Beam Calculator

The Simple Beam Calculator currently supports most simply supported beams (those with one pin and one rigid connection) with uniform loading. Zero, one and two cantilever beams are supported by the same calculator. Point loads are not supported at this time.

Cantilevered beams (those with a single rigid connection), and beams with point loads, are not currently supported. They will be soon, though, so stay tuned.

Added, but not yet operational: the Beam Tectonics "calculator" will allow you to enter the cross-section dimensions of the beam to calculate the bending (compression) and shear forces in the beam (fb and fs, respectively). Alternately, the Beam Tectonics calculator can also be used in reverse to "design" a beam for given shear and bending forces!

Important note. The clear span value (BC) must be greater than either cantilever distance (AB and/or CD). Entering a cantiliver distance greater than the clear span distance will trigger an error and cause the calculator to terminate. In some cases, entering a cantilver distance greater than the clear span could cause your browser to crash!

If a particular input value is not applicable to the situation, you may either enter a zero (0) or leave the entry field blank. In the case of single-cantilever beams, always enter the cantilever distance as CD and leave blank or enter zero (0) for AB!

The Fine Print
Note that users execute these JavaScript routines at their own risk! MSEnet makes no warranty as to their completeness or accuracy, nor to their safe execution on any or all platforms. The use of this page constitutes your agreement to indemnify and release MSEnet and its entieies from all liability resulting from your use of this page.

Simple Beam Forces Calculator
 Requires: Clear Span, Uniform Load Options: One cantilever (AB must equal zero [0]); Two cantilievers (AB and CD required) Limits: Does not support point loads or single-connection cantilevers
Attribute Value Units
Left Cantilever (AB): feet
Clear Span (BC): feet
Right Cantilever (CD): feet

Reaction at B: pounds
Reaction at C: pounds
Shear to left of B: pounds
Shear to right of B: pounds
Shear to left of C: pounds
Shear to right of C: pounds
Moment at B: foot-pounds
Mmax (moment at "x"): foot-pounds
Location of Mmax ("x"): feet (to right of B)
Moment at C: foot-pounds
Beam Tectonics
(not yet operational)
Attribute Value Units
Width (b): inches
Depth (d): inches
Section Modulus (S): in3
Moment of Inertia (I): in4
Shear Force (fs): psi
Bending Force (fb): psi