Three-edge-bearing and crack size measurement tests were carried out on plain concrete, reinforced -concrete, and steel-fibre concrete pipes of 500 mm diameters. The average three-edge-bearing strength and crack size of steel-fibre concrete pipes having steel fibres of RC80/60-BN type at a dosage of 25 kg/m(3) turned out to be 82% greater and 47% smaller than those of plain concrete pipes, and 6% greater and 15% smaller than those of reinforced-concrete pipes, respectively. Tests on those steel-fibre concrete pipes having a steel fibres dosage of 40 kg/m(3) revealed that a steel fibres dosage of 25 kg/m(3) seems to be close to optimum because a 60% increase in the amount of steel fibres engenders only minor improvements. By these findings, steel-fibre concrete pipes are more economical than and mechanically and physically superior to reinforced-concrete pipes. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.