Issue Papers
The SFIA provides members with in-depth analysis of trends in the industry, codes and standards, and competitive materials to enable members to make more informed business planning decisions.

Downgrade of Design Values for Southern Yellow Pine PDF Email
This White Paper provides SFIA members with an analysis on the impact of the recent reduction of structural values for one of the most common species of wood used in construction: Southern Yellow Pine.

As noted in the White Paper, the move provides a significant boost for the competitiveness of cold-formed steel, and was triggered by a change in the resource mix of species of pine grouped as Southern Pine. In January 2013, the American Lumber Standard Committee (ALSC) Board of Review voted to reduce the structural properties of visually graded Southern Pine (SP), and the change became effective on June 1, 2013. The downgrading is significant, with reduction in values from 15% to 30%,.

When applied to the design of a commercial building, it was found that in many cases the grade of the wood stud had to be increased in many conditions throughout the structure,resulting in higher costs of 5% or more for a SP wood framed structural system.

Impact of New Energy Codes on Cold-Formed Steel PDF Email
Recent changes in energy codes and standards are expected to have significant impacts on the selection and design of a structural system for building, including new Federal legislation that will ensure adoption and enforcement of energy codes even in areas where no code has existed in the past. These changes will require the cold-formed steel framing industry to develop alternative standard details and alter installation practices.

The SFIA Issue Paper, “Energy and Codes”, provides an in-depth analysis and possible ways that members and the industry can adapt to the evolving codes, and can be downloaded by clicking here.


When Sound is Green PDF Email

The International Building Code (IBC) and most other major model codes have long required some minimum acoustic performance from buildings. However, the recent emergence of “green” codes and standards is taking acoustic protection requirements to a higher level. Now, advocates for “green building” have broadened the definition of sustainable to include acoustic performance in buildings.

If the trend in green codes and standards begins to creep over into “regular’ building codes, as is often the case, the construction industry will need to deliver better-performing hotels, schools, offices and similar buildings to boost their ability to keep out unwanted sounds. Cold-formed steel will face challenges like many other materials.

This new SFIA Issue Paper provides an overview of the momentum that is building behind the move toward more stringent acoustic performance requirements and suggestions on how to address the new challenges they present.