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Steel beam too short? Looking for advice

Discussion in 'Building' started by gastonadrian, 24 Oct 2018.

  1. gastonadrian

    gastonadrian

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    Hi,

    We are renovating the kitchen and decided to remove a structural wall to make some space for a new kitchen. We hired a construction company to do the work, but now that they have the steel beam ready to install we saw it and it looks too short for us.
    They built 2 columns to support the beam made of special bricks and cement.

    As you can see in the picture the beam will only touch the column in one side, while the other will be touched by the wood that surrounds it.
    Not knowing anything about construction it worries me, that the beam can break the wood and fall. I talked with them, and they say is ok, given that the wood will be touching for more than 10 cm the columns beam1.jpg beam2.jpg columns.jpg

    What do you think?
     
  2. noseall

    noseall

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    100mm bearings is standard.
     
  3. Alastairreid

    Alastairreid

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    the steel should bear onto padstones minimum 100mm.
     
  4. tony1851

    tony1851

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    Complete botch; ask the building inspector to have a look and give his opinion.
     
  5. noseall

    noseall

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    What, the actual beam has not got 100mm bearings each side? Eh, WTF!
     
  6. tony1851

    tony1851

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    I think the issue may be that they are depending on the timber inserts to support the beam onto the brick piers.
    It might or might not work, depending on the load the beam is carrying, and how the timber has actually been connected to the web.
    Clearly its a botch, but you have to admire the skill of the builders in trying to get round the mistake.
     
  7. noseall

    noseall

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    How can an SE factor in the shrinkage alone? Ridiculous bodge.
     
  8. bernardgreen

    bernardgreen

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    Get a steel of the correct length and send the undersized one back
     
  9. tony1851

    tony1851

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    Personally, I think it's imaginative, even though it's a botch, and we can't say definitively that it won't work - unless we knew the loads, strength of timber, and the bolts fixing the timber to the web.
    I agree 100% that it 'should' be done right first time and if I was the inspector I would not accept that unless the SE came up with some justifying figures.
    But sometimes, things not done by the book can actually work.
     
  10. tony1851

    tony1851

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    beam extension.PNG
    This is one i did recently for a builder who got the wrong length, but using 100x100 angle and 20mm friction-grip bolts instead of timber.
     
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  11. ^woody^

    ^woody^

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    Whether it works structurally is irrelevant. Its a stupid idea with longer-term implications for the occupier and a significant risk.

    Its very simple, the builders should work to the engineers design, not dream things up.
     
  12. tony1851

    tony1851

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    Speaking hypothetically, if it did work structurally, how can that be irrelevant? Also, what long-term implications/risk would it have for the occupier?
     
  13. ^woody^

    ^woody^

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    Fire, flood, mould, infestation, disproportional collapse, seasonal movement.
    It's Heath Robinson, why accept the risk?

    Next time you get a similar job, ask your SE to design the steel 200mm too short with no bearing and and some timber noggins for the ends. See what he says.
     
  14. tony1851

    tony1851

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    You forgot pestilence and famine.:)
     
  15. wessex101

    wessex101

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    Just playing devils advocate. In effect they have created a timber flitch beam so as Tony suggested depending on the load it might just work. But if it does it would be down to luck rather than judgement.

    Personally I would throw the useless tossers off the site.

    Looks like the Dutch have our cowboy builder problem as well. I wonder if the builder has spent too much time in the coffee shops?
     
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