Tie-rods are essential structural elements, which have been employed for centuries in masonry historical buildings, either during the construction or in successive strengthening interventions, with the aim of containing dangerous horizontal actions. The actual work conditions of these tie-rods, which are strongly influenced by their load history, are difficult to be quantified theoretically, and an effective method for their measure is of great importance in order to ensure the efficiency of these elements during the time and the stability of the entire building. Common measurements are often carried out adopting models based upon significant simplifications, like, for example, hinges at the extremities. These assumptions, rarely represent the real work conditions for anchorages. In this work, a non-destructive testing method is presented, based upon sophisticated dynamical models that can take into consideration many of the circumstances neglected by the simplified models. Four case studies are extensively described, trying to embrace the most common situations in term of peculiar features of the building, structural configuration, and load history. The discussion of the results yields the safety margin of the rod with respect to the material failure and provides important indications about the overall stability of the whole building.
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