Effect of Unloading and Reloading on Bearing Strength of Unconfined Cold-Formed Steel Bolted Connections

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Journal of Structural Engineering (United States)


This data paper presents the experimental investigation of unconfined cold-formed steel double-shear bolted connections where the applied load was stopped at different stages of loading (25% or 65% of the ultimate failure load under monotonic loading) followed by unloading, and finally reloading until failure. A total of 78 bolted connections of cold-formed steel subjected to loading-unloading and reloading conditions with sheet thicknesses ranging from 0.55 to 3.0 mm, bolted with 10, 12, or 16-mm bolts were investigated and compared to the identical specimens subjected to monotonic loading. The failure mode of the specimens tested under both loading conditions was bearing of the inner sheet. The test results show that ultimate capacities obtained from unloading and reloading tests were, on average, lower than those obtained from the monotonic tests. A similar trend was also observed for the displacement corresponding to the ultimate loads. However, the effects of sheet thickness and bolt diameter were found to be less critical. This study establishes a publicly available database of control cases to build the foundation for further study into similar loading regimes. This paper also alludes to several potential use cases for the available data.

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