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RE: Curved Steel Members

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We just finished a job with a number of curved structural 4x14x 1/4" tubes
and W21x62 sections.  Getting the members curved to a 305' radius curve in
the strong direction was not too difficult.  Where we had more problems was
in transverse connections.  When you weld to one side of a tube, the weld
causes a shrinkage in the tube wall.  We had a substantial amount of welding
on one side with a resulting sweep in the tube.  On tubes therefore, try to
balance the amount of weld on each tube face.  The fab shops can compensate
for the weld, but it is a bit of trial and error for most.  Wide flange is
the same problem, but mostly in unbalanced welds on the flanges.

-----Original Message-----
From: Rafael Sabelli [mailto:Sabelli(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Friday, February 11, 2000 12:46 PM
Subject: Curved Steel Members

Dear all:

I am designing a structure with a curved roof.  The framing will consist of 
wide-flange girders and curved wide-flange beams.  I would like references 
and opinions concerning the design of steel members curved about their 
major axes.  Specific areas of concern are:

Appropriate Sections  (I assume slender sections are costly to bend, and 
that shallower, compact members may save money.  Does anyone have 
Residual Stresses  (should any strengths be reduced?)
Chord and Collector Design
Stability During Construction  (What special notes are appropriate?)
Special Specifications

Thank you,

Rafael Sabelli