Wood frame construction is one of
the most widely method used to build apartments, homes, and even industrial commercial
buildings. Wood frames are economical to build, cool, heat, and offer residents
high degree of comfortability. Added to that, woods frame is sustainable and absorbs
carbon and offset greenhouse gas.
Wood frames can be used to construct
different styles of buildings and there is no restriction on architectural
possibilities when wood frames are employed. In order for wood buildings to
perform expected functions, it is necessary to construct it properly and this can
be achieved by using sound construction and erection practices. Wood frames are
light and hence it does not require cranes and other heavy machineries during
Foundation for Wood Frames
Based on the soil type and wood
frame loads, suitable type of foundation is specified. Footings shall be deep enough
to avoid frost action in winter. The ground needs to be sufficiently compacted
if the structure is constructed on area in which root tree are removed or filled
materials are placed. If the wood frame is constructed on poor soil, then treated
wood pile with wood or concrete sills can be used.
By and large, two types of foundations are widely used for wood structure namely concrete and pressure preservative treated wood foundation which are shown in Fig. 1 and Fig. 2, respectively. Apart from these two major types of foundation, free standing pier, piers with curtain walls, and pier supporting grading beam can also be utilized.
Methods of Wood Frame Construction
After the construction of foundation is completed, then construction of wood frame structure would begin. There are various types or techniques which can be used for the construction of wood frames. Suitable construction technique shall be selected for the given wood structure:
1. Platform Frame Construction
It is an easy method and mostly suitable for the construction of homes. In this technique, first floor joists are covered with sub-flooring to create a surface upon which exterior walls and interior partitions are erected. In platform system, wall framing can be assembled on the floor and the entire unit can be tilted into its place.
2. Balloon Frame Construction
It is another method of wood frame construction which is less popular compare with platform frame construction. In this method, exterior wall studs and first floor joists are supported by anchored sill. The exterior wall studs are continuous to the second floor. The second-floor joists are supported by ribbon strip which is inserted into inside edges of exterior wall studs.
3. Plank and Beam Frame Construction
In this framing method, beams, which their ends are supported by posts, are spaced maximum 2.4m and planks are used to cover floors and roofs. The posts provide wall framing and planks act as subflooring and roof sheathing. Wall sheathing are attached to supplementary framing between posts. Roof and floor loads imposed on beams, then transferred to posts and finally received by foundations.
4. Truss-Framed Construction
In this frame construction method, roof and floor truss and metal anchors are used to build considerably strong wood frame. Outstanding advantages of trussed frame are substantial rigidity and wider spacing of roof and floor supporting members.
Types of Fastenings for Wood Frame
There are various fastening means, which
can be selected based on the size of wood element and exerted loads, used to
attach different elements of wood frames together. Most common fastening
techniques are discussed below:
1. Nails or Combination of Nails, Anchor and Additives
Nails or combination of nails, metal
framing anchor, and construction additives are used to fasten maximum 5cm framing
lumber and sheathing panels.
2. Ring or Shank Nails
Ring or shank nails are used for
3. Nailed Joints
Nailed joints are used when loads
act at right angles to nails, but it should be avoided if loads act parallel to
Wood Protection Measures
Provision of proper means to protects
wood is an indicator of good construction practice. Wood frame elements
specifically foundation members shall be protected against decay and termites.
Basic protection measures include
the removal of tree root in areas around the structure prior to backfilling,
carefully tamp loose backfill to decrease future settlement, and provide certain
degree of slopes at foundation and over the building to force water away from
Finally, all wood structural
elements shall be treated based on the exposure to weather and closeness to