Repeat, Mirror, Scaling and Shifting your structure
Repeat (copy) is an operation which allows you to select and repeat a portion of your structure. This feature is useful when you have a structure (e.g. a warehouse) that is mostly made up of repeated structures (e.g. portal frames).
Example: Modelling a warehouse with repeated portal frames
In this example, we will model a warehouse that is made up of 3 repeated portal frames. The first portal frame has already been modelled:
Hover over the Advanced tab on the top toolbar, then hover over Operations to then select the Repeat option. You can also skip this and bring up the prompt directly by using the shortcut shown, Ctrl + D:
You can check or uncheck the options to connect any duplicated nodes with members, or duplicate any supports that were attached to nodes you selected.
If you leave either of those supplemental options off, you can manually connect nodes or add supports afterwards.
The Mirror Operation allows you to mirror parts or all of your structure. Lets use the same example that is shown in the Repeat section. Start by selecting the part of the structure you wish to mirror, and selecting Edit > Operations > Mirror:
The following popup will then show with the two following required inputs:
- Mirror Plane – About which plane are you mirroring. Picture it as an actual mirror, what plane would this lie on? In our example, we want to mirror our warehouse through the YZ plane.
- Mirror Plane Location – in our model, the middle nodes are 0 m. Since we want the other side of the structure to start at this location, we will mirror as per this point.
Tip: If you make a mistake, remember you can always Undo (CTRL + Z) and try again.
We should get the following result, with the model flipped identically about the x = 0m axis (nodes turned off for clarity)
Sometimes when building your structure, you might want to shift a columns or members over by some distance while still being connected to the structure. Using the same example, if we want to shift the front portal frame by 3m, we could use the Shifting Nodes operation. Start by highlighting what nodes/members you want to shift (here we used the up-left CTRL drag to select only the members and nodes in the front portal frame):
We want to shift the nodes along the z-axis only, by 3m (in the positive direction):
And the resultant structure: