Timber Framers Guild

Looking for feedback on a simple frame

Posted By: MatthewMeredith

Looking for feedback on a simple frame - 07/24/18 06:10 PM

Hello all,

My wife and I have been dreaming of building a timber frame home with straw bale infill walls. In the July 2018 issue of Fine Homebuilding, there is a 960 sq/ft house that checks a lot of boxes for us (floorplan, shed roof, small, simple). However, it's just a stick framed house.

I've done mortise and tenon joinery in a shop, but I've never done the actual planning and design. I have attached a few pictures of my SketchUp plans and was hoping for an experienced critique!

Here's the house: https://www.finehomebuilding.com/2018/05/15/make-small-house-work

And here's the first iteration of my plans:



Posts as of right now are 8x8, beams are 8x12, and rafters are 2x12. If the rafters are scarfed at each upper beam, the longest span is 16'. Are 2x12's on 2' centres overkill? Roof material will be metal.

There are a couple places where knee brace mortises are a bit too close to beam mortises, but those can be shifted. I have the right angle legs of the knee brace (the post and beam) at 2' right now - is there a standard size for that?

Thanks very much for any input!

Edit: Hmmm, not sure why the photos aren't embedding... Anyways, the 3 links should work to view them.
Posted By: MatthewMeredith

Re: Looking for feedback on a simple frame - 07/24/18 07:49 PM

Here's the home on Nir Pearlson's site: http://www.green-building.com/projects/summer-lake-residence/
Posted By: Jay White Cloud

Re: Looking for feedback on a simple frame - 07/25/18 03:22 AM

Hi Matthew,

I do love some styles of "Cubism" in modern design. You have selected a great one to role model off of from my perspective of such design layouts.

As to the overall design of your timber frame superstructure, I see little conflict in the joinery or overall affect and perspectives. With that stated, I would be remiss to not strongly suggest (since you are a novice to the craft) that your final designs need to be seen and approved by a qualified PE with competent and well tested traditional timber framing experience. I would not recommend just any PE try to help you. I have decades of experience and my plans are still overseen by a PE I have a long relationship with.

I would also strongly suggest you find a Timberwright with experience to work with and get guidance from for this project...

I personally, to stay within this "cubist affect" and modern rectilinear design motif...would strongly suggest getting rid of all the "oblique bracing" completely as it is not necessary at all...

The structural wall and roof diaphragms of the architecture can be stiffened in much more efficient and sympathetic modalities than the more common and ubiquitous "elbow/knee bracing." This will also facilitate better fenestration approaches and aid in the structure's flow within the lines and parameters more common with modern design...

Welcome to the craft!!!


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