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Hinge Connector Specifier Guide

Technical & Installation Notes

Hinge connectors are designed to transfer loads between two beams aligned end-to-end from the end of the supported beam to the end of the supporting beam through a combination of bearing plates, side plates and bolts. Besides supporting gravity load, hinge connectors can also be ordered with additional bolt holes to resist horizontal loads if the beams are part of the continuous lateral load path.

General Requirements

  • Supporting and supported beams must be the same width.
  • Supporting beam should be at least as deep as the supported beam. Contact Simpson Strong-Tie if the supporting beam is shallower than supported beam.
  • Minimum supported beam depth is 8" for connectors without lateral capacity and 14" with lateral capacity. Maximum depth of the supported beam is 60".

Special Considerations for Dapping

HCA hinge connectors can also be ordered to accommodate dapping, or notching on the top of the beam. This notching allows the bearing plate to be flush with the top surface. Dapping on the bottom of the beam is uncommon and requires approval from the Designer.

When ordering an HCA hinge connector for a beam dapped on the top side, remember to subtract the plate thickness from the height of the carried beam when specifying the connector height. See Step 4 below for an example for ordering a hanger for a dapped beam.

HC4C3TA callout
HC4C3TA callout

How to Specify a Hinge Connector

Example

6 3/4" x 21" glulam with 20,000 lb. of roof load and 11,000 lb. of horizontal load (@ 160% duration).

Step 1 — Select Base Model Prefix using the "Horizontal Load Table":
  • If there is no horizontal load — pick either HCA or HC3A.
  • For the 11,000 lb. shown in example, choose either HCCTA with two rotation bolts or HCC3TA with three rotation bolts each with 14,850 lb. of horizontal capacity.

Horizontal Load Table

HCA Hinge Connectors Horizontal Load Table
  1. Loads include a 60% increase for earth quake or wind loading with no further increase allowed.
  2. Horizontal loads are for Douglas fir–larch glulams minimum W = 3 1/8". For other wood types, adjust the load according to the code.
Step 2 — Select Model Size Suffix using the "Allowable Download Table":

Capacity of a hinge connector is determined by the depth of the beam and the length of the bearing plates.

  • For minimum allowable load capacity, beam depth has to be at least 8" (Min. H).
  • For 100% of the allowable load, beam depth has to meet or exceed H1 dimension.
  • For depth between min. H and H1, load value can be interpolated using the following equation:
    [(H1Capacity - HminCapacity) x (Hacutal - Hmin) / (H1-Hmin)] + HminCapacity
Step 3 — Select suffix based on width of the beam:

Using the "Beam Width" column, a 6 3/4"-wide glulam requires a 7 series connector (highlighted box in table).

Step 4 — Determine the exact height (H) of the beam:

Bearing plates will protrude beyond the beams which may interfere with applying plywood or other finish material. To flush the connector, the beams can be dapped to recess the bearing plates, which reduces the effective height of the beam (H dimension) by the thickness of the bearing plate (PT). In the example, H will become 21"-1" = 20" to flush out the top bearing plate. The following steps assume the beam is undapped.

Step 5 — Determine the allowable load:

Loads listed in the table include a 25% increase for roof loads. If the hinge connector is used to support other loading conditions, reduce the values according to code.

Step 6 — Narrow down the selection based on beam depth and load requirement:

20,000 lb. is required, so 7-5 does not work because the allowable roof load capacity is 18,900 lb.. 7-6 initially looks suitable, but the 21" beam is shallower than 24" H1 dimension. Interpolation is required. Using numbers from "Two Rotation Bolts Per Beam" columns the allowable is determined to be:
[(22,680 lb. - 2,595 lb.) x (21"-8") / (24"-8")] + 2,595 lb. = 18,914 lb. < 20,000 lb. required.

Two rotation bolts per beam are not enough to handle the load. To achieve higher load capacity, upgrade to three rotation bolts and use the values from "Three Rotation Bolts Per Beam" columns. The allowable roof load at H1 of 18" is 22,680 lb. > 20,000 lb. required.

