Engineering

I almost always see wood trusses erected with no stability bracing at points of support. It seems to me that common sense and section 3.3.3.4 of The American Wood Council’s National Design Specification for Wood Construction (NDS) require that lateral support be provided at points of bearing. Plywood decking doesn't provide any more restraint for a wood truss than it does for a roof joist. I doubt if it was a concern with short span trusses having 4 in.

Manufactured gable ends are actually frames even though they are often referred to as trusses. The webs are “studs” oriented vertically and usually spaced at 12, 16 or 24 in. O.C. The gable end frame is designed to transfer vertical loads from the roof to the continuous bearing wall below. Another way gable end frames are different from trusses placed in the interior of the structure is that frames experience perpendicular wind loads. The sheathed frame transfers the wind loads to the roof and ceiling diaphragms and vice versa.

We are having a house built and on a recent visit we brought along a friend who builds houses for a living. He noticed that the trusses were wet and a bit moldy. The wood seemed warped, brown, and had white splotches on it. We are worried that it would later make the roof uneven. How could we tell how long the trusses have been exposed to the elements? What options do we have from here? Do we request new trusses, or can these be repaired?

I am looking for strongback bracing requirements for a 12 in. deep residential floor system with trusses in lengths up to 19 ft. Can the strongback bracing end at a truss without tying into an end wall? For instance, can three trusses of a type be tied together by strongbacks, then the next series of different trusses be tied together without having to be tied back to the previous type of trusses?

As a forensic engineer who has investigated numerous collapses of wood truss systems, I find your web site an excellent resource on the proper erection of wood trusses. What are your opinions on steel trusses, particularly with regards to installation and bracing? Do you feel that the installation and bracing techniques utilized for wood trusses are applicable to steel trusses? Do you know if that is the general industry standard or are there specific requirements and guidelines for steel trusses? Is there a particular guideline/commentary available for metal trusses?

Is it common practice for the supplier/distributor of a truss to provide a publication regarding temporary bracing with the delivery of the material?

How important is continuous lateral bracing in roof trusses? Is it detrimental to the roof integrity if it is missing?

I am currently undertaking a project dealing with techniques and methods of joining structural timber members. Do you have any available information on timber connections like split rings and design software?

Is finger-jointed material allowed in the manufacturing of trusses?

I own and live in the middle unit of a one-story tri-plex that has a truss-framed roof. The interior has high ceilings that would potentially allow the addition of a second floor room. I am contemplating adding a shed dormer to create a second story bedroom. Do you have any suggestions as to how a shed dormer could be added? I am familiar with how to frame up a shed dormer if the original framing were rafters and a ridge board, but the truss construction has thrown me for a loop.