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is it just me but .....

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  • is it just me but .....

    sitting here doing a timber framed extension which is 47 x 147 studs then I did a section through the eaves lintel - then drew a section with 2 head plates one on top of the other and said - DO NOT DO THIS - then I thought why am I telling them how not to do it

    Am I going mad or have other people found themselves in the same situation where the general lack of building knowledge makes you design and detail something knowing that whatever you put down they will get wrong even with a 1:10 detail.

    The favourite I find is trying to explain to the 'bricklayer' why blocks laid flat work differently to them standing up and you know they are thinking ' what is he on about ' or you have done a design for a steel beam - say in a roof then I put on it 'there is no timber alternative' and still they ring and say can we use timber ?

  • #2
    Re: is it just me but .....

    Not just you. Back when I was a BCO 30+ years ago we'd repeatedly come across "you couldn't make it up" situations.

    One that sticks in the mind was a large two storey extension to an expensive house on Coombe Hill, New Malden - it would be a six figure job now. I turned up to look at the roof timbering only to find that the rafters weren't birdsmouthed over the plates, just resting on the arris and held by nails. Thankfully it got sorted but there were times when, because of staff shortages, there were no inspections between dpc and completion and this would be hard to spot on a completed job. More than a few like this.

    I'd like to be able to say that with all the licensing requirements we have here in Australia things are much much better, but the high-rise tower in which I live is currently the subject of a multi-million dollar action against the original builder for various defects - my balcony tiles are lifting because expansion joints were omitted: multiply by 500 and you're talking serious money!
    Tony Bryer, Greentram Software Pty Ltd


    • #3
      Re: is it just me but .....

      I had a query from a 'bricklayer' asking what a class 3 mortar is then got me out on site to check his alternative construction - in place of a 337 x 215 brick pier he had built a 100 wide x 100 long block reveal to the side of a door with wall starter to the existing cut end of inner leaf - and not only put the door lintel on it but also the end of a 203 x 133 x 30 UB taking the side wall of the house and seemed a bit miffed when I suggested to the client he employed someone who could read and understands the basics of building

      but not as good as the builder (use the term loosely)who used gripfil to fit the baseplate of a load bearing stud wall onto a steel beam and wondered why building control would not sign it off