Portal Frames

Steel frame portal buildings are a great option for anyone looking to construct storage and other buildings on a budget. In circumstances where the internal finish isn’t a priority but protection from the elements is critical, then steel is the ideal material of choice.

Portal frames are usually designed for low rise structures and consist of columns and pitched or horizontal rafters joined together by moment resisting connectors. In all types of portal frames, it’s necessary to consider its stability which is why diagonal bracing is used to strengthen the structure of the framework and prevent movement.

Here in Australia, steel portal frames are very common and since they can enclose large areas, they’re particularly suited for agricultural use as well as industrial, commercial, and retail storage, as well as for agricultural use.

Types of portal frames

Portal frames come in a variety of styles, including:

Pitched roof symmetrical portal frameUniversal beams are normally used to construct this type of portal frame which as a generous area in the eaves.

Portal frame with interior mezzanine floorThis type of portal frame contains a mezzanine floor which extends from one side of the building part of the way across to accommodate office staff or for additional storage.

Propped portal frameWhere the portal frame covers a large area and there’s no requirement for a clear span, columns and pillars which take up minimal floor space are used to reduce the size of the rafters.

Manyard portal frame -This can be used in those circumstances where the eaves height of the building has to be minimised but a large clear height is required mid-span.

Mono pitch portal frameThis is a simpler version of a pitched roof portal frame and is generally used for smaller buildings.


Adding the finishing touch with cladding

Cladding rails are attached either horizontally or vertically, depending on the style of the structure, to fix external metal cladding to cover the portal framework. Typically, wire and tubular ties are utilised to prevent the cladding from sagging. Without this, a far greater force would need to be absorbed by the joints of the external cladding.


Advantages of Portal Frames

  • Quick to erect
  • A building can be quickly enclosed and made watertight
  • Since the framework is fabricated in a workshop, building isn’t delayed by the weather
  • Site works such as drainage and roads can be carried out until the portal frame is ready to be erected

Here at Metro Steel our team are experienced in all types of portal frame fabrication, so why not give us a call on 07 3204 1000 to discuss your project or drop by our facility at Kabi Circuit, Deception Bay to discuss your requirements.

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