Title:
Seismic support and reinforcement systems
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
The present invention includes a set of reinforcement and support devices for existing or new roof, ceiling and/or floor systems together with numerous variations that may be installed into existing buildings or new buildings to help prevent separation of wood or metal roof, ceiling and/or floor systems from the concrete, masonry or other types of walls supporting these systems in commercial, industrial and/or residential buildings. One embodiment includes a set of three brackets that are installed in a triangularly shaped arrangement along a side of a primary support beam and to the wall underneath a ledger, thus anchoring the support beam to the wall of the structure and stabilizing the roof, ceiling or floor it supports. Another embodiment includes a single integrated unit that attaches to the wall underneath the ledger and to an adjacent support board, thus anchoring the support board (and the system it supports) to the wall of the structure. Another embodiment includes an angle iron with predrilled holes that attaches through the ledger directly to the wall to reinforce the ledger and extend the area of horizontal support provided by the ledger. Other embodiments provide support structures that may be attached and arranged to provide specific structural support at designated locations, and/or to provide wall-to-wall structural support across the span of a roof, ceiling or floor. All embodiments may be adapted for use with ceilings, roofs or floors.



Inventors:
Deans, Brian W. (Point Richmond, CA, US)
Deans, Dustin W. (Las Vegas, NV, US)
Application Number:
11/982115
Publication Date:
01/29/2009
Filing Date:
10/31/2007
Primary Class:
Other Classes:
52/745.21, 248/300
International Classes:
E04B1/98; E04C3/11; E04C5/01
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20080060313Split-Face Block MoldMarch, 2008Edwards
20080034700Break-away multi-purpose flooring transitionFebruary, 2008Stanchfield et al.
20090308004STAIR STRINGER ASSEMBLY BENCHDecember, 2009Mannon
20050102935Floor tile system with electrical activation at randomly placed locationsMay, 2005Picard
20050198802Lattice and method and apparatus for producing latticeSeptember, 2005Mcpherson
20060283140Wooden decksDecember, 2006Kennedy
20050120645Green roof planterJune, 2005Luckett
20100012426Sloped Roof Safety SystemJanuary, 2010Golden et al.
20080034672Under-plank for watertight balcony sub-floor systemFebruary, 2008Gobeil
20030213198Form systemNovember, 2003Bentley
20090145076CONNECTION DEVICE AND METHOD OF MANUFACTURING A CONNECTION DEVICEJune, 2009Bathon



Primary Examiner:
HOLLOWAY, JASON R
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Brian W. Deans (Point Richmond, CA, US)
Claims:
1. 1-8. (canceled)

9. A reinforcing structure for a system spanning between walls of a building comprising an integrated unit having a first elongated rigid member for attachment underneath a first support board, a second elongated rigid member one end of which is attached to one end of said first member, a third elongated rigid member one end of which is attached to an opposite end of said first member wherein opposite ends of said second and third members are attached to each other at a junction, and wherein a saddle is provided at said junction for engagement with a second support board.

10. The reinforcing structure of claim 9 wherein said second and third members extend outward from said first member at angles of about forty-five degrees.

11. The reinforcing structure of claim 9 further comprising a pair of wall mounting plates provided at opposite ends of said first member, each such plate having at least one opening therein for receiving at least one bolt for attaching said mounting plates to a wall adjacent to said first support board.

12. The reinforcing structure of claim 9 further comprising at least one opening provided along said first member for receiving at least one bolt for attaching said first member to an underside of said first support board through said at least one opening.

13. The reinforcing structure of claim 9 further comprising at least one opening provided on said saddle for receiving at least one bolt for attaching said saddle to said support board.

14. In combination, a system spanning between walls of a building and a reinforcing structure, said reinforcing structure comprising a support unit having a first elongated rigid member attached underneath a first support board, a second elongated rigid member one end of which is attached to one end of said first member, and a third elongated rigid member one end of which is attached to an opposite end of said first member wherein opposite ends of said second and third members are attached to each other at a junction, and wherein a saddle is provided at said junction engaged with a second support board of said system.

15. The combination of claim 14 wherein said second and third members extend outward from said first member at angles of about forty-five degrees.

16. The combination of claim 14 further comprising a pair of wall mounting plates provided at opposite ends of said first member, each such plate having at least one opening therein for receiving at least one bolt for attaching said mounting plates to said wall.

17. The combination of claim 14 further comprising at least one opening provided along said first member for receiving at least one bolt for attaching said second member to an underside of said first support board.

18. The combination of claim 14 further comprising at least one opening provided on said saddle for receiving at least one bolt for attaching said saddle to said support board.

19. A method of reinforcing a system spanning between walls of a building comprising the steps of: a. attaching a first elongated rigid member of a support unit underneath a first support board, said unit comprising said first member, a second elongated rigid member an end of which is attached to an end of said first member, a third elongated rigid member an end of which is attached to an opposite end of said first member wherein opposite ends of said second and third members are attached to each other at a junction, and wherein a saddle is provided at said junction; and b. attaching said saddle to a second support board of said system.

20. The method of claim 19 wherein each of said support boards is a member selected from the group of a ledger, a beam and a purlin.

21. The reinforcing structure of claim 9 wherein said saddle further comprises two upwardly oriented flanges separated by a space, and wherein a mount is provide on at least one of said flanges.

22. The reinforcing structure of claim 21 further comprising at least one separate plate member for attachment to a support board, said plate having at least one bracket provided thereon.

23. The reinforcing structure of claim 22 further comprising an elongated cylindrical member for attachment between said saddle bracket and said plate bracket.

24. The reinforcing structure of claim 23 wherein said cylindrical member further comprises internal and external hollow cylindrical sleeves movably disposed over each other, and a central load bearing rod axially disposed inside said internal sleeve.

25. The reinforcing structure of claim 23 wherein a second bracket is provided on said plate for attachment to a load bearing member.

26. The reinforcing structure of claim 9 wherein: a. said saddle further comprises two upwardly oriented flanges, and wherein at least one first bracket is attached to at least one of said flanges; b. a plate member is attached to a third support board, said plate member having at least one second bracket provided thereon; and c. an elongated support member is attached between said first and second brackets.

27. The reinforcing structure of claim 26 wherein at least one third bracket is provided on said plate member, and a load bearing rod is attached to said third bracket.

28. The method of claim 19 wherein: said saddle further comprises two upwardly oriented flanges, and wherein at least one first bracket is provided on at least one of said flanges, and further comprising the steps of: c. attaching a plate member to a third support board protruding out from said ledger, said plate member having at least one second bracket provided thereon; and d. attaching an elongated support member between said first and second brackets.

29. The method of claim 28 wherein at least one third bracket is provided on said plate member, and comprising the additional step of attaching a load bearing rod to said third bracket.

30. The method of claim 28 wherein each support board is a member selected from the group of a ledger, a beam and a purlin.

31. 31-85. (canceled)

86. The reinforcing structure of claim 9 wherein each of said support boards is a member selected from the group of a ledger, a beam and a purlin.

87. The method of claim 26 wherein each of said support boards is a member selected from the group of a ledger, a beam and a purlin.

88. The method of claim 28 wherein said first support board is a ledger.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to reinforcing and supporting roof, ceiling or floor systems, and more particularly to methods and apparatus for providing improved support for new and existing roof, ceiling or flooring systems to help prevent failure in the event of seismic activity, wind, water, excessive weight buildup and the like.

