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Old 03-11-2008, 10:46 PM   #1
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


To all I have been a mason for 19 years now. I am building a garage 30x50. I am putting a gambrel roof on it. My question is, can I build a truss of this span (30 ft) on my own, or should I be looking at defenitly buying the trusses. Covering my self on the engineering aspect?

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Old 03-11-2008, 11:01 PM   #2
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


I think buying trusses from the guys who build them for a living would be a good choice. You set the foundation.
Ron

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Old 03-11-2008, 11:40 PM   #3
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Ron I hear you !!! but I would like to know if built properly can it be done the cost is not an issue, the lumber is free. I'm asking structuraly is it a good idea!!
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Old 03-12-2008, 06:30 AM   #4
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


The point I was making is that unless you have a very through understanding of how to engineer the structure and the ability to fabricate these with the connectors needed, the job will fail. This is not an intuitive process. As I look at a truss chart, I can't say, yeah, for a thirty feet span I need this one.
You don't mention any sort of personal background in engineering, so the advice is based on that.
That free wood might cost you more then you think if it collapes on top of you.
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Old 03-12-2008, 08:00 AM   #5
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


Stick to purchasing the pre-engineered trusses with load/span approval stamps for your building inspector to see.
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Old 03-12-2008, 02:08 PM   #6
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


Or, purchase ONE and then duplicate it yourself.
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Old 03-12-2008, 03:14 PM   #7
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


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Or, purchase ONE and then duplicate it yourself.

The engineering of the single truss would take into account the design. The design would be based on the wood type and the connectors, in addition to the geometry for the load.
The poster would need to get the appropriate connectors, which is the easy part. He would need to install the connectors correctly, again ,not too complicated. But, and this to me would be the deal breaker, he would need to use the correct wood species. He has free wood, but does he have the correct free wood for the job?
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Old 03-12-2008, 03:33 PM   #8
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


Apparently, the OP thinks he can grow any type of tree necessary, cut it and dry it. - The truss manufacturer can buy the necessary wood in the economical lengths cheaper than anyone else. He might even get a volume discount on the connectors. that may come with the engineering.

Mason stick to what you do best. - I have only seen one building built with gambrel concrete block trusses (90x120, 30' bays, built in 1955).
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Old 03-12-2008, 05:59 PM   #9
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


The OP already has the wood , I just don't know if it's the correct wood for the job. He hasn't mentioned the species or the sizes he has.
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Old 03-12-2008, 08:37 PM   #10
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The OP already has the wood , I just don't know if it's the correct wood for the job. He hasn't mentioned the species or the sizes he has.
Ron
I appreciate the info guys, I do! The wood I have is all type, from GP. I bought out a lumber yard that was going under,(owner is a friend of mine-I purchased the lumber much much lower than his cost) I went to Thadeous Stevens University in Reading PA, where I recieved my degree in masonry. I'm not an engineer, however consider myself to be pretty knowledgeable. Especially in comparision to some generals out there.
As the previous posting mentioned about buying a truss and copying it, I had been kicking that very thought around before he even mentioned it.
As for the connectors, gussetts assumeing that they are done properly.
CAN A TRUSS BE BUILT,OR ARE YOU SAYING THEY MUST BE BOUGHT FROM A TRUSS MFG?
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Old 03-12-2008, 09:03 PM   #11
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I appreciate the info guys, I do! The wood I have is all type, from GP. I bought out a lumber yard that was going under,(owner is a friend of mine-I purchased the lumber much much lower than his cost) I went to Thadeous Stevens University in Reading PA, where I recieved my degree in masonry. I'm not an engineer, however consider myself to be pretty knowledgeable. Especially in comparision to some generals out there.
As the previous posting mentioned about buying a truss and copying it, I had been kicking that very thought around before he even mentioned it.
As for the connectors, gussetts assumeing that they are done properly.
CAN A TRUSS BE BUILT,OR ARE YOU SAYING THEY MUST BE BOUGHT FROM A TRUSS MFG?
Oh yes! The wood species is mostly fir & white pine
ALL sizes 2x4,6,8,10,12
Various lengths, but most of the skids of lumber are12',14',16' & 20'
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Old 03-13-2008, 05:45 AM   #12
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


Yes you can build a truss on site If you have to ask the question though it may not be for you You can, depending on your building department, wing it or get an engineer to design it for building on site. Each one will be a 2 or 3 layers thick depnding on the design and much heavyer, but they work. You can't make you with those cute little clips, like the real ones use, and just pound them togeather with a hammer Good Luck
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Old 03-26-2008, 12:46 AM   #13
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


Do an internet search under Truss Designs, plywood gussets... and you may stumble onto the Canadian Dept of Ag. Truss Designs for self builders. They are pre-engineered and use readily available materials (plywood) for gussets. However, as others mentioned, not just wood species,, but structural grades of lumber may be needed to make the concept viable.

That said, the trusses I had commercially made for my front porch/entryway addition turned out to be the very economical and hassle free. I am very glad I didn't try to make my own.. Nice to be able to trot out the design/engineering specs when the inspector asks for them.

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Old 03-28-2008, 02:04 AM   #14
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


It sounds to me mason, that you want to build you some trussed. My vote is if the lumber is proper, have at it. As for buying one and copying it I can offer a different and possibly a little shadier option. The one time I bought trusses I went to the company to discuss what I wanted, within a couple miniutes he printed out a sheet with all the specs and said "this is what you need." It seems all you need is that sheet. Have Fun!!
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Old 03-30-2008, 06:59 AM   #15
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building my own gambrel truss on site?


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Originally Posted by mason-1 View Post
Ron I hear you !!! but I would like to know if built properly can it be done the cost is not an issue, the lumber is free. I'm asking structuraly is it a good idea!!
Not a 30' span. If it's a shed, no problem, but 30'...no

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