Timber Frame Construction

By the time we became acquainted with Timberpeg in the 1980’s, we were already experienced mortise-and-tenon, post and beam builders, familiar with both the handcrafted look of timber frame homes, and the precision such hand crafting required. In those early days, we would measure, cut, and chisel each mortise and tenon by hand, a very painstaking process. Discovering a company that was designing, engineering and manufacturing post and beam structures of such high quality was an eye opener. We found that Timberpeg allowed us to streamline post and beam construction without sacrificing craftsmanship.

But why use timber frame construction?

There are a number of great reasons to build the timber framing way. There’s the romantic appeal of Old World craftsmanship; of Early American strength, endurance, and timeless values; of doing things the “old fashioned way”! Hand in hand with this goes the authenticity and natural beauty of real wood timbers joined with mortises and tenons, and held together with solid oak pegs, otherwise known as “trunnels”, or tree nails. The satisfaction of creating something of great beauty and strength; a structure built to last.

With the posts and beams providing the load bearing, there is an intrinsic flexibility of design. Interior walls no longer provide support and now can be placed wherever you would like, or they can be left out altogether. This results in the spacious open floor plans commonly seen in timber frame buildings. Soaring cathedral ceilings are easily integrated. There is also a much greater flexibility in the location, number, and sizes of windows, allowing the dramatic natural lighting so often seen and admired in timber frame homes.

With the timber frame carrying the load like a skeleton, the skin is attached to the outside of the structure. This is one area where the timber frame style merges with modern technology, by using Structural Insulated Panels, or SIPS. These are panels made of extruded foam, sandwiched between sheets of oriented strand board (OSB), and are quite strong. While adding to the design flexibility, SIPS panels also dramatically increase the energy efficiency and comfort of the timber frame home.

And last, but not least, timber framing is a “green” building style. With the use of SIPS panels, “green” points are awarded for tightness of construction, which results in dramatic gains in energy efficiency, with lower heating and cooling costs, and increased living comfort. “Green” points are also earned for the use of an engineered system, panelized construction and for the fact that the wood timbers used are a renewable resource.

Why build timber frame?

Romantic appeal, strength, enduring quality and value, natural intrinsic beauty of both the parts and the whole, flexibility of design, energy efficiency and living comfort.



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Glenn and Ron were very creative on where to save money on the project, but also how to include some of the perks we really wanted.

Peter & Jakie | Wintergreen, VA

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