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RE: Spreadsheets for Cold-Formed Sections?

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Gary --

I think you may have already found your answer -- to use CFS, because
developing your own spreadsheet is too time-consuming.  My experience
has been that, if there's commercial software that does what you need it
to do, it's nearly always cheaper to buy the software than it is to
develop, verify, and troubleshoot your own in-house "software".  At $595
for CFS, you'd have to develop a working alternative in probably
something like 3-6 hours of time that would otherwise be charged to a
client.  I would think even if you know light-gauge design inside and
out, and are a wiz-bang spreadsheet programmer, you'd probably be
hard-pressed to do that.  (Of course, if work is slow, and you need
something to do, spreadsheet development or other "sharpening-the-saw"
activities are a good use of time.)

If you want to do your light-gauge section calcs within Excel because of
interaction with other parts of your design workflow, then you might
consider buying the CFS DLL from RSG.  You could have it do the
gruntwork of the calculations, and just write a Visual Basic
user-defined function that takes input from the spreadsheet, calls the
DLL, and returns the results of its calculations to the spreadsheet.
That would be a far simpler programming exercise on your end that might
justify the additional expense of buying the DLL.

-- Joel Adair
SHW Group
Plano, TX

-----Original Message-----
From: Gary L. Hodgson and Assoc. [mailto:design(--nospam--at)hodgsoneng.ca] 
Sent: Wednesday, July 29, 2009 8:27 AM
To: SEAINT Mail List
Subject: Spreadsheets for Cold-Formed Sections?

List,

Does anybody know of any excel spreadsheets for calculating the section 
properties of cold-formed steel sections?  I already use CFS from RSG 
Software (http://rsgsoftware.com/) that gives me what I want, but I'd 
prefer to do all of this within Excel.

I tried creating my own spreadsheet but I found it too time consuming.  
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

cheers,
Gary

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