Stick Build Vs. Panelized Technology
Building Systems Council of NAHB sponsored the Framing the American Dream® project to better understand wood framing. It was the first time two identical house plans were completely framed using two different methods—one stick-built, and the other with wood trusses and wall panels (components). Here’s what we learned.
Craftsmanship Through Engineering
Every building is an engineered structure. The moment a nail is driven into two boards, load transfers from one board to the other, so designing and engineering all structures is important. A house using components is fully engineered.
Each component is designed specifically for your building.
Each component location is defined, making components easy to use in the field.
All the loads go where they belong. You won’t have uneven floors, or windows and doors that don’t close properly—no surprises!
Engineering with computer software makes craftsmanship easy with components, and gives you design flexibility.
Craftsmanship Through Manufacturing
A manufacturing facility creates quality components, often starting with computer-controlled saws, which make accurate compound cuts simple. All component joints fit together tightly in precision jigs. Manufacturing can also be computer-controlled, for faster setup times and efficient production.
Weather is not a factor. Production can continue day and night, providing consistent quality.
Material shortage delays are less likely, since the entire system is supplied in one package.
Callbacks are reduced. Components made with dry lumber are less likely to shrink, warp and twist.
Components are rarely stolen from the jobsite.
Floor Truss Framing
Floor trusses can be manufactured in long spans, reducing or eliminating the need for intermediate bearing walls, beams, columns or footings.
The open webs allow for easy passage of ducts, plumbing and electrical wires within the system. No cutting of webs is required and you don’t need to fur down to hide mechanicals.
Special bearing, cantilever and balcony details are easily built in.
Stiffness can be designed into the floor truss, creating a more solid floor.
Labor costs for mechanical contractors are lower.
The 31⁄2-inch width allows for quick gluing and accurate nailing or screwing.
Cold air returns can be eliminated by using the open web system as a plenum for air distribution.
Roof Truss Framing
Complex roof and ceiling profiles are easy to design with today’s software.
Hip and valley roof systems are much easier to build using trusses than with conventional framing.
Trusses can be used with a variety of on-center spacings, to optimize strength and lumber resources.
Long clear spans are easy to create, reducing or eliminating the need for interior bearing walls, beams and columns.
Structures are dried in more quickly, saving time and avoiding weather- related delays.
Your imagination is the only limit when you design with trusses.
Wall Panel Framing
Wall lumber use can be optimized with studs designed at the optimum spacing for the applied roof and floor truss loads. Generally, less lumber is required.
Placement plans can be generated, picking up all bearing locations and showing correct locations, for easy setting. Wall panels are marked accordingly.
High quality material is used.
Walls are square.
Proper nailing patterns are used.
Studs and headers are designed to support applied loads.
Sheathing can be applied in the factory, sav- ing time in the field.
Savings: 13 Yards
What We Learned Framing The American Dream
“Images and text courtesy of the Structural Building Components Association (SBCA). For more information, visit sbcindustry.com.”