Posts Tagged ‘Timber Framing’

The Edge Of Our “timber framing” World / A Let’s Blog Off Post

April 24, 2012 2 comments

The edge of our timber framing world ends at the timber frame.

Welcome to Vermont Timber Works, we are different because we focus on the frame.

This approach allows for great flexibility, all designs are custom, and sometimes quite complex, which we like.

BUT, what about the potential client that wants more?  They want us to close in their timber frame?  Perhaps even be their general contractor?  We’ll, this is usually a no (no thank you) from us.  It’s not what we are set up to do, it’s not in our comfort zone.

Until, we (meaning Tom) decided, why not?  This played out just the way we wanted (who knew at the time).  We were asked to not only provide the timber frame (beautiful project, timber frame on the lake), but also the wall framing, siding, insulation, roof panels, windows and doors. We hooked up with LaValley Building Supply and away we went.  It went well, we were chosen as their timber framer.  AND since we did the research and provided pricing for the additional scope, they were happy.  We actually passed it all along directly (no need to be in the middle) general contractor contracted directly with LaValleys.  Everyone happy.

So, I guess we stepped out of our comfort zone…then right back in it!

Timber Frame ONLY 🙂 please.


Structural Engineer! What’s that?

April 3, 2012 2 comments

If you have ever built a commercial building or ordered trusses from a manufacturer then you might have come across structural engineers.  Actually, if you have built anything that was structural in nature then you might have wanted a structural engineer or should have had a structural engineer.  The structural engineer typically comes into a project with annoying questions like “What is this space going to be used for?” and “Where are the windows and doors going to be located?” and “Where is the project going to be located?”  All you are thinking when these are being asked is that these are just preliminary drawings and that everything might change in a week.  So who is this person and why do you need them on your job?  Well…

A structural engineer is responsible for the analysis and design of the support or framing system of a building.  I like to refer to it as the bones of the building.  While designing the building, the engineer will take safety and performance into consideration.  For performance or serviceability this is the design for vibrations from machinery, floor vibration or deflection that could cause discomfort, or even building deflection or sway.  The occupants of a building might feel uncomfortable if the building sways or moves too much, especially on the upper stories.

How can you check the qualification of your engineer?  The easiest thing to do is to check if the engineer has either a Professional Engineer (PE) license in civil engineering or their Structural Engineer (SE) license in the state which your project is being built.  Some states don’t offer a SE license so that is why there is a difference in the title.  There is no general licensing for engineers, it is state specific and each state has their own requirement to obtain and maintain their license.

The other thing that you can do is check references and talk with past client about their experience with this particular engineer.  It’s just like selecting an architect or contractor, do your homework and you should be able to put a design team together that meets your needs.

Okay, so that is a general definition of the responsibilities of a structural engineer, how does it pertain to timber framing?  Timber framing for engineers involves the same responsibilities and analysis but it all pertains to one specific material.  Not every structural engineer is familiar with heavy timber framing and traditional joinery.  So, if you have a heavy timber frame make sure that the engineer on the project has experience in this material and traditional joinery.

So what is the deal with those annoying questions anyway?  Now, that is just going to have to be another post on another day.

Rain…rain…and more rain!

November 4, 2010 1 comment

Rain is drenching Vermont Timber Works today. It is coming down so hard that I can barely stay awake. This rain, hitting our metal roof, is amazingly deafening. I cannot hear myself think, so, gee, I think I’ll blog. That will job my brain!

I don’t have a photo to share, but I can describe this fall weather. It’s not winter yet, is it? I think it’s still fall. Anyway, it is dark for 2:30 PM, almost as dark as this print. It is muddy too; I squished and sloshed to the mailbox earlier. There won’t be leaves left on our trees after this downpour. Worse, it is 36 degrees. Brr! This will mess up my fishing trip tomorrow.

Inside Vermont Timber Works, it’s not exactly toasty warm. This is a shop, after all, a hard working facility filled with hard working skilled workers. We work hard pretty much like the mailman, snow or sleet, rain or shine. Yep, we’re here. You can call if you like. It will make our sales team work even harder. We like to see them running around making everything go right. Me? I think I’ll daydream a while. Isn’t that what rain is for?