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Have Engineered A Solution

A Boon Tool To Generate RC Beam L.S

Why use this Plug-In

As of now ARC BDS does not generate layout
from ETABS file hence, to generate Beam L.S for
entire floor this Plug-In can be used.

Procedure generate Beam L.S Details from ETABS MDB file

To Generate the MDB file (from ETABS ) the following tables are
Please set the output unit to kN-m before generating the table.

"Control Parameters"
"Story Data"
"Point Coordinates"
"Column Connectivity Data"
"Beam Connectivity Data"
"Frame Section Assignments"

"Concrete Beam Section Design Data"

Concrete Column Section Design Data
"Concrete Design 2 - Beam Summary Data - Indian IS 456-2000";

From ETABS generate an MDB file having the above tables.

In ARC BDS -> Add On Tools -> Plugins -> Etabs to Lite

The dialog below appears

Select Etabs MDB Intelli Rein Excel option and click Process
Button the dialog box below appears

Click on Extract Button or button the following dialog appears


Select an appropriate MDB file and click Open button


Click Extract Button the program generates an XLS sheet

******_Intellirein.xls (where ***** is the MDB file name)

The Path of the XLS file is shown as Hint when the mouse is taken near
the Link.

That file is the BASE for generating the ARC BDS Lite file,
It contains all the Beams extracted from ETABS file
Each extracted beam has

Row Name (the program creates a row name

automatically by clubbing all the individual span
names of the row of beam)

Preferred Diameters to be used for reinforcement

Each Individual Span name

Size & Length of each span

Steel Reinforcement AREAS of Each span of beam

including stirrups

Left and right parent type and sizes

For a detailed explanation of the ******_Intellirein.xls file see
Editing the INTELLI-REIN SHEET help document

Once the ******_Intellirein.xls is modified,

Select Create ARC BDS Lite Input file and click Process button.
The dialog below appears

if the process of creating the ******_Intellirein.xls is

done in this session of work only, the Excel Name
******_Intellirein.xls file

Otherwise if the ******_Intellirein.xls file is

modified else where or in a different session click
******_Intellirein.xls file.

Click on Load from Excel button

Click on Export to ARC BDS Lite

Click on OK

Click on Exit the ARC BDS Lite file is generated; it can be loaded by
ARC BDS Lite version.

Once Loaded
Once the file is opened by ARC
In the list of beams click right button
and click Sort By Row Name
It will sort all the beams row wise,
and that is how the output will come.

Click on Reinforcement Tab

Click on Open Reinforcement
Data Sheet

Ensure that you have the backup of the OLD reinforcement sheet if
required as by CLICKING YES in this dialog.

The xls file created when clicking Yes will contain the data that is
there in the Current *.ZBLD file

Up to this point, all this can be done by the draftsmen in charge.

The draftsmen should save the xls file and give that file to the engineer.

The draftsmen should complete all the things required such

Row Grouping

Splitting of rows if required

Deleting of Beams

Adding of beams

Adding of Grid Numbers etc

All this should have been already done when editing the
******_Intellirein.xls file, in case something is missed the draftsmen can
use the features of ARC BDS to modify them.
Once the file XLS file is generated, the draftsmen in charge should NOT
add / deleted any beams in the *.ZBLD file until the Design Engineer has
completed the Modification of the reinforcement.
The design engineer should take care that this reinforcement XLS is done
properly, if this is done perfectly the drawing NEED NOT BE

If all the steps above are followed in perfect sequential manner the only
work the design engineer will have is to modify the xls file given by the
Once the draftsmen receive the modified xls file.
Click on Open Reinforcement
Data Sheet
In the xls sheet opened, replace all
the reinforcement data given by
Design engineer using copy
Save the xls file
Click Load Reinforcement From
Data Sheet and save the ARC
BDS lite file
Warning: - if this process is NOT
done, the changed reinforcement
will NOT be saved.

Once this is done; WORK IS OVER. Click GO (Generate Output)

button and generate the entire beam L.S.

If the process is done perfectly, in days time you can generate Beam
L.S for entire floor, the only thing left will be to put them in title block
and edit some clashes.
By Editing the Reinforcement in xls sheet instead of the final drawing,
the advantage is that the steel take off will be very accurate.

Precautions to be taken in Input file of ZBLD.


To reduce the number of sections in the final output

In Settings Menu Beam General Settings
Remove all the checks in Show Sections At
If you are having varying slab depths in the floor
select Show Total Depth in Cross Section Depth
Select Row in Show Cross Sections per


Ensure Proper scaling is set, if the beams are very large or

spans are many you can have a different Horizontal scale &
different scale i.e. select 1:100 scale for LS & 1:50 scale for
section, that way most of the beams will be within the title
block of A1.
Ensure the grids of the beams are properly placed (you can
use the Open Excel Data button


Note: Only for the 1st beam Left and right Grids need to be
given for all the other beams in the row you can give only the Right Grid.


Do a dry run of the file once it generates the layout, see the
important beams that require the cross section to be shown
note the numbers and go back to Detailed Edit of the
beams for which the section is required.

Select the required section


For getting your title block in the paper space, where ever
the ARC BDS.exe is present normally C:\Program
Files\ZaxisES\ARC BDS Lite there will be a
Layouts.DWG file Open the dwg

Insert your title block in appropriate Layout of AutoCAD

for example insert (SI units) A1 Title Block in A1MM
Tab and erase the green lines.
If this process is done every drawing will be generated your
title block.

Please Note:if these procedures are followed in Toto, you

will get a 95 % ready drawing with beams placed in your title
block and with NO errors in reinforcement and only few dim
clashes that can be edited easily.