Block shear strength of coped beams with single-sided bolted connection

Cheng Fang, Angus C.C. Lam, Chi Ho Michael Yam, K. S. Seak

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Block shear is one of the major failure modes for coped steel I-beams. While focus of previous studies on the block shear capacity of coped steel I-beam was mainly given to the connections with double clip angles, single-sided connections, which induce out-of-plane loading eccentricity, have not been adequately considered. Ten full-scale coped steel I-beam tests were conducted to examine the effects of two main test parameters, namely, out-of-plane loading eccentricity and web block aspect ratio (ratio of shear area to tension area). It was found that nine test specimens failed with tension fracture along the bottom bolt row of the web, and the remaining one failed in a whole block tear-out manner. Twisting of the web near the cope was observed for specimens with single-sided connection. More importantly, the test results showed that the out-of-plane loading eccentricity due to the single-sided connection did not have a detrimental effect on the block shear capacity of the specimens. Moreover, increasing the connection rotational stiffness could increase the block shear capacity. These effects are further discussed via a finite element analysis and a preliminary parametric study. Finally, the test results are compared with four major design standards. It is found that the Canadian Standards CAN/CSA-S16-09, which gives a test-to-predicted ratio ranged from 0.93 to 1.17, provided relatively good predictions for the specimens with single bolt line layout, while the predictions by other codes are too conservative. For those specimens with double bolt line layout, the capacities are underestimated by all the considered standards.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-166
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Constructional Steel Research
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2013


  • Beam connection
  • Block shear
  • Bolted connection
  • Coped beam
  • Eccentricity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Metals and Alloys


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