Virginia Tech - Invent the Future Woodworks
Advanced Design Topics in Wood Construction Engineering - March 12-13,  2013 -  The Westin O'Hare -  Chicago, IL
modern wooden atrium

Who Should Attend

The primary audiences for this course are registered design professionals, commercial designers, wood truss and framing designers, post-frame building designers, building code professionals, and general contractors that want to expand their general knowledge of wood as a building material and their knowledge of building design beyond the introductory level. Manufacturers and suppliers of building products used in the construction of wood-frame buildings may also benefit by the in-depth discussion of wood material properties and wood building design issues that impact the performance of wood buildings in-service.

Overview of Course Content

This course offers a buffet of topics often faced by wood design professionals, yet background data and references on the topics are not readily accessible. The first unit on Design for Timber Durability and Fastener and Connector Protection will include a presentation of industry design recommendations for protection against the decay of wood products and corrosion of fasteners and connectors based on various applications. The role of professional judgment in the material selection and specification process as well as interpretation of industry terminology as it applies to an application will be emphasized.

In Wood Shrinkage Issues in Construction, we will review published data on the relationship between shrinkage and moisture content (MC), how environmental humidity and temperature dictates the equilibrium moisture content of lumber, and demonstrate through examples how changes in MC can impact dimensional stability in wood framing and connections.

The session on Wind and Seismic Design Load Calculations for Exterior Decks will illustrate how to apply the provisions of the ASCE 7 load standard to calculate wind and seismic loads on decks. ASCE 7 calculation procedures can be complicated and difficult to interpret. We will explain the methodology and provide example calculations.

The ASCE 7 load standard does not give any guidance on how to determine lateral loads on decks caused by occupants. In Experimental Investigation of Lateral Deck Loads Caused by Occupants and Load Path, we will present results of laboratory tests at Washington State University in which full sized decks were loaded with people under a variety of dynamic loading cases. Testing also will be presented that shows the ultimate capacity of decks and load paths into the main structure.

The unit on Creep of Solid-Sawn Joists, I-Joists, and MPC Floor Trusses will address the literature and recognized standards on methods to evaluate long term deflection of the three member types caused by long-term loads.

In Design Considerations for Preventing Flat Roof Failures from Creep Induced Ponding Loads and Rain Load Events, we will discuss the well-known problem area of the collapse of "flat-roofs" due to ponding and snow/ice accumulation. A rational design method for accounting for long-term deflection of MPC parallel-chord roof trusses will be demonstrated.

In Multiple-Bolt Wood Connection Design Topics, participants will review a model code requirement through the NDS to check "local stresses" in multiple-bolt connections. Design methods offered in the NDS for calculating the additional failure modes for multiple-bolt connections due to "local stresses" will be demonstrated by calculations.

In Design of Floor Joists and Girders to Mitigate Floor Vibration Problems, theory, experimental results, and rules-of-thumb for preventing annoying floor vibrations will be presented.

In Shear Wall and Diaphragm Design - Load Path and Design using Provisions of the SDPWS and IBC, we will reveal sources of design values for diaphragms/shearwalls, and illustrate how to apply appropriate adjustment factors for Allowable Stress Design (ASD) and Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD). Examples will be included to illustrate diaphragm, shear wall and hold down connection design.

Post-frame buildings differ somewhat from typical light-frame wood construction with respect to framing member size and spacing, and often corrugated steel panels are used to sheath the buildings.

In Wood-Frame Metal-Clad Diaphragm and Shear Wall Tests; and Lateral Design of Post-Frame Buildings, we present shear wall test results for typical constructions and a streamlined design method that follows the procedures used in light-frame wood diaphragms and shear walls. An example problem will be presented showing how to design the diaphragm, shear wall, sidewall posts and post embedment depth.

In Evaluating Structural Capacity of Fire-Exposed Timber Beams and Columns, a general procedure and rational calculation methodology for determining the residual structural capacity of fire-exposed timber beams and columns will be presented.

In Truss Responsibilities when Registered Design Professional Mandated per ANSI/ TPI 1-2007 and the 2009 IBC, we will discuss the responsibilities of the Owner, Registered Design Professional or Building Designer, Contractor, Truss Design Engineer or Truss Designer, and Truss Manufacturer when metal-plate-connected wood trusses are utilized in a project. ANSI/TPI 1-2007 defines the various responsibilities for the parties involved in the use of MPC wood trusses. ANSI/TPI 1-2007 is referenced for MPC wood trusses in the 2009 IBC.

In Permanent Truss Bracing Design Basics, procedures for calculating required lateral bracing forces in webs and chords without sheathing (as for piggyback trusses and valley sets) will be presented.

In Rational Design Method for Increased Buckling Capacity of Built-Up Beams and Columns, we will present a design methodology to account for the reduction in variability of E when multiple plies of dimension lumber are constrained to deflect equally by proper design, detail, and installation. Example problems will demonstrate design efficiencies that can be gained.

Structural glued laminated timber (glulam) is a versatile product that can be used to create some stunning designs. In Glulam Beam Design Basics and Examples, you will learn how to size and specify glulam beams. Design examples for laterally supported and unsupported glulam beams are included with checks for bending, shear and deflection (short- and long-term).

Structural lumber used in North America can be visually stress rated (VSR) or by machine (MEL or MSR). In Understanding VSR, MEL, and MSR Lumber Design Values, we will review the philosophy and methods used in establishing and maintaining published design values as well as the safety factors included in the set of design values for a specific grade and species group.

Course Materials and CEU Credit

A notebook containing course materials, lunch on both days and continuous refreshment service are included in the registration fee.

Attendees will also receive 15 AIA/CES CEHs and 1.5 CEUs (15 contact hours).

Sponsored by

Woodworks and Virginia Tech Continuing and Professional Education

For More Information

For more specific information on course content, please contact Dr. Frank Woeste at 540-951-0469, or e-mail:

Continuing & Professional Education @ Virginia Tech