The first step in the configuration process is setting up the inventory. Whether you use metric or imperial materials, about 350 commonly used materials with information are already included. You’ll be able to modify existing materials as well as add new ones.

Initially you’ll want to focus on the plywood tab, lumber tab and fastener tab. As these are the primary items used in almost all crate designs.

The other tabs materials can be completed as needed, or as you will use them. Once the inventory is “cleaned up”, you can import your costs via a CSV file if you find that easier.

Starting with plywood, the list shows materials in this category. Below this list is a show inactive button that allows you to view all plywood items in inventory. Once you clean up these materials, you would unselect this option  to see only materials you use.

To clean up this material category, at the top of the window is a View field. Select the Design Fields List. This will bring up all the items that are currently in this category.

 If checked, it’s an active material. If unchecked, it gets moved to the inactive tab. An active material is what you use to build your crates, skids, and pallets. Or sell directly from inventory. Not your on-hand inventory. Materials included will contain extra information. Such as a waste factor and cut, install, or apply time. The values come from industry averages, whether Imperial or metrric. These will need to be changed to match your company settings.

Click on any pencil icon to return to the form view. At the bottom of the list uncheck the Show Inactive box to see only your active materials. 

To add a new material, you can click on New,  in the upper left of the window. You’re also able to rename any existing material by clicking on Item ID but I'm going to add three quarter OSB as a new item as an example. The Item ID is what appears on your cut lists and other reports. A part number can be entered where you see ABC Inventory. The Description field provides more information for the person updating Inventory. This field is optional.

If you’re unsure of the values to enter in each field, you could look at a similar item. In this case, I have ¾ CDX to use as a reference. While most sheets are purchased as 48 x 96. Or 1200 x 2400 millimetres, you will enter the dimensions based on the size you purchase.

If you know your waste factor for this material, enter it in the Waste field. If you’re not sure. Again, look at something that is similar and take those values for now. Same with cut or install time. You can change these later. Do not leave these fields blank.

In another lesson we’ll cover the Placeholder field. Please uncheck it for now if selected on any active material.

 Pricing When Applied to Designs. The unit if measure (UOM) in this field comes from the Level A unit of measure. The Level UOM is the unit of measure used on the  cut lists for that material. I suggest not changing the default units of measure in Level A for any material*. You’ll understand why as you configure more material groups.

* You may wifh to change some materials Level A UOM based on application in designs. This will be clear through additional lessons.

However, you may not purchase your plywood by square foot or square meter. The unit of measure you purchase your items are set by the Tracking Level. By default, the most common setting for plywood is by sheet, which is Level B UOM. While you may purchase plywood by other units of measure,  such as by pallet or by stack, unless you always get the same number of sheets when you order, you’ll end up doing a lot more conversions every time you purchase another lot of the material. Let us know if you want to use a different unit of measure than what’s in Level A or B so we can ensure your values are correctly set up.

When you select a Tracking Level, the Cost per UOM and weight per field will reflect the unit of measure of that Tracking Level.

Let’s move to the Lumber tab to cover additional settings and fields available for lumber material. Your first step is to go to the top of the window and select Design Fields List in the View field. You must click on that option to select it. Once you have the list view, check materials as active that you use, and uncheck materials that you don’t use.

When done, click on the pencil icon, or edit icon, to return to form view and remember to uncheck the Show Inactive box at the bottom of your lumber list, if checked.

The lumber category has additional fields unique to the lumber category. Highlighted here are those unique fields. If you might use Crate Pro to create ISPM 15 reports, check all lumber materials that are eradicated. If a material will be used as a cleat, check the cleat box. For example, you would use 1 by 4’s as a cleat material, but its unlikely you would use a 4 by 4. This ensures that if a user swaps out a default cleating material in the design, the don’t select a material that should not be used in that capacity.

Match Design Component Length. In lumber, this feature allows you to enter the board lengths that you usually keep in stock and enter them in the Level C,D,E and F rows. You can change what’s currently in those fields. When you check the box next to the row, Crate Pro 6 will identify when that length is required in a design, then not add the time for a saw stop. Be sure to uncheck the boxes if you do not carry lumber in those lengths.

Available On Projects is an option  in every material category. This is not the same as making a material active for use in a design. When a line item is checked under Available on Projects, it’s means this item can be added directly from your inventory, in the unit of measure checked,  to a Project.  In this example – I have marked that I sell 1 by 4 by 8’s and 1 by 4 by 12’s, directly into a Project. The selling markup and selling price are  shown. This markup does not need to be the same markup as when this material is used in a design.

If the markup field is greyed, the markup value is coming from the Preferences – Pricing module, which is your company default markup for this material category. In some cases, you may opt to override this markup and enter a unique markup just for this material. When you override your Preferences module mark-up, the text appears standard. This is the case throughout Crate Pro 6, when text is greyed, it's coming from your company default.

Switching to the Preferences module, Pricing tab, here you will set your company defaults for markups and other values. The first column is markups of materials added in the Design module, and the second column is for materials sold directly from the Inventory module. As you saw, you can override these values for individual materials in the Inventory module. We’ll cover setting your pricing settings in another training.

Back to the Inventory module - Once you clean up each tab, it’s fast and easy  to enter and update your costs. This time go to the bottom of the window and click "Active + the category you’re going to enter costs". Then the magnifying glass. 

Let’s do plywood. In the list you’ll only see your active materials. If you selected Level B as your tracking level then enter your costs by board foot, or cubic foot. If you selected level A, enter your costs by square foot or square meter. At any time you can update your costs this way. 

As you update costs, it's important to look at the Tracking Level column to ensure you're entering the correct values for that material. This will change in other material categories based on how you purchase. An example is that you may purchase nails by the roll but cam locks by each.

Please select the next video for Fasteners.