Lightweight Structural-Steel Beam - Fine Homebuilding

  • 7 Small Bathroom Layouts
    7 Small Bathroom Layouts
  • 7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
    7 Trim Carpentry Secrets
  • Tips & Techniques for Painting
    Tips & Techniques for Painting
  • Basement Remodeling Tips
    Basement Remodeling Tips
  • Video: Install a Fence
    Video: Install a Fence
  • Magazine Departments
    Magazine Departments
  • All about Roofing
    All about Roofing
  • Remodeling Articles
    Remodeling Articles
  • Design Inspiration
    Design Inspiration
  • Clever daily tip in your inbox
    Clever daily tip in your inbox
  • Master Carpenter Videos
    Master Carpenter Videos
  • Read FHB on Your iPad
    Read FHB on Your iPad
  • Energy-Smart Details
    Energy-Smart Details
  • Radiant Heat Comparison
    Radiant Heat Comparison
  • 9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
    9 Concrete Countertops Ideas
  • 7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
    7 Smart Kitchen Solutions
  • Video Series: Tile a Bathroom
    Video Series: Tile a Bathroom

Lightweight Structural-Steel Beam

comments (10) July 14th, 2009 in Blogs
JFink Justin Fink, Senior Editor

LVLs, LSLs, and PSLs revolutionized the ways that wood could be manipulated to create man-made structural components...components that outdid Mother Nature. Well, now LiteSteel is entering the game, too.

LiteSteelBeam, or LSB for short, is a patented, cold-formed, light-weight steel structural beam that combines the strength of hot-rolled steel with the installation workability of engineered wood beams. More than six years of research, development, and patenting went into the creation of the unique shape. Then the product was subjected to extensive testing in laboratories.


LSB delivers the same load-carrying capacity as hot-rolled steel, and it can be worked like engineered wood (cuts, nails, and can be integrated with wood framing with standard connectors) - but at around 6-12 lbs. per foot, it's 40% lighter than both.


The company says that ideal applications include basement beams, long-span headers, garage beams, roof and ridge beams, and floor and deck supports.


For more information on LiteSteel Technologies America, visit:

posted in: Blogs, remodeling, framing, restorations, roofs, additions, ridge, header, psl, microlam, beam, structural, lsl, lvl

Comments (10)

GaryLL GaryLL writes: This is now posted on their website

"Effective June 2012, LiteSteel technologies ceased operations and all inventory and plant were sold. It is not expected that LiteSteel technologies will recommence operations."

Another one bites the dust..............
Posted: 6:53 am on January 28th

JFink JFink writes: This update may interest some of you: I just got a press release from LiteSteel announcing a deal with BlueLinx to begin distributing LSBs to every major market East of Colorado.
Posted: 12:47 pm on July 31st

Oak River Mike Oak River Mike writes: Ditto what MikeG said. I had inquired previously for some projects and no one in my area (Tampa) had them or was even interested in getting me just one or two. Told me I had to at least buy a dozen before it was worth shipping.
Looks like a great product and I want to use but need help from some suppliers to do so.
Posted: 7:36 am on July 30th

Cal67 Cal67 writes: How do the beams rate in terms of fire/heat resistance. In some critical applications does the company recommend encasement in sheetrock or other fire resistant material? I ask because of the critical use of some of these beams as mid point basement supports and ridges?.
Posted: 1:48 pm on July 20th

JFink JFink writes: Good question on cost, Chuck - The FAQ from the company says that the cost is competitive with typical steel beams and engineered beams - but that's more than a little bit squishy. The company claims that additional savings is realized by eliminating the need for a crane on the jobsite.

Also, I'm not sure that there is a direct savings in vertical height, though each of the different nominal sizes (8, 10, 12, and 14-inch depths) is available in 3 different thicknesses.
Posted: 1:20 pm on July 20th

ChuckB ChuckB writes: Interesting stuff. What about cost? And what's the savings in space (i.e. 6-in. steel vs. 10-in. LVL)? Can they be welded to heavier steel beams?
Posted: 12:02 pm on July 17th

JFink JFink writes: Hi Mike,
I know you aren't REALLY surprised to see a product like this as a special order! It's a good question about the cost of the special order, though. I could see the lede time being a problem if you wanted to use them on a remodel job, where whatever is in stock often becomes the go-to choice for headers, beams, etc (extreme structural necessities notwithstanding), but I could see them as an easy thing to integrate into new construction, because they would be on the blueprints from much earlier on, no?
Posted: 10:20 am on July 17th

JFink JFink writes: Rob - great question. From what I can tell, integrating hanger hardware with an LSB would be similar to some of the methods used to integrate the hardware with a typical I-Beam.

There is a photo above that shows a 2x nested into the flange of the LSB, which makes perfect sense.

What I'm not sure of is how they intend hangers to be attached to the opposite (flat) side...I will check back with the company and see what I can find.
Posted: 10:17 am on July 17th

RYagid RYagid writes: Hey Justin,

These beams have the, "workability of engineered wood beams." That's awesome. However, I was wondering if you can hang joist hangers or other brackets from it if need be? If so, how's it done?
Posted: 4:29 pm on July 16th

MikeGuertin MikeGuertin writes: The beams sound good but aren't available nationwide. And though the company boasts that you can pick them up at your local lumberyard - none of the 3 local dealers to me stock them. They can be special ordered (yeah, how much will that cost?) but I hate waiting! I guess I'll just have to plan a little better if I want to use them.
Posted: 12:32 pm on July 16th

Log in or create a free account to post a comment.