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Aug 02, 2023

What is Post and Beam Construction?

Tags: Timber Frame

Post and beam structures are known for their unique look, strength, and intricate details. A traditional form of construction that has stood the test of time, post and beam construction is a great choice for those looking to create an open-concept, custom home that is both spacious and inviting.

While not as common today as stick frame homes, post and beam structures have made a comeback due to their beauty and durability. Despite their re-emerging popularity, there still tends to be some confusion around what it means when people say “post and beam construction.” Today, we’re going to dive into the definition so you can feel prepared when deciding on what type of building system you want for your custom home.

Elements of Post and Beam Construction

Post and beam construction is a type of construction where heavy timbers are arranged vertically (posts) and horizontally (beams) and fastened together with metal fasteners to create the frame of a home. Unlike stick frames, where dimensional lumber is used to construct the framework, post and beam construction uses widely spaced posts to provide support for the structure.

While post and beam construction is often confused with timber frame construction, there is technically a minor difference between the two systems: post and beam construction uses steel plates and bolts to secure timbers together, whereas true timber frames only use woodworking joinery.

History of Post and Beam Construction

Early post and beam techniques were developed centuries ago and allowed the construction of shelters with relatively simple hand tools. Structures became more and more complex, and timber frame techniques evolved faster than other tool and material technologies. Therefore, many grand structures were created using these traditional post and beam techniques.

Eventually, technology caught up, and following the industrial revolution post and beam construction began to fade. Small, uniform, and inexpensive lumber coupled with metal fasteners quickly allowed the much simpler stick frame construction to relegate post and beam structures to more of a specialty role in the marketplace.

Why Choose Post and Beam Construction

Post and beam structures are often chosen for their beauty, intricacy and rarity. With their large, exposed timbers, post and beam structures create a more rustic or mountain-modern look than traditional stick frame homes. Additionally, there are many different ways to customize post and beam structures to create your one-of-a-kind dream home - whether that be with the type of truss, fasteners or added decorative elements you choose.

At Marks Lumber in Clancy, MT, we are your source for quality circle sawn Douglas fir timbers, perfect for your custom post and beam home. Contact our qualified sales team today to learn more about how we can help you achieve your ideal custom home.


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