Electrical Design Software | Elecdes Design Suite by Scada Systems Ltd

How to Place Components from a List

General

You can now create a list of devices, instruments and panels in DBF format and Paneldes will import and construct these on your model. To enable construction you must supply spatial position information, tagging information and also catalog information, which includes (by lookup) the dimensions and shape for construction.

Procedure

  1. Select Place Components from List from the Construction menu.

  2. Paneldes will display the Auto Insert of Paneldes Assembly dialog which is used for various Auto Insert functions like loading, creating, editing and saving your project AI file.

  3. Firstly, you will need to choose your data file by clicking the Load AI data file button. You will be presented with a file opening dialog allowing you to choose and load your AI data file. If you don't have an existing AI file you can simply type the desired name for your AI data file and Paneldes will create it for you. After the successful load your AI data file name will appear on the dialog like this . If the AI data file already contains some AI groups then they will appear in the AI group list like shown below.

  4. Once you have chosen an AI data file you can create an empty AI key by clicking the Create AI key group button. You will be presented with a dialog where you can set the AI Key name, and it's description.

    By default, Paneldes inserts an AI group at the base point of the selected primary object. You can also choose the AI key to be inserted in WCS by ticking the checkbox AI inserts directly at WCS point. After filling in the name and description, you can save your new AI key by clicking the Save AI key button, which will add an empty AI Key to the AI group list and your data file.

    Note: Paneldes will show you a warning if the AI Key already exists in the data file.

  5. Once the AI key has been created, you can add the objects directly from CAD into your AI key group by selecting an AI Key from the list and clicking on Save the AI Key group from the CAD.

    • If your AI key is chosen to be inserted at the object base point then Paneldes will first ask you to choose a primary object that is to be the Primary Positional Reference Object for the selected AI Key Group. A warning will be shown if you do not choose any object or choose more than one object.

      After choosing the primary objects you can pick Other Paneldes Objects to include in this Key AI Group.

    • If your AI key is chosen to be inserted at the WCS point then Paneldes will allow you to choose anything from the list of all of the objects on the drawing like shown below.

    After selecting entities from drawing you can press OK to add all of the selected entities to the currently selected AI Key.

  6. You can draw your AI groups in your CAD by clicking the Draw AI key group From CAD button. If the AI group was chosen to be inserted at the WCS point then the group will be inserted in WCS co-ordinates, otherwise it will be inserted in the base point of the primary positional reference object (which was chosen while creating the AI group).

  7. Choose the base point for the insertion.

    The chosen base point will only be used for components with relative position values (the position includes "@").

    If you have only used absolute position values, you can enter (0,0,0) for this point the value you enter will not be used by the program.

File Structure

Paneldes provides a template file named templateAI.dbf that is used for all of the auto insert functions and should be located in the RTEMPLATE folder of your installation. The file contains the following columns that are used by AI functions.

KEY A key used for grouping various objects within an AI group (i.e. All the components in an AI group will have the same key.)
VISDESCVisual description of the component (e.g Cap screws for brackets).
CLASS Paneldes class of component (e.g. DEVICE / PANEL).
TAGNAME The tagname of the component.
LOCATION PNLNO tag for devices / LOCATION tag for panels.
MFG Manufacturer's numeric code. (E.g. 1 = Merlin Gerin).
CATNO Manufacturer's catalog number.
NAME_FORCE If you want the entity to have a new name every time even if its LOCATION is changed then put "NOLOCATION" in the NAME_FORCE column. This will make sure that the entity (e.g. device, instrument etc.) is always given a new name.
POWER

A number representing the power rating for this cable.

Used by Paneldes to separate cables with different power ratings during cable routing. Must match the power rating of the raceway intended to carry the cable.

0 (zero) is general and can be placed in any raceway.

EXTENDABLE

If the primary object is a raceway length segment (e.g. a straight trench) then it can be stretched to the desired length if it is marked with "Y" in the EXTENDABLE column. Other length segments of any type that are also marked as EXTENDABLE will also be stretched by the distance that the primary segment is stretched

Note that the same amount of additional length is added to each extendable segment. They are not necessarily made the same final length.

For example, when creating an AI group for a trench you can choose to mark the entries for cable tray or conduit in the trench so that they will be stretched by the same amount as the trench when the trench is inserted.

REPEAT_LEN

If the primary object is a raceway length segment (e.g. a straight trench) then any entities that have a distance in the REPEAT_LEN column will be repeated for each interval that the length of the primary object is longer than a multiple of the repeat length beyond the original position of the entity

For example, when creating an AI group for a trench you can choose to repeat a wall bracket every 2 meters (enter "2m" in the REPEAT_LEN column). If the trench is stretched so that it is 6 meters long and the first bracket is 1 meter down the trench, then an additional wall bracket will be inserted at 3 meters and 5 meters down the trench.

