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Re: Rw Factor

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Recalling that the denominator of the (old) base shear equation is an
emperical representation of the framing type's ability to asorb the energy of
the design earthquake in the post yield mode.  Whenever you are unsure it is
best to err on the conservative side and use the lower Rw value which results
in a higher design base shear.  Even designing with Rw=4 (or Is=1.5) might not
be all that off base.  The cost of construction will not increase appreciably
and you can sleep better.