Anda di halaman 1dari 5

A Beginner's Guide to the Steel Construction Manual, 13th ed.


Chapter 5 - Welded Connections

2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 T. Bartlett Quimby

Introduction to

Section 5.1

Finding Forces
in Welded

Introduction to Welding

Effective Areas
and Size
Limitations of

In the modern world of structural steel, welding is the process of joining two steel pieces (the base metal) together
by heating them to the point that molten filler material mixes with the base metal to form one continuous piece.
Webster's defines welding as "to unite (metallic parts) by heating and allowing the metals to flow together...". The
process of welding is quite complex and the strength of welds is highly dependent on metallurgy, welding
procedure, and the skill of the welder.

Effective Areas
of Base Metal

The welding process has been around for thousands of years.

Strength Limit
Designing Welds
Report Errors or
Purchase Hard
Make Donation

Last Revised: 11/04/2014

There are multiple processes and methods for accomplishing this complex task. There are a couple of points to
Welding Processes
There are many welding processes, however we will focus on the two most common processes used in structural
steel fabrication:
Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW). A manual process that is typically used when welding in the field.
It is also used frequently when welding in a fabrication shop.
Submerged Arc Welding (SAW). An automated welding process that frequently used when welding in a
fabrication shop.
The SMAW process is highly dependent on the skill of the welder while the SAW process is not. The SAW process
results in more consistent weld an a strength bonus is given to some welds created with the SAW process.
The materials and the processes used in structural welding are governed by the American Welding Society (AWS)
Specification D1.1. This specification is particularly important to welders for determining how to accomplish welds
designed by engineers. Engineers need to have some familiarity with the material requirements of the AWS D1.1.
The SCM specification is strongly linked to AWS D1.1 and has most of the information that you need to design
Weldability of Metals
Metallurgy has a strong influence on the ability to weld different types of steel. It is important to match weld
materials to the base metals that are being connected. The primary reference for matching filler materials to base
metals is AWS D1.1 Table 4.4.1. This table gives matching electrode materials for different base metals and the
various welding processes. The table is important for engineers when they specify the weld electrodes to be used
for the connections that they design. In this basic text, we will use the following electrodes indicated in Table
5.1.1. While this table is basically adequate for most typical projects, for real projects, you should match the
requirements of the AWS.
Table 5.1.1
Matching Filler Material for BGSCM Problems
Base Metal
Fy < 50 ksi

E60XX or E70XX F6XX or F7XX

50 ksi < Fy < 60 ksi



60 ksi < Fy < 70 ksi



Types of Joints
There are five basic types of welded joints.
The joints are depicted in Figure 5.1.1.
They are:

Figure 5.1.1
Welded Joint Types

Butt Joints
Lap Joints
Tee Joints
Corner Joints
Edge joints
converted by W

Butt Joints: Butt joints are formed when

two plates are butted together. The
connection is normally made with a full or
partial penetration weld. The edges of the
plate are often prepared so that the weld
can penetrate deeper into the butt joint.
Some times the plates are held apart
slightly for the same reason.
Lap Joints: These common joints are
made when two members with flat surfaces
over lap each other. The connection is
normally made with fillet welds along the
edges of the connected parts.
Tee Joints: In this type of connection
one plate element "T"'s into another. The
joint can be made with fillet, partial
penetration, or full penetration welds.
Corner Joints: Corner joints are a special
type of Tee joint. this connection occurs at
the edges of two plates.
Edge joints: This type of connection
joins the edges of two plate elements laid
together has show in Figure 5.1.1. The
connection is made with partial penetration
welds. The edges are often times prepared
with grooves so that the weld can penetrate deeper.
Types of Welds
The basic weld types are groove welds, fillet welds, and slot & plug welds.

