Conducting in-place shear tests


A new ASTM standard (ASTM C 1531-02 Standard Test Methods for In Situ Measurement of Masonry Mortar Joint Shear Strength Index) prescribes three methods for measuring the shear strength of mortar joints.  The in-place shear test (or push test) provides a direct measurement of the shear resistance of mortar joints, and is suitable for masonry that has relatively strong units and weak mortar so that shear cracks form in the typical staircase pattern along mortar joints and the units remain uncracked.  The new standard provides: a detailed technical description of the equipment, procedures and calculations; a technique for controlling the vertical stress at the test location; and a technique of applying horizontal load by using a flatjack inserted into a head joint.  The three test methods are described in detail.

Primary author(s): Transue D

                            Atkinson-Noland & Associates Inc.

Source: Masonry Constr.


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