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RE: Allowable Out-of-Plane Lateral Deflections of Masonry Veneers

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You have had many good responses already. Additionally, you may consider using a 10 year wind for servicability as opposed to the 50 year wind used for strength. Servicability should not use the same force level as is required for strength. This will give you the accepted L/720 for the 10 year wind, and about L/600 for the 50 year wind.

Harold Sprague

From: "Stuart, Matthew" <mstuart(--nospam--at)>
Reply-To: <seaint(--nospam--at)>
To: <seaint(--nospam--at)>
Subject: Allowable Out-of-Plane Lateral Deflections of Masonry Veneers
Date: Wed, 28 Feb 2007 11:45:50 -0500

Back in the early 1980's I believe, when Architect's started to go with
gage metal stud back up walls in lieu of CMU, the resulting flexibility
of the metal studs resulted in a number of problems with masonry veneers
primarily as a result of water infiltration through the mortar joints as
the brick flexed to a point in which there was actual separation between
the brick and the mortar at the joint interface. The metal stud industry
and brick industry began pointing fingers at one another with the BIA
responding with an H/600 criterion. Most design engineers at the time
had trouble accepting this criterion because after all L/360 had worked
for stucco finishes for some time. Never the less the H/600 got codified
into ACI 530 which adopted the criteria for vertical deflection only.

Does anyone have any insight into the current lack of connection between
ACI 530 vertical deflection limitations and the current BIA
recommendations for H/600 out-of-plane lateral deflection limitations?
This is an issue because the ACI is a Code and the BIA provides
recommendations only.

D. Matthew Stuart, P.E., S.E., F.ASCE, SECB

Senior Project Manager

Structural Department


Schoor DePalma Engineers and Consultants

200 State Highway Nine

Manalapan, NJ 07726

732-577-9000 (Ext. 1283)

908-309-8657 (Cell)

732-298-9441 (Fax)


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