Synthesis of Information Related to Highway Practices. Topic 53-13. Practices for Steel Bridge Fabrication and Erection Tolerances

There is lack of uniformity of information available to state departments of transportation (DOTs) about current steel bridge fabrication and erection tolerance practices both in the shops and in the field. The majority of the information available is for precast concrete bridges. The AASHTO National Steel Bridge Alliance Steel Bridge Collaboration group has noted that the use of oversize holes can lead to loss of overall structure geometry and fit-up problems during erection. Tolerances in steel fabrication require special processes such as shop blocking beams to drill field splice holes to ensure proper fit-up. Significant variability exists in state DOT fabrication and erection practices around the country and even from project to project. For example, some DOTs require full shop erection and fit-up to resolve tolerance issues in connections while others allow progressive assembly or digital fit-up. The objective of this synthesis is to document current state DOT practices related to tolerance management for steel bridges. The synthesis will focus only on steel bridge components.


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  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $45000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 20-05, Topic 53-13

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Synthesis

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Gause, Jo

  • Performing Organizations:

    Medlock, LLC

    City,   United States 
  • Principal Investigators:

    Medlock, Ronnie

  • Start Date: 20211012
  • Expected Completion Date: 20230612
  • Actual Completion Date: 20230612

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01771602
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 20-05, Topic 53-13
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: May 18 2021 12:47PM