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Lesson 2 Extra Mile Step-By-Step Model Construction   

Building Model 2 Extra Mile

To start building model 2 extra mile you will need to load model 2 which you saved from the last lesson.

If at any time you encounter difficulties while building this model, a fully functional tutorial model can be found at

Step 1: Load Model 2

  • Load Model 2 if it is not already open.

Step 2: Save Model as "Model 2 Extra Mile"

  • Go to the menu option File > SaveModelAs... to save your model under a new name.

Step 3: Add a Dashboard to Show the Content of the Queue

  • Create a Dashboard by clicking the Dashboard button on the FlexSim Toolbar. Drag the "Content vs Time" object from the library into the dashboard pane.

Step 4: Adjust the Parameters of the Dashboard to show a Content Graph of the Queue

  • In the Dashboard properties, Push the Green Plus on the Objects tab. You will now be able to select the Queue to show its Content vs Time.
  • Push the plus button next to Queues, select Queue. Push the Select button below to complete your selection.
  • Change the name of the Dashboard to Queue Content vs Time
  • Click OK to apply the changes and close the window.

Alternatively, you can click on the and then click on the Queue in the 3D view to add it to your dashboard.

Step 6: Add a Dashboard to show the Average Staytime of the Queue

  • Following the same steps from steps 4, add a new Dashboard Chart and place it below the content graph. The only difference will be that you will drag an Average Staytime Bar Graph instead of "Content vs Time" from the Library and the Graph Title will be Queue Average Staytime.

Step 7: Add a State Pie Chart for each Operator

  • Following the same steps from step 4, add a new Dashboard Chart for each Operator. Select State Pieinstead of "Content vs Time" from the Library and set the Graph Title to be Operator State Pie.

When reset and run, the pie charts should look something like this:

Step 8: Adding 3D Text to the Model

There is another way to add information to the model that can show performance measures. You can place 3D text at strategic points in the layout to show what is happening while the model is running. This is done using a VisualTool. In this model we will add 3D text to show the average wait time of flowitems in the "Conveyor Queue".

  • From the library under the Visual group, add a VisualTool by dragging a Text object into the model. Place it by ConveyorQueue, and name it Text.

  • Double-click the VisualTool to bring up its Properties window (see Figure 2-45).
  • In the Text Display list select the Display Object Statistics option. The code template window will appear. Change the parameters text to be as follows:

Text: "Average Conveyor Queue Staytime: "

Object: centerobject(currrent,1)

Stat: Average Staytime

  • For the Object: value, click the Green Plus sign, then click on the plus sign next to Queues, and select Average Staytime. Then press Select.

  • For the Stat: value, click the Dropdown Menu, and select Average Staytime.

NOTE: To click on the VisualTool, click directly on the 3D text that is showing.

At this point you may want to adjust the display of the text. The text size is set to 1 by default, and you may want to make it smaller. You may also want to have the text hover over the queue. To make the text smaller, type the desired size in the Properites window of the VisualTool. You may also adjust the thickness to give the text a 3D appearance.

  • Double-click the VisualTool to open its Properties window. On the Display tab, change Text Thickness to 0.1.

  • Click the General tab.
  • Change Rotation X to 90.
  • Click OK to close the Properties window and apply the changes.

The text will now be rotated in the model. Use you mouse to select and position the text as desired. Remember that the z-position of the text can be controlled by selecting the text with both the left and right mouse buttons and moving the mouse forward and back, or selecting the text and then rolling the mouse wheel to move the text up or down.

Step 9: Reset, Save and Run

  • Reset and Save the model. You are then ready to Run the model and look at the graphs, charts, and 3D text you have just added.

This ends the "Model 2 Extra Mile" lesson. As you can see, it is very easy to add powerful 3D reporting visuals to your simulation models.

To continue the tutorial, go to Lesson 3.

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paul.t contributed to this article


FlexSim 2016.1