Advantages of Components (FAD)

Innovative thinking and careful construction allowed Truss Craft to give a condemned structure new life.

When PDJ Components opened its doors for a plant tour, it was an education for everyone.

Ric Thompson, a senior truss designer with Millard Lumber, is used to taking on a challenge. “I don’t do small jobs,” he said. “I only do monsters.” Still, some monsters are more monstrous than others. Ask him about BLUEBARN Theatre, and it’s clear that this project stands out.

If a new product can solve age-old building challenges, it can work anywhere—and help CMs become the go-to suppliers in their markets.
In many areas of the country, business is thriving. CMs have all the work their crews and plants can handle without drumming up new sales or making new connections in their marketplaces. Jess Lohse—president of Rocky Mountain Truss and 2015 president of SBCA—and Jason Blenker—president of Blenker Building Systems—say today’s boom is a perfect time to market components. 

“The sooner a project is completed, the sooner it can be sold or leased. That’s a real opportunity cost that means something to owners when I sell them on using our products.” Ken Cloyd, chairman of the board of California TrusFrame, said this to me a few years back during an interview for an article focused on innovation in the industry.


Floor systems are as key to making framing better, faster and more cost effective as wall panels and roof trusses. 

“All the builders and framers I talk to out there say the same thing: they can’t find enough guys to do what they want to do.” Those are the thoughts of Jason Blenker, president of Blenker Building Systems. If national surveys and media reports are accurate, the sentiment is shared by most of the construction industry across the country.

How Framing the American Dream again shows there’s a better way to frame.

In this issue, we take a look at the Framing the American Dream (FAD) project and the value it has for component manufacturers (CMs). This FAD overview lays the foundation for future articles in which we’ll go into greater depth on specific benchmarking data. A comment from Jack Dermer, president of American Truss, sums it up: “Now that the latest study is completed, the next step is for component manufacturers to look at their own markets and find different ways to talk about the study so it’s applicable to their own unique situations.”