gypsum

Calculating Fire Resistance Ratings of Wood Assemblies Using the IBC

by Sean O'Hara, AIA, LEED AP November 16, 2018
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Architects and Contractors can spend a lot of time hunting for miscellaneous fire rated assemblies in wood construction. What you’ll eventually learn is that the easiest place to design your own 1-hour assembly is Section 721.6 of the International Building Code. The section details the […]

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Use 5/8″ Gypsum Board With 24″ Stud Spacing

by Sean O'Hara, AIA, LEED AP August 23, 2018

Most residential projects are framed with wall studs at 16″ on center and finished with 1/2″ gypsum board. To save lumber many builders are moving to 24″ centers where they can, in interior walls or at exterior walls where the trusses are aligned with the […]

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The Easiest Place to Find Fire Rated Assemblies is the Gypsum Association Manual

by Sean O'Hara, AIA, LEED AP June 10, 2016

After several projects of fighting with the UL Manual (Underwriters Laboratories) and the International Building Code I discovered that there is a much easier visual way to find fire rated assemblies. I use the Gypsum Association Fire Resistance Design Manual. Everything is visual and it […]

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Dwelling Unit Separation Wall at Duplexes and Townhomes (2 Hour Fire Wall)

by Sean O'Hara, AIA, LEED AP December 15, 2015

The International Residential Code requires that in townhomes and duplexes, each unit needs to be separated from the next by fire walls. In addition each unit needs to be self supporting where the collapse of one unit will not damage the neighboring unit. In my […]

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Gypsum Association 2009 Fire Resistance Manual

by Sean O'Hara, AIA, LEED AP March 30, 2010

My favorite resource for determining gypsum assemblies for fire protection is the GA Manual. The 2009 manual is now available online. It sorts fire assemblies by the location of the assembly and then by the number of hours each one provides. It also provides STC […]

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Achieving a 2 Hour Floor Ceiling Assembly From the Underside Only

by Sean O'Hara, AIA, LEED AP March 21, 2009

One of our current projects is a change of occupancy where the change will require a 2 hour rating between the main level A-2 occupancy and the R-2 occupancy above. The challenge in these situations is that you do not want to tear into the […]

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