When loads are defined they are grouped into basic load cases (BLC's). You are allowed up to 1000 separate Basic Load Cases. These are the basic building blocks of the final load combinations applied to the structure. The basic load cases may be assigned to load categories such as dead load and live load. These basic cases and categories are then combined to define load combinations used in analysis. A BLC can be comprised of any type of load, such as joint loads, distributed loads, member point loads, etc.

Any time you are applying or viewing loads, graphically or in the spreadsheets,
they are assigned to the current basic load case. This current basic
load case is displayed in the **Window** **Toolbar** in a drop down
list. To change to another BLC simply choose it from this list.
If you wish to name the BLC's you may do this in the **Basic Load Case**
spreadsheet.

To Add Loads to a Basic Load Case

- When adding loads graphically click on the toolbar button for the type of load you wish to add and specify the BLC along with the load definition.
- When adding loads with the spreadsheets, open the spreadsheet for the load type you want to add and select the BLC from the list on the Window Toolbar.

The **Basic Load Cases** spreadsheet groups and summarizes the loads
applied to the model and may be accessed by selecting **Basic Load Cases**
on the **Spreadsheets** menu.

Information about Basic Load Cases (BLC’s) is recorded on the **Basic
Load Case** **Spreadsheet** and the loads themselves are recorded
in the load spreadsheets for each load type.

You may enter descriptions for each BLC in the first column. These descriptions are primarily for your own use. The descriptions will print the descriptions as part of the input printout and can also display the description when plotting the loads for the BLC or choosing them from the list.

The second column is used to assign the BLC to a load category such as Dead Load or Live Load. Simply choose the category from the drop down list. You can then build load combinations for analysis by referring to the categories rather than list each basic load case.

The next three columns may be used to specify
that the self-weight of the structure be included in a load case. Simply
enter a factor in the column that represents the direction of the self-weight. Typically you will enter a value of “-1”
in the **Y Gravity** column assuming that Y is the vertical axis.

The remaining columns display the quantity of each type of load that
is contained in the BLC. You may not edit these values **but you may
click on the quantities to open the spreadsheet and view the loads that
it represents**. For example, the previous figure has 9 joint loads
as part of BLC 1. Clicking on the number 9 with the mouse will
open the Joint Loads spreadsheet and display these loads.

You may copy the loads from one BLC into another BLC. This can be useful when one load case is similar to another and can be entered quickly by copying a load case and then making changes to the copy with features such as block math.

To do this, open the **Basic Load Case** spreadsheet and then click
. Specify what case to copy loads from and
which case the loads are to be copied into. You may further specify
which types of loads are to be copied. For example, if you check
**Joint Loads** and uncheck all the other load types, only the joint
loads will be copied.

Any loads copied into a BLC will be added to any loads that may already be in that BLC.

You may automatically clear all the loads in a BLC. To do this,
open the **Basic Load Case** spreadsheet and then click the **Delete
BLC** button on the **Window** toolbar.
Select the BLC you wish to delete.

All of the loads will be deleted including category information and
any self-weight information. The BLC Description will remain in
the **Description** field.

The basic load cases may be assigned to load categories, such as dead
load and live load, which are commonly used in building codes. You
may do this on the **Basic Load Cases** spreadsheet. These categories
may then be combined to define load combinations used in analysis.

Categories are easy to use and are very helpful. They allow you to put your loads into groups that are commonly used in load combinations, while keeping them in separate load cases. This is especially helpful in large models where the loads might occupy many different load cases. They also allow you to define load combinations that are easily understood because they resemble the combinations as they appear in the building code.

Load Category | Description |
---|---|

DL | Dead Load |

LL | Live Load |

EL | Earthquake Load |

WL | Wind Load |

SL | Snow Load |

RLL | Roof Live Load |

LLS | Live Load Special (public assembly, garage, storage, etc.) |

TL | Long Term Load (creep, shrinkage, settlement, thermal, etc.) |

SLN | Snow Load Non-shedding |

HL | Hydrostatic Load |

FL | Fluid Pressure Load |

RL | Rain Load |

PL | Ponding Load |

EPL | Earth Pressure Load |

IL | Impact Load |

OL1 - OL10 | Other Load 1 - 10 (generic) |

ELX, ELY, ELZ | Earthquake Load along global X-axis, Y-axis, Z-axis |

WLX, WLY, WLZ | Wind Load along global X-axis, Y-axis, Z-axis |

WL+X, WL+Y, WL+Z | Wind Load along positive global X-axis, Y-axis, Z-axis |

WL-X, WL-Y, WL-Z | Wind Load along negative global X-axis, Y-axis, Z-axis |

WLXP1, WLYP1, WLZP1 | Partial Wind Load 1 along global X-axis, Y-axis, Z-axis |

WLXP2, WLYP2, WLZP2 | Partial Wind Load 2 along global X-axis, Y-axis, Z-axis |

ELX+Z, ELX+Y | Eccentric Earthquake Load along global X-axis shifted along positive global Z-axis, Y-axis |

ELX-Z, ELX-Y | Eccentric Earthquake Load along global X-axis shifted along negative global Z-axis, Y-axis |

ELZ+X, ELZ+Y | Eccentric Earthquake Load along global Z-axis shifted along positive global X-axis, Y-axis |

ELZ-X, ELZ-Y | Eccentric Earthquake Load along global Z-axis shifted along negative global X-axis, Y-axis |

ELY+X, ELY+Z | Eccentric Earthquake Load along global Y-axis shifted along positive global X-axis, Z-axis |

ELY-X, ELY-Z | Eccentric Earthquake Load along global Y-axis shifted along negative global X-axis, Z-axis |

NL, NLX, NLY, NLZ | General notional load and along global X-axis, Y-axis, Z-axis |

WLX+R, WLY+R, WLZ+R, WLX-R, WLY-R, WLZ-R, | Roof wind loads in the positive and negative X-axis, Y-axis, Z-axis |

Using categories is optional. Remember though that if you define
combinations of categories you must define these categories in the **Basic
Load Case** spreadsheet. If you don't the combinations will have
no loads.