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RE: Alternate to steel beams

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Have you looked into the LiteSteel beam ( It’s basically a heavy-gage C-shaped cold-formed section but with the top and bottom flanges rolled back into a tube shape. One 8” LSB section approaches the capacity of (2) 10” standard cold-formed joists back to back or a W8x13. The weight is ~40% less than a W section.


The parent company is Australian, but they have a plant in SW Virginia, in the general vicinity of Roanoke and Blacksburg. There’s a code official in Northern VA I know who has worked with them on getting local approval and I understand it’s becoming fairly popular. I’ve seen them exhibited at trade shows also.






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From: erik [mailto:erik_g(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Saturday, March 26, 2011 2:34 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Alternate to steel beams


I am designing a very large 2 story custom home with a lot of open space on the 1st floor. The architect says to design for 1-1/2” Lt weight concrete floors and clay tile on the roof. With all the open space on the 1st floor and heavy design loads I am forced to use steel beams to support the floor joists and bearing walls above in order to make the spans with minimal deflection, but I am looking for alternatives to the traditional W sections. I Googled “alternatives to steel beams” and I found a few, but they seem to be located in the UK.


Does anyone have any experience using any type of open webbed truss/beam hybrid? This would be a good alternative because the openings in the web could be used to route the plumbing and electrical through, instead of the extra effort and labor to cut holes in the web of a W section.




Erik Gibbs