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Re: Hardy Frame, between code changes

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Thanks for your reply Bruce, I agree with you 100%. I hope you did not
interpret my post to mean that *I* am promoting to "sneak in under the
deadline", just the opposite. My point is that the architect was aware of
the aspect ratio's for the 1994 code and they actually started the design
well over a year ago, but the project got delayed for a number of reasons
including neighbor agreements for design. Changing the elevations for a 2:1
ratio would not go over well since it would require an all new design review
negotiation with the neighbors (and the owner for that matter). I am hoping
to hear favorable comments about such things as the Hardy Frame. Also,
Simpson is apparently coming out with their own proprietary manufactured
shear walls complete with holdowns and fastener templates. Whether or not it
meets the aspect ratio requirements of the 1997 code, I do not know.

Jeff Smith
-----Original Message-----
From: Parkerres <Parkerres(--nospam--at)>
To: seaoc(--nospam--at) <seaoc(--nospam--at)>
Date: Friday, March 27, 1998 8:19 AM
Subject: Re: Hardy Frame, between code changes

>Jeff -
>In my opinion, if you know the upcoming code requires 2:1 H/L ratios for
>shear walls and you are still designing for 3.5:1 just to sneak in under
>deadline, you are doing your client and your profession a disservice.  As a
>professional licensed engineer, you have a responsibility to design to
>incorporate the best available thinking into your design not just blindly
>finally the letter of the Code book.  Particularly in circumstances
>a "learning experience" such as an earthquake, are we bound to wait for
>changes to be written and adopted before we try to pass on our experience
>new projects?
>We were faced with this exact shear wall issue following Northridge.  Our
>office is in LA which was enforcing 2:1, while surrounding cities such as
>Malibu and Santa Monica, where we do a lot of work, were not.  We insisted
>that our clients follow the more restrictive guidelines because we felt
>irresponsible giving them a lower quality building just because some
>bureaucrat hasn't gotten around to changing the code language.  High and
>mighty as this sounds, I know there was a difference in opinion (or at
>in practice) with local engineer's regarding this issue.  I still think we
>the right thing to insist on forcing our client to follow the "new" code
>if it wasn't quite in force yet, because we knew, as you do, that it was
>As to the architect, he needs to face reality with regards to the new
>structural system, whether it is now or 6 months from now.  That is part of
>his job.  The use of steel frames is usually how we solve the lack of shear
>wall problem.  The architect can often accomodate the frame with a 2x8 wall
>hide the frame.
>I would encourage you to do right by yourself and your client.  Remember,
>are being hired for your expertise!
>Bruce Resnick, SE
>Parker Resnick Str. Eng.