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There are numerous older wood-structured buildings in the United States which have great potential for reuse; however, their allowable load capacity is unknown or is not readily calculable due to the lack of grade marks on the wood members which would identify their strength properties.
This paper describes a method by which the allowable strength properties of in-place wood structural members can be determined. The method consists of a series of procedures which utilize current ASTM standards and specific inspection techniques to render the allowable strength properties of the wood members. With the allowable strength properties of the wood members determined, the load capacity of the total structure, of specific members, or of areas of the structure can be determined by the use of common engineering calculations.
allowable strength properties, allowable unit stress, clear wood strength, wood structural members, allowable load capacity, in-place structural members, strength ratios
Vice-president and Architect, Architectural Investigation and Documentation Services, Chicago, IL