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Terry Ruth
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I'm on a job we do not see often so I thought I share. We are normally primes but this job is huge 11,500 SF chapel and Banquet for wedding's attached to an existing house. We have the T&G you see we just started today, SIPs goes on it, we add the roof, sill plates, frame a coridor, etc...I keep the pics coming as we go. The timber framers are a different contractor I have not idea where they got them but interesting watching the do the joinery....the use linseed oil at the inner joints, not sure about the outers exposed to weather. They are leaving the finish all natural with a clear coat...It's two stories with upper vaulted SIP ceiling. The SIP come early next week so we'll see. I am in my RV on the site 24/7 for a least a month. Geese flew in to watch the build
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Terry Ruth
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More pics......
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Terry Ruth
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More pics.....
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Terry Ruth
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More pics.......
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Terry Ruth
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More PICS.......
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Jay C. White Cloud
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Hi Terry,

Thanks for sharing this and the photos...

Is this your first chance to see a modern timber frame being assembled?

What are you doing on this project?

Can't wait for more pictures and your thoughts/questions...

Regards,

j
 
Terry Ruth
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Hi Jay, yes this is the first time our construction company has been around Traditional Timber Framing very rare in the midwest America and USA according to the crew so I thought I'd share with some permies that appreciate it, I know you do HUGE $$$ is the Timber framing, we did not bid the job so I do not know an exact amount. In this situation, the Timber company produced the stamped PE structural drawing's for it they are not far from here, it's cedar....A very experienced national pro crew was hired to do the build, they did an excellent job and fast! I chatted with them a little bit today on their way out to find that much. We are laying in the pine T&G lower vaulted upper ceiling attached to rafters and perlins shown on the Skyjack (lower gets drywall, I would have done wood perhaps budget issues drove the decision)...it is going slower than we like since the SIP crew will be in Monday and start laying it on the T&G roof, and our sill plates we install tomorrow for the walls. You can see our anchor bolts 5/8's x 8 galvanized steel around $7 each in the pics. We ripped down the 2 x 8 slab forms and recycled them to 2 x 6-1/2 lower sills plates for the SIPs wall to sit on...Key on the anchor bolts is drill depth and clearance get that wrong or the hole diameter and the head shears off from too much torque. We use a hammer drill and impact gun to drive them. I'm not sure how thick the SIP ceiling is yet, more on it and the wall ties later. We also do the standing seam roof over SIPs and the light framing from corridor to the house, and we are negotiating more work. Here is some PICs of my on site rig/home for at least the next month. We are out of state about 300 miles from home.

The interesting part is they changed the outer walls that wrap the timber frames from light construction to sips and I don't have an updated drawing so it's word of mouth on for now.....you know thats construction, but we get it done!

We are also light framing the corridor between the timer banquet room and house. We are waiting for the pluming and electrical, slab poor, then we start on it....

So tomorrow we try and get more of the T&G done and sills in so we are ahead of the SIPs crew coming Monday along with the SIPs panels.....A race to around they envelope....Better now that the Timber crew is out of the way.

We lucked out on weather, 60 highs, no rain or snow not typical for January....This is tornado alley in the spring, summer....super high winds, hail, ice storms, most of the year. The huge stuctural rated timbers, sips, etc, well resist well but large $ to get there. No basement or storm shelter needed here, which are very common in this state.

PS: Sorry about the typos in the OP it was late and i was tired, mods feel free to correct. Gets dark @ 6 PM we keep going with flood lights in lows down in the 10s F.

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Terry Ruth
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More Pics....
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Jay C. White Cloud
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Hey Terry......thanks for the update!!

Good to know your background...it explains your in depth knowledge of general construction and contracting...

The number of Timberwrights in that part of the country is low...Has been for sometime, yet is on the increase as folks move back to "traditional systems" more and more each year. It also seems to be attached to the fact that many folks now realize that if you build a house...by todays means, methods and materials... its value in mainly in the land and not necessary the architecture itself as that could very well be looked at as...transient. I have now heard/read several experts in the field of construction refer to moder builds as..."...having an economic and/or viable lifespan of only 20 to 30 years before the possibility of razing or invasive alteration or upgrade..." This alone, is testament to the modern "consumer culture" that has developed, and over commercialization of many aspects of our lives.

