Is there any advantage to the idea?
I know some people do this for top plates on walls but is this just creating unnecessary work for myself?
It seems like whichever frame I go with I can easily adapt the infill to the structure and the roof will remain relatively unchanged, just rafters running from the lower to the higher wall.
Is there yet another solution I've overlooked?
Thus far I've passed on the idea of using cob, straw bales, or tires as load-bearing walls because of the amount of time it will take to put them up.
I will continue trying to learn to use it seeing as a labelled design is obviously hugely beneficial in soliciting advice.
As a first time builder I would ideally buy these plans, but money is tight and the process will be... labile, to say the least, so I only have some images to work off with my own measurements. If there are more "traditional" plans that I should look to, I would appreciate being given direction, but for now I'm working off of these.
I think the process of building the frame should be relatively simple. The building footprint will be 8'x16' with 3 poles at the front and back spaced every 8 feet.
The front, opening to the north will be 16' high, and the back wall will be 12' high.
My hope is that I can eventually place boards across the bracing to build a small loft. As you and Rufus rightfully pointed out, putting together that many recycled materials would be time-consuming. Thus, I have elected to use the utility poles instead so that my "laminated beams" will only be needed for the top plates.
First, the "laminated beams" I'm intending to make need to be 16' long as well. My plan was to sandwich 1/2" plywood between a pair of 2x8's 8ft in length, these will then be spliced together over the center pole. Do you have any suggestions or improvements to that idea?
Secondly, I have not yet decided whether to use metal fasteners or joint-work. As Rufus points out, fasteners would be quicker and easier, but I believe joints will be stronger and though I am a complete amateur at this method of building I would like to learn more about joint work and would rather go through the experience.
If I would like to go this route, is there a joint I could use on the laminated top plates?
I need to affix them to the the poles, and I need to affix diagonal bracing as well.
I don't see an obvious way to do so as the laminated beam would seemingly be disastrously weakened by the removal of material to form a mortise.
Perhaps I could cut a mortise and tenon for the bracing at the poles, but affix the top beams with fasteners? (As an aside, do you have an opinion about trying to cut mortises into an old utility pole?I can imagine it might make some nasty dust.)
Third, what "structural improvements" were you mentioning that should be made to this basic design? I hate to ask you so bluntly to apply your expertise to such a rudimentary design, but I do not have the sight yet to see those initial improvements.
Apologies again for my lack of photo and measurement documentation. I have, unfortunately, a penchant to adapt my plans as I go along and then recap everything at the end rather than catalog the process. I hope that this small structure can prove of some use to other amateur builders on the forum though, particularly as the structure becomes enclosed and finished.
... that your enthusiasm is as yet untried.
Other issues may be diagonal bracing to stop wracking but if you have full single piece posts 6"-8" diameter buried 4'-6' deep,
Rufus Laggren wrote:...what lateral loads a post can take for 1) post size; 2) local subsoil; 3) post height; 4) post depth; 5) "structural diameter" - the effective size w/stone or other large fill; 6) how various types of large fill (stone) affect the post. Of course, if the post setting doesn't allow it to move, then it's just the breaking point for a particular diameter post...
Rufus Laggren wrote:W/out proven traditions for the exact particular building, I think I'd tend to go as deep as convenient and then deeper if I thought of any good reason. Plus the rocks around. Thinking is mostly "I haven't done much of this" and "Don't know what I'm going to stack on top down the road". Or how hard some "friend" will back his 1-ton pickup into it some happy night.