2. Description of the Prior Art

Many types of buildings may be heavily damaged by seismic movement, high winds and other natural disasters. These include, but are not limited to, tilt-up buildings that have concrete walls which are formed and poured and cured flat on top of existing slabs on grade and then raised into position, masonry walls, pour-in-place concrete walls, or block walls. These varieties of walls anchor to roof systems constructed of wood usually with a series of primary beams (glued laminated beams—GLB's), secondary timber beams or purlins, joists spanning from purlin to purlin, wall mounted ledgers, or simply beams with joists spanning in between. Such buildings will simply be referred to herein as “buildings.” In these types of buildings, the plywood sheathing acts as a diaphragm which ties the roof to the wall along with assorted metal connectors such as nails, straps, bolts or other transfer mechanisms. On older buildings, the transfer mechanisms are likely to be substandard either because of design deficiencies, installation shortcomings, or both, and thus are not up to current Uniform Building Code (UBC) standards. The devices of the present invention may be used to upgrade (retrofit) the connections used in the aforementioned structures, and may also be used in new construction.

Aside from seismic and wind forces, a common roof failure results from a build-up of rain or water from pipe leakages because of clogged roof drains or snow build-up. Additionally, roof mounted equipment and/or material stored on a roof may contribute to wall separation from the roof. When this occurs, roof collapse is often the result. Another contributing factor in roof collapse is improper placement of anchor bolts that connect the walls to a ledger that is bolted to the inside of the wall at the roof level and subsequently to the roof plywood with nails. At the location where anchor bolts are positioned in line with the wood grain of the ledger, the natural grain of the wood essentially defines a fault line that is prone to splitting, which would allow the wall to separate from the roof diaphragm. Factors that exacerbate the aforementioned splitting are oversized drilling of bolt holes which, when combined with nuts that are over-tightened, may cause the (round) cut washer to bend inward at the center and exert force that causes the upper portion of the wooden ledger to separate from the lower portion. This phenomenon occurs to some degree even when stronger plate washers are used. Many older buildings have cut washers at such locations.

Another vulnerable connection is where a GLB is anchored to a column which is part of the perimeter, or where a GLB hangs onto the wall with only a metal hanger with no direct column support from below. A similar vulnerability exists where a concrete column using a prefabricated metal saddle for anchoring a GLB has been poorly installed (i.e., poor pouting, casting of the column). Ordinarily, when a connector such as a GLB beam seat is installed according to specifications, the bolts connecting the GLB to the GLB beam seat saddle pre-drilled holes are approximately two inches (plus or minus) from the bottom of the GLB. When installed on a GLB that may be 24 inches or more in height, the connection is inadequate by current building codes. In addition, when the holes drilled in the GLB for anchorage to the aforementioned GLB beam seat are oversized, this makes the edge of the drilled hole even closer to the bottom of the GLB. Also, as is often the case, when these saddle connectors are installed out of level either side to side or end for end, this already questionable installation is worsened.

Locations where one GLB is connected to another in a linear manner (abut end to end), but do not adjoin inside of a saddle that is supported by a column, usually are connected with a hinge connector that allows the two beams to stay connected, but they may separate due to the swinging action of a hinge connector. This is a system deficiency that usually occurs during a seismic event. The aforementioned movement results in loosening of the nails that are critical to the structural integrity of the roof diaphragm system.

Purlins which anchor to the wooden ledgers that bolt to the walls should have a purlin anchor strap which is embedded into the concrete when the concrete is poured. These purlin straps are usually anchored to purlins using only nails, and are not designed to provide vertical counterforce either upward or downward, even when installed properly.

It is therefore desirable to provide methods and apparatus for retrofitting existing roofing, ceiling or flooring systems, and for use in new roofing, ceiling or flooring installations, that provide improved support to help prevent failure in the event of seismic activity, wind, water, excessive weight buildup and the like. It is also desirable to provide numerous alternative methods and apparatus that may be combined, adapted and intermingled for use with various roofing system sizes, shapes and configurations.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

The present invention provides a number of alternative roofing, ceiling or flooring system support structures that may be used to improve the tension and vertical strength of a wide variety of roof, ceiling or flooring systems. One set of embodiments of the present invention is made up of three elongated tension members. All three components may be shortened, lengthened or sized to accommodate individual building specifications by the engineer of record. These components, when prefabricated on-site, create a triangle shaped system having one member anchored to the side of a beam, a second member anchored to the concrete (or block or masonry) wall and forming a corner with the first member, and the remaining member connecting the ends of the first and second members forming a hypotenuse of the triangle. In alternative embodiments, another such triangular shaped system may be installed on the opposite side of the aforementioned beam in mirror image fashion.

The above-described embodiments are designed for installation under the ledger or other analogous structure in order to supply a counter force to seismic movement of the primary beam and ledger relative to the wall in the vertical plane. In addition, these systems supply a counter force to GLB movement in the horizontal plane at the GLB/wall connection through the first component that is attached to the wall, and through the second component that is attached to the beam. This aforementioned connection also provides additional vertical support to the GLB at this location. The opposite end of the first component (away from the GLB), also bolts to the wall tinder the ledger providing additional vertical support. The hypotenuse component acts as a brace for the wall between beams, and provides a counterforce to wall movement in two planes: lateral movement of the wall at a right angle to the roof diaphragm, and horizontal wall movement both toward the roof and outward from the roof. In some embodiments, the components of this embodiment are symmetrical at each end to the opposite end, so that the second and third components may be used on either side of the beam, and/or be installed with the angle-iron flange facing up or down. When used, the mirror image systems may be attached to each other through the beam.

A second set of embodiments of the present invention include a single welded frame that accomplishes essentially the same objectives as the first set of embodiments, but which uses the secondary beam (purlin) in place of the primary beam (GLB) as the initial anchoring roof element. In place of the duality of installed frames that may be used as part of the first set of embodiments, the second set of embodiments uses a prefabricated frame that is installed under the purlin, with two angle irons several feet apart (e.g. four feet), with the purlin intersecting the ledger in between the two aforementioned angle-irons. In most existing structures, the purlin will already be anchored to the ledger with a pre-existing purlin hanger. The two angle-irons provide vertical support for the ledger that the purlin supports. The remainder of the integrated structure is made up of two additional arms or angle straps (preferably 2″×¼″), having one end welded to each angle-iron. These arms traverse at an angle (preferably 45 degrees) inward, and the opposite ends are welded together at their junction forming a saddle that encompasses the purlin at a distance (e.g. two feet) out from the ledger. This saddle is bolted to the purlin with multiple bolts that complete the connection from wall to purlin.

The above described elements provide a counter-force to wall movement relative to the roof diaphragm element in three planes. The two angle straps provide a counter-force to lateral wall movement parallel to the length of the wall. The two angle-iron members provide vertical support at the ledger. The saddle, through the angle-iron connection, provides a counter-force to seismic forces that either push the wall into or away from the roof diaphragm system.

In one aspect of the second set of embodiments, a single welded or molded unit is provided with two sections of rigid material (e.g. angle iron) that bolt to the wall under the ledger at two locations, both locations approximately 2 feet to the side of where the purlin intersects the ledger that is bolted to the aforementioned wall. A flat rigid strap (preferably metal) is attached or welded to each section of angle iron and extends at an approximately 45 degree angle where they are attached or welded to the lower portion of a rigid (preferably steel) saddle which in turn bolts through the purlin and into the opposite side of the saddle. The two sections of angle iron that bolt to the concrete wall under the ledger provide vertical support to the ledger and consequently to the intersecting purlin where the purlin is anchored to the ledger. The lateral anchoring force provided by the two flat straps which are welded to the angle iron and the saddle transfer force along the plane of the roof diaphragm to the aforementioned wall and replace or supplement both the embedded bolts that anchor the ledger to the wall and the diaphragm perimeter nailing of the roof plywood. This system is not intended to supplement the vertical load capabilities of the purlin hanger since the purlin hanger should be adequate in the aforementioned vertical plane when these embodiments are installed and keep the purlin from separating from the wall. The two angled straps which anchor on opposite sides of the purlin exert a counter force to any seismic lateral movement of the wall relative to the roof diaphragm.

