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Re: Curved Steel Beams

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12' is tight for a W16.  Channels bend nicely. At the end of the day
it will be best to talk to a fabricator. There are a couple (probably
a lot more than I know) of people that do this kind of thing.  Ck
"Moden Steel Construction" over a few back issues to find national
companies ( try for instance Rich-Con 800 7327 0987 or, oddly,
BendCo. 800 473 1882). No guarente that a local guy will see thing the
same way.

Michael Donoghue, PE

-----Original Message-----
From: Tom Castle <tcastle(--nospam--at)>
To: 'seaoc(--nospam--at)' <seaoc(--nospam--at)>
Date: 18 February, 1998 7:25 PM
Subject: Curved Steel Beams

>I am working on a structural steel framed roof with a curved "turtle
>shell" surface.  Of course the architect wants the volume ceiling to
>reflect the top side of the roof, so no trick flat beams below.  I
>a couple options as to how to frame it, but was wondering what the
>practical limits are as to how tight a radius a wide flange beam can
>curved.  The beam size would be about a W16x26.  I suppose that the
>can always be fabricated out of plates, but I if think I want to
>this.  I know how to analyze the beam once it is made, but can it be
>made and are there residual stresses that must be taken into account?
>The radius at some points is as little as 12 feet.  Any thoughts?  It
>would be appreciated.  Thanks.
>Thomas Castle, S.E.