The phrase “tiny house” used to be a niche topic for discussion. Today, it has become the topic of conversation. With many binge-worthy reality shows balanced by documentaries that explore the physical and mental benefits of minimalistic living, this trend is gaining serious mainstream momentum, especially in the DIY community.
Pounding waves. Ship collisions. Saltwater corrosion. Freeze and thaw cycles. Storm damage. From coast to coast, the nation’s wharves, sea walls, docks, and piers take an annual beating from sun, sand, wind, and surf, not to mention the wear and tear from supporting maritime and recreational boaters. Sure, they’re built tough, but extreme conditions put these structures in need of regular repair and restoration.
Do you want to learn how Simpson Strong-Tie is creating builder solutions to help get houses on the market faster?
Since many of us are relying more on online solutions, we’ve developed a builder webinar series highlighting new innovative product solutions that reduce labor time and help decrease the opportunity for misinstallations, while meeting code requirements.
Over the last decade — in outlets reaching from construction industry journals to the Boston Globe and the Economist; from CNN and Fast Company to Popular Mechanics; to Nautilus and TED talks — we’ve been hearing increasingly about mass timber and related phenomena: “CLT,” big wood, tall wood, tall timber, timber towers, ply-rises, plyscrapers, ply in the sky, super-ply, Brobdingnagian boards, and all manner of engineered arboreal futures.
So what’s the huge deal about mass timber? What on earth’s so good about wood? Is CLT the new CBD (for builders, that is)? Can ply really get that high? Is this just a big buncha buzz, or is something more solid behind it?
Homeowners seeking the best bang for their buck on home improvement projects typically turn to swanky kitchen or bath upgrades involving high-end appliances or granite countertops. But the latest cost-versus-value report by Remodeling magazine finds that the addition of masonry veneer siding delivers a much higher return on investment.
Continue reading “Getting Big Payback from Brick or Stone Veneer Remodeling Projects”
This post examines several advantages of fabric-reinforced cementitious matrix (FRCM) applications over traditional shotcrete methods in the repair and reinforcement of concrete construction.
Continue reading “FRCM – An Alternative to Shotcrete for Structural Repair and Strengthening of Concrete”
Residences and low-rise commercial structures have been built using dimensional wood framing since the mid-19th century.
The first skyscraper ever built was erected with steel framing, however. The Home Insurance Building in Chicago was completed in 1885 and was 10 stories tall.
Continue reading “What You Should Know About Cross-Laminated Timber Construction”
Cross-laminated timber (CLT) is changing the way urban builders scrape the sky.
From London to Tokyo, the race is on to build the tallest wood-framed skyscraper in the world. Prized for its workability, low cost and visual aesthetics, wood was widely used by urban builders until the early 20th century, when fires triggered by the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake leveled the largely stick-built city. Until recently, the other knock on wood was a vertical one, in that stick-framed buildings generally top out at five stories, owing to the accumulation of dead and live loads in excess of the allowable loads for lumber.
Continue reading “Cross-Laminated Timber Takes Wood Construction to Greater Heights Than Ever Before”
Legions of catatonic organisms lie asleep in the matrix, waiting only for momentary exposure to water and oxygen in order to awaken — whereupon the organisms immediately germinate, grow and fulfill their destiny, sealing the cracks in the fabric of their universe before falling dormant once again.
Continue reading “It’s Alive! Self-Healing Concrete, Materials Science and Other Evolutionary Developments”
Back in March, a few colleagues and I were discussing how to prepare kids for college. With that subject in mind, I wanted to do something fun and meaningful for the kids in our community. So I organized some workshops in my back yard focused on engineering with kids who might be interested in exploring structural engineering — and summer was the perfect time to do it! We had a group of 12 kids, aged 7–11, who signed up and were all set to explore some engineering concepts. It was a learning experience for me, as well!
Continue reading “Engineering with Kids: Popsicle Sticks, Spaghetti and Marshmallows”