April-May 2016


In This Newsletter

DHI conNextions 2016 Follow-Up

AVAproject 2016 - Just Weeks Away!


Schedule Hardware –
Without Hardware Groups!


Extended Product
Attributes offered for


Material List Summary &
Automated Quote Forms

AVAware Welcomes Stanley Security Solutions

AVAproject Tip: Speeding Up the Take-Off Process

Catalog Updates

 U.S. Price Books:

  • ABH
  • Adams Rite
  • Anemostat
  • Best
  • Boston Hinge
  • Design Hardware
  • Falcon
  • Glynn-Johnson
  • Hager
  • HES
  • Ives
  • LCN
  • Markar
  • Masonite
  • Norton
  • Pemko
  • Schlage
  • Schlage E.S.
  • Stanley
  • Stanley Commercial
  • Stanley Precision E.D.
  • Steelcraft
  • Trimco
  • Von Duprin
  • Yale
  • Yale Residential
  • Zero

 Canadian Price Books:

  • Adams Rite
  • Apex
  • Arrow
  • Assa
  • Baron
  • Canaropa
  • Corbin-Russwin
  • Draftseal
  • Fleming
  • Folger Adam
  • HES
  • Markar
  • McKinney
  • Norton
  • Pemko
  • Rixson
  • Sargent
  • Securitron
  • Yale

DHI conNextions 2016 Follow-Up

AVAware was proud to participate in the annual DHI ‘conNextions’ event in Orlando, Florida earlier this month, hosted at the gorgeous World Center Mariott!

At the beginning of May, Orlando played host to the annual Door and Hardware Institute (DHI) sponsored trade event for the architectural openings industry. ‘conNextions’ has for many years been the premiere event of its kind for the industry throughout North America, often even attracting attendees from many other parts of the world.

This year’s extravaganza took place at the Orlando World Center Mariott. The outstanding facilities and on-site convention space offered attendees the opportunity to enjoy all aspects of the convention, from the exhibition floor to the various seminars and education events, all under a single roof. This type of “all-in-one” facility has proven extremely successful for conNextions; both participants and attendees have appreciated the convenience it offers. In recent years, the DHI appears to have gravitated towards such locations for its events. The Hilton Anatole in Dallas, for example, offered a similar locale for the 2014 event.

Each year this event is highly anticipated by all the participants, as it provides one of the very few opportunities many vendors have to meet with clients for that all-important “face time” that is so rare in an industry as widespread as this one. This was especially true for this year’s convention, as the 2015 event, originally planned for Baltimore, Maryland, was cancelled just days before its scheduled start date due to public safety concerns that arose over some violent protests that occurred in the days leading up to it.

This year’s event did not disappoint. Although overall attendance seemed to be less than everyone hoped for, those that did make the trip to Orlando did so with a renewed sense on optimism for the coming years. Most of the people we spoke to agree that economic circumstances have improved greatly since the financial difficulties of the past decade. Expectations for the coming year, and the prospects that come with it are nothing but positive.

For more information about ‘DHI conNextions’, visit the website at: http://www.dhiconnextions.org, or to learn more about the DHI, visit them at: http://dhi.org

AVAproject 2016 - Just Weeks Away!

The much-anticipated first release of AVAproject 2016 is scheduled for the beginning of June.

The first feature-packed release of AVAproject for 2016 is only weeks away from general release. Months of intense product development work has led to the creation of this AVAproject release, with a feature list that contains many powerful new product enhancements as well as a variety of customer-requested additions.

The following is only a partial list of new features offered in the 2016 update:

  •   New Material List Summary’ and ‘Enhanced Quotation Forms’
  •   The ability to Schedule Hardware directly in the Openings Schedule
  •   Additional support has been added for packaged, pre-hung and residential openings
  •   Door, frame and hardware “packages” can be specified in the Openings Schedule
  •   Support has been added for ‘Net Heights’ and ‘Net Widths’ in addition to the ‘Nominal’
  •   PDF files added to the Submittal Packaged can be repositioned and anchored to any section.
  •   Support has been added for ‘Extended Product Attributes’ for hardware items.

... and the list goes on and on!

The final list of revisions will be made available when the new version is released... ‘Release Notes’ will be published on the ‘Product Updates’ page of the AVAware website, as well as within the online help of software itself. AVAproject users will be automatically notified when the new version is available for download through the AVAwire Flash service.

In the interim, the following are some brief overviews of some of our favorite new features.


Schedule Hardware – Without Hardware Groups!

