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What contractors need to know

about ACI 530/ASCE 5

The new code and they receive contract documents. must now be shown on the project
specification require The new Code requires that engi- drawings:
neers and architects show more in-
inspection of masonry formation on project drawings. • The specified compressive
work and more detail on The Specifications contain a num- strength of masonry, f’m’ at a
project drawings ber of quality control and quality stated age or stage of construc-
assurance requirements that were tion for which the masonry ele-
previously included in codes and ment is designed
By Mario J. Catani hence not always included in pro-
ject specifications. Three new items • Provision for dimensional

Table 1 Compressive Strength of Clay Masonry

Net area compressive strength
of units, psi Net area compressive
strength of masonry
Type M or S mortar Type N mortar psi
he masonry industry has a

T new building code and for

the first time a standard con-
struction specification. Late
in 1988, both the American Con-
crete Institute (ACI) and the
10,400 13 000 3000
American Society of Civil Engi-
neers (ASCE} adopted two new 12,400 — 3500
standards for the design and con- 14,400 — 4000
struction of masonry: ACI Source: ACI 530.1/ASCE 6, Table
530/ASCE 5 Building Code Re-
quirements for Masonry Struc-
tures (the Code) and ACI Table 1 Compressive Strength of Clay Masonry
530.1/ASCE 6 Specifications for Net area compressive strength
of units, psi Net area compressive
Masonry Structures (the Specifica- strength of masonry
tions) (Ref. 1). In 1989, the South- Type M or S mortar Type N mortar psi*
ern Building Code Congress (SBC- 1250 1300 1000
CI) and the Building Officials and
1900 2100 1500
Code Administrators (BOCA)
adopted these standards in their 2800 0305O 2000
model building codes. When these 3750 4050 2000
model building code requirements 4800 5250 3000
are adopted by state or local gov- * For units of less than 4-inch height, 85% of the values listed.
ernment agencies they will be-
come law. For the first time the Source: ACI 530.1/ASCE 6, Table
masonry industry will have a
specification that is standardized A contractor must show that his masonry work meets the compressive strength
specified by the designer. He can do this by using the unit strength method: Based
and required by law. on the mortar type and the net area compressive strength of the units, the
With the passage of these two compressive strength of the masonry is determined using Tables 1 or 2. If each
standards, contractors will begin wythe meets the specified strength, then the whole wall meets the specified
to see some changes in the way
changes resulting from elastic de- Using Table 1, you can see that pared with the specified compres-
formation creep, shrinkage, tem- the compressive strength of ma- sive strength of masonry, f’m, for
perature, and moisture sonry in the brick wythe is 2000 each wythe. When prism tests are
psi. This exceeds the specified val- required, one test should be con-
• The specified size, grade, type, ue of 1500 psi, so the brick wythe is ducted before construction and
and location of reinforcement, in compliance. Using Table 2, you one test for each 5,000 square feet
anchors, and ties can see that the compressive of wall surface. Even on a project
strength of masonry in the block where the unit strength method is
Specified masonry strength specified for most of a building,
wythe is equal to 1500 psi. This
Just as in concrete work where equals the specified value of 1500 the prism test method can be
the specified concrete strength (f’c) psi, so the block wythe is in com- specified for specific parts of the
must be shown on the drawings, pliance too. Since each wythe is in building.
in masonry work the specified ma- compliance, the whole wall is in
sonry strength (f’m) must now be compliance. No further proof is Movement joints
shown on the drawings. Contrac- needed, as long as the contractor In its deliberations, the commit-
tors must show that their masonry doesn’t change material suppliers. tee that developed the new Code
work for the job complies with this To use the unit strength method, found that in many cases masonry
specified compressive strength. units must conform to certain distress was caused by improper
