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Post Beam Framing vs Timber Framing
Timber ConnectorThe use of Timbers in construction dates back to the beginning of construction itself. The plentiful supply of wood materials and replenishing nature of timber has promoted the use of wood in building. This resource discusses the difference between two types of timber construction. If your building project involves connecting timbers as structural members, it is likely you are using at least one of the framing methods discussed in this resource. Both framing methods discussed use similar materials and are often referred to interchangeably. But the two construction framing types also have distinctive characteristics that we will point out in this resource.

Beam and Post Framing

Beam and Post FramingBeam and Post Framing is often referred to as Timber Framing as well. However, there is a structural and often visible difference between Beam and Post Framing and Timber Framing. Similar to Timber Framing, Beam and Post Framing uses timbers as the structural members. But instead of using wooden pegs to connect timbers Beam and Post Framing construction will use heavy duty metal connector plates to join the timbers together. These plates are most often made out of ¼” or thicker steel material. Lag bolts are used to connect the plates to the timber members as well as secure the connection between the timbers. In essence, the metal timber connector plate becomes part of the structural system by holding the timbers together at their joint.

The timber connector plates used in Beam and Post Framing are often coated, plated or made of a corrosion resistant material because of their visibility and their exposure to the environment. Since the timber connectors are visible they are often painted a color that enhances the overall appearance of the structure in which they are being used. Timber Connectors come in varying sizes and shapes to meet the joining requirement presented at the timber connection. It is a good idea to have an architect and/or structural design engineer review and approve any Timber Framing and/or Beam and Post Framing construction project.

Timber Framing

Timber framing is the oldest of the two framing methods discussed. Timber framing involves the use of wood timbers and connections between the timbers. In timber framing construction the timbers are connected together using large wooden pegs at the timber joints to connect the supporting timbers together. This framing style is used often in barns and in older framed structures.

In many instances, timber framing leaves little to no visible fastener at the joints of timbers, whether beam to beam or beam to post junctions. The timbers are worked in the areas to be connected so that wood pegs may be used as the securing components. Timber Framing gives an appearance that the timbers are fitted together without connection.

For more information on Bison Built post beam framing and timber framing products contact us at