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The contents of this report reflect the views of the author(s), who is responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Commonwealth Transportation Board, or the Federal Highway Administration. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. Any inclusion of manufacturer names, trade names, or trademarks is for identification purposes only and is not to be considered an endorsement.


Ramifications of Welding a Soleplate to a Precast Metal Insert of a Prestressed Single-tee Beam
Michael M. Sprinkel
Year: 1976
VTRC No.: 76-R41
Abstract: A model of the bearing assembly specified on the plans for the bridges being constructed in Norton, Virginia, was prepared in the laboratory at the Research Council. The shielded metal-arc welding process was used to weld the soleplate to the metal insert. The electric arc, varying from 175-225 amps, and several 5/32 inch E6010 electrodes were used in making the weld. Thermocouples and tempilstiks were used to monitor the temperature distribution throughout the bearing assembly during the welding. Based on the laboratory investigation, it is believed that the bearing assembly requiring the 3/8 inch field groove weld specified for the Norton bridges will be satisfactory but may not necessarily be the most desirable. It is recommended that cement grout be used to fill any cracks which form between the insert plate and the concrete because of welding. Also, for aesthetic purposes, the concrete should be protected from the discoloration caused by welding. If the performance or appearance of the bearing assembly used in the Norton bridges turns out to be less than desirable or if welding appears to require unnecessary field labor and cost, it is recommended that the Department consider the use of an alternative bearing assembly in future prestressed bridge members.