Tekla Developer Awards 2019: Sigmat Stair API

Updated: 4 Nov 2019

Developed by

Ayub Muhammad and others at Sigmat.


We set our-in house development team the task of creating an API to assist with modelling stairs to suit the 3x different options we offer in our LGSF buildings.

See more info here: Sigmat Stair Plugin v2 Cheat Sheet.pdf.

Problem that app solves

The value of time saved can be measured in weeks not hours per year. Anyone who has manually detailed a stair will know the massive step forward that this API offers, by taking only a few clicks to have stair and landing completely modelled.


We develop our software to suit our bespoke product, so we don't offer our API's externally. But the feedback from all of our 26 in-house detailers has been extremely positive. And it's no surprise when you consider a modelling exercise that previously took a few days, can now be done in minutes.

This API has completely streamlined the modelling process of stairs within all of our Sigmat LGSF buildings. Tasks which were almost entirely manual, due to the limitations of the standard software. Now require nothing more than a few clicks to model a full stair & landing. The time savings this now allows across our business, could be measured in weeks per year, not hours!

The real complexity of the API can be seen within the ‘built-in’ help files, which we refer to as ‘cheat sheets’. The number of pre-loaded options available, means the help file is 11 pages long! Given that we have 26 detailers across 4x offices, this was extremely important, to assist the use of this new API when the developer is not on hand to offer guidance.

About the development project

We agree that small can be good too. But our entry is far from small. This was developed by Ayub Muhammad, alongside his role as a detailer, And tested by our senior detailers. We were so pleased with the result, that Ayub has now switched roles and has moved into programming full time for Sigmat, and is working on several new API's.

Brief / Challenge

We set our-in house development team the task of creating an API to assist with modelling stairs to suit the 3x different options we offer in our LGSF buildings.

It needed to:-

  • Improve accuracy & speed.
  • Be user friendly.
  • Utilise a simple and intuitive input method.
  • Have typical/standard details preloaded.
  • Be flexible and easy to manipulate.
  • Meet building regulations.
  • Minimise the situations that it would need to be ‘exploded’.
  • Connect to ground floor slabs and steel beams automatically.

The result

  • Simple 2 click input method, following nosing line.
  • Setting out can be manipulated by either changing the number of risers or moving the handles.
  • 3D ‘Splash’ screen with clear and obvious interfaces.
  • Un-available options ‘blanked’ out when not activated for certain situations.
  • Pre-Set options to load in the 3x stair types (Folded steel, CP board and screen infill)

Exceeding Expectations

Along with creating the stair API, out development team also included the options to add a half landing to all stairs. Which also has options to change the frame setting out and profiles required.

About the company - Sigmat

From its inception in 2001, Sigmat has uniquely specialised in the design, detail, manufacture and build of load bearing light gauge steel framed (LGSF) structures to meet the burgeoning demand for offsite construction solutions. Our innovative approach has ensured that we are the largest constructor in this sector.

Our unique steel profiles are 17.8% more structurally efficient than standard steel sections, and our standalone LGSF structures can be erected up to 15 storeys.

Along with our innovative edge protection system, the stairs we offer allow our buildings to be accessed immediately and without the need for scaffolding. Allowing the buildings to be built from within their own footprint.

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