Messages

Subject:
Re: I was gona stay out of this but...

C John Hebert
....I can't count the number of houses I framed and built and worked both, stick framed roofs and trusses and both have their respected advantages. For my own houses and additions....I chose to frame it myself. Trusses in a lot of places allow for 2' on center as opposed to 16" on center placement...saving one or 2. As for labor saving costs...sorry. It takes at least 3 guy's to stand up trusses, after they are carried over, unless there is a cherry picker available but that is extra cost. The webb bracing prevents the attic space just about useless. Sure you can order the center open, but that has extra cost involved AND...your still limited as to the load, and...it may open up the center, but you still are at a loss over what may be used as storage.
My place now, I stick framed alone. Time wasn't an issue, and neither was labor because it was mine. I can store anything I want above, and have tons of sq. ft space, which is the way it should be...after all, you paid for it! I have a 10 pitch here in Maine and certainly don't have a snow load to worry about. To keep this short, we decided to live above the shop and scrap the 3 bedroom originally planned home because retirement was near and we really didn't need all that, as well as loving the view from above the second (attack) level. I ended up putting in 2 full "A" roof window dormers, pushing out two walls to the end of the deck area. The size of the dormers were 8'/ One was in the living room, and the other in the bathroom. I framed a shed roof for the back half, keeping the front side a 10 pitch. This allowed me to frame the back wall straight up and have the ceiling joists (now floor joist) sitting on top of the lower wall then continuing to receive the rafters. I had to put a center beam down stairs with support posts, but I ended up wrapping some stationary equipment around the posts, so work area wasn't all that at a loss. I ended up with a 1 bedroom apartment, large bath with a whirlpool. Kitchen with an island divider and dining room, and a comfortable living room that ended up being pretty damned comfortable for a retired couple. For the front side...my rafters were a tad over 22' if I remember right. My staircase is on the outside and have a dumb waiter powered with an electric winch to bring up groceries and firewood as I heat with wood alone and no back up for this log cabin.
Having a prior shop with a gambrel design, I had wood dry out nicely that I stored up there through a gable end door, and from the heat loss of the shop. As for the shop floor...I live in Maine, so we have to deal with frost 3' and 4' deep. Ready for this??? LOL I poured a 6" slab, with standard wire. Rebar is an overkill! The key is to pour the slab over a sand base or..."Clean" gravel with no large stones. I scrape about a foot of top soil out, then fill with sand or gravel, then the slab. Sand doesn't freeze, cause heaves or cracking and that's what the wire mesh prevents...cracking, and now with this fibre cement...it's even better.
Basically...stick frame gives you so many advantages on usage, where trusses your limited. Trusses gives you an open floor plan, where stick frame you might end up with a center beam and 2 support posts depending on the size of the building. The cost difference between the two I think is a wash...it just depends on the use and abilities are. As for the rebar...I built my log cabin from my own cedar trees. Milled them, and started stacking right on top of the slab. Been here 15yrs, and haven't had a crack yet.

© 1998 - 2017 by Ellis Walentine. All rights reserved.
No parts of this web site may be reproduced in any form or by
any means without the written permission of the publisher.

WOODCENTRAL, P.O. BOX 493, SPRINGTOWN, PA 18081