Experimental Investigation of Load Sharing Behavior for Timber Half- Caps of Toodyay Bridge

A.A. Shah1, Y. Ribakov *, 2, A. Khan 3
1 Department of Mechanical and Environmental Informatics, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan
2 Department of Civil Engineering, Ariel University Center of Samaria, Ariel, 44837, Israel
3 Department of Civil Engineering, Curtin University of Technology, Perth, Australia

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© Shah et al.;

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 International Public License (CC BY-NC 4.0) (, which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Civil Engineering, Ariel University Center of Samaria, Ariel, 44837, Israel. E-mail:


This study investigates the load sharing capabilities for half-caps of a 190m long timber bridge. The bridge has 31 spans over the Avon River in Toodyay, Western Australia. It was constructed from local hardwood timbers and had a series of repairs. However as the width between kerbs was only 5.5 m and it was no footpath it was decided to replace the bridge by a new wider concrete structure. The proposed removal of the existing bridge provided an opportunity to carry out a research program aimed at bridge inspection, estimation of timber material properties, required for more accurate modeling of structural failure as well as selection of improved repair techniques and strengthening methods. Nondestructive evaluation of the bridge prior to construction of a new one was conducted using trucks to provide both static and dynamic loadings. Half-cap load sharing was examined for north and south loading of the bridge deck at the pier and span positions. This paper deals with the results obtained only the north loading case at the pier position. As Toodyay Bridge 631 is a typical timber bridge in Western Australia, the findings of this study can be applied to other bridges to prolong their lifetime.

Keywords: Timber bridge, experimental investigation, half-caps.