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Glossary A-C

Agricultural Building

A structure designed and constructed to house farm implements, hay, grain, poultry, livestock or other horticultural products. Such structures shall not include habitable or occupiable spaces, spaces in which agricultural products are processed, treated or packaged; nor shall an agricultural building be a place of occupancy by the general public. For quotes see our steel riding arenas, steel horse barns and barn kits sections of the site


A supplementary building product, such as a door, window, skylight, ventilator, louver, etc.

Anchor Bolt Plan

A plan view of a building(s) foundations showing all dimensions and sections required to properly locate the anchor bolts, including the projections of the bolts above the concrete surface, required recess, etc. Column reactions (magnitude and direction), and base plate dimensions are also included.

Anchor Bolts

Bolts used to anchor structural members to a concrete floor, foundation or other support. Usually refers to the bolts at the bottom of all columns and doorjambs.


A hot rolled member with two legs forming a 90 degree angle.

Approval Drawings

Drawings sent to the customer to verify design and dimensions and to verify the sales contract description of materials and services the supplier has agreed to furnish.

Auxiliary Loads

All specified dynamic live loads, other than the basic design loads, which the building must safely withstand. Examples are loads imposed by crane systems, material handling systems and impact loads.

Building Width

The dimension measured from outside to outside of sidewall girts.

Building Eave Height

The dimension measured from the bottom of the base plate on the column to the intersection of the inside of the roof and sidewall sheets.

Building Length

The dimension measured from outside to outside of endwall girts.

Back-up Plates

Additional plates used in connections to provide sufficient bolt grip, allow for erection tolerances, or increase strength.

Base Angle

A continuous angle fixed to the slab or to the grade beam to enable the attachment of wall panels.

Base Plate

The endplate of a column, which rests on the supporting substructure surface.


The space between the centerlines of frames or primary supporting members in the longitudinal direction of the building. Also called Bay Spacing or Bay Length.


A horizontal structural member designed primarily to resist moments.

Beam and Column

A structural system consisting of a series of rafter beams supported by columns. Often used as the end frame of a building.

Bill of Materials

A list of items or components used for fabrication, shipping, receiving, and accounting purposes.

Blind Rivet

A small headed pin with an expandable shank for joining light gauge metal. Typically used to attach flashing, gutters, etc. Also referred to as a Pop Rivet.

Brace Grip

Galvanized steel strands formed into a helical hairpin shape that is
wrapped tightly on the strand at the end of the cable brace.

Brace Rods/Cables

Rods or cables placed diagonally in the roof and walls for the purpose of transferring wind loads to the foundations and longitudinally stabilizing the building.


A structural support projecting from a column or rafter to which another structural member is fastened. Example: Brackets supporting crane runway beams.

Building Codes

Regulations developed by recognized agencies establishing minimum building requirements for licensing, safety and functionality purposes such as setbacks, fire regulations, spacing and clearances. Building codes usually address acceptable design codes. An example of a building code is the International Building Code (IBC).

Built-up Section

A structural member, usually an "I" shape, made from individual flat plates welded together.

Butt Plate

The end plate of a structural member, which usually rests against a similar endplate of another member to form a moment resisting connection. Also called Splice Plate, End Plate, or Cap Plate.

By-pass Girt

The girt, which passes continuously along the outside flanges of the columns.

C Section

A member formed into a "C" shaped profile by cold roll forming from coils.


An overhanging or projecting roof structure, below the eave level, supported at one end only.


A projecting beam that is supported and restrained at one end only.

Cantilever Beam

A beam supported only at one end having a free end and a fixed end.

Cap Plate

A plate located at the top of a column or end of a beam. Also referred to as End Plate.


A narrow walkway used to provide access to mechanical equipment normally supported on roof platforms.


Standard drawings and design analysis shall bear the seal of a registered professional engineer upon request. Design analysis shall be on file and furnished by the supplier upon request.

Channel (Hot Rolled)

A member formed, while in a semi-molten state at the steel mill, into a "C" shaped profile having standard dimensions and properties specified by a relevant standard specification.

Checkered Plate

Flat hot rolled plate with raised checkered design to prevent slipping; used for industrial equipment platforms, catwalks, stair treads, etc.

Clear Height

The vertical dimension from the finished floor level to the lowest underside point of the rafter.

Clear Span

A building without internal columns.

Closure Strip

Purpose-made foam fillers to fit inside and outside profiles of roof and wall panels providing a weather-tight seal. Also known as Foam Closure.

Cold Forming

The process of using press brakes or rolling mills to shape steel into desired cross sections at room temperature.

Cold-Formed Member

A light gauge structural member produced from coiled steel stock running through a series of rolls at normal room temperatures.

Collateral Load

The static load other than the basic design loads such as sprinklers, mechanical and electrical systems, ceilings, etc.


A vertical structural member used in a building to transfer loads from the main roof beams, trusses or rafters to the foundation.


An independent part of an assembly.

Concrete Notch

A rebate or notch formed along the edge of the concrete floor slab or grade beam, allowing wall panels to end below the floor level thus preventing ingress of dust or water.

Continuous Beam

A beam that has more than two points of support.

Continuous Ridge Vent

Two or more ridge ventilators mounted on the building ridge that allows air circulation.

Corner Column

A column at any corner of a building. Corner columns may be primary rigid frame columns or post-and-beam columns.

Cross Section

A view formed by a plane cutting through an object usually at right angles to its axes.

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