Development and Updates for the Medeek Truss Plugin

Started by Medeek, November 07, 2015, 03:06:39 AM

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Version 1.8.5b - 02.23.2017
- Addressed minor bug with "Front Only" gable end scissor trusses.
- Addressed minor bug with soffit cuts and TJI rafter roofs with dual glulam beams.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Working on 2 ply and 3 ply headers as well as LSL headers:

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Version 1.8.6 - 02.25.2017
- Added 2x sawn lumber and LSL headers for Gable Dormers.
- Enabled interior wall sheathing (Gypsum Wall Board) for Gable Dormers.
- Enabled ceiling sheathing (Gypsum Wall Board) and ceiling battens for common trusses.

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


An example dormer created with the dormer tool and the gable roof created with the common truss tool.  Note that I have enabled all of the cladding, sheathing and GWB in the global settings.

View model here:

When you select "YES" for the gypsum ceiling in the advanced options of common trusses and additional dialog is presented which then allows for manually adjusting the GWB thickness, ext. wall inset, and ceiling battens (size, spacing).

You will notice that in the global settings within the "Sheathing" tab a couple of new items have been added for Gypsum Sheathing.

Now I just need to enable ceiling sheathing for vaulted truss and rafter roofs, yet another large task added to the todo list.

Attic and Gambrel attic trusses will require not only ceiling GWB but also the attic GWB on walls and flat and sloping ceilings.

With the addition of all the interior and exterior cladding, the plugin can now generate the majority of the structural features of a roof.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


This probably pertains more directly to the Wall Plugin I have been working on but I could also test out the concept with the dormer module.

If the user enables the exterior wall cladding I could also enable a further option which will draw the corner and window trim as shown.  This option would only become active if the cladding option is selected.  I would create a new tab in the global settings for the all of the trim options (size, material etc...)

I'm also considering a rudimentary door and window module that can auto-fill the window and door holes in the Wall Plugin, however I don't know if architects and designers would find any use for it since they may be inclined to use more sophisticated 3rd party window and door plugins. 

The reason I am considering this is that it would further automate the creation process and I have yet to find a window and door plugin that I am 100% satisfied with.

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Raised heel fink truss roof with 1.5"x1.5" ceiling battens and 5/8" GWB at a 5.5" wall inset.

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Tomorrow is my birthday.  Given all of the health issues I've had the last few months I'm just happy to still be kicking.  My neck and general constitution is still not quite right but at least I'm functional and for that I am very grateful. 

In response to the overwhelming positive vibe I've received from the SketchUp community during my downtime I would like to offer the following offer to current users of the plugin who currently have a non-expired license/serial number:

1.)  By March 2, 2017 (offer ends midnight Mar. 2) post on this forum or the other SketchUp forum a screenshot or rendering of a current project you are working on that you have utilized the plugin.  Give your company name or state "for personal use".  Also describe what features you primarily use within the plugin (ie. trusses, rafters, floors etc...)  Please try to make the picture such that it shows the output from the plugin as clearly as possible.

2.)  Send me an email with the time and date of your post and your name/company name and I will then extend your license out for another full year from the existing expiration date (add an additional year to your license).

My reason for doing this is primarily to see how you are using the plugin in the real world.  Is it making any sort of meaningful impact?  Does it actually get used, or do people purchase it out of curiosity and then never actually use it?

I also want to give back a little to those who continue to support the plugin and its development.  Hopefully a few of you will take me up on this offer since I am really curious to see how the plugin is actually being used by real architects and designers.   
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


I've been giving some though to the soffit and fascia and I realized that in many cases the design may call for a closed soffit:

I've seen soffits constructed with plywood and also metal (aluminum, vented).

Also the fascia I am creating currently should be more properly labeled the sub-fascia since in many cases the true fascia board is a thinner 5/4 or 1x material.  If metal is used then the sub-fascia is covered over with a fascia cover:

Then of course we get into the whole boxed soffit at the corners:

I would like to get some input in what you would like to see with closed soffits and fascia.  I am thinking it might be useful to have a completely separate section in the global settings that deals specifically with closed soffits, fascia and corner treatment (ie. boxed corners vs. non-boxed)
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Medeek Truss vs. MS Physics:

Pretty clear the house didn't have a chance.

I'm actually very impressed with the collision detection of MS Physics, an amazing extension. 

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


I've been reviewing my Todo list lately and it really hasn't shrunk much, if anything it has grown a bit as I've added some new features in the last month and more catching up needs to be done with various truss types. 

I only work on this project part time and on the weekends as much as possible, so my progress since September of 2016 has been quite slow (took a new job with the City of Ocean Shores).

Currently the Truss Plugin has seen the most development but I am also spread between the other separate plugins as well:

Medeek Wall Plugin
Medeek Structural Plugin
Medeek Foundation Plugin
Medeek Deck Plugin

The structural and wall plugins will be just as complex and involved as the Truss Plugin and will require a couple years of my full time attention to get where they need to go.

When I step back and look at everything I want to accomplish there is just no way, given my current situation, that I can achieve it.  It would be nice to also be able to hire some help in knocking out some of the coding, realistically there is only so many hours in a day and only so much one person can do.

I would really like to work full time on all of this as I see it has some serious potential and I'm also very excited about it but my previous attempt at using KickStarter to raise some working capital did not amount to much.

I was watching Shark Tank last night and I was thinking would this type of business even have a chance in that setting?  Anyhow, I am open to any ideas you might have in how to really blow this thing up and get it going.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Version 1.8.7 - 03.26.2017
- Added energy/raised heels for double howe truss (3 variant: wedge, slider and vertical w/ strut).
- Metal plate connectors now enabled for double howe trusses.

Back to updating all the truss types with metal plates, raised heels and all other advanced options.
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Recently I've had a couple requests for bobtail/stub end trusses.

When specifying how to truncate the truss, what lengths are typically used to control the location of the stub end(s)?

1.)  Stub or heel height.
2.)  Nominal span minus stub length
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Then of course to further complicate matters there is the double bobtail truss which is really nothing more than a raised heel truss with unequal heel heights

So rather than add in a completely new category of trusses I suppose I could just allow the user to specify a heel height for both the left and right side of the common truss.  Currently the first menu has the option for a raised heel which is then applied to both sides of the truss.  I think I could just update to be:

Raised Heel Left: YES/NO "Defaults to NO"
Height Height Left (in.): "Defaults to 12" if no user entry"
Raised Heel Right: YES/NO "Defaults to NO"
Heel Height Right (in.):  "Defaults to SAME AS LEFT"
Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.


Version 1.8.8 - 04.28.2017
- Added energy/raised heels for mod fan truss (3 variant: wedge, slider and vertical w/ strut).
- Metal plate connectors now enabled for mod fan trusses.

Nathaniel P. Wilkerson, P.E.



I'm very impressed with this plug-in.  Looking forward to seeing the wall framing one as well.

Any ETA for the completion of the hip truss portion of the app? 

I know programming for this portion is likely extremely complex but the lack of complete hip truss automation is the biggest impediment to using this in a working environment us.