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Re: Retaining wall rotation

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I learned in school to "lean" retaining walls back to account for
deflection and I usually use 1/4"/ft. They certainly look much better
when this is done.

Stan Scholl, P.E.
Laguna Beach, CA

On Thu, 24 May 2001 11:44:42 -0500 "Brian K. Smith"
<smithegr(--nospam--at)> writes:
> I think the statement "wall rotation is inherent" should be clarified 
> as
> "typically inherent" as it is dependent upon the design method.  
> Engineers
> typically design for active soil pressures; however, many times I 
> design the
> wall for the Ko or at rest earth pressure, depending on the 
> importance of
> the wall.  If the wall was designed for the active soil pressures, 
> then the
> wall must rotate to produce these pressures.  In Foundation Analysis 
> and
> Design, 4th Edition by J.E. Bowles, the following is given as to the
> required rotation;
>     Cohesionless, dense        0.001 to 0.002H
>     Cohesionless, loose        0.002 to 0.004H
>     Cohesive, firm                0.01 to 0.02H
>     Cohesive, soft                0.02 to 0.05H
> Brian K. Smith, P.E.
> Bossier City, Louisiana
>   -----Original Message-----
>   From: John P. Riley [mailto:jpriley485(--nospam--at)]
>   Sent: Thursday, May 24, 2001 10:27 AM
>   To: Frank E. Stewart; seaint(--nospam--at)
>   Subject: Retaining wall rotation
>   A homeowner made an insurance claim on his retaining walls, one 
> each side
> of the front of his underground home.  Both walls have rotated since 
> their
> construction in 1979, one has an outward lean of about 1/8" in 8" 
> (just had
> my little torpedo level with me . . . not real accurate) and the 
> other is
> about 1/4" in 8"; both are 12' high tapering to 0' in 12' (i.e.: 
> they are 45
> deg triangles).
>   I am about to prepare a report, saying among other things that 
> retaining
> wall movement is inherent.  But I forget "how much" movement is to 
> be
> expected.  Of course, I know its impossible to say for all cases, 
> but I'm
> looking for an 'order of magnitude' number as a percent of height.
>   __________________
>   John P. Riley, PE, SE
>   Riley Engineering
>   20 Oakwood Drive, Blue Grass, Iowa 52726
>   Tel & Fax:  319-381-3949
>   jpriley485(--nospam--at)

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