The ‘Horizontal Hardware Schedule’ columns, available in the AVAproject Openings Schedule (pictured below), have long been popular with detailers and estimators that wish to have door, frame and hardware information appear on a single schedule. Industry veterans will recall a time when scheduling hardware for a project on the Openings Schedule was commonplace, while others have found it to be an efficient way to list hardware without the complexity of a full Hardware Schedule.

AVAproject automatically extracts hardware from the groups associated with a given opening, separates it by DHI’s established ‘Master Categories’ and populates the ‘Horizontal Hardware Schedule’ based on the categories of the individual products. This is another example of how the additional information content offered in AVAware’s architectural hardware catalogs is used in a practical application. The industry-standard hardware category and sub-category applicable to each and every product contained in the catalog library is pre-loaded by AVAware’s catalog team. As such, hardware products taken from the catalogs can be automatically positioned in the correct columns. At the user’s option, products can be identified using their full ‘Product Codes’, or to save space, their assigned ‘Short Codes’.

The 'Horizontal Hardware Schedule' operating interactively with pull-down menus

In the 2016 version of AVAproject, the ‘Horizontal Hardware Schedule’ columns can be made to operate interactively. When selected, the background color changes (as seen above) to indicate this mode is active.

Within each column, products in the ‘Hardware List’ that are identified with the corresponding hardware category are offered in a pull-down menu, allowing the user to identify the hardware used on each opening – without ever having to create a ‘Hardware Group’.

This is ideal for simpler projects that have a limited number of hardware items on any given opening, and projects that don’t require a ‘Hardware Schedule’ be created.

Those only interested in estimating doors and/or frames, may opt to use the standard library of ‘Generic Hardware’, provided by AVAware, when it’s not necessary to identify the specific piece of hardware being used. The ‘Generic’ selections allow AVAproject to automatically place and price the necessary hardware preparations on the doors and frames, with a minimum of effort on the part of the estimator.

In larger, and more complicated projects, the ‘Horizontal Hardware’ columns will never entirely replace ‘Hardware Groups’, especially on openings with an unusually large number of products installed. In the case of those openings, estimators and detailer may always fall back on the standard ‘Hardware Group’ option; in which case, the products contained in it will be displayed on the ‘Horizontal Hardware’ columns as always.


Extended Product Attributes offered for Hardware

AVAware’s architectural product catalogs offer a number of powerful information features, not found in any other industry catalog library. In addition to product detail and pricing, each product is also pre-loaded with their required door and frame preparations, standard DHI established hardware categories and sub-categories, keying and handing requirements, and complete catalog cut references.

Unlike typical databases, the number and choice of attributes associated with any give category of product are not pre-defined or contained in pre-determined fields with them. Instead, the available attributes for each, and their specific options can be added to at any time – making it a truly “open” platform for organizing and disseminating product information.

For each of these product details, AVAware has established standardized lists of architectural options that can be used to coordinate products across multiple catalogs. For example, Curries frames and Mohawk doors can be automatically prepared to receive Allegion hardware and priced accordingly using their individual manufacturer’s prep codes and pricing.

AVAware’s product catalog format has been enhanced to allow for the addition of “Extended Attributes” to be defined for any given hardware item. “Extended Attributes” are essentially additional product details related to specific products – as defined by their hardware categories.

For example, ‘Locksets’ may carry information about their specific ‘Backset’, ‘Latch’ and ‘Strike’, while ‘Closers’ would carry information about their ‘Mounting Options’ and ‘Arm Types’.

Additional 'Information' columns added to the 'Openings Schedule'

Additional 'Information' columns added to the 'Openings Schedule'

In the 2016 version of AVAproject, these extended attributes can be defined by the user in the “Advanced” dialog in the ‘Hardware Product Builder’. (example depicted to the left)

Once again, attributes will vary based on the hardware category assigned to the given hardware item. In the future, AVAware foresees pre-loading these additional “attributes” as product catalogs are updated. For the time being, this information can be populated by the user and re-used by copying hardware items from one ‘Hardware List’ or ‘Group’ to another.

A number of additional “Information” columns have been added to the ‘Openings Schedule’ which allow the extended attributes to be displayed along with the opening and related hardware information.


Material List Summary & Automated Quote Forms

AVAproject users have always made extensive use of the apparently endless ways in which the products listed in the AVAproject Material List can be grouped and/or sorted. Used in combination with the extensive column library, the Material List can truly be presented in a huge variety of formats and styles.

Amongst the available options, perhaps the most useful is the multi-level grouping capability. Users have a great deal of control over how products are arranged and grouped within the list. In addition, AVAproject can separate and sub-total the entire project based on any of the grouping options offered.

