Studwall Walk-through

Modified on Tue, 23 Mar 2021 at 03:26 PM

Summary: This guide walks you through basic use cases of the Studwall Module in Vitruvius.


If you prefer video walk-throughs, feel free to skip over to our YouTube channel; otherwise, continue reading for an in depth walk-through:

Starting Out

To start a studwall design first click on the studwall design module icon located in the design module dropdown in the upper right of the screen next to your username.

This will load the studwall design module, which loads with a preset template.

The following steps do not have to be completed in this order and are designed to work dynamically with each other, so don't worry if you realized later you clicked the wrong thing or made a mistake, just change that item and the rest will follow suit accordingly.

Set the Properties

On the left side of the screen is the Properties tab, work progressively from top to bottom to specify the desired properties. The template is used to set predetermined properties. 

At the top of the properties tab is the LRFD/ASD design options, as well as the dry or wet factors button. The pictures above shows LRFD and Dry. The picture below shows ASD and wet. Click the icons to toggle back and forth between the two options for each.

Below is a list of the properties selections based on the material type. Use each of these to guide you through the selection process.


  • (Species) Select the species of wood.
  • (Grade) Select the grade of lumber.
  • (Include Self Weight) Check for including the self weight of the member.


  • (Temperature Factor) Select the temperature range of the design.

Stud Wall

  • (Stud Type) Select the stud type.
  • (Wall Height) Input the wall height.
  • (Wall Length) Input the wall length.
  • (Stud Spacing) Select or input the on-center stud spacing for the wall.

Adding Openings and Loads

After the properties of the stud wall are chosen move to the middle panel of the screen to edit the stud wall openings and start the loading process.

Adding Openings

There are three opening types available for use. In order of appearance down the screen on the add load toolbar to the left of the diagram, there is the Door type, Window type, and Collector Beam type.

The opening input window is shown below. 

  • (Location) Input a name for the opening.


  • (Height) Select or input an opening width.
  • (Width) Select or input and opening height.
  • (Distance) Input the distance from the left side of the wall to the left side of the opening.
  • (Elevation) Input the distance from the bottom of the wall to the bottom of the opening.
  • (Add 2" Framing Clearance) Uncheck if adding 2" of framing clearance is not needed for your opening dimensions. When checked, the program will automatically add 2 inches to the width and height of the opening.
  • (Template) Select a template or leave as is on the New Header Template.
  • (Width) Select or input a beam width for the header.
  • (Depth) Select or input a beam depth for the header.
  • (Type) Select a header type* Locked feature until full release.

For each opening type the input window is the same with some features locked or unlocked. For example, when the door type is selected the Elevation will be locked to zero. When the collector type is selected the height will be set to the wall height in inches and the elevation will be locked to zero. 

Openings can be edited or deleted by clicking inside the opening on the loading diagram, after which the opening input window will appear and allow for edit or delete.

Adding Gravity Loads

Adding gravity loads is the same process used for the other Vitruvius design modules. Click the corresponding add load button (Add Distributed Load, Add Trapezoidal Load,  or Add Point Load). Once a load has been entered into the popup, the loading diagram will switch to its "Show Loads View" which allows for more room for you to see the applied loads. 

Once a load icon is selected an input box will appear where you can enter the loading data. As shown in the example "Add Axial Load" input box, the load axis is locked to the Z axis. 

After load input click "Add" and the load will be added to the wall. When the point load is added it will automatically generate a new stud in the wall at the location of the point load, this will be a edit enabled column design module. As shown in the image below  the new stud is highlighted red to indicate it has not been calculated yet. Click the the stud to open a column design module and edit the size. The load will be shown in the loads tab. Click calculate and if it passes click save, the red highlight will be gone.

Once the load is added it can be manipulated in two different ways.  You can change the load by clicking on it which will bring back the load input box or you can change the load by locating the loads tab on the bottom of the screen.   

To switch between the 2 views, the button in the upper right hand corner of the loading diagram allows for easy toggling between the two.

Click this to go back to the full wall height view.

Adding Studwall Lateral Loads

Below the gravity load buttons is an "Add Wind Load" this button is adding a trapezoidal load (plf) in the Y axis of the studwall section. This load shows up in the right side view of the loading diagram as seen in the main image above.


The toolbar on the right side of the loading screen is where the calculators are located. These are some handy tools used to facilitate a faster design process, and save you time!

From top to bottom the calculators are as follows:

Dead Load Calculator

Coming Soon!

Tributary Area Calculator

Use the input boxes to enter the load type (the load axis is locked to the Z direction), load psf value for the tributary area, and the tributary area for the wall. The resulting load will be added to the embedded post accordingly.

Snow Load Calculator

Coming Soon!

Wind Load Calculator

Coming Soon!

Wall Load Calculator

The wall load calculator is used to quickly add loads from multiple levels above.


Once the stud wall has been loaded you can run a calculation by clicking the calculate button located in the top toolbar in the loading diagram.

From left to right the buttons are Calculate and Save. After calculating the Print Preview icon will appear.


After calculation there will not be any adequacy cards appear like they do in other modules. Any of the elements that are highlighted red will turn to the original texture. If there is anything causing a failure a popup message will appear on the screen.

After successfully calculating, the print preview icon will appear in the top toolbar and clicking it will bring up the pdf report generated for the design.

Thank you for reading! If you have any questions please reach out to our customer support at or call 1-800-279-1353.

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