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RE: Summing Shear Capacities under the UBC

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I don’t have the code references handy, but basically it works like this:


If you are in UBC country you are in seismic country.  Even if you state that wind governs, the wall still has to meet the minimum demand requirement for seismic.  Since you can’t use gypsum for seismic, then you cannot use it for wind.


From: Eric Tompos [mailto:etompos(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Tuesday, January 23, 2007 4:59 PM
To: 'seaint(--nospam--at)'
Subject: Summing Shear Capacities under the UBC


The IBC addresses summing of shear capacities in light framed shear wall in Section 2305.3.9.  This section permits allows for one to consider the gypsum strength for wind design only.  The WFCM uses the same method of summing shear.


The UBC seems to be silent on the matter--unless the section is in a less than obvious location.  I was recently told by a code official that the UBC prohibits consideration of gypsum--even for wind design.  And, while the UBC provides tables for gypsum racking strength they are not to be used.  The code official was not able to cite any local amendments or any references to support his opinion.


Any thoughts on the matter would be appreciated.




Eric Tompos, PE, SE

Vice President

NTA, Inc.