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drewp29 (Mechanical)
17 Jun 09 18:47
My company is bidding a project in which the structural material is all metric. We are used to working in 'American' units (Imperial), and do not have a good source for metric materials, so I would like to be able to find the equivalent Imperial sizes needed.

The sizes are called out as thus (example): H400x400x13x21

This is a 'H'eavy beam according to the H designation correct? Is this the equivalent of a Wide Flange (W) beam in Imperial units? Also, obviously the first 400 is the height, the second 400 the width of the flange, but what do the 3rd and 4th numbers designate? One is most likely a weight/length value, but is the other the thickness of the web, or flange? Which is which, and in what units?

And finally, does anyone know where I can get a conversion chart so I don't have to do the metric-imperial conversion and then try to match the values to my Structural Handbook? Thanks in advance for any help.

Drew
prex (Structural)
18 Jun 09 2:49
That one is a JIS (Japanese) beam: 13 (mm) is web thickness, 21 flange thickness.
In the first site below, Under Beams -> Cross sections -> I beams -> Parallel you'll find JIS beams, as well as europeans (HE) and others.
However you won't find a reliable equivalence table anywhere: you'll need to decide yourself whether you want to compare on weight, main axis inertia, main axis modulus, secondary axis... etc.

prex
http://www.xcalcs.com : Online engineering calculations
http://www.megamag.it : Magnetic brakes and launchers for fun rides
http://www.levitans.com : Air bearing pads

hokie66 (Structural)
18 Jun 09 7:39
Shapes like the one you listed are not generally rolled steel sections like your wide flange beams, but rather are welded beams fabricated from plate with continuous welding.
drewp29 (Mechanical)
18 Jun 09 13:15
Ah, I see, that's why every time I searched for H-beams it came up with Japanese beams and manufacturers . . . it makes sense now.

So if these are not typically rolled steel sections, then I guess we could possibly fab them, but that's a lot of welding . . . I'll have to see what we can do on pricing the beams from different sources before going that route.

I can always do as you stated prex and compare mechanical properties to determine equivalency, but as we did not design the structures we do not have executive decision on the material props necessary for the calculated loading.

Thanks for the info - that helps a lot!

Drew

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