2023 – #7 Ed Fronapfel Forensic Engineer and Principal Investigator on Zero Clearance shaft liner Area Separation Wall E119 Burn Testing

Ed Fronapfel is a forensic engineer who I first met when he taught a thermography class I attended.  Later he became the student when he participated in an Energy Rater class I taught. Ed has built and sold several successful engineering companies on the back of his ability to distill information and present it in understandable ways. Over the years we have been discussing the disconnect between energy and fire codes in relation to shaft liner area separation wall design and function. I was starting to get involved with work being done to understand how to air seal the assembly to successfully pass blower door testing requirements of the IECC. Ed, in the meantime, had been working to be qualified as an expert witness in construction defect litigation. He now has been involved in over 80 trials in District and Federal Courts and provided over 800 depositions and hundreds of arbitrations.


Our paths crossed again at the Colorado Chapter of the ICC Education Institute, where we were both teaching, right before the Covid shutdown. I learned that Ed had an opportunity to fund some ASTM E119 burn testing on Shaft Liner wall assemblies and became the facilitator to organize and get the testing completed. As you can imagine we both have been frustrated not being able to speak to the results of the testing that was performed, and now that we can, I am very grateful to Ed for the opportunity I was given to be involved in this work, and the story you are about to listen to.

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