ConstructionCalc. Designed to size beams, rafters, joists, engineered wood, and steel, updates to ProBeam 4.0 software (at left) include cost-saving measures and code-compliance suggestions. The Microsoft Excel–based system analyzes framing schemes to minimize the number of headers and beams, enable the use of leftover lumber, and allow for use of materials that are more cost-effective or readily available. With as few as four inputs, ProBeam 4.0 will show up to 20 code-compliant alternatives. The user can click on each option to determine its efficiency and make the “greenest” choice, the maker says. 360.422.5663. www.constructioncalc.com.
Digital Canal Corp. Version 18 of SolidBuilder (at right) with Building Blocks is now available. Create professional and accurate 3-D models, complete with framing, openings, roofs, symbols, and accompanying blueprints, by simply clicking and dragging to add rooms to a design. The software also offers 3-D presentation capabilities for interactive project sales. 800.449.5033. www.digitalcanal.com.
iLevel by Weyerhaeuser. Enhancements to the maker’s Javelin design software version 3.19 (at left) help increase accuracy and include user-requested features such as flexibility to make changes on-the-fly and better load tracking through the frame. Users can now view design results for iLevel products, allowing designers to match customer expectations with material performance. Assistance with stud alignment and advanced framing helps users earn green-building credits. Materials lists and framing diagrams print directly from the program. Additionally, a Virtual Jobsite view allows designers 3-D visibility into their structures. 888.453.8358. www.ilevel.com.
Maxwell Systems. A Microsoft Outlook user interface makes navigating American Contractor 8.0 (at right) software more familiar and logical for enhanced productivity. Multiple records can be open at once, so users can perform simultaneous tasks, such as analyzing a job budget while viewing a customer record. Easier list sorting is another upgrade, along with estimating tools including RFIs, transmittals, submittals, and more for seamless processes and improved communication, the maker says. 800.688.8226. www.maxwellsystems.com.