Where the purlins intersect the concrete wall at intervals of, for example, 8 feet, the only lateral connection through this 8-foot range is the nailing through the roof plywood. These embodiments add lateral support at, for example, 2-feet from the aforementioned intersection, so that in this example, the original 8 foot span is now only 4 feet.

Installation of systems of the second embodiments described above is the first step in establishing a strut connection embodiment that may extend from one end of the building to the opposite end along a series of purlins that are in line and end with similar embodiments on the opposite end of the building.

When an original ledger is installed, often the holes were oversized and/or the nuts were over-tightened which bends the cut washer into the gap created by the oversized hole and forces the ledger to split or be vulnerable to splitting when seismic or wind forces are at play. When the upper portion of the ledger rotates inward and the wall separates from the roof diaphragm, support for the purlins is compromised and the wall moves away from the building.

In another aspect of the invention, one or more retro-washer embodiments are provided to replace existing cut or plate washers that anchor the ledger to the wall. These retro-washers provide support for the full length of the washer. The retro-washers are manufactured in varying lengths to accommodate different sized ledgers. The wider part of the angle-iron is drilled with at least two holes, with one hole an inch closer to the center of the washer to allow for varying bolt locations and allow for the washer to extend closest to the bottom of the sheathing. When a retro-washer cannot be installed because the bolt is too close to the plywood then this washer may not be necessary anyway. In most embodiments, the retro-washers are provided with an outwardly extending flange. These flanges project out from the ledger and supply the strength that distributes force along the full length of the retro-washer when the original nut is replaced on the bolt. These embodiments are essentially upgraded washers that are designed to stop a ledger from splitting along the natural grain line that intersects the hole drilled for anchoring the ledger to the wall. The retro-washers are designed to replace existing cut washers or plate washers. The size and length of the retro washers will vary depending on the size of the ledger and the structural engineer specifications based on individual building conditions.

In one embodiment, a retro washer is essentially an angle iron approximately 2″×1″×11″ long that holds the upper portion of the ledger from rotating inward and also provides supplemental strength intended to keep the ledger from splitting through use of two ¼″×2½″ self tapping screws. In this embodiment, each end of the washer has one screw intended to keep the upper and lower portion of the ledger from separating.

Another set of embodiments is similar to that of the second set described above, providing structures for wall-to-wall support along the purlins. In these alternative embodiments, a bracket is provided on one or both sides of the saddle that is attached to the purlin. A transition bracket is then provided further down the purlin. This transition bracket has two welded brackets on each side of the purlin. One welded bracket is for attachment of a PT cable that traverses the length of the building through drilled holes in the primary beams (GLB's) and connects to a mirror image system on the opposite end of the building. The second transition bracket has a shrouded assembly bolted to it that connects to the angled flange on the saddle embodiment which is installed on the purlin directly adjacent to the aforementioned purlin. This may be provided on one or both sides of the purlin, thus connecting three purlins to a pair of PT cables that spans the building. These systems may be incorporated onto the adjacent set of 3 purlins, and the next set of 3, and so on, providing wall-to-wall support along these purlin sets. The purlins that run in-line with the center purlin establish a strut line through the length of the building at each purlin to GLB connection, the connection may be shimmed tight to establish the compression requirements as stated by the structural engineer. In effect, these systems are capable of anchoring 20 or more feet of wall to the roof diaphragm.

Another set of embodiments is similar to those of the first set described above. In these embodiments, a shrouded system is used in place of an angle-iron for both the tension and compression required elements required by current building codes. T his system installs above the bottom of the purlin/ledger ceiling line and consequently will clear almost all ceiling mounted equipment. The shroud anchors to a stud welded to a plate which is anchored to the wall through the ledger and just below the joist system. At the wall, the rigid plate (preferably metal) that is anchored to the wall also has a stud welded on its face which is angled outward toward a purlin/GLB intersection several feet (e.g. approximately 16 feet) out from the wall. The shrouded assembly which may include an all-thread bolt and rubber spacing washers, is covered with a larger series of cylinders with threaded connections for anchorage to adjoining cylinders. This shroud assembly supplies the compression element to this system when it is tight at each end of each segment of the shroud. Each piece of the shroud has a threaded male end and female end. The required overlap length will be painted red on the male threaded portion for inspection purposes. If no red painted threads are visible, the required overlap is assured. The inner portion of the shroud assembly (which also may be all-thread) will have a similar red designated male thread coloration with the same purpose.

The threaded portion of the shroud (rod) passes through any purlin not intended for final anchorage, penetrating a drilled hole with no washer or nuts that would connect the rod to the intersecting purlin. The outer portion of the shroud will be tightened to a wedge shaped washer that installs on each side of any intersecting purlins for purpose of supplying the required compression element of current building codes. The threaded portion supplies the tension requirements when it is attached to the GLB/purlin intersection with an angle-iron that has a stud welded to it and angled toward the stud at the wall bracket.

Most components of the embodiments disclosed herein are symmetrical at each end which allows these individual components to be used on either side of a GLB or purlin or with flanges either up or down to allow the systems to clear any ceiling-mounted equipment, fire sprinkler systems, or conduit that may conflict with these systems. This means fewer parts are required to be manufactured and stocked, making installation simpler and less expensive.

The fact that these systems can be installed to clear ceiling mounted obstructions is a large advantage over other systems that must be installed completely beneath purlins and ledgers thus restricting use of the aforementioned space.

Another advantage of these systems is that it may be slightly altered to allow for use when a pitched roof or angled walls or beams require adjusted lengths to be used.

Another advantage of the systems is that they provide vertical as well as horizontal support to ledgers and beams.

Another advantage of these systems is that the wall anchorage plates have a staggered hole pattern which allows for the use of any combination of holes to be used for concrete wall anchorage. This means that if the primary hole is obstructed due to embedded steel or conduit then the next staggered hole may be used and then the next if necessary without damaging expensive drill bits or drilling into steel that has structural value and should not be damaged.

The fact that most of the wall anchoring and drilling of concrete walls required for metal plate connections installation is accomplished below the ledger means that a magnetic resonance imager that can only see 7″ into the wall or when a ledger is over the wall only 3.5″ into the concrete after first penetrating the 3.5″ thick ledger. The result is being able to drill holes into the concrete with little or no risk of hitting obstructions.

Another advantage of these systems is the use of pre-positioned bolt holes along with the metal connecting straps that connect one angle iron to its twin on the opposite side or end, thus eliminating any location issues in positioning the holes to be drilled into wood beams or the concrete wall.

Another advantage of these inventions is that they are comprised of relatively light weight materials which should not require any special equipment to hoist them into place, but can be lifted into place using a man-lift along with the installer.

Another advantage of these inventions is that they may be prefabricated on the ground and lifted into position as a single unit. Each of the embodiments may use ¼″ predrilled holes with ¼″ self tapping screws for temporary support while holes are drilled and installed. However, the individual components may be installed separately when ceiling mounted equipment or fire-sprinklers conflict. Also, the connecting straps that connect one end angle iron to its twin may be eliminated when necessary for ease of installation.

Another advantage of these systems is that they include elements that may be readily available from a metal or other fabricating shop. This means that waiting for fabrication and delivery from a distant fabricator will not be necessary when a component is miss-fabricated or job site conditions require alterations or additional components to be fabricated.

