The Steel Framing Alliance announces upgrades to the Steel Framing Hotline, resulting in expanded hours and enhanced access to technical and practical knowledge about the design and construction of cold-formed steel-framed structures.

Experts who man the hotline can be reached by dialing (800) 79-STEEL.

Supervised on site by Nader Elhajj PE, director, structure and materials, for the NAHB Research Center, the hotline increases the number of hours when an expert can be reached-from two hours a day to eight hours. New hours are 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, EST.

In other SFA news, two new publications and three 2004 supplements of existing publications in the steel industry's library of Standards for Cold-Formed Steel Framing are now available from the alliance. In addition, SFA has revised the publications' pricing structure, reducing the cost for these and other standards.

The new standards added to the suite of ANSI-approved publications are Lateral Design and Wall Stud. The Lateral Design Standard contains requirements for shear wall design, diagonal strap bracing and diaphragms. Like the IBC and NFPA model building codes, this standard has design procedures for Type I (segmented) and Type II (perforated) shear walls. Diaphragm values for wood structural panel sheathing are included, as is a procedure for determining design deflections so the designer has a way to check against code drift limits for seismic considerations.

The 2004 editions have recently been made available for the General Provisions, Truss Design and Header Design standards. General Provisions adds language that clarifies the requirements for additional corrosion protection and updates the reference documents and standards it cites. In Header Design, the scope was expanded to include single L-headers, corrections were made to the crippling capacity of box headers, and the list of reference documents was updated. The Truss Design Standard was revised to clarify definitions and update reference documents.

Included in the group of publications that make up the 2004 set is a supplement to the current Prescriptive Method that expands the information available about headers, braced walls and roof framing in high wind design, ceiling joists, and wall-to-floor connections.

The publications can be ordered by calling (202) 785-2022 or by downloading an order at