How is timber frame construction different from other methods of construction?
Timber framing is the ancient craft of building with large section timbers, connected with all wooden joinery. It was used extensively in medieval times all over Europe, and was brought to the new world with European settlers. It died out towards the middle of the 19th century, when balloon or stick framing was developed here in North America. Stick framing was brought about by a need to build houses more quickly, by less skilled hands, at a lower cost. By using dimensional lumber and nails, the need for complex three-dimensional joinery and large section timber was eliminated. Stick framing is not meant to be seen from the inside of the home.
Post & beam construction is often thought to be synonymous with timber framing. It isn’t. Post & beam is heavy timber construction without the use all wooden joinery. Instead, complex joints are avoided and metal fasteners are used to connect the timbers together.