These systems, in addition to providing a counter force to seismic or wind events caused by building/wall movement also provide vertical and horizontal support around the edges of the roof structure where water or snow build up is most likely to occur as a result of a clogged roof drain.

Other seismic retro-fit systems do not provide vertical support at purlin/wall location but only drill through ledger and wall and insert a machine bolt through the wall or anchor to the wall with epoxy cement at about mid height of the ledger. Such systems provide no vertical support for the ledger and consequently the connecting purlin which just hangs onto the ledger with a flanged hanger with usually only nailing through the top flange into the top of the ledger. The systems of the present invention attach directly to the wall, thus providing better support. Any individual components depicted in these several embodiments may be combined with any other depicted components to achieve the preferred truss required design.

Several of the embodiments may be installed substantially above the ceiling line established by the ledgers and purlins, and should not conflict with ceiling mounted equipment, fire sprinklers or conduit that may be mounted on the ceiling.

Another advantage of the wall-to-wall embodiments is that only every third purlin need be shimmed and/or bolted at purlin-GLB intersections. This eliminates approximately 66% of the usually required hardware at these locations. Each location customarily uses four welded brackets, two threaded rods, and approximately six machine bolts, not to mention the labor to install these items.

The aforementioned qualities and advantages of these inventions are not intended to be limiting factors when applying these inventions to individual buildings. Design alterations specified by a structural engineer are to be expected and should not limit the use of these inventions in any way.

Other advantages of these systems will become apparent to those skilled in the trades when installing and reviewing these systems and working with structural drawings prepared by a structural engineer for specific and individual buildings.

An object of the present invention is to provide reliable, simple and inexpensive seismic retro-fit systems to upgrade or replace existing seismic movement resistant connections on buildings with wood or metal roof, ceiling or flooring systems and concrete walls.

Another object of the invention is to provide reliable force transfer mechanisms that include both tension and compression capabilities that transfer force from the building walls to the primary beams (GLB's) and consequently to the purlins, joists and ultimately to the roof, ceiling or floor plywood diaphragm and consequently to the walls at opposite ends of the building.

Another object of the invention is to provide seismic connections of the type described that either eliminates or lessens dependence on the roof, ceiling or floor plywood diaphragm perimeter nailing into the ledger that bolts onto the concrete wall at the outside perimeter of the building at the roof line and/or at wood floor connections to concrete walls.

Another object of the invention is to provide additional vertical support as well as horizontal support for ledgers, primary beams and purlin beams.

Another object of the invention is installing a system that upgrades existing tilt-up style buildings to comply with current UBC standards.

Another object of the invention is to establish a strut line that crosses the primary beams (GLB's) and connects to 3 individual purlins to a single wall-to-wall line; essentially anchoring twenty four linear feet of concrete wall to the selected strut (purlin) which is connected to the roof plywood diaphragm and ultimately to a mirror system at the opposite end of the building.

Additional objects of the invention will be apparent from the detailed descriptions and the claims herein.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a lower perspective view of one embodiment of the present invention having three main parts, illustrating those parts attached to each other.

FIG. 2 is an upper partially cut-away environmental view of a building roof support structure showing examples of the embodiments of FIG. 1 installed thereon.

FIG. 3 is a lower partially cut-away environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiments shown in FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a cross-sectional end view along line 4-4 of FIG. 2.

FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional end view along line 5-5 of FIG. 3.

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional side view along line 6-6 of FIG. 3.

FIG. 6A is an illustration of an embodiment of a random hole pattern for avoiding obstructions in a wall.

FIG. 7 is a lower perspective view of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 8 is an upper partially cut-away environmental view of a building roof support structure showing an example of the embodiment of FIG. 7 installed thereon.

FIG. 9 is a lower partially cut-away environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiment shown in FIG. 8.

FIG. 10 is a cross-sectional end view along line 10-10 of FIG. 8.

FIG. 11 is a cross-sectional side view along line 11-11 of FIG. 9.

FIG. 12 is a perspective view of another embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 13 is another perspective view of the embodiment of FIG. 12.

FIG. 14 is an upper partially cut-away environmental view of a building roof support structure showing examples of the embodiments of FIG. 12 installed thereon.

FIG. 15 is a lower partially cut-away environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiments shown in FIG. 14.

FIG. 16 is a cross-sectional side view along line 16-16 of FIG. 15.

FIG. 17 is a lower perspective view of an alternative embodiment of the invention of FIG. 7.

FIG. 18 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including the embodiment of FIG. 17.

FIG. 19 is another perspective view of the support structure of FIG. 18.

FIG. 20 is an upper environmental view of a building roof support structure showing examples of the embodiments of FIGS. 7, 17 and 18 installed thereon

FIG. 21 is a lower environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiments shown in FIG. 20.

FIG. 22 is a cross-sectional top view along line 22-22 of FIG. 21.

FIG. 23 is a cross-sectional top view along line 23-23 of FIG. 21.

FIG. 24 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including that of FIG. 1.

FIG. 25 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including that of FIG. 1.

FIG. 26 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including that of FIG. 1.

FIG. 27 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including that of FIG. 1.

FIG. 28 is an upper partially cut-away environmental view of a building roof support structure showing examples of the embodiments of FIGS. 1 and 24-27, installed thereon.

FIG. 29 is a lower partially cut-away environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiments shown in FIG. 28.

FIG. 30 is a cross-sectional side view along line 30-30 of FIG. 28.

FIG. 31 is a cross-sectional end view along line 31-31 of FIG. 28.

FIG. 32 is an upper partially cut-away environmental view of a building roof support structure showing an example of an alternative embodiment of the present invention installed thereon.

FIG. 33 is a lower partially cut-away environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiments shown in FIG. 32.

FIG. 34 is a cross-sectional side view along line 34-34 of FIG. 32.

FIG. 35 is a cross-sectional end view along line 35-35 of FIG. 32.

FIG. 36 is a cross-sectional opposite end view along line 36-36 of FIG. 32.

FIG. 37 is an upper partially cut-away environmental view of a building roof support structure showing an example of an alternative embodiment of the present invention installed thereon.

FIG. 38 is a lower partially cut-away environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiments shown in FIG. 37.

FIG. 39 is a cross-sectional side view along line 39-39 of FIG. 37.

FIG. 40 is a cross-sectional end view along line 40-40 of FIG. 37.

FIG. 41 is an upper partially cut-away environmental view of a building roof support structure showing an example of an alternative embodiment of the present invention installed thereon.

FIG. 42 is a lower partially cut-away environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiments shown in FIG. 41.

FIG. 43 is a cross-sectional side view along line 43-43 of FIG. 41.

FIG. 44 is a cross-sectional end view along line 44-44 of FIG. 41.

FIG. 45 is a cross-sectional end view along line 45-45 of FIG. 41.

FIG. 46 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including the tubular members of FIGS. 50-52.

FIG. 47 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including the tubular members of FIGS. 50-52.

FIG. 48 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including the tubular members of FIGS. 50-52.

FIG. 49 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including the tubular members of FIGS. 50-52.

FIG. 50 is a top plan view of a building roof support structure showing an example of an alternative embodiment of the present invention installed thereon.

FIG. 51 is a cross-sectional side view along line 51-51 of FIG. 50.

FIG. 52 is a lower partially cut-away environmental view of the roof support structure with installed embodiments shown in FIG. 50.

FIG. 53 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including those of FIGS. 1 and 56.

FIG. 54 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including those of FIGS. 1 and 56.

