What is going on here?

Timber Frame LA℠  was established to provide top quality structures that remind us we are living in a magical world surrounded by mystery and beauty. It takes a lot of effort to create structures that inspire as much wonder as they instill confidence. We are dedicated to Craft, Integrity, Sustainability, and Community. We refuse to sacrifice quality for profit, which means you always get more than what you paid for.

That's HOW timber frames are made, but what ARE they? Simply put, timber frame is the practice of structurally connecting dimensional lumber using joinery, without the use of foreign materials or metal connectors. Joinery, typically mortise and tenon, is the act of shaping wood so that they fit together like puzzle pieces. A hole is then drilled right through the joint, and a wooden peg is pounded in to hold it all together. That's just the start, read more...

IS THIS SOMETHING NEW?

Variations of timber framing have been practiced for hundreds, if not thousands of years until roughly the start of the 1900's when the demand for cheap, fast housing brought dimensional lumber to the construction forefront, sacrificing quality wood and sustainable forestry in the process. In the 1970s, craftsman revived the timber framing tradition in the United States and have ushered the design style into the modern era. In Japan, Norway, France, England and now Israel of all places, timber frame is alive and well. However, Los Angeles is one of the last places in this country to benefit from this building style.

NO NAILS, NO SCREWS

Modern building practice has developed around the principal of cheap unskilled labor and standardized materials and methods. As a result, we have forests of young, ill-formed trees being used in large quantities with metal fasteners, assembled by barely skilled workers in most cases. Contrast this with Timber Frame and you have large, fire-resistant timbers selected for strength and beauty, cut and joined by an expert in their craft, all the while driving improvements in sustainable forest management. Overall less wood is used, as well as fewer resources are required in processing the wood and for manufacturing metal/plastic fasteners and brackets. Specific to Southern California, wood is the ideal building solution for seismic issues. For example, the Griffith Park Teahouse has been transported around Los Angeles on a flatbed trailer on aging freeways, effectively enduring a massive earthquake each time, not to mention salvaging urban wood destined to rot. Between earthquakes and rampant fires, timber frame is the ideal building solution.

Next Steps...

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See recent work in the portfolio. If you don't see what you're looking for, let's make it!

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Take a look behind the scenes and see what goes into a hand-cut timber frame!