Brace Position – green oak barn

Monday 28/12/20

It’s cold out there so while I wait a bit for the frost to melt I thought I’d talk about the thinking that has gone into the position of the braces. In the original drawings all the braces were centrally positioned. This wasn’t so much a conscious decision as a holding position until I thought about the detail of how the walls would be constructed.

Front wall braces

There is a planning requirement that the braces on this wall are visible from the outside of the building. However, I want to be be able to see all the posts from the inside of the building. This is for balance but I also wanted to see the lower joint between the post and the brace for the braces linking the posts to the tie beams. I didn’t want these braces disappearing into a wall. So taking all these things into consideration the brace positions and wall build-up looks like this.

Wall build-up west (front)

The back and north wall braces

These walls will not be a feature from the outside of the barn. They are obscured from view by other buildings and vegetation. So I decided to bring the beauty of the braces inside the building where they can be fully appreciated. So the build-up for these walls looks like this:

Wall build-up north and east (back)

The car port wall braces

This wall is slightly more complicated as the top brace joints go into a 150mm wide tie beam (and not a 200m wide wall plate). So the tie beam is narrower than the post – 150mm vs 200mm. There is no planning restriction on where the braces go on this wall, so inside or outside the building were both options. However, if they were on the outside, the wall build-up on the inside would have interfered with the tie beam and spoilt the view of the truss. So I decided to put the braces on the inside. It is tricky to accommodate the wall build-up while keeping the brace fully exposed internally. After a lot of fiddling around this is what I’ve ended up with.

Post - Truss brace detail - right

Note that this configuration does mean that the tie beam is not sitting perfectly central over the post. However, I think this will work aesthetically. The brace position on the other central post that carries the second tie beam will be the mirror image of the above so that things are symmetrical from the centre of the building.

Post - Truss brace detail - left

These decisions mean that I will have to modify the tie beam cog template I made last week to accommodate the fact that the tie beams will no longer rest centrally on the posts. However, this will be an easy modification. I will just need to elongate the mortice on the base of the template so that it can be used on all of the four central posts up against the appropriate end of the elongated mortice.

Tie Beam spacer - 4

It’s all in the detail.




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