Groove Welds
Groove welds are generally used to fill the gap between the two pieces being connected. They are called groove
welds because the edges of the materials being joined are prepared so that there is a groove of some shape formed
when the pieces are first laid together. The weld metal fills the groove.
Groove welds are considered to be either "complete joint penetration" (CJP) or "partial joint penetration"
A CJP weld completely fills the gap between the two pieces. Parts A, B, and C of Figure 5.1.2 illustrate CJP welds.
CJP welds made with appropriate filler material are stronger than the base metals that they connect, so strength
calculations are not necessary.
A PJP weld only fills a portion of the gap as seen in Figure 5.1.2 parts D, E, F, and G. PJP welds are used when it
is not required to develop the full strength of the connected parts to transfer the load.
Figure 5.1.2
Groove Weld Examples
Click on image for larger view

Fillet Welds
Fillet welds do not penetrate the gap between the parts being connected. A fillet weld generally has a triangular
cross section with one leg of the triangle being attached to each piece being connected.

converted by W

Fillet welds are very common and are used for a variety of connections. A typical fillet weld is shown in Figure
Figure 5.1.3
Typical Fillet Welded T Joint
Click on image for larger view

Slot & Plug Welds

Slot & Plug welds are similar to fillet welds in that they do not penetrate the gap between the parts being
connected. These welds fill a slot or hole in one of the pieces being connected with the connection being between
the edge of the slot or hole on the one piece and the surface of the other piece. The welds can be made in
conjunction with fillet welds to shorten the lap of two pieces where space is limited.
Prequalified Welded Joints
The AWS specification defines a number of "prequalified" joints that can be made. Before a welded joint can be
made on a project, it must be proven that the weld can be made using the desired materials and attain the required
strength and ductility. Once the joint has been proven, a welding procedure that details how the weld is to be
made is published and the procedure is considered to be prequalified. If the engineer specifies a joint or weld that
has not been prequalified it is necessary for the welders to go through the qualification process to develop a new
qualified welding procedure.
Before a welder is allowed to make a particular joint he/she must be CERTIFIED to make that weld. The
certification process requires the welder to create the weld on a sample using the materials, procedure, and
position that will be used for making the final connection. The sample is tested to insure that it meets
specifications. Once a welder demonstrates that they can consistently create a weld that meets performance
specifications then they are certified to make that particular weld.
The SCM Table 8-2 (SCM pages 8-34 through 8-64) presents that design parameters for the most common
prequalified welds used for structural building connections.
Weld Symbols
A means for communicating the intent of the designer to the welder through standard weld symbols has been
developed by the AWS. A table defining the weld symbols for prequalified welded joints is included in the SCM on
page 8-35. You should take some time to examine this table. Pay particular notice to the notes at the bottom of
the table. As an engineer you need to understand the language of the symbols or you may not get the weld that
you are expecting.
Some things to notice:
1. The basic weld symbol consists of an arrow that points to the faying surface (i.e. the surface of contact
between the pieces being connected) of the weld and a horizontal line where symbols are placed to describe
the type of weld to be made.
Figure 5.1.4 shows an example a common mistake. The left example is from a drawing where the
designer desired four welds on the outer side of the HSS section, but actually specified the welds as
shown. The appropriate symbol is shown on the right side of the figure.
2. The arrow may be placed at either end of the horizontal line and may have one or two corners in the leader.
The line segments are always straight lines.
3. The "field weld" flag and "weld all around" symbols always appear at the intersection of the horizontal line
and the arrow leader.
The flag of the "field weld" always point towards the tail end of the horizontal line as shown in Figure
4. The basic symbols are graphically similar to the type of weld or edge preparation that needs to be made.
Figure 5.1.5 illustrates this concept. Notice that the fillet weld symbol has it's "back" (i.e. the vertical
line) on the left side of the triangle regardless of which side the arrow is on. The weld information is
converted by W

the same on both weld symbols.