FIG. 55 is a perspective view of a support structure of the present invention that may be used with several of the embodiments of the present invention including those of FIGS. 1 and 56.

FIG. 56 is an upper partially cut-away environmental view of a building roof support structure showing an example of an alternative embodiment of the present invention installed thereon.

FIG. 57 is a cross-sectional side view along line 57-57 of FIG. 56.

FIG. 58 is a cross-sectional side view along line 58-58 of FIG. 56.

FIG. 59 is a cross-sectional bottom view along line 59-59 of FIG. 56.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Referring to the drawings wherein like reference characters designate like or corresponding parts throughout the several views, and referring particularly to FIGS. 1-6, it is seen that a first embodiment illustrated in these drawings includes three elongated rigid (preferably metallic) bracket members 70, 80 and 90. These members may be used independently of each other, they may be used in combination with other support members, and/or they may be attached to each other in a triangular fashion as illustrated in FIG. 1. Some of the alternative and/or independent usages of members 70, 80 and 90 are described and illustrated in other embodiments herein.

In the exemplary triangular embodiments illustrated in FIGS. 1-6, and referring particularly to FIG. 3, it is seen that a first elongated member 70 is adapted for attachment along the underside 44 of a ledger 40 of a building roof, ceiling or floor support system. In some embodiments, bracket member 70 is not attached to ledger 40, but is inserted flush against the lower surface 44 of the ledger, and is attached directly to the concrete, masonry or block wall 140 of the building using one or more bolts 26 that are passed through holes 60 in mounting plate 170. This location provides supplemental vertical support for the ledger 40 at both ends of bracket 70. Bolts 26 are engaged with the concrete wall 140 using epoxy or some other suitable adhesive material for permanent attachment. Detail of this attachment is shown in FIGS. 5 and 6.

Because the systems of the present invention may be used for retrofit purposes, structures such as the concrete wall 140 may already be in existence, and there may be metal structures, holes, or other irregularities on the surface of wall 140 where each mounting plate 170 is to be attached. Accordingly, in several embodiments of the present invention, the mounting holes 60 in plate 170 are provided in one or more different patterns in order to improve the opportunities for attaching bolts 26 to wall 140. See FIG. 6A. It is to be appreciated that any suitable number of mounting holes may be provided in plate 170, and that these holes may be provided in any regular, irregular, uniform or random pattern thereon. Plate 170 may be provided with a reinforcing flange or gusset 110 which transfers lateral force more evenly, and helps prevent bending of plate 170. The number of engineer-specified holes to be used (usually no more than 2 on each side of the gusset) will leave the balance of predrilled holes unused. Elongated bracket member 70 has outwardly protruding flanges at both ends, and holes are provided in these end flanges to receive bolts or other similar devices to attach the end flanges to other support structures such as but not limited to members 80 and 90.

In alternative embodiments, bracket member 70 may be attached directly to the lower surface 44 of the ledger 40 by using lag screws or other suitable fasteners. In these embodiments, one or more openings 68 may be provided along bracket member 70 through which such fasteners may be passed for attachment to the underside 44 of the ledger 40. It is to be appreciated that the direct attachment to the bottom 44 of ledger 40 may be done independently or in conjunction with the previously described attachments directly to wall 140.

In the triangular system embodiments of FIGS. 1-6, bracket member 70 is attached and positioned such that one end is adjacent to a perpendicularly extending (roof) beam 30. A second elongated bracket member 80 is attached along one side of the beam 30. Bracket member 80 includes plates at both ends having openings through which bolts or other devices are used to attach bracket member 80 to beam 30. Bracket member 80 also includes outwardly extending flanges at both ends, and holes are provided in these end flanges to receive bolts 24 or other similar devices to attach such end flanges to other support structures such as but not limited to members 70 and 90. Bracket member 80 preferably sits over the top of bracket 70 in order to provide supplemental vertical support for the beam 30. It is to be appreciated that in this embodiment, bracket members 70 and 80 are installed such that their orientation is perpendicular, just as beam 30 is perpendicular to ledger 40, with one end of bracket member 70 attached to the adjacent end of bracket member 80 near where beam 30 meets ledger 40, using one or more bolts 24 as shown in FIG. 5. A third bracket member 90 is then installed diagonally by attachment to each of the open ends of bracket members 70 and 80, forming the hypotenuse of the triangle made up of members 70, 80 and 90. Bracket member 90 exerts a counter force to any lateral wall movement either in, out or parallel to the wall at a point several feet from the beam 30 along the length of the wall. This exerted force is transferred to the roof diaphragm through the beam 30, purlins 120 and ultimately to the plywood diaphragm system of the roof, ceiling or floor. In this context, a diaphragm is generally the structural element comprised of roof plywood nailed to joists, purlins, ledgers and GLB's.

In some embodiments, a second set of bracket members 70, 80 and 90 is installed on the opposite side of beam 30 in a mirror image fashion to the first set of such members, as depicted in FIGS. 2 and 3. In such embodiments, brackets 80 may be attached to both sides of beam 30 using the same bolts 29 that extend through beam 30 and protrude out from each side, as shown in FIG. 4. However, brackets 80 may alternatively be attached separately from each other using other independent bolts 27.

The systems of FIGS. 1-6 provide independent seismic support to beam 30 by providing apparatus and methods for direct attachment of beam 30 to wall 140, instead of relying only on gravity. These systems prevent beam 30 from pulling away from or falling down from wall 140 in the event of seismic movement, high winds, excessive roof/ceiling/floor weight or the like.

The alternative embodiments which provide for direct attachment to the underside 44 of ledger 40 through openings 68 help prevent possible lateral movement of a metal plate that is attached to a wall 140. These openings 68 may be provided in the straps connecting the brackets together or on the brackets themselves, or both.

Alternative support system embodiments are illustrated in FIGS. 7-11. These embodiments are designed for use in supporting roof, ceiling or floor purlins 120, but may also be used with support beams 30. In these embodiments, a one-piece seismic support unit 10 is provided that is made up of an elongated cross member 51 and two diagonally oriented arms 50, all of which may be integrated together. Attachment plates 170 having a pattern of holes 60, as described above (uniform, irregular or random pattern), are provided at both ends of cross member 51. In some embodiments, plates 170 may be provided with a reinforcing flange or gusset 110 which transfers lateral force more evenly, and helps prevent bending of plate 170. One end of each of arms 50 is attached to one of the ends of cross member 51, and the opposite ends of arms 50 meet at a junction 152. Junction 152 is formed in the shape of a squared U, with the bottom sized so as to fit flush underneath a purlin 120 (or underneath a beam 30). The two opposite sides 151 of junction 152 extend upward so as to fit flush against the sides of the purlin (or beam) forming a saddle or beam pocket (i.e., metal hardware with two sides and a base that the purlins and/or beams are bolted or nailed into). An installation and fitment of the junction is illustrated, for example, in FIGS. 9 and 10. This structure provides vertical support to the purlin (or beam). In some embodiments, the U-shaped saddle with bottom and sides 151-152 is a separate piece that is welded to the junction of arms 50.

In alternative embodiments, the two metal straps 50 are welded to saddle base 152 to provide a lateral counter force from the wall to the purlin and consequently the diaphragm. The metal strap 51 that connects the two angle irons to each other is provided for ease of application purposes and to eliminate side movement of angle irons 170 attached to wall 140. Strap 51 may be omitted when ceiling mount equipment is in conflict. If strap 51 is eliminated, angle irons 170 are attached directly to the ends of straps 51 for attachment to the wall 140, and holes 60 in the angle iron 170 may be used to eliminate side movement.

