Author Topic: Do PSL columns have a "narrow side"?  (Read 467 times)

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Offline SouthernTier

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Do PSL columns have a "narrow side"?
« on: April 17, 2018, 03:15:42 PM »

There was actually a link to technical bulletin T-C-SCLLCM that was not on the catalog cut, so my question was answered, sort of, I will leave the rest below just for posterity.

The link is:

It seems like they still punt to the engineered wood manufacturer, and Weyerhauser seems to just say no.  Nobody wants to take liability, I understand. 

So knowing it is really only worth the electrons they are written width, I'd still like to hear people's opinions on bolting the cap to the 5-1/4" side, if indeed that is the "narrow side"

Interestingly, that technical bulletin says no strength reduction for LSL columns.  Perhaps I should consider one of those rather than a PSL.


Looking to order the wood to start building up from the platform (yes, will get that build thread going when I find the time).

I plan to use a column in the middle of the cabin to hold up two ridge beams, since I will have a cathedral ceiling in the front half, and in the back, even though I have a loft floor, I have two dormers so not much of a floor joist tie-in happening.  I have support down to the foundation in the middle under this column.  Out-of-date but not too far off images of my plans are in the link in my sig.

I plan on using a nominal 6x8 column.  It has the bearing capacity, including after taking account the unsupported length (non-specific discussion here).

The ridge beams will be two ply, two 1.75" x 14".  I ran the calcs on that and hopefully the lumber yard agrees since I will want their stamp.  It is a ~14' span, with a 55 psf snow load.  One pair for the front, one pair for the back.

So I want to fasten a 3-1/2" wide beam to the top of a 6x8 nominal column.  Even though a Doug Fir column would work, I want to overbuild and use something like a PSL column, which is about 5-1/4" x 7".  I need to run it with the 7" dimension in line with the beam in order to provide a 3-1/2" bearing width.  So far so good.

I was planning on using a Simpson Column Cap to fasten.  The straps on these are under the beam, so I was looking at the CC48.  Would fit perfect. 

However, looking at PSL literature, for example it warns against putting bolts through the narrow face (p. 30 of that link).  I could understand this with an LVL or an LSL, but is it also the case with a PSL?  Hence the title of this post.

If this is an issue, what are my options?  Simpson also says in their table footnotes that the table assumes the bolts go into the wide edge.  But they also reference a technical bulletin T-C-SCLLCM about bolting into the narrow side, but Google can't seem to find that bulletin.  Any insight?

Would I run the risk of splitting the column with the bolts or would it just be a case of losing some uplift rating?

I was thinking the other option would be to get a CC66, but with the straps parallel to beam orientation.  But then I would have to add a 1" thick gusset to either side of the beam to build up from a 3-1/2" width to a 5-1/2" width.  But at least I'd be bolting into the wide side.

Thanks in advance.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2018, 04:05:01 PM by SouthernTier »


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