Timber Framed House Construction

It is possible to construct houses at minimum cost provided one understands the various regulations and structural requirements for the elements in which the timber is used.

Structural Strength & Stability

The proposed “Planning and Building Regulations 2009” Volume 3 Section J (Walls) provides that

“Any wall shall be capable of safely sustaining any loads to which it is likely to be subjected and in the case of any structural wall such wall shall be capable of safely transfering such loads to the foundations supporting such wall.”

The main factors to consider in timber framed construction include

1. The height of the construction and any unsupported length of timber members

2. Water penetration– any external wall of any building must comply with Kenyan Standards, BS 5268:1996. Timber framed walls should not allow water penetration

3. Damp-Proof Course– Any wall or sleeper pier of a building shall be provided with damp-proof courses in such position and to an extent that will protect the wall against rising damp and the interior of the building ingress of moisture from abutting ground (as per BS 8215). For timber construction, the DPC  should be below any ground floor timber beam or joist.

In any timber framed wall a damp-proof course shall be installed between the bottom plate of the wall and any foundation wall or concrete floor slab.

4. Behaviour in Fire: The walls should meet requirements for fire resistance and non-combustibility.

5. Ring Beam– Where a timber roof construction is used, provide a ring beam at ceilling level not less than 200mm in both breadth and depth reinforcedproperly and the roof members securely tied thereto.

Framing Floor Joists & Walls:

The video below explains the logical sequence of erection of a simple frame building. It gives some instructions in certain principles underlying the construction of all buildings.

Closing remarks:

There is room to embrace good practice that is safe and secure in all our construction practices. We also need more specialist Contractors to venture into low-cost housing that is affordable and easy to implement.

There is abundant room to embrace mosdern Architecture in otherwise simple house construction.

I have seen plenty of Timber Frame Construction in Kenya in especially in “cold” places like Timboroa, Rondiani, Kijabe &  Aberdares.

Kindest Regards

David Nahinga


~ by ujenzibora on May 11, 2010.

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