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RE: Load - Occupancy Live Load

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Back in the days of slide rules in the dawn of the age of codes.  The requirements for dance floors varied between 100 psf and 120 psf.  I even recall a footnote somewhere that required a 500 psf live load for floors for square dancing. (Don't ask which code this was, I can't remember.)

Now that we are older and wiser, we know that the floors do not need such a heavy static load.  These old requirements were based on dynamics problems that the old slide rules would try, smoke, catch fire, and still be off by a factor of 10.  It was a back door way to address the dynamics problem.  Now we have computers that can bang these problems out very rapidly.

The lesson is: sure lower the actual load by whatever code minimum you can get by with, but don't forget to run the dynamics.  The dynamics can vary dramatically depending on the type of floor, perceptibility limits, damping, etc.  By the time you properly account for the dynamics with little damping, the aerobics floors may be able to carry 100 to 500 psf.

Harold Sprague
Krawinkler, Luth & Assoc.
4412 W. Eisenhower Blvd.
Loveland, CO 80537
Voice: 970 667-2426
Fax: 970 667-2493
Email: hsprague(--nospam--at)