Final Step:

Combining the model prefix, suffix and height, the hinge connector most suitable for our example is:
HCC3TA7-6, H = 21"

Allowable Download Table
Model No. Dimensions (in.) Bolt Dia. (in.) Two Rotation Bolts per Beam Three Rotation Bolts per Beam
Beam Width W PT PD H1 H1 Allowable Roof Loads (125)1,2 Min. H1 Min. H Allowable Roof Loads (125)1,2 H1 H1 Allowable Roof Loads (125)1,2 Min. H1 Min. H Allowable Roof Loads (125)1,2
  1. Loads include a 25% increase for live loads; reduce for other durations according to code.
  2. Wood-bearing loads are 750 psi for PSL and 560 for glulam.
  3. See Horizontal Load Table for models with three rotation bolts.
  4. H1 is the minimum dimension required to achieve full load for the hinge connector. For H dimensions between H1 and minimum H, loads may be linearly interpolated.
HCA3-5 3 1/8 3 1/4 3/4 5 3/4 12 8,750 8 3,070 10 8,750 8 4,465
HCA3-7 7 3/4 18 12,250 15 9,240 14 12,250 12 9,235
HCA3.62-5 3 1/2 3 5/8 3/4 5 3/4 15 13,125 8 3,100 12 13,125 8 4,625
HCA3.62-6 6 3/4 20 15,750 17 14,265 15 15,750 13 13,560
HCA3.62-7 7 3/4 24 18,375 21 16,725 18 18,375 16 16,670
HCA3.62-9 9 3/4 34 23,625 28 19,160 25 23,625 21 19,550
HCA5-5 5 1/4 5 1/4 3/4 5 3/4 17 16,015 8 3,100 13 16,015 8 4,560
HCA5-7 7 3/4 27 22,420 20 14,835 20 22,420 16 15,505
HCA5-9 9 3/4 40 28,830 25 16,365 29 28,830 19 16,030
HCA5.37-5 5 1/4 5 3/8 1 5 3/4 19 19,690 8 3,100 15 19,690 8 4,640
HCA5.37-6 6 3/4 26 23,625 22 20,755 20 23,625 17 21,360
HCA5.37-7 7 3/4 31 27,565 28 24,530 24 27,565 21 25,045
HCA5.37-9 9 3/4 40 29,605 38 27,865 34 35,440 28 28,690
HCA5.62-5 5 1/2 5 5/8 3/4 5 3/4 18 17,190 8 3,100 14 17,190 8 4,640
HCA5.62-7 7 3/4 28 24,065 22 17,840 21 24,065 17 18,360
HCA7-5 6 1/4 6 7/8 1 5 3/4 20 21,095 8 3,100 16 21,095 8 4,605
HCA7-6 6 3/4 26 25,315 15 11,670 18 23,275 13 13,580
HCA7-7 7 3/4 33 29,530 24 19,850 24 29,530 18 19,845
HCA7-9 9 3/4 40 29,600 30 20,905 36 37,890 22 20,190
HCA7.12-5 7 7 1/8 1 1/4 5 3/4 23 26,250 8 3,100 18 26,250 8 4,635
HCA7.12-6 6 3/4 31 31,500 12 7,780 23 31,500 11 9,700
HCA7.12-7 7 3/4 39 36,750 16 11,150 29 36,750 14 13,350
HCA7.12-9 9 3/4 40 29,600 24 15,670 40 44,330 19 16,950
HCA9-5 8 7/8 8 7/8 1 1/4 5 3/4 23 27,345 8 3,100 18 27,345 8 4,605
HCA9-6 6 3/4 32 32,815 11 6,485 23 32,815 10 7,755
HCA9-7 7 3/4 40 37,900 29 25,455 29 36,280 22 26,145
HCA9-9 9 3/4 40 29,600 37 27,000 40 44,320 27 27,160
HCA11-5 10 7/8 10 7/8 1 1/2 5 3/4 28 33,595 8 3,100 21 33,595 8 4,605
HCA11-6 6 3/4 38 40,315 25 24,655 27 40,313 18 23,270
HCA11-7 7 3/4 40 37,900 34 31,230 35 47,030 25 30,815
HCA11-9 9 3/4 40 29,600 40 29,615 40 44,325 32 33,630
HCA
HCA
HCCTA
HCCTA
HC3A
HC3A