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[en] This paper presents a new approach validated experimentally to reconstruct with strain gauges the deformed shape of a straight beam with circular cross section. It is based on a novel beam-specific strain gauge model that improves the strain measurement by taking into account the width of the gauges. These improved strain measurements are used by a 3D finite strain large displacement beam shape reconstruction method to recover the deformed shape iteratively. The whole reconstruction approach has been validated experimentally with 3D deformations of a beam instrumented with strain gauges. Results show that the strain gauge model developed improves reconstruction accuracy and that beam reconstruction can be achieved effectively.