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New Openings in (E) CMU/Concrete Bldg

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Wanted to get an opinion on the design of new wall openings in existing
conc/cmu building.  The general method used in our office has been to
provide a frame around the opening ie., about 6" beyond the opening on top
and two sides.  Angle at the top anchored to the wall and strongback running
from floor to roof.  The angle takes the vertical (based on a triangular
load) from the wall and roof above while the strongback transfers the
vertical to the wall and also acts as a strongback to take the out-of-plane
lateral forces of the wall.  The architect is not too much for this design
since steel is going to be visible all across the wall.

But I have seen other engineers put a channel around the opening which fits
into the door or window rather than on the wall.  How effective is this for
the lateral forces.  Building we desing are mostly in the southern calif.

Thanks for your input.



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