February 9, 2023


ASDIP STEEL is a structural engineering software for design of steel members and connections. It includes the design of beam to column web shear connections based on the AISC provisions.

The design of shear connections may become time-consuming, since it involves the checking of multiple limit states, design provisions, and geometric constraints. This document is a step-by-step design example of a beam to column web connection, using ASDIP STEEL.

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Beam to Column Web Connection Example

As an example, consider the beam to column web shear connection shown below, which is part of a multistory building. Design the shear connection for the loads and sizes shown below, assuming that continuity plates will be required due to moment connections at the column flanges.


Specify the Geometry

In the Geometry tab select the Connection Type as Double Angle. Enter the member sizes and geometric information of the connection. In this case, the beam is W12x30 and the column is W12x50. As the Support Type select Column web. Per the given information, a similar connection occurs at the other side of the column web. In addition, continuity plates to reinforce the column web should be considered. This means that the beam flanges will be coped at top and bottom, 4" long x 1-1/2" high.

In the Geometry > Angle tab specify the clip angle size. Typical size is L4"x3-1/2" to provide clearance for bolts at both legs, and bolt spacing 3". Edge distance 1-1/4". This geometry is adequate for 3/4" diameter bolts. In this case the beam eccentricity is zero, since the beam will be coped at both flanges.

The At-a-Glance tab shows a summary of the results organized by topic for a quick overview of your work as you go. The limit states are listed for the shear connection, where you can see what limit state passes or fails to resist the applied loads, and what load combination controls. In this example all the limit states pass for all load combinations. The Design Check section shows the ratios of the applicable code design provisions, as shown below. In this case no design checks are applicable.


Specify the Material Properties

In the Materials tab enter the material properties for the components of the shear connection, such as beam, column, angles, bolts, and welds. Per the statement of the example, Fy is 50 ksi for all steel, and bolts are 3/4" A325.

The Condensed tab shows the calculation results in more detail, grouped by topic and per load combination. It shows the controlling load combinations, and the controlling limit states for a quick granular check. In this example the shear design strength is 50.8 kip and the maximum factored shear is 50.0 kip, therefore the connection capacity is adequate. The controlling limit state is Beam Bearing Bolt Holes.


Enter the Loads

Go to the Loads tab and enter the vertical reaction P at the connection per load case. The loads are given in the statement of the example. ASDIP STEEL will combine the specified loads per the ASCE 7-16 load combinations. Alternatively, user-defined load combinations can be used.

The Detailed tab shows a complete set of step-by-step calculations with exposed formulas and with references to the design code, for a deep granular checking of the results, as shown below. Note the calculation of all the applicable limit states and the design checks.

Being a beam to column web connection with a similar connection at the other side of the web, the loads on the support bolts and holes will be doubled. It should be noted that the design ratio is 0.98. In order to reduce the design ratio, it would be necessary to specify a beam size with a thicker web.


ASDIP STEEL generates images of the designed connection in plan, section, and elevation views with useful information to generate the construction drawings. In addition, it shows a summary of the results for a quick check, as shown above. Note that the design can be optimized easily since any change in the input will be reflected immediately in the results.


ASDIP STEEL includes the design of beam to column web connections, with multiple options to optimize the design in less time. The software checks the applicable limit states in shear and bending, as well as the code design provisions and geometric constraints.

Detailed information is available about this structural engineering software by visiting ASDIP STEEL. For engineering background, see the post Shear Connection: Overview of the Design Process. For our collection of blog posts about steel design please visit Structural Steel Design.

You are invited to download the Free 15-day Software Trial, or go ahead and Place your Order.

Best regards,

Javier Encinas, PE

ASDIP Structural Software

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