5. The arrangement of the symbols and notes on the horizontal line are exactly as shown regardless of which
end of the horizontal line the indicating arrow is located.
Figure 5.1.4
Arrow Side / Other Side Example
Click on image for larger view

Figure 5.1.5
Weld Information Location
Click on image for larger view

Prequalified Welded Joint Tables

Each AWS standard prequalified joint has a table associated with it. A set of these tables is found in SCM Table 8-2
(SCM pages 8-34 through 8-64). The table gives the geometrical and material parameters associated with the
joint. Typically a figure is given to define the different dimensional quantities. The associated table gives the
acceptable parameters associated with each dimensional quantity. The table also assigns a joint designation to
each weld for each process. This designation directs the welder to the AWS welding procedure associated with the
Weld Quality
As a design engineer you should be aware of the factors affecting weld quality, however it is not the responsibility
of the designer to check the quality of the welds.
There are quite a number of factors affecting the quality of a weld. A good quality control program will have
procedures in place to ensure that welds are of appropriate quality. The elements of that program will include the
use of prequalified welding procedures, performed by welders that have been certified to perform the designated
weld, qualified welding inspectors present on the job, and the specification of specialized weld inspection
techniques as required.
Some of the factors affecting weld quality are:
Proper Electrodes, Welding Apparatus, and Procedures
Proper Edge Preparation
Control of Distortion
Inspection of welds must be done by qualified individuals. Most engineers are not qualified to determine the
quality of weld. Visual inspection is the least expensive method but cannot detect many weld defects. Visual
inspection can be used to ensure proper weld size has been obtained. Ultrasonic or X-ray techniques can detect
hidden defects of welds but are very expensive. Many projects will specify that these techniques be used to spot
check the welding on a certain percentage of the welds and on all welds that are deemed to be particularly critical.
converted by W

There is a good discussion of inspection techniques starting on SCM pg 8-4.

Possible defects in welds include:
Incomplete Fusion
Inadequate Joint Penetration
Slag Inclusion
Limit States
The primary objective of checking all strength based limit states to ensure that the strength of the structural
element is strong enough to handle anticipated forces exerted on them. In the case of welds, this can be expressed
The FORCE on the weld < min[STRENGTH of the weld, STRENGTH of adjacent base metal]
For welds, the forces can be resolved into to tension and shear components. In the special case of fillet welds, all
stresses are assumed to be shear.
Figure 5.1.6 summarizes the following discussion about determining the forces on welds and the strength of welds.

Force on the Weld

The force on any given weld is the result of the forces
being applied to the connection and the geometry of the
connection. Principles of Mechanics and Structural
Analysis are used to determine the force at any particular
point in a weld in a connection. The next section
discusses several commonly used methods for computing
the forces in welds.

Figure 5.1.6
Force < Strength
Click on image for larger view

Strength of a Weld
Welds have one tensile limit state and one shear limit
state. Typically the SCM denotes the nominal capacities
of each as Rn.

Tensile Limit State: Tensile Rupture

For the case of tension, the limit state is:
The TENSILE FORCE on the weld < The TENSILE

Shear Limit States: Shear Rupture

For the case of shear the limit states can be stated as:
The SHEAR FORCE on the weld < The SHEAR RUPTURE STRENGTH of the weld

Strength of Base Metal

The connected parts are referred to as the "base metal". There are two base metal components associated with
each weld. The strength of both base metals in the vicinity of the weld needs to be considered. The base metal
with the least strength controls the base metal capacity. Typically the SCM denotes the nominal capacities of each
as Rn.

Tensile Limit State: Tensile Rupture

For the case of tension, the limit state is:
The TENSILE FORCE on the base metal < The TENSILE RUPTURE STRENGTH of the base metal

Shear Limit States: Shear Rupture

For the case of shear the limit states can be stated as:
The SHEAR FORCE on the base metal < The SHEAR RUPTURE STRENGTH of the base metal
<<< BGSCM Table of Contents <<<

>>> Next Section >>>

converted by W