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Frequently Asked Questions

General

I have a glulam beam that is deeper than I need. Can I rip it to a shallower depth? Should I remove the excess depth from the top or from the bottom?

The removal of laminations from glulam beams is generally not recommended. Glulam beams are typically manufactured with the highest quality laminations placed at the top and bottom of the section. Removal of laminations from the top or bottom of the beam will result in significant reductions in design properties related to both strength and stiffness. In particular, the laminations at the bottom (tension side) of the beam are typically the highest grade in the lay-up. Removal of these laminations will cause severe reductions in allowable stresses and in modulus of elasticity.

If the removal of laminations cannot be avoided, the excess depth should be taken from the compression side (top) of the beam. Reduced design values for beams with compression laminations removed can be obtained from AITC 117, Table A3.

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