Building the Frame

Planning the Frame

An experienced carpenter can frame

a simple building from the most minimal

drawings, but the framing for a

larger or custom-designed structure

may need to be planned as carefully

as for a steel- or concrete-framed

building (Figure 5.16). The architect

or engineer determines an ef cient

layout and the appropriate sizes for

joists and rafters, and communicates

this information to the carpenters by

means of framing plans (Figures 5.17

and 5.51). For most purposes, member

sizes can be determined using

standardized structural tables that are

part of residential building codes, or,

for more complex framing or special
conditions, custom engineering may

be required. Larger-scale section details,

similar to those seen throughout

this chapter, are prepared for major

connections in the building system.

The architectural fl oor plans serve to indicate

the locations and dimensions


Figure 5.17

A framing plan for the ground-fl oor platform

of the building shown in Figure 5.19.

of walls, partitions, and openings, and

the exterior elevations show the outside

faces of the building, with vertical dimensions

or elevations indicated as

required. For most buildings, building

sections are also drawn that cut

completely through the building,

showing the dimensional relationships

of the various ß oor levels and

roof planes and the slopes of the roof

surfaces. Interior elevations are often

prepared for kitchens, bathrooms,

and other rooms with elaborate interior



Figure 5.16

A fl oor plan and building section are

two important components of the

for a simple

house with wood light framing. The

ground fl oor is a on grade.

Notice that portions of the walls have

been designated on the fl oor plan as

shear walls; shear walls are discussed

beginning on page 185.

Figure 5.17

A framing plan for the ground-fl oor platform

of the building shown in Figure 5.19.

Erecting the Frame

The erection of a typical platform frame (referred to, imprecisely, asrough carpentry in the architects specications) can best be understood by following this chapters sequentialisometric diagrams, beginning with Figure 5.19. Notice the basic simplicity of the building process: A platform is built on top of the foundation.Walls are assembled horizontally on


Figure 5.18

Ground-fl oor framing details, keyed to the lettered circles in Figure 5.19. A

compressible or resilient sill sealer strip should be installed between the sill and the

top of the foundation to reduce air leakage but is not shown on these diagrams. Using

accepted architectural drafting conventions, continuous pieces of lumber are drawn

with an X inside and intermittent blocking with a single diagonal. The metal termite

shield in detail C is used in areas where the risk of termite infestation is high. It

prevents subterranean termites from traveling undetected from cracks in the concrete

into the wood framing above.

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