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Re: Battered piers/piles

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Drilled concrete piles can be done at an angle provided you have the right equipment and a crew that knows what they are doing.  Of course this is dependant on the type of soil you have (i.e. one that does not easily cave in).

In the good old days, you designed the vertical piles to take 100% of the vertical load and no lateral load, then designed the battered piles to take 100% of the lateral load and no vertical load.  It was conservative and seems that have had good performance.

The best bet in today's world is to get the recommendations and design criteria from the geotech who is experienced in this type of pile design.

Thomas Hunt, S.E.
ABS Consulting

"Sherman, William" <ShermanWC(--nospam--at)>

01/05/2005 12:19 PM

Please respond to

Battered piers/piles

A few questions regarding battered piers/piles:

1. Can drilled concrete shafts be installed with a batter? (I would
think not, but I've heard rumor that it has been done before.)

2. If I have a deep soil retaining structure with significant lateral
load, I can come up with battered steel H-piles driven to refusal in
rock to resist the lateral load (2V:1H batter). But if I assume that the
pile resists the load axially, there is a significant vertical component
that exceeds the total vertical load of the structure - what happens to
the excess vertical reaction from the pile? (Most references I've seen
say to design the battered pile for the total lateral load but do not
address what to do about unbalanced vertical loads. But it seems that
the free-body diagram does not balance. How do bridge abutments using
battered piles handle this?)

3. Similarly, if I remove the lateral load but still want to resist
vertical load (such as for dead weight without applied lateral load),
the vertical reaction in the battered pile creates an unbalanced lateral
load (if it acts axially). What happens to the unbalanced lateral load?
(My proposed solution is to install equal and opposite battered piles to
exactly offset the lateral load - and neglect these battered piles when
in tension for the laterally loaded case.)

Any input or references would be appreciated.

William C. Sherman, PE
(Bill Sherman)
CDM, Denver, CO
Phone: 303-298-1311
Fax: 303-293-8236
email: shermanwc(--nospam--at)

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