Now we are seeing folks turn away from this...Thank goodness! With a timber frame they realize that they have a much more enduring structure, with the added bounce of having fiscal value well beyond the property it sits on. There are few forms of architecture that actually hold value (and actually increase in value) as time goes on...and...can me sold and moved to a new location. We have now had a number of clients take their timber frame or family barn with them when they sold there property and/or got more money for the purchase of the property by selling the timber frame as a "separate item."

We get more and more calls every year from the Midwest for timber frames...both vintage and contemporary...

Look forward to seeing more as you finish off the project...

Regards,

j

P.S. Don't worry about typos we all have them...
 
Terry Ruth
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Anyway, Jay, as you know I am reading George's book on the "Breathable Wall" learning more about MGO in my down time which is hard to find right now, we will probably take off from here about 400 miles south in our rig to meet with George with lessons learned, get his input on our natural spec home designs, and surely I will have some questions for you. Go back home with a plan to start producing specs homes this spring ( I'm not confident to try it in winter). ..The SIP and Timber framing most here have no experience with, learn as we go. I need to find out whom the Timber company is here locally and get some price quotes on smaller homes. I'll keep you and the site posted ...Thanks for accommodating us and the apples.
 
Terry Ruth
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I had a nice chat with the owner today and found out the reason they went to SIPs vs light frame wrap is "Time"or exposure to the elements. The timbers, I stand corrected are Douglass Fir not Cedar from this company: http://clydesdaleframes.com/

They advocate SIPs with an EPS, XPS, or Poliso foam core I do not like who knows on the skins (OSB?) we will see Monday when they come, but the SIP takes half the time to wrap the timber that probably have no weather or WRB protection, so they are pushing us to get the wrap done. He said the timbers cost TWICE as much as "gluelams" typically used but look like and are factory junk! They also talked him out of a natural wood ceiling in some areas, a mistake IMO. to drywall.

We are lucky the weather is nice for timber protection, the cost is through the roof for them, and I am sure that is all about supply and demand the industrial revolution ruined, too bad! There is not much competition here in the midwest to drive the cost down.
 
Jay C. White Cloud
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Hi Terry...

Well...as a Timberwright...the older I get the more...well...'snooty'...I seem to get. So I will just apologize sincerely upfront if I sound a bit 'preachy' when I speak of timber framing, the methods by who (and who shouldn't) etc...

This is what we often call the "jump ons." This is not "necessarily" a criticism, yet it is a warning to many folks and other seeking guidance...

In the last few decades and especially a few years before and after the 2008 economic downturn just about every "general contractor" out there started trying "jumping onto" the timber frame band wagon and getting into the building scene. You got all kinds of..."my grandfather..."..."I have loved..."..."being a professional contractor for..." and every other iteration and tie in you can imagine to justify their ties to this craft and why they now are "timber framing." Some of them are damned good "basic" Timberwrights...yet most...like today with the green movement...are just "jump ons."

Buying and using "kiln dried" Douglas Fir which clearly it is (I was pretty sure it wasn't any species of Cedar but knew it would reveal itself soon enough) is a dead giveaway of a company that is either just starting out, and/or "homogenising" the craft so that all the little details can be overlooked in dealing with traditional understanding of timber framing...WHICH ARE...usually built only with fresh green timber or very old and specially aged over time air dried (like say 1000 year old plus trees and aged for say 3 generations in special sheds) type timber. These kiln dried timbers (especially DF) can blow themselves apart if they get wet and take on moisture...many act up anyway just taking on ambient free water from the atmosphere. This is why they have to "wrap them up quick," in nice big plastic wraps of modernity...

The other give away about this crew...SIPs and other industrial building practices they are promoting to go with timber frames...

