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Re: '97 UBC and Proprietary Shearwalls

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Dennis-
    Setting aside the question of code compliance for the moment, the issue is
really how to apportion the load between various walls.  I've typically seen
10-30% load increases between flexible and rigid results for story shear.
    So far, apportioning load for the narrow walls has been the hardest part.
The manufacturer should provide load/deflection data, Simpson does.  I guess you
could assume linear behavior based on the one data point you have, but I'd
request the test report(s) from Hardy.
    It's hard to believe that everything has the same stiffness if you need to
mix in some Hardiframes.  Or are you saying that you'll use nothing but these
frames?
    Regarding liability, Josh Kardon proposes that arithmetic is not the
essential element of engineering.  If you can design a structure that meets the
minimum requirements of the code with a simpler analytical  method, more power to
you.  In the litigation cases I've seen so far (all settled through arbitration,
not courts) a new engineer performed a new analysis.  If the structure met the
code, no problem.  If it doesn't, then the blame is apportioned.  If you didn't
follow the code and the structure is determined to be under designed, you could
have a big problem.  What incentive do you have to intentionally ignore the
code?  Do you get some bonus?  More work?  Better reputation?  It seem like this
work carries enough liability already without going looking for trouble.
Chuck Utzman