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StructuralEng, Consultant
Category: Structural Engineering
Satisfied Customers: 7144
Experience:  Structural Engineer
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I want to build a steel beam and steel column platform

Customer Question

I want to build a steel beam and steel column platform for a deck/lightweight cabin in a very remote location. Using 12 foot beams to support a 12' x 36' deck area supported by 8' steel columns bolted to reinforced concrete pads sitting on solid ground. What is the minimum column size and beam size I should use? Assume worst case 25-30 people could stand on the deck at one time.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Structural Engineering
Expert:  StructuralEng replied 1 year ago.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
FYI I assume columns would be placed at 12 foot intervals.
Expert:  StructuralEng replied 1 year ago.

I can size the columns and beams for Gravity loading only. You will need to be sure there is adequate lateral resistance and the footings are adequately sized and that the connections are properly engineered and detailed. What spacing do you want for the beams?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I would want beams supported at 12 foot intervals (8 columns total for a 12 x 36 foot area). How much lateral resistance do I need (I am in earthquake country) and can sufficient lateral resistance be generated from the 8 vertical columns (8' maximum height) if they are bolted to adequate concrete footings?
Expert:  StructuralEng replied 1 year ago.

You will need to ensure the deck can span the 12' between the beams. Cantilevered columns are not a good lateral system in a seismic zone.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok what would be the minimum beam size and column size to support the gravity load?
Expert:  StructuralEng replied 1 year ago.

You can plan for W8x18 beams ASTM A992 Gr. 50 beams with 3" nominal poor columns. The connections will need to be detailed to brace both the beams and columns. This assumes a maximum deck dead load of 30 psf and live load of 40 psf.

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