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Structural Design for the Stage by Bradley L Powers, Steven A Schmidt, Ben Sammler, Alys Holden

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11

Trusses and Cables

INTRODUCTION

Trusses and cables are common methods of efficiently supporting weight. Both are designed to maximize the loading per unit of material, which has obvious advantages in theatrical situations. Quite frequently, the concepts behind truss and cable design are shrouded in mystery, implying that genius-level intelligence is required to understand them. In reality, the analysis of both is based on the rules of static equilibrium and basic trigonometry.

Simply stated, “A truss is a structure composed of slender members joined together at their end points” (Hibbeler, 81). A truss can range from a simple three-member triangle to a complicated repeating pattern which spans hundreds of feet. In this chapter, we will focus ...

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