Wednesday, September 06, 2006

We just had dinner with Nils Peterson (the local timber framing guru) and his family. He showed me two structures: A 12x20 toolshed and a 20x30 timber frame barn with a beautifully finished interior. Both were impressive buildings in their own way.

The 12x20 "shed" was particularly interesting, because it is fairly close to the exact design that I intend to use to build the cabin (again, based on a design in Sobon's first book). Sobon presented plans for a 12x16 tool shed and Nils made it longer at 12x20. I intend to extend the plans further to make my cabin a 14x24. Nils hand-hewed the posts and beams in this shed, which obviously gave the shed a nice, rough-hewn look. This was the first timber-frame structure that he ever constructed, sometime in the early to mid-1990s.

The barn was impressive in its size and beauty. Notably, it used three bents with crucks! It has a partially cantilevered sleeping loft upstairs. The timbers were different sizes, and the roof was very high at 20' from floor to ridge beam. The crucks are the dominant feature of the barn, and Nils paid special attention to them (that was undoubtedly unavoidable, I suspect!). In particular, for the crucks in the middle bent, the loft allows you to see and feel both sides of the bent.

I think Nils will be a great resource. Not only is he a great guy, but he is very passionate about timber framing and he seems very willing to help. And I think I will need all the help I can get!

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