The aim of this thesis is to study the load-carrying behaviour of dowel-type steel-to-timber connections in detail. This is achieved by performing experimental tests on single-dowel connections. A large variety of influencing parameters is assessed, which include wood density, connection width, the dowel roughness, and the application of reinforcements in order to prevent brittle behaviour. Separate stages in the loading history are identified, starting from an initial consolidation phase, the region of maximum stiffness during load increase, and the point of maximum connection strength.
The results of the experiments are compared to the design practice in Eurocode 5 for strength and stiffness estimation. Strength prediction is conservative except for slender connections, while stiffness prediction complied with experimental results only for connections of intermediate width.