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Frame numbers can be assigned in either Ram Modeler from the plan or elevation view using Layout - Frame Numbers. They can also be assigned in RAM Frame - Analysis mode using Assign - Frame Numbers. It's usually easiest to assign them in Ram Frame with the Fence option while in a rotated 3D view from the top or the side point of view.
Assigning frame numbers is optional and never has any impact on the model stiffness matrix and never affects the analytical behavior of the model.
Assigning frame numbers does make the program output easier to use, however, and it is required when using Pseudo Flexible diaphragms and for some seismic provisions. Below is a list of features affected by frame number assignments.
Assigning frame numbers affects the organization of most reports. When frame numbers are assigned many of the reports, like Member forces are organized first by frame number, then by story and member. Furthermore, reports can be generated for selected frame number rather than always reporting on the whole model.
The Report - Frame Story Shear will only provide relevant information if frame numbers are assigned. For additional information see: RAM Frame - Building and Frame Story Shear
In order for the program to distribute diaphragm force totals to specific frames according user defined percentages, Frame Numbers must be assigned. Once frame numbers are assigned they will appear in the Loads - Pseudo-Flexible Diaphragm Properties dialog.
For additional information see: RAMSS Pseudo Flexible Diaphragms FAQ
Use the View - Frames... to hide some frames and show others.
When starting the Ram Frame - Steel - Seismic provisions mode there is an option to "Use frame No. to designate a single line of bracing"
Within the building code certain prescribed checks (e.g. for braced frames) require the engineer to perform a global check on frames that are part of a single line of bracing. The engineer can assign the same frame number to all member that are considered a single line of bracing (typically for braced frames within ten percent of the width of the structure apart) and select this option to have RAM Frame perform the required checks on single bracing lines.
Frame numbers can be assigned any way you like, but most users assign a single frame number to each isolated 2D frame inclusive of the beams, columns and braces. Corner columns can only be given a single frame number, so you might choose the dominant frame, possibly based on column alignment, or assign the corner column its own, unique frame number.
Where walls form groups that are 2D or 3D, such wall groups are often assigned a frame number as well. It's worth noting that assigning Wall Groups and Frame Numbers are distinct actions, though it often makes sense to align the two things. For more information see RAM SS Walls FAQ
RAM Frame - Building and Frame Story Shear
RAMSS Pseudo Flexible Diaphragms FAQ
RAM SS Walls FAQ