What Is a King Pile Beam?

A king pile beam is the beam that’s used to create a king pile combined wall system (called a combi wall for short). Every combi wall system has three main components: king pile, sheet piles and the connector (which is welded with the king pile and connects the king pile to the sheet pile). These walls can be temporary or permanent, and they’re a good alternative to traditional retaining wall structures such as secants or sheet pile walls.

King Pile Beam Installation

King pile beams are usually either single H-king pile, double H-king pile, or pipe pile. Regardless of the type, every king pile combi wall is built using large king pile beams and sheet pile. The king pile beams provides the bulk of the wall’s structure, while the sheet pile is used to fill in the gaps between the beams, filling in the wall and making it continuous.

The king pile beam used to construct a combi wall system must be driven into the earth at a stable, rigid and straight position to create a strong enough frame to support its load. Similarly, when installed, it’s important that the king pile beams are embedded vertically, which will guarantee that they are parallel to each other and allow the wall to retain its integrity.

King pile beams are typically installed as bored pile, which is sometimes backfilled with concrete and reinforcing steel. A vibratory hammer is then used to install sheet pile into the spaces between the king pile beams. Finally, the sheet pile is aligned and welded to the king pile at interlocking points. Once the wall is unified, it is ready to bear loads.

Steel beams: wide flange, h-oile, and more

King Pile Combi Wall Applications

King pile combi walls are often used in place of secant or sheet pile walls for projects where the piling wall must have a high bearing capacity, and a regular sheet pile wall will not suffice. Some common combi wall applications include:

Retaining wall structures

• Building foundations

• Wharves

• Piers

• Roadway structures

• Railway structures


• Dams

• Lake filling

• Port expansion

King Pile Combi Wall Advantages

King pile combination walls provide a number of advantages. They offer increased wall stiffness and increased wall movement resistance. They have more load bearing capacity than a sheet pile wall, meaning they can be used for larger projects. They’re also a cost effective shoring alternative to the secant wall, making them a more economical option. Finally, king pile beams can be installed deeper into the earth to better bearing strata, which makes the wall more stable and able to bear heavier loads.

Common King Pile Beam Sizes

King pile combination walls come in a range of large sizes, and often include the following sizes of wide flange beams:

  • W18: W18x35, W18x40, W18x46, W18x50, W18x55, W18x60, W18x65, W18x71, W18x76, W18x86, W18x97, W18x106, W18x119, W18x130, W18x143, W18x158, W18x175, W18x192, W18x211, W18x234

  • W21: W21x44, W21x50, W21x57, W21x58, W21x55, W21x62, W21x68, W21x73, W21x83, W21x93, W21x101, W21x111, W21x122, W21x132, W21x147, W21x166, W21x182, W21x201, W21x223, W21x248, W21x275

  • W24: W24x55, W24x62, W24x68, W24x76, W24x84, W24x94, W24x103, W24x204, W24x117, W24x131, W24x146, W24x162, W24x176, W24x192, W24x207, W24x229

  • W27: W27x84, W27x94, W27x102, W27x114, W27x129, W27x146, W27x161, W27x178, W27x194

  • W30: W30x90, W30x99, W30x108, W30x116, W30x124, W30x132, W30x148

  • W33: W33x118, W33x130, W33x141, W33x152, W33x169

  • W36: W36x135, W36x150, W36x160, W36x170, W36x182, W36x194, W36x210, W36x232, W36x256



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