In the 2016 version of AVAproject, a new Material List Summary’ grid can be called up with a single ‘click’.

AVAproject's 'Material List' with Summary

The smaller, embedded table contains a complete “cost through quote” summary of the entire project – and is broken down in accordance with the primary grouping option selected for the Material List.

The ‘Material Summary’ depicted here, illustrates a project whose products are grouped primarily based on their “Product Group” (ie: HM Frames, HM Doors, WD Frames, WD Doors, etc.).

A closer look at the 'Material List' Summary

Just as it does with the group sub-totals throughout the Material List, AVAproject updates the numbers within the ‘Material Summary’ each time a change is made to the pricing information, discounts or markups for any product in the Material List.

Once the user has grouped the products in the Material List as desired, the ‘Material Summary’ can be used to automatically create a brand new ‘Quotation Form’ – expressing the project’s total quoted cost using the selected grouping option.

Finally, making use of AVAproject’s built-in PDF rendering engine, users can select a PDF-based “letterhead” on which the quotation information will be embedded and printed.

AVAware Welcomes Stanley Security Solutions

AVAware proudly welcomes the Specification Writing team at Stanley Security Solutions to our growing family of AVAproject users.

In April of this year, Stanley Security Solutions (a div. of Stanley Black & Decker) acquired AVAproject for use by their internal specification writers. Based in their Mississauga, Ontario location, the team will use AVAproject and AVAware’s library of the architectural product catalogs to create their architectural specifications and hardware schedules.

Distributors throughout Canada that use AVAproject for detailing and estimating will be able to accept project files directly from Stanley Security in native AVAproject format. This will allow them to complete their estimates and submittal documents by building on the work begun by the specification team. Needless to say, this will eliminate countless hours, even days of work normally spent by the distributors creating “take offs” from architectural drawings.

Distributors interested in obtaining architectural specifications in AVAproject format, or wish additional information on Stanley Security Solutions and their offerings, should contact Warren Jones, their Manager of Marketing, Products and Training at warren.jones@sbdinc.com or visit their website at www.stanleysecurity.com.


AVAproject Tip: Speeding Up the Take-Off Process

When it comes to doing quick take-offs and estimates, AVAproject is an extremely powerful tool. In fact, nothing is faster. Like most tools, however, it's efficiency comes with learning a few "tricks of the trade". Here’s a particularly powerful one that is sure to save hours of valuable take-off time.



AVAproject's Internal Clipboard and the Paste External: The World's 'Smartest' Paste Command!


Copying and pasting within AVAproject are done through a special "internal" clipboard. When rows are copied, even data contained in "hidden" columns are copied as well. When transferred to the clipboard, each cell of data is tagged with its column source. This is why data pasted back in AVAproject is placed in the correct columns, even if the layout is changed in between the cut & paste event or the data is pasted to a schedule with a different layout altogether.

The AVAproject 'Paste External' Menu Item

While data is being copied to the "internal" clipboard, it is also being copied into the standard Windows clipboard simultaneously. This is why data can be pasted back in other applications as well.

By default, when a paste command is issued in AVAproject, the data is taken from the internal clipboard. To facilitate the movement of data from Windows standard clipboard, AVAproject features a very special "Paste External" command.

If you wish to copy a schedule from an outside spreadsheet (such as Microsoft Excel), simply perform the following steps:


  1. Lay out the AVAproject columns to correspond with the Excel spreadsheet. If there are columns you do not need, either hide/delete them in the source sheet or add some "User Defined" columns in AVAproject as place holders. They can easily be deleted after the data is imported.
  2. Select the range of rows in the source spreadsheet.
  3. Position the cursor in AVAproject to the top-left corner of the destination range.
  4. Select "Paste External" from the Edit menu.


You will notice something amazing happens! Not only is the data pasted in, but AVAproject performs some of its own special magic - Wherever possible, AVAproject attempts to "understand" the nature of the data being pasted into the various columns. In dimensional columns, regardless of the format of the source data, AVAproject automatically interprets and translates it into the format as defined in the project options. Lists of opening numbers are cleaned up, formatted and counted automatically and catalog options are recognized wherever they match the proper nomenclature. It is truly the "smartest" paste command you will ever see and can shave countless hours off of the take-off process.

A conceptual illustration of what can be accomplished with the amazing 'Paste External' tool

We welcome any questions, comments or suggestions about any topic mentioned in this edition of AVAwire. Please visit our website for more information, or contact us directly at (416) 239-9099.