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Measurement Calculator

Hello Experts,

Please bare with me as I explain this one...

There is probably no right answer to this question, as the solution will probably be pretty subjective.  And technically, it's not an Excel question - though the calculator lives within an Excel workbook.

I'm really looking for someone to guide me, or help me with a new way of thinking of this calculator based on an issue that has come up after a few months of actual use.

See the attached file I created.

The purpose of this calculator is to recommended a specific size bag, based on the object they are lining or covering.

I recommend enabling macros if you open the workbook as many features are dependent on code running in the background.

Let's take a look at two different examples, so you can see my dilemma.

Example 1:

Object = Square/Rectangle
Width = 50
Depth = 10
Height = 20
Bag Type = Gusseted
Objective = Liner with Tie Off

Answer = 51x11x35 (Bag Size)

Example 2:

Object = Square/Rectangle
Width = 20
Depth = 10
Height = 50
Bag Type = Gusseted
Objective = Liner with Tie Off

Answer = 21x11x65 (Bag Size)

As you can see, the object in each of the examples - has 3 dimensions.  And the width/depth/height, is different depending on how you're viewing the object.

And while the dimensions of the object never change, only how I 'view' those dimensions - I can get two very different bags sizes to cover/line the object.

In the first example, that size is great - if I am holding the large object (50" left to right) and bending down and placing the object into the bag.

But in the second example, that size is great - if I'm placing the large object into the bag, just like I would be placing my foot into a sock.

Hopefully, I haven't lost you.

Well, that is my dilemma.

Instead of the user having to change around the width depth & height measurements - I want the user to always follow the same logic.

The "Width" is always the widest dimension.
The "Depth" is always the shortest dimension.
And the "Height" is always how far off the ground the object is.

My logic in thinking this through, is that I need another field - basically talking about the orientation of the object, or how the object is placed into the bag - but that's where it all becomes gray to me.

I am hoping someone can offer me some advice on how to solve this problem. And just to be clear, I am not looking for any formulas.  I am only looking for advice on how I should be tackling this next problem.

Am I right, that I need to include something about orientation of object?  And if so, how am I wording it? How am I incorporating that?

Again, this is all subjective - so I'm sorry in advance.

~ Geekamo
3 Solutions

as long as you want to put it into Excel, that has to be measureable, and then you need to be able to put it into some kind of formula.

That is what Excel is for.


GeekamoAuthor Commented:
@ Jorgen,

I think you're missing the point of my question, or maybe I didn't do a good enough explanation.

I am aware - anything I want to do will involve the use of more formulas.  But before I even get to that point - I need to figure out how I am going to approach my new problem that I outlined in my question.

@ all,

If anything I wrote isn't clear enough, please let me know.
How about having a different image appear whenever an object is selected.  Each image should be a representation of the shape and identify the respective dimensions lines.  Take a look at the image below:

Rob HensonFinance AnalystCommented:
If you want to force users into putting the largest dimension as the width, use some data validation on the other two dimensions to ensure they are smaller.

Rob H
Continuing Rob's line of thought, if the width is always the biggest, then perform your calcs as follows:
Width = MAX(user-entered width, height, depth)
Height = MEDIAN(user-entered width, height, depth)
Depth = MIN(user-entered width, height, depth)

It doesn't matter how the user decides to interpret width, height and depth--just that he enters three values. And if you are confident that the most economical bag has the Width as the largest dimension and the Depth as the smallest, then perform your calcs using the results of the MAX, MEDIAN and MIN of the user-entered dimensions.
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