In the integrated embodiments illustrated in FIGS. 7-11, and referring particularly to FIG. 9, it is seen that a cross member 51 is adapted for attachment along the underside 44 of ledger 40 of the building roof support system. In some embodiments, cross member 51 is not attached to ledger 40, but is inserted flush against the lower surface 44 of the ledger, and is attached directly to the concrete wall 140 of the building using one or more bolts 26 that are passed through holes 60 in mounting plate 170. This location provides supplemental vertical support for the ledger 40 at both ends of cross member 51. Bolts 26 are engaged with the concrete wall 140 using epoxy or some other suitable adhesive material for permanent attachment. Detail of this attachment is shown in FIG. 11.

In alternative embodiments, cross member 51 may be attached directly to the lower surface 44 of the ledger 40 by using lag screws, fasteners or the like. In these embodiments, one or more openings 68 are provided along cross member 51 through which such screws may be passed for attachment to the underside 44 of the ledger 40. It is to be appreciated that the direct attachment to the bottom 44 of ledger 40 may be done independently or in conjunction with the previously described attachments directly to wall 140.

Arms 50 extend from each end of cross member 51 to junction 152 underneath a purlin 120 (or beam 30). Anchoring bolts 29 are passed through openings 60 in flanges 151, and through purlin 120 (or beam 30) to hold junction 152 against purlin 120 (or beam 30). This system prevents purlin 120 (or beam 30) from pulling away from ledger 40 or falling down from wall 140 in the event of seismic movement, high winds, excessive weight or the like.

FIGS. 12-16 illustrate other reinforcing embodiments of the present invention. These embodiments include a rigid (preferably metallic) plate 130 having an optional flange 92 that is generally orthogonally attached to it, forming a bracket having a generally L-shaped cross section. Plate 130 includes one or more openings 60 for receiving anchoring bolts 26 that are passed through openings 60, through ledger 40, and into concrete wall 140 as shown in FIG. 16. One or more additional smaller openings 21 are also provided for attaching plate 130 to ledger 40 using bolts such as 22. One or more of plates 130 may be attached to a ledger 40 in order to provide reinforced attachment to wall 140. Flange 92 provides additional strength to plate 130 to prevent bending of plate 130 in the event that stress is placed on the ledger 40 from seismic movement, high winds, excessive roof weight or the like.

FIGS. 17-23 illustrate alternative embodiments of an integrated support unit. These alternative embodiments include an integrated triangular support structure 11 that is similar to that illustrated in FIGS. 7-11, and previously described (10) as including a cross member 51 and a pair of arms 50 that meet at a junction 152 having a pair of opposing side walls 151. In some embodiments, the U-shaped saddle with bottom and sides 151-152 is a separate piece that is welded to the junction of arms 50. In the illustrated embodiments of structure 11, one or both of side walls 151 includes not only openings 60 for attachment to a purlin 120 (or beam 30), but also a support flange 63 having an opening 69 located thereon. Flange 63 may or may not have an angled orientation. Flange 63 and opening 69 are adapted to receive one end of a support rod 23. A bracket assembly 67 having a complementary support flange 63′ is also provided, with flange 63′ adapted to receive the opposite end of support rod 23. Flange 63′ may or may not have an angled orientation. Openings 60 are provided in bracket 63′ for attaching bracket 67 to a beam or purlin using bolts or other suitable devices.

Detail of an embodiment of rod 23 is shown in FIGS. 22-23. In this exemplary embodiment, rod 23 includes an inner rod 191, an inner sleeve 196 and an outer sleeve 197. Inner rod 191 is threaded at both ends, allowing it to be bolted to flanges 63 and 63′ as shown in FIGS. 22-23 inner rod 191 is the primary load bearing member, providing the tension required for wall anchorage. Spacers 198 aid in keeping rod 191 centered inside sleeves 196 and 197, and also aid in keeping the whole assembly straight, which is important in terms of compression capability. Spacers 198 may be made of rubber, plastic or other suitable materials, and are preferably cut through on one edge so that they may slip over rod 191 and then return to their original shape. Sleeves 196 and 197 supplement the compression capability of the inner rod 191. In some embodiments, the end of the inner sleeve 196 is coded red at a point that defines the necessary overlap of the inner 196 and outer 197 connection, to indicate whether the inner threaded portion of rod 191 is properly embedded into the outer sleeve 197 of the adjoining member sufficiently to meet building code requirements or engineer specifications. It is to be appreciated that in other embodiments, support rod 23 may be comprised of only inner rod 191 having threads at both ends.

In use, an integrated triangular support structure 11 having flange 63 is installed, as above, with cross member 51 attached along the underside 44 of ledger 40 (ether directly to ledger 40 through openings 68, or to wall 140, or both), saddle 152 underneath a purlin 120 or beam 30, and walls 151 bolted to the sides of the purlin 120 or beam 30. A bracket assembly 67 is installed on an adjacent purlin (or beam) downstream from junction 152. One end of inner support rod 191 is attached to flange 63 on side wall 151, and the other end of rod 191 is attached to flange 63′ on bracket 67 as shown in FIGS. 20-21. If provided, inner sleeve 196 is rotated relative to outer sleeve 197 for snug fit against flanges 63 and 63′ to optimize support. It is to be appreciated that the angles of flanges 63 and 63′ may be varied as desired, and will establish an optimum downstream position of bracket 67 on purlin 120 for receiving the end of rod 23. Anchoring of this assembly should preferably occur at least every 9 feet when the assembly is installed under the purlins.

The triangular support structure 11 of the present embodiment may be, and preferably is attached to a first and third purlin, and brackets 67 are attached on either side of a second intermediate purlin downstream from the triangular support structures, as shown in FIGS. 20-21. This provides direct attachment of the downstream purlin to the concrete wall 140. Other triangular support assemblies may also be attached to any intermediate purlins. These may be of any type described herein (11), but preferably of the type (10) illustrated in FIG. 7 or in FIG. 17 (with or without flange 67).

In some embodiments, an additional flange 64 is provided on bracket 67, In other embodiments an additional flange 64 may be provided or on one or both of flanges 151. This flange 64 is used to connect to a rod, cable or other elongated support structure 180 that may extend the length of the purlin (or beam) to the opposite side of the building. Structure 180 may be a PT cable, which is a flexible plastic encased steel cable that has tension applied to it after the installation is complete. This applied tension supplies the counter-force to any seismic wall movement. In such embodiments, a complementary bracket 67 is provided at such other end, together with complementary (mirror image) triangular support structures and rods 23. The complementary bracket 67 (or complementary flange 151) has a flange 64 to receive the opposite end of rod or cable 180, and a flange 63′ for receiving a rod 23. Rod 23 is, in turn, attached to a bracket 63 on a triangular support assembly that is mounted beneath the purlin (or beam) and beneath ledger 40. These embodiments provide a complete direct connection from the wall on one side of a building to the wall on the opposite side of the building. It is to be appreciated that multiple installations of such embodiments may be made along selected purlins (or beams) to 115 provide additional wall-to-wall support structures along the length or width of the roof. It is also to be appreciated that support structures having dual brackets 67 (one for each of flanges 151) may be employed in these installations to support two rods 23 extending away from a single junction 152. In other embodiments, one or both of flanges 151 may include a bracket 64 for direct attachment to a rod 23.

