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Re: Plywood Shear Walls On Metal Stud Framing

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In a message dated 9/9/99 8:49:00 AM Pacific Daylight Time, skarin(--nospam--at) 

<< Does anyone have any background information on UBC Section 2220.3? This
 section essentially limits the gauge of metal stud framing at plywood shear
 walls to 20 Ga. I suspect the limitation might have something to do with a
 tested assembly. >>

This has been discussed in the past and you might check the SEAINT archives. 
As I recall, the APA tested shear walls and recommended in their document 157 
(from memory) the use of 16 gauge studs for shearwalls.
However, further testing was done under the work of NAHB (National 
Association of Home Builders) in tandem with the LGSEA (Light Gauge Steel 
Engineers Association) and under grant from the AISI (American Iron and Steel 
Institute).  The final testing became adopted and published in the '97 UBC. 
This indicated that the walls with 20ga studs produced higher shear 
capacities before failure due to stud buckeling than did the 16 ga. studs. 
The stiffness in the 16 ga. studs created failures in the screw connection - 
the screw failed in shear before the stud buckeled or the plywood tore 
You also might research the work of Renaud Serrette (spelling) who was the 
professor that overviewed the research work on metal stud shearwalls. LGSEA 
has a lot of information on this (lgsea(--nospam--at) or

Dennis S. Wish PE