Round timber in construction: Notes for structural design
In This Series
- Assessment of the durability and engineering properties of lesser-known hardwood timber species for use in marine and freshwater construction
- Avoiding landfill through effective wood waste disposal and a shift in product focus
- Bracing for non-domestic timber trussed rafter roofs
- Cross-laminated timber: an introduction
- Environmentally responsible construction: Community wood recycling
The use of round timber for structural applications can provide designers with attractive features in sympathy with local surrounding in a range of applications from housing and agricultural buildings to major engineering structures such as bridges.
Structural engineers are often faced with little information on designing with round timber and this sheet gives basic technical guidelines to building with round timber. This document contains a basic guide to the standards which cover round timber construction as well as some grading and species selection advice, design approaches and a number of references for further, detailed reading.
- Basic terminology
- Measurement of sizes and tolerances to prEN 14544 and prEN 1309-2
- Permitted deviations from target sizes
- Measurement of features
- Measurement of features and tolerances to prEN 14544 and BS EN 1310
- Visual strength grading
- Mechanical properties
- Conditioning, Moisture Content (MC) in service conditions
- Natural durability and conferred durability (via preservative treatment) of wood
- Environmental aspects
- Environmental impact assessment
- Sustainable forestry and chain of custody certification
- Machining - health and safety aspects
- Waste management
Timber is an internationally traded material and the UK has
traditionally imported timber from a wide range of countries, as
well as producing its own. A large range of sizes are available
throughout Europe, with individual countries having different
traditions as to the sizes in common use.
This Wood Information...
Although the vast majority of structural timber in the UK is softwood, there is a significant interest in hardwoods from both temperate and tropical regions for structural applications. When using hardwoods in structures, the specifier may need to take more interest in the species, its origin and its moisture condition...
Philip O'Leary, head of TRADA Technology's Structural Investigations team, highlights his concerns about a lack of understanding in the industry about timber strength grading issues.
Timber as a natural material, is inherently variable, even within a single species. Strength grading of softwood and hardwood overcomes this, by assessing the...