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Pinning our hopes


Politically, the beam fiasco at Holyrood (NCE last week) could have long term ramifications for structural engineers. It will take some time to rebuild respect with our political masters. It is intensely embarrassing when you see beams (that are not designed to take tension) hanging from ceilings.

Differential settlement, thermal effects or variations in live load could easily induce tension for such a complicated structure. Would a pin acting in double shear been so aesthetically abhorrent? It should also be noted that the failure of some glue could have killed somebody.

In my opinion we should leave aside our pride and enhance each joint by drilling and pinning.

JM Wilson (M), @melvilledesign. uk

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