Its great for the contractor as they can...get in...get done...make lots of money...GET THE HELL OUT OF THEre...and onto the next..."pop up frame." They are doing the same thing to the art of Timber Framing as they did with their nail guns and 2x stock...These folks are "framers that work in timber" they are not Timberwrights...or at least I do not accept them as such, not unless they validate and own their practices of the quick "in and out"---"just get it done"---"can't see it from my house tolerance for mistakes" they so often have...I am too often saddened and confronted by many of these companies when trying to help clients understand what they are trying to buy...compared to...what they are going to get...

Brother Terry...make sure you are not in the chain of responsibility for anything on the frame, the panels or otherwise...These jobs can go...'sideways'...really quick if things start...well...not working and the contractors start pointing fingers at everyone but themselves...

Give me a call if you really need to talk...

j
 
Terry Ruth
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Jay you speak a lot of truth in that last post some of which I cannot comment on. I’m learning from you on the Timbers, I had read about green ones but forgot. One thing to read in a text book or post, another to actually be part of it…..

I took what you wrote and called the Timber company whom immediately knew who we were since we are doing all the stick framing, floors, decks, etc….I’m interested in what I can learn here for our single family homes design TBD. I had a decided after looking at this a little a while ago that it is cost prohibitive since here we do not have an abundance of Timbers. I found out we do have another supplier in our town, but they get shipped in from other states green then kiln dried. So I will develop a bid plan and see. They said the reason they kiln dry down to 20% moisture or less is to cut down the on-site drying time. I’m guessing that depends on local humidity and heat which here is the southern central Midwest can get very high and hot, it could take months to a year or more? Two hours away where the company is the climate zone is different, so it has to dry at the location they said. This ranch has the room, but a single city lot would not and often around here once you purchase a lot in a development you have to complete construction in 6 months max. Also builders with construction loans would be eating away at profit in interest to a bank the more days the build takes.

They said these Douglas Fir timbers sensitive to the damaging effects of sunlight and heat that result in a grey discoloration, thus, an outer wrap in this case SIPs are erected in a timely manner to protect against sun degradation. The SIPS will take 4-6 days, I think we could have stick framed in that time The inner wood is protected by a coat of natural linseed oil or stain. The outer wrap can also be traditional framed lumber with insulation or other materials. The combination also provides very high structural value and wind that are high here is tornado alley, or shear wall resistance.


I’m still trying to figure out code compliance. They say the DF is #1 grade and they have the moisture content. I think I can take that info to our code enforcers and if I need a PE stamp the Timber Company has one in house. Timbers should be easier than the rammed earth we were considering, getting past not only code but the land owners of the cookie-cutter subdivisions we have to get past here in America. I think our approach will be to slowly introduce more natural builds, I would like to do a rammed earth wrap around Timbers some day and make it affordable to the un-wealthy. I seen some on the internet that are beautiful! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0RnJZq9rbL8

He said they have built some strawbale wraps in another state, it can be whatever we want have not determine yet. Mine will breath, not trap moisture in or have material than can rot from it. I know I’d never do SIPS unless it had natural materials, like Soy or hemp or slip core and mag board? They used a 5 ½ polyurethane core with 7/16 OSB, it outgases for a while as it continuous to cure. You can smell the toxic soup at the job-site. It looses r-value as it out-gases they claim eventually stops but I wonder what real studies have been done to see if it breaks down, wants to re-cure, over time and how stable it is in it's environment, since I have seen that occur in open cell spray foams, especially on OSB. This is closed cell PU a petroleum product.

Here is some more info on the build, not that I agree with it all……Oh and BTW more Timbers are coming for the Chapel, phase two.

We set the lower treated sill plates and seals, SIP adds another on top that becomes a locating jig for the walls that are craned in. The 6.5 inch thick SIPs provides an R-value of 40 to the walls and roof far exceeding code minimum of R-13/30. The SIPs is constructed of a polyurethane foam core with OSB bonded to it under high temperature and pressure. The SIP is tongue and groove with a foam seal (in black), moisture impermeable, and can be air impermeable with taped seams. Screws fasten SIPs the two inches into the post.
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Terry Ruth
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Sips also gets delivered with electrical boxes and conduit routing holes pre-installed at the factory. HVAC ducts are huge, three units will be set on the side of the house. The floor registers are blocked off for now.
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Terry Ruth
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Weather is cooperating almost done after four days with T&G vaulted ceiling, other than some snow and rain tonight that could affect the SIPs over sheathing moisture….looking nice owner is so happy with it he decides to take our advice and change the lower floor ceiling from drywall to T&G. We think he made a good more natural choice that fits the timber architecture better. You can see the SIPs walls are coming along….a crane has a long reach to the far corner and they will work their way down both sides, then set the upper walls, and roof. We'll be attaching floor joist to these horizontal Timber beams for the upper floor and lower ceiling on top of the Timber beams.
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Jay C. White Cloud
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Hi Terry,