A rod or cable 180 may be provided on each side of the purlin system that spans from one end of the building to the opposite end where it connects to another identical three-purlin system. The purlins along the rod or cable line constitute a strut at each purlin-to-beam connection, which may be approximately every 20 to 24 feet. The intersection of a strut (cabled) purlin 120 and beam 30 is shown in FIG. 22. Such intersections may be shimmed where any gap between the purlin and beam exists, thus creating a line of compression that extends through the entire length of the building. The purlins on either side of the strut purlin need not be shimmed. This embodiment constitutes a substantial savings in labor and material over systems that require as many as four brackets and two all-thread bolts to connect purlin-to-purlin through a beam at each location.

Other embodiments of the present invention are illustrated in FIGS. 24-31. In these embodiments, support brackets 131, 132, 133 and 134 are utilized in conjunction with one or more bracket members 90 to provide support to a beam 30 without the use of bracket members 70 or 80. In particular, instead of providing a single elongated member below ledger 40, a first L-shaped bracket 133 (such L-shaped brackets are sometimes referred to herein as angle irons) is installed by attachment to beam 30 and to concrete wall 140 below ledger 40. A second L-shaped bracket or angle iron 131 (or 132) is also attached to wall 140 a distance away from beam 30 below ledger 40. See FIG. 29. Each of brackets 131/132 and 133 includes a plurality of openings 60 on a wall flange (one of the “L” surfaces of the respective bracket) through which mounting bolts 26 are passed for anchoring the bracket to the concrete wall. The pattern of openings 60 may be uniform or random, as with other bracket hole patterns described previously, in order to provide multiple opportunities for bolt attachments in case there are embedded blockages in wall 140. One or more additional holes 60 are also provided on the remaining flange of bracket 133 allowing for attachment to beam 30. At least one hole is provided on the remaining flange of bracket 131 or 132 for attachment to elongated bracket member 90.

In the embodiments illustrated in FIGS. 24-31, the first bracket 133 is preferably provided with triangular upper and/or lower flanges for improved strength. One flange of this bracket 133 is anchored to wall 140, and the other flange is attached to the side of beam 30, as shown in FIG. 29. In alternative embodiments, another of brackets 133 may be installed in mirror-image fashion on the other side of beam 30. This provides reinforcement through direct attachment of beam 30 to wall 140. The second bracket 131 is preferably provided with a gusset 110 for improved strength. One flange of this bracket 131 is anchored to wall 140 such that the other flange has a horizontal orientation for engagement with bracket member 90. One end of an elongated bracket member 90 is attached to bracket 131, and the other end is extended perpendicularly from wall 140 and attached to the closest purlin 120. A third L-shaped bracket 134 is attached to this purlin 120 where it abuts against beam 30. One flange of the L is attached to purlin 120, and the other flange to beam 30. An anchoring plate may be used to further secure bracket 134 to purlin 120 or beam 30. In alternative embodiments, another of brackets 134 may be installed in mirror-image fashion to the purlin on the other side of beam 30; in such embodiments, the same bolts 29 may be used which pass through both brackets 134 and beam 30. A fourth L-shaped bracket 132 is provided for attachment to beam 30. This bracket 132 may include a gusset 110. One flange of bracket 132 is attached to beam 30 such that the other flange has a horizontal orientation for engagement with one end of a second bracket member 90. Second bracket member 90 extends diagonally from bracket 131 to purlin 120 where its other end attaches to the purlin and an end of first bracket member 90. It is to be appreciated that all of the aforementioned brackets and horizontal members are illustrated in FIG. 29, but that not all of them may be needed in every situation, such that different combinations thereof may be used as desired by the user.

The embodiments of FIGS. 24-31 provide a direct anchoring of beam 30 to wall 140 by way of bracket(s) 133, and provides a further anchoring of beam 30 to wall 140 through bracket members 131, 132 and 90. Further reinforcing and transmission of tension is provided by intermediate bracket(s) 134. In alternative embodiments shown in FIGS. 37-40, brackets 131, 132 and/or 133 are used with an elongated member 90, but bracket 134 and the other member 90 may not necessarily be used. Instead, a single elongated member 90 is provided for direct diagonal attachment between wall-mounted bracket 131 and beam-mounted bracket 132. In many embodiments, brackets 131 and 132 may be interchanged.

The embodiments of FIGS. 24-31 and 37-40 may be used when the beams 30 are, for example, twenty feet apart making the un-braced section of wall slightly less than 10 feet which may be acceptable in some buildings. In these embodiments, the L-shaped brackets may be installed with no connecting steel straps along the purlin length or the beam length. That is because, in this configuration, the length of a pre-fabricated system could make this embodiment too cumbersome to install as a single unit. The size and shape of the L-shaped brackets 131-134 vary from the embodiment of FIGS. 1-7. The two members 70, 80 that bolt together at the beam/wall intersection are replaced by one angle-iron that bolts to the beam and through the hole pattern (which may be a uniform, irregular or random pattern) in the section of the flange that bolts to the wall, thus providing a counterforce to both vertical beam collapse and transferring a counter force to seismic or other wall movement relative to the roof diaphragm. This aforementioned angle-iron may have a small gusset on top of this piece that provides vertical support for the ledger where it abuts the beam.

The embodiments of FIGS. 32-36 and 41-45 utilize a central threaded load bearing tension rod 175 that is positioned in parallel with the beams 30 of the roof system. Rod 175 may be surrounded by a reinforcing shaft 171 having spacers 198 such as rubber washers to center its position. One end of rod 175 is attached to a plate 172 that is anchored to wall 140 through ledger 40 using bolts 26, as shown in FIG. 34. In an alternative embodiment, plate 172 includes an integrated threaded shaft or welded stud 185, and rod 175 is engaged to shaft 185 using a threaded coupler 186 or other similar engagement device (such as a turnbuckle). Rod 175 is sized such that its opposite threaded end may be passed through an adjacent purlin 120, where it is secured on the opposite side of purlin 120 using plate 173 and at least one nut. It is to be appreciated that rod 175 may be manipulated from the opposite side of purlin 120 for engagement with turnbuckle 186, and for securement to plate 173. A separate L-shaped bracket 179 is provided on the near side of purlin 120 through which rod 175 passes. This bracket includes a horizontally oriented flange section 179 that included openings for receiving attachment bolts for connection to diagonally oriented members 90.

In the embodiments illustrated in FIGS. 32-36, members 90 are attached to wall brackets 131 that are mounted to wall 140 below ledger 40 at locations between rod 175 and beam 30. In the embodiments illustrated in FIGS. 41-45, members 90 are attached to corner brackets 133 that are mounted to wall 140 below ledger 40 adjacent to beams 30. It is to be appreciated that the elements of these illustrated embodiments could be mixed, such as, for example, a first member 90 may extend from one side of flange 179 to a corner bracket 133, and a second member 90 may extend from the other side of flange 179 to a wall bracket 131. The angle and length of member 90 depends upon whether the member is attached to a wall bracket 131 or a corner bracket 133, as well as the position of such bracket.

In alternative embodiments, one or more additional brackets 133 may be mounted on beams 30 where they intersect with purlins 120, so that an elongated member 90 may be attached to extend from each such wall bracket 131 to corner bracket 133. In other embodiments, one or more corner brackets may 133 may be mounted at the intersections of beams 30 and purlins 120 without attachment to any elongated member 90. Each of these alternative embodiments may be used independently of the others, or in different combinations with the other embodiments, as illustrated, for example, in FIGS. 33 and 42.

Rods 171 and 175 may be used when there is a significant span between primary beams, such as, for example, twenty-two or twenty-four feet. In such an example, the wall length between the beam and rod 171 (the center shroud lateral wall anchorage) would be approximately eleven or twelve feet. Where specifications require a lesser distance then lesser spans would be used, such as, for example, six feet between anchorage locations.

