What the Heck is a Hybrid Timber Frame?


Hey everyone! This is Brice with Timber Frame HQ.  In this short video we are going to look at what a hybrid timber frame is and how you can utilize this construction method to bring warmth and comfort into your home.  To get to the skinny on the definition of what a hybrid timber frame is… It is a structure that utilizes timbers, either structural or nonstructural, in combination with other conventional construction techniques.  This is a vague definition, so let’s get in to some of the particulars of the topic so we can define it a bit more.

To give you a little background, I would suspect that about 90% of the homes that are built with timber frames in them today are hybrid timber frames.  You can have a complete structure supported by the timber frame; or, you can have just part of it, such as the great room, dining room, kitchen or a combination of all three.  It may be that you just have accent timbers in the master bedroom or maybe you incorporate a timber frame entry porch into your project.  All of these are considered hybrid timber frames.   As you can see, this term is quite broad.

Let’s look at an example of how you can support a timber frame by using a conventionally framed 2x wall.  Here we have a timber frame truss that bears directly on a 2 x 6 wall.  You’ll notice that the wall has been beefed up with these two by sixes to carry the loads from both the timber frame load and the roof load.  It is vital that you get these details engineered to make sure that you have adequate structure under the timbers to carry the loads appropriately.

As our quick tip, if you are looking for an engineer you can check out our directory here. Or another complimentary resource is the Timber Frame Engineering Council.

One of the biggest advantages of a hybrid timber frame is a cost savings that you can achieve while maximizing the aesthetics you get when incorporating timbers in your home. There are some parts of a home that do not necessarily need timbered elements, such as the closets or bathrooms.  As the homeowner you can put your money into areas where the most amount of time is spent such as the great room, dining room and kitchen.  When you start talking to your designer or architects, make sure you talk through all the options with them so you get the right amount of timber not only for your budget but to enhance your home.

Well, that is a brief overview of what a timber frame hybrid home is.  The term covers a wide range of options from structural to non-structural timbers.  If you have any other questions about the timber frame hybrids or want to browse through some house plans that feature hybrid frames please visit timberframeHQ.com for more information and resources and don’t forget to stop by say hi to us at facebook.com/timberframehq.

Take care and thanks for watching.

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2 thoughts on “What the Heck is a Hybrid Timber Frame?”

  1. Timber Frame hybrid has become very popular over the last few year… Currently the majority of the designs on our board are this building system. Thank you for providing additional info on what the heck it is, we spend a lot of time educating our clients on this very subject. great, informative web site!

  2. Thank you for your comments on both the article and the website. It is great to hear your feedback.

    As a funny note about the title…I was talking to a friend about timber frames and mentioned “hybrid timber frames” to him and his response to was what the heck is a timber frame hybrid?…So it seemed like a great title and subject for the article.

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