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Re: modeling of 3d-frame with shearwall

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In response to:  
> 1. What is an acceptable level of mesh refinement? 
>...start with a coarse mesh to get initial results, and then use finer  
meshes until successive model results show an acceptable level of  
convergence.  Finite element analysis is not exact, so some trial and  
error of this sort is needed to ensure that the results are  
consistent. < 
I concur with this advice.  If you can do color coded stress contours of
elements on your computer screen, look at them to see if they look realistic 
and if stress contours are smooth.  Refine your mesh at least until the
contours look reasonable.  I tried doing a study using various meshes for a 
simple flexural design and found that the stress contours were not smooth 
until the mesh became more refined.   And I couldn't get "unrefined" meshes
very accurately match theoretical bending stresses for a simply supported 
span.  I don't trust very coarse meshes to give very accurate results.  (But
can't find any good "rules of thumb" on how fine a mesh to use.)