Wedge washers 178 are used when these embodiments are utilized with outer rods 171 at any intersecting purlin that the threaded rod 175 passes through, and outer shroud casing 171 abuts against. Wedge washer includes at least two holes (preferably ¼″) for holding the wedge washer 178 in position and preventing rotation. Washer 178 is drilled so that the outer shroud casing 171 will have full contact with the flat face of the washer as depicted, for example, in FIG. 43. A nut is not required where the threaded rod 175 passes through the washers on either side of a purlin.

The embodiments of FIGS. 46-52 provide a set of versatile mounting brackets 161, 162, 163 and 164 which may be used in conjunction with rods 23, 191, 171 and/or 175. Bracket 162 includes an angled flange thereon having an opening therein for receipt of one of the aforesaid rod members. Brackets such as 162 are designed for attachment directly to ledger 40 and may or may not also be mounted to wall 140. Brackets 163 and 164 are triangular wedge-shaped pieces having mounting holes for attachment to a beam or purlin, and openings for receiving rod 191 or 175. As shown in FIGS. 50-52, a rod such as 191 or 175 is attached at one end to bracket 162, and passes through brackets 162 and 163, and through purlin 120 at an angle. Rod 191 or 175 then extends to and terminates at bracket 161 which is mounted at a junction between a purlin 120 and a beam 30. Bracket 161 also includes an angled flange having an opening for receiving rod 191 or 175. It is to be appreciated that different combinations of brackets 161-164 may be used with rods 23, 191, 171 and/or 175 of different lengths, depending on the positions selected for brackets 161-164. It is to be appreciated that brackets 161-164 are used to support rods such as 23, 191, 171 and/or 175, and that these rod-and-bracket systems may also incorporate other embodiments of the invention such as, without limitation, brackets 133 and/or 134. It is to be appreciated that brackets 133 may be used to connect directly to a wall 140, or between a beam 30 and purlin 120. These embodiments install completely above the ceiling line of the purlin which means they should completely clear any ceiling mounted obstructions.

The embodiments of FIGS. 53-59 provide a set of mounting brackets 191, 192, 193 and 194 which may be used in conjunction with elongated bracket members 90. Brackets 191 and 192 each include an L-shaped flange thereon having an opening therein for receipt of a bolt for attachment to an end of an elongated member 90. Brackets 191 and 192 also include openings 60 therein for receiving mounting bolts 24 and/or 26. Brackets such as 191 and 192 are designed for attachment directly to ledger 40 and may or may not also be mounted to wall 140; brackets 191 and 192 may also be attached across from each other through a beam or purlin using bolts 29, as shown in FIG. 58. Brackets 193 have an L-shaped cross section with a triangular cross flange having an opening thereon for receiving a bolt for attachment to an end of an elongated member 90. As shown in FIGS. 56-59, in one embodiment, an elongated member 90 is attached at one end to a bracket 191 or 192 at ledger 40, and extends to a complementary bracket 191 or 192 on an adjacent purlin (or beam). In a variation of this embodiment, member 90 may extend from the ledger bracket 191/192 to a corner bracket 193 that is mounted at the junction of a beam or purlin. In the illustrated embodiment, another bracket 191 or 192 is provided on the other side of the purlin or beam, and a second member 90 extends away from the opposite bracket. This member 90 may terminate at another of brackets 191/192, or at a corner bracket 193 (as illustrated). It is to be appreciated that different combinations of brackets 191/192 and/or corner brackets 193 may be used with elongated brackets 90 of different lengths, depending on the positions selected for brackets 191, 192 and/or 193. It is to be appreciated that these embodiments may also incorporate other embodiments of the invention such as, without limitation, brackets 133 and/or 134. These embodiments install completely above the ceiling line of the purlin which means they should completely clear any ceiling mounted obstructions.

The embodiment depicted in FIGS. 21-22 should be installed close to or onto the bottom of the roof joists so as to be clear of any roof mounted equipment or fire sprinkler system anchored to the bottom of the ledger or purlin.

In the embodiment of FIG. 17, the angled bracket 63 may be replaced by a square bracket 64 such as, for example, when a PT cable is required at 8 foot intervals or at every purlin.

Most embodiments of these inventions are symmetrical such that identical or mirror image components may be installed on opposite sides of the purlins or GLBs.

Most components in these inventions are fabricated in a manner that allows use with a different embodiment and/or component. In addition, some angle iron components used in the first set of embodiments may be replaced with a shrouded anchor system since both embodiments provide the required tension and compression elements. In other embodiments, the shroud assembly may also be replaced by angle iron(s).

The shrouded system described in FIGS. 22-23 provides a red marker that can be used by the installer and inspectors after installation is complete. This means that an on-site inspector is not required until the product is completely installed so that schedules are not affected and the interim inspection costs are lessened.

It is to be appreciated that all of the components of the systems disclosed herein may be shortened, lengthened, increased in size, both dimensionally and by increasing the thickness of the component parts at the discretion of the structural engineer as needed on a building by building basis. In those applications where a shroud assembly or an angle-iron has a span over 8 feet, it may be necessary to anchor either or both at a specified intervals.

It must also be appreciated that while the embodiments, components and elements of the various systems and structures of the invention(s) described herein are preferably made of metal, any of the embodiments, components and/or elements may be made of any other suitable rigid material (including without limitation plastics, acrylics, or the like) that provides an appropriate level of strength and durability.

At locations that have a wall-to-wall system connecting all beams to walls, a strut line in line with the aforementioned anchored beams along the length of the building should be established with a similar beam to wall connection on the opposite end of the building.

In some situations where the embodiment of FIG. 17 is employed, a building length strut line may be established every 24 feet, every third purlin 120, which means only one third of the building purlins need to be shimmed for compression. The PT cables 180 that traverse the building (one on each side of the center purlin in this embodiment along with the shimmed purlin ends where they abut GLB's) supply the necessary tension and compression elements required for all three purlins at each installation. This embodiment illustrates a single system of FIG. 7 installed in the center purlin of this embodiment and two systems of FIG. 17 installed on both adjacent purlins. Both of the FIG. 17 systems connect to the angled bracket 63′ welded to the side of the transition bracket. The two PT cables 180 attach to two welded brackets 64 on the side of the aforementioned transition bracket and extend the length of the building where they attach to an identical FIG. 17 assembly.

It is to be appreciated that different versions of the invention may be made from different combinations of the various embodiments, elements and components described above. In particular, each of the disclosed embodiments, and any of the sub-elements thereof, may be used in combination with any of the other embodiments disclosed, or any of the sub-elements thereof. For example, and without limitation, bracket members 90 may be attached to extend between any of brackets 131, 132, 133, 134, 191, 192 and/or 193 which brackets may be mounted in various locations on any or all of a wall 140, ledger 40, beam 30 and/or purlin 120; and/or such elements may or may not be used with other brackets such as 70 and 90; and/or such elements may or may not be used with other support devices such as rods 23, 191, 171 and/or 175 (and their respective mounting brackets 63, 67, 161-164, 172 and/or 173, etc.); and/or such elements may be used with brackets 10 and/or 11; and/or may be used with cabling systems 180. The length and angle of members such as brackets 90 and rods 23 may be varied according to the location of the support brackets to which they are attached.

It is to be appreciated that the support systems of the present invention may be employed for use on any support structure spanning between building walls including without limitation ceilings, floors, and the like.

It is to be understood that other variations and modifications of the present invention may be made without departing from the scope thereof. It is also to be understood that the present invention is not to be limited by the specific embodiments disclosed herein, but only in accordance with the appended claims when read in light of the foregoing specification.