NORTH

Y value of the position of the component, e.g. "20ft".

OR relative Y value of the position of the component, e.g. "@20ft".

EAST

X value of the position of the component, e.g. "10ft".

OR relative X value of the position of the component, e.g. "@10ft".

ELEVATION

Z value of the position of the component, e.g. "30ft".

OR relative Z value of the position of the component, e.g. "@30ft".

XVECT_XThe X axis of the coordinate system of the entity.
XVECT_Y
XVECT_Z
YVECT_XThe Y axis of the coordinate system of the entity.
YVECT_Y
YVECT_Z
STD_PLATES If this value is set to "FALSE" or "NO" then the standard plates of automatically inserted panel components will be omitted. Only the panel frame will be inserted.
HEIGHT

Parametric height for components with a rectangular cross-section.

e.g. 230mm

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

WIDTH

Parametric width for components with a rectangular cross-section.

e.g. 100mm

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

RADIUS

Parametric radius for components with a circular cross-section.

e.g. 150mm

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

LENGTH

Parametric depth or length for components with a rectangular or circular cross-section. e.g. 230mm

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

BENDRADIUS

Parametric radius for bends in raceway, e.g. 200mm.

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

CNRANGLE

Parametric inside corner angle for bends in raceway, i.e. corners or risers.

e.g. 135 means the corner will have an inside angle of 135°, so it will deviate 45° from straight.

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

SECHEIGHT

Additional parametric height for some segments of raceway, e.g. 45mm.

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

SECWIDTH

Additional parametric width for some segments of raceway, e.g. 45mm.

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

PROTRUDE

Parametric protrusion of the front of the component through a mounting plate. E.g. 20mm.

Used by Paneldes to construct the physical model.

VERTICAL Set to "TRUE" or "YES" if the component should be oriented vertically.
POSITION

Component position specified in one column with comma separate values.

Absolute 3D position, X,Y,Z with units, e.g. "10ft, 20ft, 30ft".

Or relative 3D position, @X,Y,Z with units, e.g. "@10ft,20ft,30ft".

NTH_FRONT

The angle of the component from North.

If the list is processed automatically from a catalog spec, see below, specify the angle from the front of the originally inserted component.

Notes:

Items, which cannot be resolved from the catalogs, will not be inserted.

The data from the Elecdes BOM is very similar to the above and can be "massaged" into this format.

The DBF file may have any file name.

Always use relative position if this list is inserted as extra components from the catalog see below.

The separate position columns, NORTH, EAST and ELEVATION, will be used only if the POSITION column is left empty.

Automatic insertion of extra components from catalog

When you insert a component, Paneldes checks the chosen catalog specification for a link to one of these insertable component lists.

The catalog specification should have the following extra columns:

AI_FILE

Name of an insertable component list, as described above.

The file should be located in the same folder as the catalog file: MET_CAT or IMP_CAT.

AI_KEY

Optional key name to select components from the insertable component list.

This value is checked against the KEY of each record in the component list, see above.

This key can be any user defined text name e.g. "MYKEY"

The POSITION or NORTH, EAST and ELEVATION values in the insertable component list should always be relative, with "@" prefix.

The NTH_FRONT value should specify the desired angle relative to the front of the originally inserted component.


If the file is found, then Paneldes will insert all of the components from the file that have a KEY value matching the AI_KEY value. The insertion base point and orientation, of the list based components, is the insertion point and orientation of the original component you were inserting.

Auto insert dialog buttons and columns:

Item

Displays an icon for each AI group in your AI data file.

AI_Key

Displays the name of the AI Key for an AI group.

WCS_Only

If the AI group uses the WCS coordinates for insertion then this column will display WCS_origin otherwise it will show Component in it.

Description

Displays the description for your AI key.

Primary record

Displays the record number of the primary record of the AI group in your data file. e.g. if your AI group starts from record number 50 then it will display the number 50 inside this column.

Load AI data file

Opens a file opening dialog allowing you to choose and load your AI data file.

Edit AI data file

Opens your AI file in Database Editor where you can manually edit the dbf file and save it.

Create AI key group

Creates new AI key with user specified AI Key name and description. Also allows you to choose to insert the AI Key group directly at the WCS point.

Save AI key group From CAD

Allows you to select the objects from your drawing and add to the the selected AI key.

Edit AI key group From CAD

Allows you to edit your existing AI groups. When you choose to edit an AI group, Paneldes will draw the selected AI group inside the drawing where you could make all the necessary changes. After finishing the changes you can re-save the AI group using the Save AI key group From CAD button and re-selecting your updated group.

Draw AI key group

Draws the selected AI group onto your drawing. The group will be inserted directly in the WCS if it was selected at the time of creating the group.