Use Case

Piping Designers place components hourly and at some point, newly placed components must be extracted to support subsequent roles that support purchasing, fabricating, and traceability to satisfy PSM and PHMSA.


Creating material snapshots periodically provides a historical record of all the components required to route piping that has been modeled.  When these records are recalled and compared to current designs, the results can be used to process the difference.


In many situations, MTOWorx Snapshots are used to create material requisitions or purchases.  Material planner roles then append CAD data by adjusting quantities or populating missing Part Numbers.  Often work orders demand that CAD data be appended with additional properties like work order numbers, vendor, due date, etc.


This article describes how MTOWorx creates material Snapshots that can be appended with business information to support fixed equipment projects and ultimately mechanical integrity programs. 


Setup & Configuraiton

CWX and P3D

Believe it or not, there is absolutely no configuration or setup required within CADWorx PLANT or AutoCAD PLANT 3D.

MTOWorx knows which application is active and automatically sets the default Snapshot columns.  


Setup & Configuration

CURRENT Options Tab - Standard & Additional Fields


CWX and P3D Snapshots will include default fields.  Users can opt to add fields, and they must be aware the MTOWorx compare processor must find matching columns within the Current and Snapshot data sets


Default FieldsAdditional Field
SizePart Number*
Long DescriptionShort Description
LengthLine Number

Drawing Number

Program Code

Item Type

*Using Part Number shall become mandatory when connecting with SOCKETWorx Materials described below.


In almost all cases Size, Long Description, and Length are suitable to manage CAD material take-offs.  
Additional field use becomes necessary when there are business drivers to roll up based upon their values.


CURRENT Options Tab - Load Sheets

Users can configure and set up Excel workbooks to be assigned to one of six  MTOWorx templates.  Why six?  I guess everyone wants a six-pack of some sort.


Template configuration includes setting the Excel workbook template, data start row, what worksheet to populate, and other purposeful settings.


The SOCKETWorx configuration includes connecting to a website.  Once connected SocketWorxLists and SPECWorx Material fields such as cost, and other look-up fields.


Field configurations are added and deleted to set up and format Excel output workbooks that MTOWorx calls Load Sheets.

Column type and position are set and when they are enabled populate them.

LoadSheet templates can be configured to support many requirements from simple worksheets for review to enterprise ERP/MRP system input files.


Home Tab - Program Code Filters (CADWorx only)

By default, all 200 hundred component types are set to be accumulated and processed.   Clicking on the Program Code Filters button launches a pop where unchecking will suppress component types.



Creating Snapshots


There are so many reasons to take material take-off snapshots.  They are Excel workbooks that are recalled so they can be compared to the currently loaded model file and yield results.


There are two MTOWorx compare options; (1) All Components and (2) Pipe Only.  There exist because users had use cases where they wanted to process fittings and valves separately from the pipe, where cut lengths are critical to their process.

The pipe-only option is intended to process cut lengths, based upon unique CAD identifiers.


The process starts by clicking one of the two options from the MTOWorx: Bill of Materials palette section.

When launching the All Components compare, users, have the option to suppress, or Hide Pipe.  This utility plays a purposeful role when the workflows are designed to process pipe separately.


There are two paths to results.  One is to bypass the snapshot compare and transfer all current model snapshot components to results.  Or two, select a previously saved snapshot file.  The results are immediately populated after either Compare To action.


The MTOWorx Compare process can be accomplished in four steps, keeping in mind that everyone refines them.


1. Take Snapshot 

The Take Snapshop section on the Home ribbon is where the Save button is located.  Once clicked users must pick a directory, or folder, where a new MTOWorx Snapshot will be added.  Users cannot control the resulting Excel workbook filename because they are formatted with a date/time stamp to ensure the file can be produced.  After creation, users can rename snapshot filenames, and this is recommended to suit their purpose.


2. Load Compare To Snapshot

Once Snapshots exist as Excel workbooks, they can be loaded by clicking the Snapshot File button within the Home Tab Compare To section and selecting one of them to load.


If exporting the current model snapshot represents the desired results, then click the Bypass Blank button in the Home tab Compare To section.  The results are populated and ready for review and export processing.


3. Review Results

After using either Compare To options, the results are displayed and they contain 5 quantity assessments.

  • No Change, no color change, and quantity equals zero
  • Increased, Text color set to green
  • Decreased, text color set to red
  • Added, background color set to green
  • Deleted, background color set to red

4. Sending Results to Excel Workbooks

There are two options in the Home tab Send Results ribbon section.   The Screen Sheet button exports an Excel workbook that is basically one for one with the results grid.  The Load Sheet button exports an Excel workbook that is based upon which of the six templates is set as active.


Imagine how these results workbooks can service AutoCAD PLANT 3D and CADWorx PLANT projects.