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Author Topic: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam  (Read 7147 times)

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Offline mmhailey

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Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« on: May 04, 2010, 10:59:56 AM »
I thought this subject had been discussed here, but in my searches I can't turn up anything. Please forgive me if it has, and if you know where to find it let me know......


I just received my latest Fine Homebuilding annual Houses issue, and before I write them a nasty note, I thought I would throw out my complaint here.

They have an article of a beautiful house titled " Timber-Framing the views. Once you look at the pictures you see that the house has metal connections and they use Glulams for some or not all of the main beams.

Is it not correct that this would be considered a Post and Beam and not a Timber Frame?



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Offline Jim_Rogers

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2010, 03:54:13 PM »
If it's held together with bolts and plate then yes, it's post and beam.....

Glulams aren't necessarily a bad thing, just some thing we don't often use in timber framing, unless we have to ......

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Offline mmhailey

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2010, 10:59:44 PM »
Thanks for the confirmation Jim.  I was looking on the internet, Wiki, etc; for a definitive definition of Post and Beam, and Timber frame.

The one I found which I  like is "Timber Frames predate the use of Iron connections, hence true Timber Frames are composed of wooden structural members  joined by various methods of hand cut joinery, typically mortise and tenon".

I am not sure where Glulams fit in there, but I guess if you used Glulams, and did not use metal connectors it would still be a Timber Frame....


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Offline Brad_bb

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2010, 09:10:33 AM »
If you can't get a large enough timber, glue lams are an option, though I'm not sure how they affect joinery and strength of a joint.  There are a number of alternate joining methods being employed today.  Timberlinx is one metal connector system that is not exactly post and beam.  Post and Beam I usually consider plates and bolts as Jim said.  There is also a router/dovetail system from Lignatool.  Traditional timberframe though is mortise and tenon and wood peg.
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Offline barbender

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2010, 10:18:09 AM »
In the book "The Craft of Modular Post and Beam" the author differentiates post and beam from timber frame more by method of construction. His connections are largely wood pegged, not much metal used. Basically, with his method the post and beam frame is exposed on the interior and exterior, and infilled with a variety of methods. Log, stud framed, I've also seen examples with cordwood masonry infill. Also, the top plate timbers usually extend out to support the gable overhang.
Too many irons in the fire

Offline frwinks

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2010, 11:01:05 AM »
where do we draw the line?  Hundeggers, timberlinx, lognatool jigs, metal brackets, etc.  All invented to speed up the process of connecting pcs of wood.

I like the description mm found:"Timber Frames are composed of wooden structural members  joined by various methods of hand cut joinery, typically mortise and tenon"

and since I don't think you can cut mortises into glulams, I'm classifying them as
"wannabees" too...sorry, I mean post and beams :D


Offline barbender

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2010, 11:50:42 PM »
I don't think a post and beam is a wanna be, just a different method. In fact, most of the post and beam methods I have looked over provide a stand alone structure, whereas a timber frame nearly needs another structure built on the outside of it if you want to insulate it. My .02
Too many irons in the fire

Offline frwinks

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2010, 03:37:33 PM »
just makin' a funnay...  ;)

The point is that FH mag, and in fact a lot of mags out there, proudly show off post and beam homes and try to sell them off as TF
you wouldn't call a duck a chicken would ya ;D

Offline barbender

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2010, 11:58:29 AM »
Nah, I wouldn't call a duck a chicken :) I hate metal connectors, they be ugly.
Too many irons in the fire

Offline GaryinMississippi

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2010, 12:48:25 PM »
Q:  How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg?

A:  4.  Calling a his tail a leg does not make it a leg.


Calling a post and beam a timberframe does not make it a timberframe.

Offline Brad_bb

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Re: Timber Frame vs. Post and Beam
« Reply #10 on: May 14, 2010, 11:52:32 PM »
I am biased towards timberframe, but post and beam, or a combination of the two give the blacksmith an opportunity to be creative or artistic.  I've seen some cool looking hardware in old pictures.  If you're into post and beam, don't cheap out on the hardware.  It's a chance to add flare and embellishment.
Anything someone can design, I can sure figure out how to fix!
If I say it\\\\\\\'s going to take so long, multiply that by at least 3!


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