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Jointing and Framing of Wooden Structure


Wooden frame

Timber Framing is the method of creating structures fitted and joined timbers with joints secured by large wooden pegs. It is commonplace in large barns. The methodology comes from making things out of logs and tree trunks without modern high tech saws to cut lumber from the starting material stock. Using axes, adzes and draw knives, hand powered auger drill bits (bit and brace), and laborious woodworking, artisans or farmers could gradually assemble a building capable of bearing heavy weight without excessive use of interior space given over to vertical support posts.

Korean traditional housing frame

Korean traditional housing section

joint system






A Study on the Connecting Method of Wooden Structure Found at Korean Traditional Wooden Structure and American Wooden Structure       

( Geuklakjeon Hall of Bongjeongsa Temple in Korea and Hanford Mills Museum in United States)


This study is to examine the connecting method of wooden architecture found through comparing two structures: one is the restoration process of one of Korean traditional structure which is Geuklakjeon Hall of Bongjeongsa Temple in Korea, which was constructed in Goryeo(918-1392) Dynasty and the other is the Hanford Mills Museum which is one of American wooden sawmills. This research also deals with the characteristics of the structure and construction method through the findings of the connecting method.

On Geuklakjeon Hall and Hanford Mills Museum, basic frame is made up of columns and lintels. Also, column is connected with lintels. Joints used between column and lintel are tenon and mortise joint, and dovetailed joint.


Hanford Mills Museum

Type of Frame Construction_ Balloon Frame Construction

 Balloon framing is a method of wood construction used primarily in Scandinavia, Canada and the United States (up until the mid-1950s). It utilizes long continuous framing members (studs) that run from the sill plate to the top plate, with intermediate floor structures let into and nailed to them. Here the heights of window sills, headers and next floor height would be marked out on the studs with a storey pole. Once popular when long lumber was plentiful, balloon framing has been largely replaced by platform framing.

Although lumber was plentiful in 19th century America, skilled labor was not. The advent of cheap machine-made nails, along with water-powered sawmills in the early 19th century made balloon framing highly attractive, because it did not require highly-skilled carpenters, as did the dovetail joints, mortises and tenons required by post-and-beam construction. For the first time, any farmer could build his own buildings without a time-consuming learning curve.

The main characteristic of balloon framing is at the floor lines. The balloon wall studs extend from the sill of the first story all the way to the top plate or end rafter of the second story. The platform-framed wall, on the other hand, is independent for each floor. In balloon frame construction, exterior wall studs continue through the first and second stories. First floor joists and exterior wall studs both bear on the anchored sill, second floor joists bear on ribbon strip, which has been let in to the inside edges of exterior wall studs.

Since steel is generally more fire-resistant than wood, and steel framing members can be made to arbitrary lengths, balloon framing is growing in popularity again in light gauge steel stud construction. Balloon framing provides a more direct load path down to the foundation. Additionally, balloon framing allows more flexibility for tradesmen in that it is significantly easier to pull wire, piping and ducting without having to bore through or work around framing members.



                                                                                     Photo of Structure of Hanford Mills Museum 




Geuklakjeon Hall

_Composition and Basic Frame

                                                                       plan                                                                                                                   elevation


Geuklakjeon Hall is made up of 4×5 columns and basic structure is composed of columns, sills, and penetrating ties. Sill and penetrating tie connect each lower columns and upper columns.

In the structure of Geuklakjeon Hall, it was found that front·rear and left·right side of the building used the different connecting method. It is due to the reason that side of the hall and inner part structured with the middle height of columns is different. The frame structures such as main beams, end beams, middle bracket posts, are connected with the joint and splice method. The center bay and side elevation bay are constructed with the different frame and construction method. In particular, the frame structure of the side has tall column which is connected with beams and penetrating ties. Through the study mentioned above, it is found that the connecting methods are highly related with the plan, structure, and construction method to construct a building.



                                                                                    Body System of Column and Lintel

Composition method of Korean traditional body structures  is frame(column and lintel) construction which is a building technique based around vertical structural members, usually called studs, which provide a stable frame to which interior and exterior wall coverings are attached, and covered by a roof made of horizontal ceiling joists and sloping rafters. Joint of column and lintel plays a significant role as keeping whole frame. Also, method of mortise and tenon joint and dovetail joint are used for connecting of column and lintel.





                                                                                     Upper System of Cross Beam and Lintel

This is upper system of structure. Main purpose of upper system is for supporting roof. Basic frame of structure consists of columns and lintels. And cross beams are located on the lintels. Cross beams support the roof.



Jointing Method



                                                                                                 Mortise and Tenon joint

The mortise and tenon joint has been used for thousands of years by woodworkers around the world to join pieces of wood, mainly when the adjoining pieces connect at an angle of 90°. In its basic form it is both simple and strong. Although there are many joint variations, the basic mortise and tenon comprises two components: the mortise hole and the tenon. The tenon, formed on the end of a member generally referred to as a rail, is inserted into a square or rectangular hole cut into the corresponding member. The tenon is cut to fit the mortise hole exactly and usually has shoulders that seat when the joint fully enters the mortise hole. The joint may be glued, pinned, or wedged to lock it in place.




                                                                                                       Dovetail joint

A dovetail joint or simply dovetail is a joint technique most commonly used in woodworking joinery. Noted for its resistance to being pulled apart (tensile strength), the dovetail joint is commonly used to join the sides of a drawer to the front. A series of pins cut to extend from the end of one board interlock with a series of tails cut into the end of another board. The pins and tails have a trapezoidal shape. Once glued, a wooden dovetail joint requires no mechanical fasteners.