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This test problems demonstrates the use of section cuts drawn in the graphical user interface using a model shown in the figure below. The model is 1m long cantilever column with a 1m long horizontal arm that supports another 1m long horizontal arm oriented in perpendicular direction to the first arm. The first arm is aligned with Global X direction and the second arm is aligned with Global Y direction. The column is fixed at the bottom and the end joint of the second arm is loaded by point forces Fx = 1kN, Fy = 10 kN, and Fz = 100 kN. The model is analyzed and various section cuts are drawn using the "Draw > Draw Section Cut" menu command. This test problems provided a discussion of how the section cut forces are obtained and how they should be interpreted.

Section Cuts in 2D View

For section cuts drawn in 2D view, the program internally defines the section cut by quadrilateral cutting planes, as can be shown from the second figure below. The Z coordinates in the quadrilateral cutting plane definition are determined from the "2D View Cutting Planes +/-" parameter that can be set via "Options > Dimensions and Tolerances" menu command.

Section Cuts in 3D View

For section cuts drawn in 3D view, there are the following open questions:

  • How is the section cut internally defined? Using groups or quadrilateral cutting planes?
  • If quadrilateral cutting planes are used, how is the plane determined from the line representing the section cut? (The plane is not uniquely defined by the line that is drawn to represent the section cut.)
  • Why section cuts drawn in 3D view cannot be saved?


  • [SAP2000 V14.1.0 model|Section cuts drawn in graphical user interface^SAP2000 V14.1.0] (Zipped SDB file)
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