Feet and Inch Engineering Tools

With The Feet and Inch Engineering Tools, you can be the fastest most accurate dimension guru in your office. This is an advanced RPN construction calculator software solution built for feet & inches dimensional mathamatics used in steel detailing, structural engineering, & building construction. The software runs on HP48G, HP49G, & HP50G Handheld Graphing Calculators and their emulators on PC's, laptops, tablets, & smartphones, keeping the software at your fingertips wherever you work. With this software you can add, subtract, multiply, and divide lengths which makes checking dimensions and figuring minimum and maximum spacing problems a breeze. You can solve dimensional problems using the tools for right triangles, oblique triangles, circles, arcs, chords, cubic weight, lineal weight, & rectangular weight, all in feet & inches. When working with the right triangle tools you just set your angle and enter a side you know and hit the button for the side you want and it is displayed. Values on the stack from previous calculations are always preserved so you can flow through a group of triangle calculations accumulating the results with ease and no round off errors.

Feet and Inch Engineering Tools Command List

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Input is entered in feet and inches using just the number keys and the decimal point. The results of your calculations are displayed in exactly the same format and the full accuracy of your answers are retained in the answer value, so you can use the answer in your next calculation without any loss of accuracy do to the round off problems associated with converting the answer to feet, inches and fractions. let me explain. The calculator display is set to display 4 places of accuracy like this (1.0000). When you enter a dimension, the feet are entered on the left side of the decimal point, like this (12' = 12.). The inches are entered in the first 2 digits to the right of the decimal point, like this (11" = .11) and any number from 00 up to 99 is valid. The fraction is entered in the third and fourth digits to the right of the decimal point like this (13/16" = .0013) and again any number from 00 up to 99 is valid. A dimension like 12'-11 13/16" would be entered like this (12.1113).

The software can be set to run in the following fractional modes: (halves, quarters, eighths, sixteenths, thirty seconds, and sixty fourths of an inch). The fractional part of a dimension, entered in the third and fourth places, is just the total number of denominations in the fraction for the mode that is set. Here is a table for the sixteenths fractional mode and some examples of dimensions and how to enter them.

 1/16" = 0.0001 | 3/8"  = .0006 | 11/16" = .0011
 1/8"  = 0.0002 | 7/16" = .0007 | 3/4"   = .0012
 3/16" = 0.0003 | 1/2"  = .0008 | 13/16" = .0013
 1/4"  = 0.0004 | 9/16" = .0009 | 7/8"   = .0014
 5/16" = 0.0005 | 5/8"  = .0010 | 15/16" = .0015

 6'-4 1/4"   =  6.0404  | 0'-2 1/8"     = 0.0202
 3'-9 15/16" =  3.0915  | 4'-3"         = 4.03
 13'-0 7/8"  = 13.0014  | 10'-11 15/16" = 10.1115
 5'-11 3/16" =  5.1103  | 2'-3 3/4"     = 2.0312

 You can also enter inches and fractions like this.
 79 11/16" =  0.7911
 43 1/8"   =  0.4302
 56 1/2"   =  0.5608

 Dimension results are read from the display like this:
 11.0305 = 11'-3 5/16"
 4.0404  = 4'-4 1/4"
 16.0205 = 16'-2 5/16"
 0.0016  = 1"

Note! (some food for thought) 0.9999 = 99 inches and 99 sixteenths, which is a valid input. If you add 0'-0" to it, you will get 8.0903 or 8'-9 3/16". You can add and subtract dimensions in this format with the intrinsic + and - commands on the calculator as long as a carry does not occur between the feet, inches, or fraction part of the number. This makes working with dimensions even faster.

Like this problem:
(1'-5 13/16"+4'-11 15/16"+3'-2 7/8") - (5'-7 9/16"+1'-11 3/16+0'-7 7/16") = ?
On the calculator:
1.0513 "ENTER" 4.1115 "+" 3.0214 "+" 5.0709 "ENTER" 1.1103 "+" 0.0707 "+" "MINUS" = 1.0607
Right before you run the MINUS program you see 8.1842 in level 2 and 6.2519 in level 1.

After running the MINUS program you will get 1.0607 or 1'-6 7/16" which is the answer to the problem. You only had to find and run one program to solve this whole problem!

When a decimal dimension is converted into this feet and inch format, you see the numbers to the left of the decimal point and the four digits to the right of the decimal point. The full precision of the dimension is stored in the digits beyond the fourth decimal place which you do not see, but are used when you feed the value into your next calculation. Because of this feature, your answers are never rounded off to the even fraction and they always maintain their full precision.

You may need a chart for a day or two, but after learning the simple number system of the mode you use most often, you will appreciate the speed at which you can key-in, read, and manipulate dimensional data. This steel software is designed for high speed production work like steel detailing.

You can solve all your design or dimensional problems without working with the decimal equivalents. Using the software to calculate bracing and gusset plates is a breeze. You can calculate building geometry, the running dimensions for a complex beam or column, or check the dimensions for a stair stringer, faster and with greater accuracy, than any other handheld solution. A comprehensive user manual is provided to quickly bring you up to speed with this powerful software package.

A very important feature of this software is a set of 3 commands that allow you to save your critical angles and dimensions in a special storage area that is accessed with an index number. This allows you to label angles and dimensions on your drawings with numbers and then recall the data in its full precision when you need to use it in a calculation. This feature is integrated with the trigonometry commands and allows you to keep all the angles and dimensions used in your project readily available. The storage area data is all stored in one variable. This makes it easy to backup your data to port memory or a PC for future use.

Commands are provided for calculating the weight of, quantities of cubic units, quantities of lineal units, and quantities of rectangular units using feet and inch input. When running in feet and inches mode the weight in pounds, of one cubic foot of steel (490 lbs.) is provided as a default input for the per cubic unit input. When running in metric mode the weight in kilograms of one cubic millimeter of steel (0.00000784905 kg.) is provided as a default input for the per cubic unit input. You can use these or enter your own values. This allows you to easily calculate the weight of steel or any other material.

There are conversion commands used to convert to and from metric and to convert or display a dimension in any of the available fraction denominators. This library of commands provides the power and speed you need to get the job done fast and accurately.

Trigonometry Example

In this example we are calculating the overall length, end cut dimensions, and bevel on 12" of a sloping member. The Feet and Inch Engineering Tools quickly calculates the dimensions "A" through "G" with the following command sequence.

1.11 [Enter] .0612 Minus 1.0404
Dimension "A" = 1'-4 1/4"

6.0210 [Enter] .0710 Minus .1108 Minus 4.0708
Dimension "B" = 4'-7 1/2"

R:BtoA 0.0308, 4.0913, 16.3197
Bevel "C" = 3 1/2"
Angle "D" = 16.3197 deg.
Dimension "E" = 4'-9 13/16"
Note! The angle is now stored in the angle variable for subsequent operations.

Leave 4.0913 in level 1 and delete the bevel and angle result.

1.04 BtoR 0.0411
Dimension "F" = 4 11/16"

Plus 5.0208
Dimension "G" = 5'-2 1/2"

This example shows you how to flow through a very simple problem. A problem with many trigonometry calculations like a stair stringer or gusset plate is just as easy to calculate using this software. Using the feet and inch trigonometry commands, and the feet and inch plus and minus commands, you can quickly string together triangles and dimensions as needed to solve a problem with no re-entry of results, no round-off errors, and no decimal equivalents.