Good to hear the client likes your work and wants to change over to more T&G instead of nasty old 'wall board.'

As for the "drying wood" stuff the supplier is pushing...that is common "smoke screen" sales crap many push in this day and age of 'box store' construction. What really scares the hell out of me now is 90% of them actually believe it and don't know any other way! When they see our work...from timber frames to harvest tables all the way to doors, and coffee tables and learn it is done with either completely green wood or with wood that is only air dried a short time... they either stammer in disbelief or flat out say they don't believe me...I get a chuckle either way. When folks see me take a slab of cherry off a mill and turn it into a coffee table in less than one month they just don't get how it's possible...We work wood the way it has been worked for "most" (not all) wood needs of the last 10,000 years...fresh from the stump. If the project is for a "King or Queen" and/or a special shrine then perhaps a well aged...air dried...piece of wood is warranted...For most job, (i.e. rustic log cabins, folk style architecture, and related traditional stuff) green wood and the skill to work it is all that is needed.

We take trees from forest pretty fast and knock them down into rough 'bolt' length for the mill. In less than a week, those 'bolts' are knocked into 'cants' for final milling and shaping into the timber dimensions we need. From here they go straight to the 'beamery' where we cut the frame. Most frames come in and go out in under 40 days with only two guys working with hand held power tools and much is shaped, sawn, chiseled and planned (et al) with hand tools.

So I guess what I am saying is...you don't need any "dry wood" (certainly not kiln dried) and turn around for a turn key is well under six months for most jobs, as the frame takes 30 to 60 days to cut and raising is fast...

They said these Douglas Fir timbers sensitive to the damaging effects of sunlight and heat that result in a grey discoloration, thus, an outer wrap in this case SIPs are erected in a timely manner to protect against sun degradation.


Yep...more hype and sales B.S...doesn't surprise me even a little bit. I have Douglas Fir and White Pine both that has been outside for 8 years...Its as yellow as the day it came out of the shop. Then again, we use traditional treatments of pine rosin, beeswax, flax oil, tung oil, citrus oil and a little UV stabilizer that seems to all work great...Food grade on most of the materials we use. All are classified as naturally and safe...including the fire retardant we sometime have to apply for frames that are in "high risk flash zones."

This..."get it wrapped up quick" stuff is often just to push project along so the contractor can get out of there as quick as they possibly can. Besides, some folks just love 'grayed and antiqued' timbers...Thats why old barns are so popular...Now those we do have to protect from UV degradation...but that isn't that hard...

I think I can take that info to our code enforcers and if I need a PE stamp the Timber Company has one in house.


Again...we go against 'code enforcers' all the time about...."'stamped this and dried that..." Soon as our PE gets his phone call...most of the code folks go quite...You can do the same thing yourself. If you can work your way around making a kitchen cabinet or designing an armoire you can cut (or help cut) a timber frame. I encourage everyone interested to only buy from Timberwrights that are willing to teach and tolerate client "hands on" participation...If they won't...don't work with them...Passing on the craft is more important than the just a bank account. Besides, only 1 out of 20 (if I am lucky as I wish more would) actually wants to cut their own frame on site...

