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re: Lateral Analysis Software for Wood Structures?

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I have Quakemax, Wood Works and I have helped start the spreadsheet program with Dennis.

Quakemax is the best for limited configurations; I have found some errors in previous versions. I always start with it as a preliminary outline of what the shear walls will be. I can get results in about an hour.

I usually transfer the preliminary Quakmax design to Wood Works, for a final check. Editing input and output for WoodWorks is difficult. Results have sent me into the red on many projects. I am talking days.

In my last project (4 stories) I was overwhelmed with vertical shear wall reactions over beams. I decided to transferr all results to S-frame. 28 load combinations were a whiz. Modeling was about 6 hours.

I was told recently, that TrusJoist is improving its beam design for all load combinations.

My hopes are now that I can organize Sframe input for all wood design, Using Quakemax for the preliminary shear walls and the TrusJoist program for most of the basic beam designs of proprietary sections. Shell elements can represent rigid or flexible diaphragms. All output is easily transferred to Excel. Sframe and Pframe have been developed to link with TEDDS. I have more faith in the results when using Sframe I know the properties and elastic behavior that I am modeling. I make the assumptions, if any, and I am not relying on a "black box model" to tell me results.

I am not happy about the difficult wood design demands placed on the engineer. I am looking forward to a possible ruling that wood needs not to be designed for a 2,500.0 return period. Why wait for a performance code?

Why not also accept a reduction in base shear to reflect the high dynamic period in wood structures. It is already in the code!

If the loads could be just reduced enough to allow an over designed generic simplistic flexible diaphragm analysis with a few basic load combinations.

David Merrick, SE