad)
>to help me choose.
>
>Rather than clutter this forum, you may want to reply direct.
>
>Thank you-all,
>
>Fountain E. Conner, P.E.
>Gulf Breeze, Fl. 32561
>   Phone 850-932-5547
>   Fax      850-934-1916
>
>
>
>


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