Such proof may be required both ASTM standards: Bed joints can- details for accommodating dimen-
before and during construction. not exceed 5⁄8 inch in thickness, and sional changes, especially those
A contractor can show compli- grout, if used, must conform to the caused by temperature, drying
ance in two ways: the unit strength requirements of ASTM C 476 (Ref. shrinkage, moisture expansion,
method or the prism test method. 2). Most masonry wall construc- and creep. Traditionally, the detail-
Unit strength method. In most tion meets these requirements. ing and layout of movement joints
cases, the unit strength method is Thus architects will probably spec- (expansion joints or control join. )
easier and more cost-effective. ify the unit strength method most was voluntary and often not clear-
With this method, all the contrac- often. In fact, unless the specifier ly handled by project documents,
tor has to do is certify that the mor- indicates otherwise, the unit making contractors responsible for
tar conforms to the type mortar strength method is required in the their design and location. The new
specified and submit certification, standard by default. Code makes it clear that the loca-
test data, or other proof showing Prism test method. Where tion and design of movement
the net area compressive strength the specifier explicitly requires joints is the designer’s responsibili-
of the masonry units for the pro- that the prism test method be ty. If joints are not shown and de-
ject. With this information, the used, prisms should be tested in tailed, contractors should point
compressive strength of the ma- accordance with ASTM E 447 this out to designers and have
sonry can be determined using Ta- Method B modified (Ref. 3). The them do the layout.
bles 1 or 2 shown here. modifications described in Section
As an example, assume that include constructing: Anchors and ties
Type N mortar and a masonry The Code also requires design-
compressive strength (f’m) of 1500 • Stack bond prisms with a full ers to lay out and design anchors
psi at 28 days are specified for a mortar bed regardless of and ties. Section 4.3 states, “Type,
brick and block composite wall. whether or not the units are hol- size, and location of connectors
Assume also that the contractor low and whether or not face shall be shown or indicated on the
can submit test data from the brick shell bedding is used on the Project Drawings.”
and block producer to show that project This doesn’t mean that the de-
the net area compressive strength signer can simply list a number of
of the brick is 8000 psi and the • Prisms with h/t ratios within
manufacturers in the project speci-
strength of the block is 2150 psi. specified limits
fications. By indicating specific ties
According to the Specifications, • Prisms with at least one bed joint and anchors on the drawings, the
“the compressive strength of ma- designer assumes responsibility
sonry in each wythe of masonry The average compressive for the connectors. After indicating
and grouted collar joint shall equal strength of three prisms, corrected connectors on the drawings, he or
or exceed the applicable f’m.“ for the actual h/t ratio, is com- she should list approved manufac-
Table 3 Inspection Requirements in ACI 530.1/ASCE 6
(e) Ties shall have at least two 3⁄6-
Section Paragraph Description inch-diameter pintle legs.”
1 - General Requirements 1.5 Quality assurance For nonadjustable ties, the Code
1 - General Requirements 1.6 0 Cornpressive requires one #9-gauge tie for each
strength 22⁄3 square feet of wall or one 3⁄16-
determination inch-diameter tie for each 41⁄2
2 - Masonry 2.1.2 Subrnittals square feet. When ties with drips
2 - Masonry 2.1.3 Quality assurance are used, the tie spacing must be
2 - Masonry 2.3.1 Inspection & test- halved or evidence must be pro-
ing vided to show that the drip ties
3 - Reinforcement/Accessories 3.1.2 Submittals are as strong as ties without drips.
Z ties can be used only with solid
3 - Reinforcement/Accessories 3.3.1 Inspection
masonry units. Rectangular ties
4 - Grout 4.1.2 Submittals can be used with any units, hol-
4 - Grout 4.1.3 Quality assurance low or solid. Ties should be
4 - Grout 4.3.1 Inspection spaced no more than 36 inches
Source: ACI 530.1/ASCE 6 horizontally and no more than 24
inches vertically.
The new Code and Specifications assume that all masonry work will be inspected.
