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Thumb rules for designing a Column layout | Civil Engineering


Alignment of columns, Building Construction, Design of columns, Distance between columns, Guide to making a column layout, How to make a column layout?, Size of the columns, structural design, Thumb rules for making a column layout, Wrong Structural Design

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Guidelines to be followed for making a column layout | Building Construction


Today, we will discuss something very general. Inspite of knowing these general thumb rules, Civil Engineers still end up making disastrous mistakes which would not only cost them but also cost the people living in the building designed by these engineers. Earlier, I wrote an article describing one of my projects where structural designing was executed on site (which was extremely pathetic) even before Architectural design was done. (Check out: Consequences of Wrong Structural Design | Live Project example) In this article, we will go through the essential thumb rules to be followed for giving a column layout. Ofcourse RCC columns have to be designed in accordance to the total load on the columns but apart from that it is essential for every Civil engineer and Architect to remember a few thumb rules so that they are prevented from making mistakes.

Three thumb rules to be followed are as follows:


1. Size of the Columns

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2. Distance between Columns 3. Alignment of columns

Thumb rule no.1 Size of the columns


The size of the columns depends on the total load on the columns. Minimum size of the column should not be less than 9x9. 9x9 columns are to be used for a single storey structure with M15 grade of concrete. In case, 9x9 column size is to be used for 1 and half storey structure, then it is advised to use M20 grade concrete. A safe and structurally sound column size for a 1 and half storey structure should not be less than 12x9 using M15 grade concrete. This should be in your most preferred and practical options list. Thumb rule no.2

Distance between the columns


Try to maintain equal distance between the centres of two columns. Always plan a column layout on a grid. The distance between two columns of size 9x9 should not be more than 4m centre to centre of column. If larger barrier free distances are required then going for larger column size is to be used.

The size of the columns increase because of two factors:


1. Increase in the distance between two columns (This increases the dimensions of the columns as well the depth of the beam.) 2. Height of the building (Increase in the number of floors is directly proportional to the dimensions of the columns. Thumb rule no.3

Alignment of Columns
A rectangular grid is to be made for placing the columns. This helps in avoiding mistakes and placing in columns can be done in the right way.

The columns can preferably be arranged in two different fashions:


1. In a straight line with the help of a grid 2. In a circular fashion for circular buildings. Zigzag arrangement of columns is an absolutely wrong way of working out Structural design. It should be remembered that when columns are erected, beams are laid connecting the columns.

The Zigzag column placement causes three major issues:


1. Unbalanced load transfer 2. Problems in wall construction 3. Problems in laying beams If these three thumb rules are followed by Civil Engineering and Architecture students, implementation of wrong Structural design can be prevented. In the next article, I will explain these three thumb rules with the help of an example Column Layout for a Residence.

Also read:
Introduction to design of RCC Structures Building Design Guide which includes design of: 1. RCC columns 2. RCC beams 3. Foundations 4. Staircase

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This entry was posted on September 9, 2011, 9:27 am and is filed under Building Construction, Civil Projects. You can follow any responses to this entry through RSS 2.0. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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#1 by Ghulam Mustafa Vira on September 9, 2011 - 10:58 am


wow gr8 stuff thanx

#2 by BenzuJK on September 9, 2011 - 11:53 am


Hello Mustafa, I am glad our article has been of help to you. Do keep visiting. Cheers

#3 by awais on April 2, 2012 - 9:27 pm


thanks

#4 by ADIL YOUSAF ADIL on August 13, 2012 - 5:05 pm


thanks for this good welfare

#5 by Poonguzhale.V on September 27, 2011 - 2:53 am


worth stuff. thanks a lot

#6 by Vaibhav kashyap on December 3, 2011 - 4:42 am


Igts really worth article.. Thnx..

#7 by sunita on January 31, 2012 - 3:02 am


Really helpful article Thanks for sharing

#8 by rhon ammang on February 15, 2012 - 11:14 pm

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A BIG HELP 4 ME,,THANKS

#9 by KANNAN on May 1, 2012 - 2:35 am


Thanks

#10 by Gerard on May 2, 2012 - 4:51 pm


Sorry, if I may sound dumb as I am a new bee. What does 1 and half storey structure mean? A house will be either 1 or 2 storey. Also, would it be ok if the column size is 12x12 using M15 grade concrete? Thanks in advance.

#11 by BenzuJK on May 15, 2012 - 10:17 am


Hello Gerard, 1 and half storey is calculated by adding the length of the plinth beam and the parapet wall. When their lengths are added, they sum up to 5 which is equivalent to half storey. This is assumed so since they have to be considered in the structural design calculations. As far as column size is concerned, the column size for any building is derived from its structural calculations. Go through the following article. It will be of help to you. Building design Guide | Structural Design

#12 by mahantesh on July 13, 2012 - 4:56 am


hi..its very nice article if possible mail me thumbrules for brick masonry.

#13 by Gourav tiwari on July 30, 2012 - 4:49 am


Very nice articles. Thanks for such a wonderful job. GhPlease mention some more thumb rule practised in civil eng.

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