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Re: Factory Mutual - open web Joist spacing

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It's not that FM necessarily limits the joist spacing, but they limit
the deck span (which is the same thing, they just state it in terms of
the different deck profiles). As I understand it, in this case, FM is
primarily concerned about wind uplift.

You need to get the pages from the FM manual that give the span limits
for the different types of deck. I don't recall the limits being as low
as 4'-0", but they are oddball numbers like 4'-11", etc.  The actual
limits vary depending on whether you are using narrow, wide, or
intermediate rib deck.

Also be aware that FM is very serious about fastening the deck for wind
uplift (they have specific fastening requirements for corner and
perimeter zones) and they have their own formulas for checking for snow
drift. They are also very serious about firewalls.

All these requirements are based on their studies of historical causes
of insurance claims.  Your client should be able to get you the pages of
the FM manual that you need. You can buy the manual on the FM web site,
but it costs a fortune. 

Rick Burch
Columbia, SC

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