Anyone who is interested in roundwood timber framing will be fascinated to follow the tree selection, felling, cutting and raising of a 3 bay, sweet chestnut, roundwood cruck frame in Haslemere, Surrey, England by Ben Law. This is Ben's 12th roundwood cruck timber frame and so this practice is beginning to represent a significant sea change in timberframe design and building here in the UK.

The cruck blades are made from 35 year old sweet chestnut coppice stock and since sweet chestnut contains only 2 or 3 rings of sapwood growth it means that these cruck blades are nearly all heartwood. Since the sweet chestnut can replace itself at least twice over the lifespan of an average persons then the selection and use of this timber demonstrates a truly sustainable method of building. Sweet chestnut is as durable as oak and cleaves particularly well to make lath, shingle or peg stock.

The cruck frame was raised using one tirfor in an amazingly quiet and controlled fashion.

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Ken Hume

Last edited by Ken Hume; 05/14/11 05:42 AM.

Looking back to see the way ahead !