• To observe the action of shear at a cut section in a simply supported beam.
  • To compare the measured and theoretical values of shear.
  • Visual demonstration of shear force at a ‘cut’ in a beam.
  • Creation and use of shear force diagrams.
  • Shear force variation with varying point loads, load positions and load arrangements.
  • Shear force variation with an increasing point load.
  • Variation of shear force for various loading conditions.
  • Examination of various other loading cases and their effect on shear force, including loads traversing the beam.


  • To consist of 2 simple supports; a rigid beam cut into two unequal lengths, which permits vertical movement, whilst resisting bending.
  • Electronic force transducer measure direct shear force at the ‘cut’ section.
  • Multiple load positions achievable.
  • Calibrated weights set supplied
  • Load hangers supplied.
  • Comprehensive instruction manual provided.

When simply supported beams are loaded two main forces are created, bending and shear. These forces are internal and cannot easily be seen. This experiment brings these internal forces from inside the beam to outside the beam so that students can visually see the beam deflecting and shear forces acting.

Each beam is simply hanged on struction frame. The experiment hardware is a simply supported beam with a ‘cut’. The beam fits onto a Frame.

A mechanism bridges the cut, which stops the beam collapsing and allows movement in the shear direction only. An electronic load cell measures the force, and connects to a Digital Force Display. Students apply loads at set positions using hangers holding various masses.

The force transducer is supplied with a connection lead to connect its output directly into the display unit. Special load hangers are provided that fit over the beams. The load hangers can be positioned accurately along each beams length by using the graduated scales attached to the side of the beams. A full set of slotted, calibrated weights is included.

A comprehensive instruction manual, giving full details on apparatus assembly and operation as well as example results. All necessary assembly and operational tools are provided.