How to use MASS without diving into any one of the assemblage modules

Chapter 2 provides a concise outline of the Masonry Analysis Structural Systems (MASS) software package. This outline includes; an overview of the program and the beam, wall, and shear wall modules. It also includes instructions on creating and saving a .masonry14 file and an introduction to the main features found in MASS. The outline also includes the steps necessary to complete a design, as well as instructions on retrieving information about a successful or unsuccessful design.  This chapter also provides users with information on how MASS can be used to analyze an assemblage rather than design for one.

This introductory section covers everything you might want to know about MASS that is not specific to one of the technical modules: beams, out-of-plane walls, shear walls, multi-storey shear walls, and shearline (shear wall elevations with openings and movement joints).

The topics contained within this section are shown below (headings linked):

General Overview

A bird’s eye view summary of the scope and capabilities of MASS.

Assemblage Modules

A brief outline of each module designed by MASS.

Creating a Project File

How to get started with your first masonry design

Adding, Renaming, and Removing Assemblages

This section contains pretty much exactly what you would expect

Saving a Project File

Losing work is never fun. This section covers the basics of saving your work.

User Interface Overview

MASS can seem overwhelming at first. This section is a great reference tool for all of the buttons and text boxes scattered around the screen.

Design Steps

In general terms, each assemblage module performs designs in discrete steps. Read this section to learn more.

A Complete Design within MASS

This section outlines what is needed to complete each stage of the design process.


MASS can perform simple analysis rather than a design. Read this section to learn how.


Printing and documentation is also a key part of the engineering process. This section explains it from start to finish.

Materials Unit Database

Looking to use something a little different? This section walks the user through the process of designing outside the box.


Haven’t found what you’re looking for in this section? Click here to go back to the main page or you can click here to advance to the next section on masonry beams.

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