General Interest Engineering Software and Documents

Engineering Power Tools is a library of engineering programs that can be used to quickly solve a wide range of commonly encountered engineering problems in all branches of engineering.

  • Fast – Instant access to over 70 programs and data tables
  • Organized – programs are neatly categorized with drop-down menus
  • Intuitive – standard graphic interface eliminates learning curve
  • Powerful – solves complex multi-step problems quickly with minimal input
  • Eliminates wasted time hunting for formulas and performing manual calculations
  • Networkable – Power Tools will work over your LAN from one central location

Engineering Power Tools is intended for Windows 95 and later Windows operating systems. It has both SI and U.S. unit capabilities. It is shareware, subject to the terms and conditions on the software. A full version with more capabilities is available from the producer of the software. The program has a self-installer within a zip file.


From the same developer, there is also a program to analyse sheet pile walls.

Framework is a structural analysis program for both 2D and 3D structures for Microsoft Windows. It contains the following capabilities:

  • nodal loads.
  • various BASE loads from where load COMBINATIONS can be composed.
  • all of a selection of the beams can possess continuous distributed springs along the beam axis.
  • the beams can be prismatic or non prismatic (incl. properties to make possible to calculate concrete reinforcement.
  • the beams can be FIXED, HINGED or SPRING connected to the node.
  • infinite stiff EXCENTRICAL beam connections are possible.
  • the nodes can undergo prescribed displacements (including different types of supports).
  • when for prismatic beams the moments of resistance have been input the stresses in the beams will be calculated (for non prismatic beams the moments of resistance will be calculated by the program itself).
  • it is possible to indicate per beam if shear distortions should be accounted for in the calculation process (specific important for compact beams)
  • the nodes can also be connected via springs with the surrounding world.
  • the calculation of plastic hinges is supported by the program; a rather advanced option.

The program also has a section calculator. It is difficult to describe all that the program does in structural analysis; you’ll just have to download to see for yourself.

Lessons Learned from Design and Engineering of Naval Facilities

October 1985

Engineers well know the meaning of the saying, “Learn from the mistakes of others because you won’t live long enough to make all of them yourself.” This document details the lessons learned from many years of experience accumulated by the Naval Facilities Engineering Command in their design of construction of facilities of the U.S. Navy around the world. Touches on a wide variety of engineering disciplines.


MathGV is a software program for Windows 95/98/ME, NT4, 2000, or XP, designed to generate graphs of mathematical functions. It can not plot raw data points. It can plot functions only.

  1. Plots 5 function types; 2D Cartesian (X, Y), parametric, polar, 3D Cartesian (X,Y,Z), 2D function rotated into 3 dimensions.
  2. Graphs can contain multiple functions.
  3. All graphs are drawn on resizable bitmaps, and displayed in scrolling windows.
  4. Graph bitmaps can be copied and pasted into other programs, or saved to disk.
  5. Multiple document interface (MDI) allows for simultaneous viewing of multiple graphs.
  6. Can calculate negative numbers to fractional powers.
  7. Function calculator that can give decimal or fractional results.
  8. All changes take effect immediately after they are made.
  9. Use tool bar buttons to zoom, rotate, and page up, down, left, right.
  10. Graphs can be saved in bitmap (bmp), jpg or MathGV format.
  11. Label tool bar for drawing, lines, free hand lines, rectangles, circles, round rectangles, flood fills, and text.
  12. Labels can be selected, dragged, dropped, resized, added and deleted on any graph at any time.


MiniTk is the “freeware” version of the TkSolver! program from Universal Technical Systems. TkSolver! is a very useful program which enables the solution of a wide variety of engineering and mathematical problems involving simultaneous equations. It enables the entry of equations without resorting to writing a lot of code and has facilities to accommodate mixed units.

MiniTk is fully functional; however, it is limited in the number of equations it will accept and does not have the graphics capabilities of full TkSolver! For many practical applications, however, MiniTk is more than adequate to the task. It has both online help and a reference card for the commands; it also has sample problems. Distribution rights are described in the readme file.

MiniTk is a DOS program; you will need to run it as a DOS program under the operating system you have. To load and start the program do the following:

  • Create a directory for MiniTk.
  • Download the ZIP file into the directory you have created.
  • Using an appropriate program (such as PKZIP or WinZip,) extract the files into the same directory.


PC-Stran is a three dimensional structural analysis program for linear structures. It is very versatile and will analyse a wide variety of structures for deflection, shear, bending moment and reactions. It accommodates a wide variety of boundary conditions and constraints. It has very versatile output, both text and graphical. There is probably no structural analysis program what will do what PC-Stran does with as few computer resources as it requires.

PC-Stran is definitely shareware; it has both distribution and use restrictions that are fully described in the documentation. It is a DOS program. Its installation is not difficult, but the following instructions must be followed exactly for proper results:

  • Click on the download button below. The file PCSTRAN.ZIP will be loaded onto your computer.
  • Create a directory off of your root directory called PCSTRAN. It must be spelled exactly as you see it here.
  • Move the PCSTRAN.ZIP file to the \PCSTRAN directory.
  • Extract the PCSTRAN.ZIP file into the \PCSTRAN directory. Make sure that, when you extract, you include a command to include the directory name with the extracted file. PC-Stran has a very specific organization of the subdirectories of \PCSTRAN that it needs to function; this has been included in the PCSTRAN.ZIP file. If you fail to do this, or if your file extractor does not allow you to do this, you can create the subdirectories and sort out the files from the documentation, but this takes some time.
  • Review and print out (if you like) the documentation files. These are “.doc” files that will be found in the \PCSTRAN\DOCS subdirectory. The documentation files will look their best when printed or viewed with a fixed-pitch font such as Courier or Courier New. The program itself is run from the file PC-STRAN.EXE found in the \PCSTRAN directory.

Note: more information about this software, along with updates and a virtual PC to run the DOS software, can be found at the developers site here.

Universal Converter

Universal Converter is a little DOS program from Software Excitement that converts just about anything: distance, weight, mass, volume, currency, etc. It also does some areas and volumes as well. During conversions it generates a “log” file which you can use to copy and paste results elsewhere. This has been around for a while but is very handy.Universal Converter is shareware.


wintopo-80x62WinTopo is a raster-to-vector conversion tool from SoftSoft Ltd. in the UK. It converts graphic files to a variety of vector formats. It primary application is converting hand drawings into CAD, and in that respect it does an excellent job. It runs on Windows 95/98/Me/2000/Xp.WinTopo is “freeware/charityware” with distribution and use terms and conditions fully described in the documentation. A commercial version is also available for faster and more versatile conversions. Instructions and help is included with the program. The program is installed with a self-installing executable file.