Red Suspenders Timber Frames

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Report 9-22

We are moving quickly and the number of finished timbers continues to grow. Unusually warm weather still for September but things have cooled down a bit making outside work more pleasant.

You can see the stack of finished timbers beginning to grow.

These timbers will be used as plates in the frame to support roof trusses and other frame elements. Notice the "scarf joints" at the timber ends. This joinery allows us to join two shorter timbers to form a longer beam.
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Image Not Available Willow is checking out the timbers before layout. She wants to know if they have been kiln dried correctly and have a proper moisture content.
We are moving through fabrication of the purlins in the main house and bedrooms. Richard and Doug are working on hand finishing all of the joinery and we will begin oiling the timbers later today. More timbers are expected out of the dry kilns soon.

Keith is cutting the joinery on one of the purlins used between the main roof trusses. At this point, all work is done by hand tools to meet exacting measurements and quality standards.
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Image Not Available Will is making the initial cuts to square the purlin ends before cutting the joinery. The saw you see is one of the largest in the shop. This is a precision cut that demands intense concentration to get it right.
Here you can see a number of purlins to be used in the main roof trusses and the bedroom area here. A lot of hand work goes into the timbers at this point so we are very careful not to make mistakes. No one wants to do the job more than once Image Not Available
Image Not Available Richard is hand finishing each timber. First he hand plans the timber to produce a smooth surface. He may spot sand one or more faces of the timber with a belt sander to touch up any rough spots. Richard's comment, "This stuff really looks good!" We all agree.
We mark the individual timber so that we can identify where they are to be placed when we raise the frame. Each purlin, post, girt and plate is made for only one specific location. It's a lot to keep track of. It also wears out a lot of chisels. Image Not Available
Image Not Available Doug is sharpening his set of chisels in the back work room. We wear out a lot of mallets and chisels.