Wood trusses are building materials made of wooden beams which support the roof or floor of a building, acting as a framework. They consist in a network of connected triangles secured with truss plates. The interior triangles are called “webs” and they are supported by external triangles known as “chords.” There are various types wood truss designs, but they are all based on a similar principle and their size depends on the building. Wood trusses are widely used for their durability, as they are rust resistant, can be treated against termites and ensure good insulation.
Wooden trusses are used in a wide range of constructions, from residential to commercial and agricultural buildings, both for roofs and floors. Generally speaking, wood trusses are usually found in residential buildings, while steel trusses are used in commercial construction.
Roof trusses have replaced rafters in most home designs because they are less expensive. Roof trusses have smaller wood members that are engineered to provide a similar strength without all the expensive wood. It's really about being efficient with both materials and labor.
To determine how many trusses to create, you will first need to measure both the width and length of the structure you are building. The trusses should be a little longer than the exact width to allow for overhang, and you will need enough trusses to mount across the length. Most are spaced between 18-26 inches apart or as its known in the trade at 16" centers or 24" centers. Wider spacing is allowed but requires specially engineered trusses and and wider introduces other challenges in the building process. Talk to an expert!
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