ASTM D4255 / D4255M - 01(2007)

    Standard Test Method for In-Plane Shear Properties of Polymer Matrix Composite Materials by the Rail Shear Method

    Active Standard ASTM D4255 / D4255M | Developed by Subcommittee: D30.04

    Book of Standards Volume: 15.03


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    Significance and Use

    These shear tests are designed to produce in-plane shear property data for material specifications, research and development, and design. Factors that influence the shear response and should therefore be reported include: material, methods of material preparation and lay-up, specimen stacking sequence, specimen preparation, specimen conditioning, environment of testing, specimen alignment and gripping, speed of testing, time at temperature, void content, and fiber volume reinforcement content. Properties that may be measured by this test method include:

    5.1.1 In-plane shear stress versus shear strain response,

    5.1.2 In-plane shear chord modulus of elasticity,

    5.1.3 Offset shear stress, and

    5.1.4 Maximum in-plane shear stress. In cases in which the strain at failure is greater than 5 %, the shear stress corresponding to 5 % shear strain should be reported.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method determines the in-plane shear properties of high-modulus fiber-reinforced composite materials by either of two procedures. In Procedure A, laminates clamped between two pairs of loading rails are tested. When loaded in tension the rails introduce shear forces in the specimen. In Procedure B, laminates clamped on opposite edges with a tensile or compressive load applied to a third pair of rails in the center are tested.

    1.2 Application of this test method is limited to continuous-fiber or discontinuous-fiber-reinforced polymer matrix composites in the following material forms:

    1.2.1 Laminates composed only of unidirectional fibrous laminae, with the fiber direction oriented either parallel or perpendicular to the fixture rails.

    1.2.2 Laminates composed only of woven fabric filamentary laminae with the warp direction oriented either parallel or perpendicular to the fixture rails.

    1.2.3 Laminates of balanced and symmetric construction, with the 0 direction oriented either parallel or perpendicular to the fixture rails.

    1.2.4 Short-fiber-reinforced composites with a majority of the fibers being randomly distributed.

    Note 1

    Additional test methods for determining in-plane shear properties of polymer matrix composites may be found in Test Methods D 5379/D 5379M and D 5448/D 5448M, and Practice D 3518/D 3518M.

    This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.

    1.3 The values stated in either SI units or inch-pound units are to be regarded separately as standard. Within the text the inch-pounds units are shown in brackets. The values stated in each system are not exact equivalents; therefore, each system must be used independently of the other. Combining values from the two systems may result in nonconformance with the standard.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    D792 Test Methods for Density and Specific Gravity (Relative Density) of Plastics by Displacement

    D883 Terminology Relating to Plastics

    D2584 Test Method for Ignition Loss of Cured Reinforced Resins

    D2734 Test Methods for Void Content of Reinforced Plastics

    D3171 Test Methods for Constituent Content of Composite Materials

    D3518/D3518M Test Method for In-Plane Shear Response of Polymer Matrix Composite Materials by Tensile Test of a 45 Laminate

    D3878 Terminology for Composite Materials

    D5229/D5229M Test Method for Moisture Absorption Properties and Equilibrium Conditioning of Polymer Matrix Composite Materials

    D5379/D5379M Test Method for Shear Properties of Composite Materials by the V-Notched Beam Method

    D5448/D5448M Test Method for Inplane Shear Properties of Hoop Wound Polymer Matrix Composite Cylinders

    E4 Practices for Force Verification of Testing Machines

    E6 Terminology Relating to Methods of Mechanical Testing

    E111 Test Method for Youngs Modulus, Tangent Modulus, and Chord Modulus

    E122 Practice for Calculating Sample Size to Estimate, With Specified Precision, the Average for a Characteristic of a Lot or Process

    E177 Practice for Use of the Terms Precision and Bias in ASTM Test Methods

    E251 Test Methods for Performance Characteristics of Metallic Bonded Resistance Strain Gauges

    E456 Terminology Relating to Quality and Statistics

    E1237 Guide for Installing Bonded Resistance Strain Gages

    E1309 Guide for Identification of Fiber-Reinforced Polymer-Matrix Composite Materials in Databases

    E1434 Guide for Recording Mechanical Test Data of Fiber-Reinforced Composite Materials in Databases

    E1471 Guide for Identification of Fibers, Fillers, and Core Materials in Computerized Material Property Databases


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 83.140.20 (Laminated sheets)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    Referencing This Standard

    DOI: 10.1520/D4255_D4255M-01R07

    ASTM International is a member of CrossRef.

    Citation Format

    ASTM D4255 / D4255M-01(2007), Standard Test Method for In-Plane Shear Properties of Polymer Matrix Composite Materials by the Rail Shear Method, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2007, www.astm.org

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