The level of inspection is up to the designer, but contractors must be sure they know
precisely what level of inspection is required. Corrosion protection
Depending on the environmen-
Table 4 Who Pays for Inspection tal exposure, the Specifications re-
Test or Inspections Paid by Contractor Paid by Owner quire two levels of galvanizing for
To document submittals X metal joint reinforcement, ties, and
anchors. In noncorrosive environ-
To certify product X
compliance ments, these metal embedments
must have a Class 1 coating (0.40
To establish mix design X
To get changes accepted X ounce of zinc per square foot), in
accordance with ASTM A 641 (Ref.
To appeal rejections X
4). In exterior walls and other cor-
To inspect foundations for X
rosive environments, they must
tolerance compliance
have a hotdipped coating (1.50
To inspect work in X
ounces of zinc per square foot) af-
progress for acceptability
ter fabrication, in accordance with
Source: ACI 530.1/ASCE 6, Section 1.5.
ASTM A 153 (Ref. 5). There are
The contractor and owners share the cost of inspection other requirements for metals
completely embedded in mortar or
grout but the times when the ap-
plicable conditions occur are rare.
turers in the specifications. As with “(a) One tie shall be provided for
joints, if ties and anchors aren’t de- each 1.77 square feet of wall Inspection required
tailed on the drawings, contractors area. The new Code and Specifica-
should notify the designer and re- tions assume that all work will be
(b) Horizontal and vertical spacing
quest specific information. Con- inspected whether the building is
shall not exceed 16 inches.
tractors should no longer accept designed empirically in accor-
responsibility for determining con- (c) Adjustable ties shall not be used dance with Chapter 9 or analytical-
nector design and location. when the misalignment of bed ly in accordance with Chapters 5,
This Code is the first masonry joints from one wythe to the 6, and 7. The inspection require-
code to recognize adjustable wall other exceeds 1l⁄4 inches. ments are covered in the sections
ties. Prescriptive requirements for (d)Maximum clearance between of the Specifications listed here in
adjustable ties are given in detail: connecting parts of a tie shall be Table 3. The level of inspection is
⁄16 inch. up to the designer.
Contractors must be careful to dards, the time required to esti- 426 South Westgate, Addison, IL
review project specifications to mate work should be reduced.
learn precisely what level of in- All in all, the development and 2. Specification for Grout for Rein-
spection is required. In general, if use of the new standards should forced and Nonreinforced Masonry,
no mention of inspection is made improve masonry construction. As ASTM C 476, ASTM, 1916 Race St.,
Philadelphia, PA 19103.
in the project specifications, a mini- with all standards, the new Na-
mal amount of testing, submittal, tional Masonry Standards Joint 3. Test Methods for Compressive
and inspection is required. Testing Committee (NMSJC) is still at Strength of Masonry Prisms, ASTM E
and inspection are paid for by the work refining and improving the 447, ASTM.
contractor or the owner, as out- documents. Any contractor or de- 4. Specification for Zinc-Coated (Gal-
lined here in Table 4. signer interested in participating in vanized) Carbon Steel Wire, ASTM A
this activity should contact Gregg 641, ASTM .
A major change Borchelt, Secretary, NMSJC, %
5. Specification for Zinc Coating (Hot-
The new Code and Specifica- Brick Institute of America, 11490 Dip) on Iron and Steel Hardware,
tions represent a major change in Commerce Park Drive, Reston, ASTM A 153, ASTM .
the way many masonry buildings Virginia 22091 (703-6200010).
will be designed and built. For ma-
sonry contractors, a state-ofthe-art
standard specification mandated References
by law should make the quality of 1. ACI 530/ASCE 5, Building Code
Requirements for Masonry Structures,
masonry work more consistent and ACI 530.1/ASCE 6, Specifications
and thus reduce the risk involved for Masonry Structures, published by
American Concrete Institute and PUBLICATION#M900388
when bidding work. Once estima- Copyright © 1990, The Aberdeen Group
American Society of Civil Engineers,
tors become familiar with the stan- available from The Aberdeen Group, All rights reserved