1 of 2
Timber frames are solid wood – no nails, bolts or metal plates.
2 of 2
Floyd Inside Home
The great room in David Fason and Diane Jackson's Floyd, Va. home soars 20 feet up at its highest.
Timber framing is a form of post and beam construction. Traditionally, large, solid lumber is used as the structural frame and joined by carved wood joinery, such as mortises and wooden tenons rather than nails. Simply put, a mortise and tenon joint is a square peg in a square hole.
Joinery is what sets timber framing apart from other post and beam methods, which may use hidden bolts or metal plates. Also, in true timber frame construction, the posts and beams are solid wood.
During the ninth and 10th centuries, the Europeans developed the timber framing skills we use today. Timber framing is now used as much for the aesthetic value of the handsome exposed wood framing as it is for its strength.
“The timber frame is almost like a piece of art, it’s so beautiful,” says architectural designer Deborah Chevalier. “When the frame goes up, the owners are ready to have a party.”
Interior photography by Paul Calhoun.
For related story, click here.