I and H beams have form similarities, so how can they be chosen in practice? This article is going to give detail explanations on the theme.  It is apparent in the following figure that there are differences in their shapes.

I beam crossed section has got I-like shape. Inside layer incline of top and bottom flanges appears within 1:6. This results in outer thin flanges and inner flange thickness and makes I beam crossed section features greatly different. Exerting steel rigidity in practice is rather hard. I beam is widespread in steel marketplace, though it lacks twist resisting quality.

H beam has a vast usage in steel-structured building these days and it has been proved to differ from I beam.

Differences in flanges are quite clear in the first figure, the second one shows that there is not any incline in flanges, top and bottom layers are parallely positioned. H beam cross-sectional properties excel the conventional I beam as well as channel-steel, angle-steel. H beam is a saving section-steel possessing optimal sectional expansion, more acceptable strong load ratios. It is called so as the crossed sectional form of it has some similarity to H letter. Both of its outer beams are direct, no incline exists in the midst of them. Due to this H beam weld process is easier compared to I beam. H beam steels possess more preferable technical features, that allow saving lots of time as well as materials. I beam sectional area bears immidiate compression and tensile-strength, though section sizes are excessively limited to oppose twist in contrast to H beam steels. Theymay be both advantagous and disadvatagous.

H and I beam distinctions and application.

1. I beam sectional sizes are restricted and high in cases of regular and light duty beams. It cannot be applied for axle compressing structure elements and for bend of structure elements vertical to web planes. This considerably limits its applications.

2. H beam steels are included in highly efficient economical cut profiles such as cold bent, thi-walled sectional steels, compress steels and so on. Because of its preferable sectional form, it functions more effectively and bears more weight. In contrast to a regular I beam, H beam flange is wide, inside and outside layers are parallely positioned strengthening it in high-forced bolt connection. Possessing optimized size and accomplished samples itis quite simple to design and use it.

3. H beam steels possess equally thick flanges together with roll sections, compound crossed section containing 3 weld plates. I beam is a roll section with 1:10 incline in flange sides due to weak fabrication techniques. H beam roll differs from I beam roll. H beam utmost roll highness is 800 mm in China, in case more highness is needed, it welds compound crossed section.

4. Hot rolled H beam steels (GB/t11263-1998) fall into 3 groups: hz, hk, hu.

1.narrow-flanged

2. wide-flanged

3. steel-piled. 

The first one is applicable in case of beam and bend elements, the second and third ones sre for awle compress structure and bend elements. In comparison with H beam, I beam in the same load w, ix, iy of I beam is not as suitable.

5.  I beam is shorter, higher, it bears one-direction strength.

6. H beam is deep-grooved, considerably thick, it bears two-direction strength.

7. I beam steel does not meet today`s requirements of steel-structured buildings, as relatively thicker I beam is not stable in the application of load bearing column. I beam is quite suitable for beam constructing, whereas H beam is proper while buildind load bearing column.

9. H beam excels I beam with its saving and more preferable technical characteristics. Its hot roll flanges are broader compared to I beam flanges. Its sidelong firmness is larger, it is more bend-resistant. It excels I beam in lightness even possessing all the same specifications.

10. I beam flanges are thicker at web and thinner at outer face. H beam has got equally crossed sections.

11. H beam can also be referred to as HW, HM, HN, H. While H beam has weld capacity, HW, HM, HN are hot-rolled.

12. HW is as high as H beam, it has the same flange breadth as H beam. It is mostly applied while constructing steel-cored columns in reinforce concrete-framed columns. So it is applicable in steel-structured columns.

HM highness and breadth correlation is 1.33~~1.75. It can be applied in steel structures, in form of steel-framed columns and in dynamic-load withstanding frame structures in form of beams, e.g device platforms.

14. HN highness and flange breadth correlation equals 2 or it can be larger. HN has some similarity in application with I beam. It is mostly applied while constructing beams.  

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