Posts Tagged ‘timber frame’

Oak timbers

January 15, 2013 Leave a comment

Oak Timbers

These are Oak timbers, already stained, ready to package for delivery to the job site.


Pergola Love

October 29, 2012 Leave a comment

Check out the details!

Better yet, check out the crazy beautiful view!

I think we should all have a timber frame pergola in our backyard, who’s with me?

Ready to Raise (Almost)…

October 18, 2012 Leave a comment

Timber frame fabrication almost complete for the Nemacolin Woodlands NEW Ski Lodge (very exciting project)!

Time to get organized…everybody MOVE your cars, please.

Uhmmm, Tom? Where the heck is Tom?

Ok, here we go.

This project has quite a lot of steel joinery, need to check it before we get to the jobsite, just to be sure we have all that we need.

Interesting steel column cap shown here.  All of the steel was designed by us and custom created for us by Vermont Steelcraft.

Glulams from Calvert Company via Northwest Specialty Timbers.

If you have Adobe Reader, and would like to check out our design, click below.  Peeled pole columns, glulam branches and lots of STEEL!

Nemacolin Ski Lodge Timber Frame 3d

I’ll add more pictures later, please come back 🙂

Take 4 scissor trusses and call me in the morning.


Oh and you better take some purlins too.

There, there, feel better?


Timber Frame decisions can be stressful.  It’s certainly an investment that absolutely adds warmth to the space.

Totally worth it, in our opinion BUT…

You don’t have to have a full timber frame, sometimes an accent with timber is all that’s needed, or wanted.

We understand.

You want big? You want small? Something in between?

We can do that.

The 4 Scissor Trusses shown above would help create a wonderful great room area, don’t you think?  They can brace on conventionally framed walls and viola!  This truss design visually adds height, which I love.

Timber Frame + Wood Flooring?

September 28, 2012 3 comments


Maybe not…

1st photo, this design works.  the contrast the painted cabinetry offers, in my opinion, makes this work.

2nd photo, can you say LOVE THIS!! I love the Soapstone flooring tiles by Vermont Soapstone.  (Whether a timber frame home or not, this is a fabulous option).

How about cement tile?

Loving the tiles also, but so many choices…I would need an Interior Designer.  ANDIE are you available?

Back to the wood flooring…if there is enough interesting character, I’m in!

So, timber framing + wood flooring = YES.

Timber framing + soapstone tiles = Yes yes!

Cement tiles get my vote also.

Can you fast track my project?

September 7, 2012 1 comment


Some timber frame projects lend themselves to a fast track, some do not.  And fast tracking the one that does not is a tough process.

Let’s see…

Client:  I would like to fast track my project, can you work with me?

Sandy: Of course!  Do you have a design?

Client: Not yet.

Sandy:  Have you chosen an architect?

Client: Uh, no.

Sandy:  Have you hired a general contractor?

Client: I’m going to GC this project myself.

Sandy:  I’m thinking fast track may not be in the cards for this project, but let’s see what we can do.  Preliminary shops drawings and a foundation plan are typically all you need for a building permit.  Let’s start there.

Client:  Sounds good and thank you.

In a situation like this, where we work out the timber frame design initially with the client,  we then recommend an architectural/engineering firm to design the foundation plan under our frame.  Not usually a good option for a fast track.  Once permit is in place, then the real fun can begin!

Timber Connections – Steel

July 11, 2012 Leave a comment

So there are really two types of joinery for heavy timber frames, traditional and steel.  There is a hybrid of the two so maybe that could make a third type but typically as soon as you start adding steel plates it’s considered a steel joint, even if it is a concealed plate.

The use of steel plates for timber joints is a fairly straight forward concept.  The force transferred from the timber (in compression or tension) to the steel plate by steel pins.  These pins can be bolts, lags, nails, etc.  The steel plates then carry the load along the plate to the next timber member.  The steel pins in this member then transfer the force back into the timber frame.

The plate configuration and the number of steel pin connectors all depend on the forces that need to be transferred from one member to the next.  The simplest configuration is a plate on one side of the member.  This is also the weakest version because the bolt is in single shear.  In single shear there are two members trying to slide past each other in opposite directions.  So the two members create a shear plane.  Sometime a simple connection is all that is needed and it will be cheaper.

Then you can also place a piece of steel in the middle of the timber member.  This is called a knife plate because it cuts into the beam.  This is a stronger connection because the bolts are in double shear.  In single shear there were two members sliding past each other.  In double shear there are three members that create two shear planes.  Knife plate connections are a concealed connection.  The bolts can be countersunk and plugged to hide the connection.  This is also a more expensive connection because more time is required in the fabrication of the timber to cut out the space for the steel.

The most common configuration for steel plate connection in trusses is having a steel plate on each side of the timber.  This is also a double shear connection but it is stronger than the knife plate because you have two surfaces of steel and one of wood where the knife plate is vice versa.

There are other ways to strengthen a steel connection.  One way is to make the steel plate thicker.  Larger diameter bolts can be used or shear plate can be added to the connection.  The exact configuration of the connection needs to be designed for each individual case.  Depending on the configuration and the loads at the connection a number of possibilities are available.