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Old Wood Framing

Oct 10, 2019   //   by wvanbusk   //   Redwood Victorian  //  Comments Off on Old Wood Framing

This home is either a timber frame or a hybrid frame based on observation of the attic and crawlspace carpentry. Once visual access to see how the exterior second floor joists are supported by the walls will it be possible to know if the framing style is hybrid balloon; e.g. if the second floor joists are lapped with the wall studding. In the crawlspace, there originally was no perimeter sill plate upon which the floor joists and wall studs connected. Rather, the home was built on concrete piers supporting upright posts. The posts support a network of large wood girders that are joined with simple rabbet joints. Full length floor joists span the width of the home with no wall studs penetrating the sub-floor or openings into the wall cavities. All of the wood in the crawlspace is rough cut old growth, except for the new pressure treated sill bolted to cement blocks set on a poured concrete perimeter footing.

In the attic, the hip roof with rectangular deck platform are built with timbers resting on perimeter beams (top of wall plate?) with no upright structural posts between the attic floor and the attic ceiling. hip deck roof The ceiling joists in the floor of attic are not tied to the roof rafters and no wall studding is visible, although insulation would need to be pulled back to see more detail. Electric wiring is supplied through holes drilled through interior wall partitions. One of the major deficiencies of balloon framing, open cavities connecting the crawlspace to the attic, is not present.

There are no metal ties in the attic or crawlspace. The only visible retrofit is the perimeter concrete foundation with bolted 2×6 sill plate. A logical next step would be to replace the round bolt washers with plate washers and then add metal straps to tie the posts to the sill and the girders and also tie the first floor joists to the girders. rabbet jointOnce the underpinnings are better secured, the addition of plywood sheets will vastly increase the shear strength of the support posts. It is unknown if this home was purposely designed differently than a regular balloon frame home. If it was specifically built for Frank Herrick, his occupation as an engineer may have influenced the design and construction. Frank was likely aware of the fire hazard, but not likely aware of the need to fortify for earthquakes (1992 M 7.2) and wind storms (1981 69 mph).

Fully fenced
The Parlour