Look forward to more updates...

j
 
Terry Ruth
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Some updates....The SIPS wrap is on, they used some toxic spray open cell foam I see, that is proven to rot OSB. Lots of confusion on the breathability of the walls and roof I am in the middle of since we are doing the roof. Lots of debates among building scientist on SIP ventilation and directions of drying, taping seams, plastic barriers, etc....I want no part of. The best way out imo is a large ventilation gap on the roof and walls to create a low pressure to suck all the moisture and toxins out the building and keep the upper osb surface from cold condensation, moisture getting trapped between SIP seems, or built in. They should have put a lid on this roof a long time ago, we have rain and snow coming this Saturday. The architect calls out "water and ice shield" and no specifics, class, perm rating, type....The SIPs company has a different opinion and theory for drying. They and the Architect should have this figured out. I told them the small gaps the metal roof and W&I creates won't dry the SIPs/OSB out fast enough (24-48 hours) to prevent mold and rot. We'll see how this one pans out. Such a shame to see such beautiful timbers wrapped with toxic foams.

We are coming along with the connector building and stairwell framing. Waiting on materials in the middle of a build for floors, walls, roof, etc....lots of errors on drawing's too.

FUN!



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Chris Yust
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Hello, I work for Clydesdale Frames Co. and I was looking through our website referrals and noticed we had some traffic from this blog. If you have questions, you're certainly welcome to contact us directly and we will provide any of the answers that we can regarding the timber frame. It's nice to see that word about an age old craft is still spreading like wildfire! Have a great day!
 
Terry Ruth
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The conventional light framing is coming along. Clydesdale will be setting the Chapel Timbers Monday is what I hear. Nice and cold here, and humid, 70-80% RH. Floor joist TGIs, T&G under them match the ceiling nicely. A wood interior is the way to go, vs drywall, especially in high humidity climates like this. Strawbale and an earth plaster also, or any mass to the interior that is inert.

Here are the base plates they set the post on. It appears they notch the underside of the post. I guess this helps keeps it from shifting along with the weight of the building. The best part of this build is the timbers, Clydesdale is doing a great job. The Chapel is connecting to the Banquet in the outdoor area seen in PIC 3.
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Terry Ruth
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More PICS..connection to the existing building, and SIPs roof with water and ice shields on it that is a barrier and helps prevent ICE dams on the lower cold part of the roof from rain water drainage, by the gutter.
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Terry Ruth
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Chris, we are looking forward to more Timbers.....see ya all soon!

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Chris Yust
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The framing looks like it's coming along nicely! The guys have sanded and oiled the frame and are on schedule!
 
Terry Ruth
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Dang Chris, I heard you guys were delivering yesterday. I expected to get here and see Timbers on the ground but the Chapel is almost done in a day or two. Nice! I'll be in touch soon, got a plan for you to look at. I got a chance to learn more from John and Mike. Terry
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Terry Ruth
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The linseed oil beads right up I like it: Little moisture absorbtion and we are 41F dew, 51 F, 70% relative humidity.
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Terry Ruth
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Some of our conventional Framing.
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Terry Ruth
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Terry Ruth
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Terry Ruth
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Here is a blog I am working on explaining more detail. Excuse my suit but we are a natural design-build management company trying to push more natural builds through the thick politics and mainstream competitors. Clydesdale is estimating or working on one of our builds now. http://paramounttimbers.blogspot.com/ It will be on our website we are working on and facebook page soon, but we won't be wrapping it in SIPs. We have other more natural ideas. Our Mission: "Its time to change the way America builds" and "mainstream construction" for the better We have some natural skin in game anyway. Thanks Permie.com for your knowledge and support
 
Terry Ruth
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Updates...she shaping up pretty nice.
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Terry Ruth
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Terry Ruth
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Terry Ruth
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Cecil Pettway
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The whole project looks great! The one thing I was curious about is the bridge. Does it lead straight to the doors of the chapel? And if so, do you happen to have a finished shot looking through the bridge at the chapel?
 
Terry Ruth
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Cecil, thanks, the bridge leads into the Banquet doors from a parking lot. We pulled out of the job before complete the only pics we have are above or in my blog in my signature.
 
You showed up just in time for the waffles! And this tiny ad:
The $50 and Up Underground House Book by Mike Oehler - digital download
https://permies.com/wiki/23442/digital-market/digital-market/Underground-House-Book-Mike-Oehler
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