Print Preview Quick Reference Guide

Modified on Tue, 09 Jun 2020 at 11:15 AM

Print Preview Quick Reference Guide

Print Preview and Print Project overview

Summary: Print Preview allows you to print out your engineering information for a specific module or structural member. 

  • Customize control over what appears in the Print Document such as module diagrams, VMD Diagrams, and Load Diagrams.

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

Print Preview At a Glance

Inside Print Preview, depending on what type of module (i.e. Beam, Footing, Rafter, Shearwall, Studwall, etc.) you have open, you can select different items to be included in your print document. Once you’ve selected which items to include in the print document, those settings will be saved and will be included(or excluded) in Print Project. Print Preview allows you to print out a specific module/member of your project. After a module’s calculations have been run, the Print Preview button is activated and you can generate a print document

Print Project will create a printable document for your entire project (all modules/members), and is selected in the Project Explorer in the left toolbar. The options that are/aren’t selected in Print Preview will be reflected in Print Project. For example, if you have a studwall at “Location: 1st Floor East Elevation Studwall” and you have the “Show Loads Diagram” option selected in Print Preview, that diagram will be included in Print Project. Likewise, if you’ve deselected “Show VMD Diagrams” at “Location: Garage Roof Rafter”, the VMD Diagrams will not be included in the Print Project. Note: Print Project can only be used after all members/modules have been saved and closed.

Using Print Preview

Click the Calculate button.

The Print Preview button becomes available after you’ve run your calculations on your module. 

After you’ve run your calculations, whether the module passes or fails, you can generate the print document.

Once the document is generated, you’ll have a few different sets of controls.

Outlined above are the Print, Refresh, Thumbnails, and Diagrams buttons.


Print the document from your printer.


The refresh button rebuilds the print document after you’ve made changes to other print options, such as including a Load Diagram. Since Vitruvius’s calculations can be quite complex, it may take a few seconds to generate the document. Once you’re satisfied with your selections (what to include/exclude in the document) you can click the refresh button to build the document all at once. The refresh button is only active when the Diagrams tab is visible. 


Displays all of the pages of your document. You can navigate between pages but using the arrows in the upper right hand corner of Print Preview/Print Project, or by selecting a thumbnail image.


Displays the Moment, Shear, and Deflection Diagrams from your module.


Include Beam Diagram: 

Include or Exclude the Diagram on the 1st page of the document. This could be a Beam, Collar Tie, Studwall, Shearwall, etc.

Include VMD Diagrams: 

Include all, none, or a custom selection of VMD diagrams on your print document. Once you’ve selected or deselected items be sure to click the Refresh button to re-build the document. 

If the ‘Include VMD Diagrams’ box is checked, it will select all of the individual diagrams in the Diagrams section. Deselecting it will deselect all and remove the page containing the diagrams. You can select individual diagrams, only including those which you’d like to be included in the document. 

Include Load Diagram: 

Show your module/member with each unique load.

Certain modules, like Studwall, also contain a Y Load.

Print Preview for Studwall and Shearwall


Print Preview in Studwall is similar to other modules except the VMD options are set withing members inside the Studwall. For example, if you want to include different diagrams in your Studwall, you can double click a member within the Studwall and select options then. When printing a Studwall module, only the Studwall itself will be drawn. If you want to include VMD and Load diagrams in your engineering report, double click on the members where you would like to make custom selections, save and close the member(s), save and close the Studwall, and click the Print Project button in the Project Explorer.


To generate a Print Preview document for a Shearwall module follow the steps below:

  1. Open a new or existing Shearwall and double click the Shearwall line in the bottom toolbar to calculate the Studwall part of the Shearwall.

  1. Once you have the Studwall open you can run the calculations for the Studwall module using the same steps in the outline highlighted here. Add loads and size members as necessary in order for the Studwall to pass its calculations and click the save button. You’ll automatically be redirected back to your Shearwall. You can generate a print document of  just the Studwall from here, if you choose, as well as customize which diagrams will be displayed for this member for Print Project.
    Note: If the Studwall does not pass its calculations you will not be able to create a Shearwall Print Preview document.

  2. Be sure to give your Studwall a unique/descriptive name so it’s easy to identify and associate with the 
    parent Studwall or Shearwall when you use Print Project. 

  3. Once the child Studwall is calced and saved, click the ‘Lock’ button at the bottom toolbar to start calculating your Shearwall.

  1. The Shearwall is now generated (you can choose to show/hide sheathing) and you’re ready to run the analysis. Click one of the analysis buttons highlighted here to begin.

  1.  Choose the starting and ending points of your Shearwall.

  2. Once the 'Start' and 'End' of your Shearwall have been selected, click the calc button and the Print Preview button will become available. If the Shearwall has passed be sure to save the module, and it’s ready for Print Project.

Print Project 

Print Project allows you print the entire project with all of the members, including individual members within a Studwall or Shearwall. To generate a Project Report, save and close all modules/members and click the Print Project button in the Project Explorer in the left toolbar. 

Warnings and alerts

Warning messages will appear if a module/member has failed its calculation, or has not been calculated. In Print Project, a warning message will display for each unique module which has failed. If you select ‘OK’, the print document will still build and can be viewed. If ‘Cancel’ is selected, the print document will stop building and give you the opportunity to revise the module and update/upsize a property in the module to pass the calculations. Be sure to run calculations on your modules before trying to generate the Print Project document to ensure all of your module/member information is as current as possible. 

Coming Soon!

        Print Project is an ongoing work in process and we understand how important it is to be able to customize your engineering reports. Features like being able to add/remove specific diagrams, control which pages are included in your print outs, generate .PDF files for sending quick emails and permit submittals, etc. are all essential in helping make your jobs easier, which is why we're working diligently to get those things out to you as quickly as possible. We appreciate your patience as we continuously try to put out more tools to improve your workflow and make Vitruvius the hands-down best structural engineering calc software available. 

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