Timber Frame Houses

A house made of timber brings a lot of economic advantages:

  • Low weight - lower foundation costs
  • Short build time –not dependent of the time of year and therefore lower bridging finance costs
  • Greater heat insulation and therefore lower heating costs

 

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Wood has been used as a building material for centuries.

Where previously, the knowledge and skill of the master builder determined which timber parts would be applied to the construction project, and thereby preserving the long tradition of timber construction. Today, the qualities of stability, usefulness and application technology determine which of our products are used.

Besides the static requirements, demands such as sound, fire and heat insulation, also have to be satisfied. But aesthetics and ecology also play an important role.


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Distinguishing features in the appearance of the timber are the cracks which occur. Although in most cases (cracks through drying out) they have no effect on the static load bearing capability, they are still often the subjects of claims. Planners and builders use visible wooden parts to build with as an artistic element. As a consequence they view cracks, when they are too big, as an optical intrusion.

Decisive in the reduction of cracks, which are to be expected in the drying out process, and apart from the modern techniques for drying timber, is the way in which way timber is cut. Making incisions away from the heart of the wood is state of the art technology today.

Investigations into damage claims have revealed that humidity levels in the timber have been responsible for many of the construction damages that have been criticised.


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From this, what principally applies is:

    • Using dry wood to build with and keeping it dry;
    • Keep out insects, that is keep them under control.

What is also important to the protection of wood for construction is the safeguarding of dried timber against humidity during transport and storage on the building site.

The choice of wood also gives the planner the option of using special protection for wood. So called colour heartwood (eg Douglas Fir) demonstrates a higher resistance to Fungus Infestation and hence it is often used as the threshold for an outer wall. It can be guaranteed that no higher moisture levels arise than in the rest of the walls surface so that GKO can be used as basis thus doing without chemical protection for the wood.


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Even laths and timber boards can get by without chemical protection of the wood, if the hollow cavity between the external cover of the building component and the roof cover is ventilated. This way any intruding dampness can be expelled and potential fungus infestation excluded. An insect infestation is not anticipated in relatively small cross sections.

If the conditions are right, to be able to do without chemical protection of the timber, then it should be done without for health and ecological reasons.

A timber construction that is not load bearing makes for a healthy living atmosphere, and allows for additional material or thermal usage, according to what use the building is being put.

(siehe www.rettenmeier.com).