Length of simple DC

I have a question about how best to deal with controlling the length of a DC featuring a steel beam.

I have constructed my beam out of two identical components forming the flanges and one group forming the web. I have given the user options for the width of the beam with the depth being fixed.

Ordinarily, I would just have a non-dynamic Component of a generic length, place it in the model and use Scale tool or Push/Pull to stretch it to the necessary length. Nice and simple but you need all the different steel sizes as components. DCs allow you to reduce the number but there is a problem with the length unless you happen to know what it is (in which case you can include length as a user definable entry).

Is there any clever way to allow the best of both worlds, ie. a limited number of components but with the ability to stretch them simply and quickly with going to the faff of measuring and inputting data?

Here is a typical DC:
203 I beam DC.skp (351.1 KB)

I would lock the lengths of the subcomponents to the overall length of the component to avoid possible uneven scaling. Then I would add a length attribute to the parent and disable all scaling handles except the length. The length attribute is needed only if you need numeric input instead of simply using the scale tool.

1 Like

I presume you mean like this:
305 I beam DC.skp (349.1 KB)