Frequently Asked Technical Questions

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Frequently Asked Question

What type of wood is usually used for wood trusses? I live in Louisiana and I would guess pine, but I want to make sure.

Frequently Asked Question

If the truss design drawing specifies using 2x4 1650F SPF, can 2x4 No. 2 southern pine be used instead? What are some things that need to be checked?

Frequently Asked Question

As an engineer, I have noticed truss designers in some high wind states routinely using “Main Wind-Force Resisting Systems” wind pressure coefficients as opposed to “Components and Cladding” coefficients to design for wind uplift. A roof truss is not a main wind-force resisting system and would have to have a tributary area of more than 1000 sq. ft. before qualifying for the lower Primary Frame coefficients. In my experience this practice is routine.

Frequently Asked Question

I am a structural engineer on a project with a wood trussed roof. I have noticed some variations in the peak height in a run of identical trusses. Do you have any information on tolerances for the final dimensions of manufactured trusses?

Frequently Asked Question

I am thinking of using wood trusses for the roofing/ceiling structural systems on some houses I shall build. I remember, though, an engineer/volunteer fireman commenting back in 1989 that the connector plates are prone to expand and pop off, early on in a fire, causing catastrophic structural failure. Was this the case, and if so, has this problem been corrected?

Frequently Asked Question

How long does it take the moisture content to stabilize in a wood truss? I live in southern California. Also, how much deflection should be expected in a scissors truss over a partition wall?

Frequently Asked Question

I am looking for some information regarding black surface mold on lumber. Does it alter the integrity of the lumber stress values? I have a client who wants to use “all dry” lumber for his construction but I do not know if this is really necessary.

Frequently Asked Question

Girders are trusses specially designed to carry extra loads that are a result of the structural framing members they support. Sometimes a single ply girder truss is insufficient to carry the entire load, so the truss designer designs a multiple-ply girder. This is where identical trusses are built and fastened together to act as one unit to support the load. ANSI/TPI 1 states that girder trusses up to three plies thick can be fastened together with nails. Girders over three plies must be pre-drilled and bolted rather than nailed.

Frequently Asked Question

Are trusses required to have tags on all bearings that are not at the heel location? What about tags on webs requiring lateral reinforcement?

Frequently Asked Question

The industry suggests notching the gable end truss to support the overhang. Is this wise? What about a structural gable, or a gable designed with drag loads, or one with only partial bearing? How safe is it for a framer working with a truss that has the top chord cut repeatedly?

Frequently Asked Question

I have recently heard of a problem with fire-retardant-treated wood (FRTW) trusses that were manufactured and installed in 1965-1980. I was searching for more information, since my job involves the protection of property in our member school districts. I had heard that the trusses make of FRTW during that time period can or will become corrosive to the hardware and the trusses will fail.

Frequently Asked Question

The Gypsum Association “Fire Resistance Design Manual” (GA-600-12) lists file RC2601 with two layers of 5/8 in. gypsum wallboard (GWB) on wood joists.

Frequently Asked Question

I am looking for a 1-hour roof/ceiling assembly for wood truss construction. I would like to apply the drywall directly to the bottom of the truss and also have insulation for sound control. Is this possible without using channels and what UL number would I use?

Frequently Asked Question

As the owner for a building designed to have metal plate wood trusses, what documentation should I receive to be assured that the manufactured wood trusses delivered to the site have indeed been manufactured at a licensed and registered wood truss manufacturer under the required written quality control procedures?

Frequently Asked Question

I installed roof trusses in my house and dry walled the ceiling to the bottom of the trusses. Now I seem to have a problem with the change of the seasons. Where the ceiling meets the interior wall, a gap opens and closes – in winter it opens, in summer it closes. What did I do wrong, how can I correct it and how should the drywall be installed in the first place?

Frequently Asked Question

Is lag bolting the bottom chord of a truss to the top plate of a wall a proper fix to correct truss arching, assuming the attic is properly vented?

Frequently Asked Question

I am remodeling a 16-year-old ranch style home. The roof consists of 4/12 26 ft. span trusses, 24 in. O.C., over 2x4 stud walls. What is the recommended means of affixing the top plate of new interior partitions to provide the lateral support needed for the partition? Also, I want to hang a soffit above and overhanging the new kitchen cabinets (recessed lighting placed within). What is the recommended means of attaching the soffit to the underside of the trusses so as not to interfere with the designed movement of the trusses under the variable live load experienced (snow load)?

Frequently Asked Question

Can a roof truss penetrate a one-hr. tenant separation wall without having a one-hr. rated ceiling? The building official insists that the 2x4 chords are combustible and nullify the integrity of the one-hr. rated partition that is constructed in an attic above an 8 in. C.M.U. bearing wall. The partition consists of gypsum board attached to 2 x 4 stud framing. The building official insists that a ledger must be attached through the gypsum board to support the trusses each side of the wall. This is almost saying that any rated assembly must have bearing only on other rated assemblies.

Frequently Asked Question

I am looking to purchase a new home and have one concern about truss construction. The prongs that come off the plates and penetrate the wood seem to only penetrate about 3/8 to 1/2 in. My question is: what keeps these plates from loosening over time and the truss from possibly falling apart from the load? Can the shaking from an earthquake cause the trusses to come apart?

Frequently Asked Question

Is a Class A fire rating (provided by our liquid spray-on fire retardant) acceptable in certain situations?