Popular in Canada and Europe, mass timber construction is now gaining a foothold in the U.S. Working with existing code has been one of the challenges for the mass timber construction industry; however, increasing numbers of builders and their investors are turning to mass timber because of its many benefits over alternate building materials. As more construction teams choose to work with mass timber, they will need to rely on a new class of tools and supplies to enhance these building methods.
What is Mass Timber Construction?
The term mass timber refers to a framing style characterized using large solid wood panels for construction of walls, floors, and roofs. These products generally involve the lamination and compression of multiple layers of wood to create panels of laminated wood with increased strength and stability. Various types of mass timber include cross-laminated timber (CLT), nail-laminated timber (NLT), glue-laminated timber (glulam) and dowel-laminated timber (DLT), among others. Mass timber construction is becoming more popular in commercial building in the U.S. due to its many advantages.
One of the benefits to construction with mass timber products today is cost. Now that increasing numbers of builders are demanding these types of products, suppliers are coming to the plate to fulfill the niche. In the past, U.S. builders who wanted to work with cross-laminated timber or glue-laminated timber, for example, had to import these products from Canada, but importation added cost to their project budgets. Now that these products are growing in availability in the U.S., the costs are reducing.
There's little doubt that mass timber is more sustainable and has fewer carbon emissions than traditional steel and concrete buildings. When the timber is responsibly sourced, it is, in fact, a completely sustainable and renewable construction material. Not only is mass timber more environmentally friendly, it is a sound and durable building material. It even features resistance to fire especially well when encapsulated in gypsum board. Research has also demonstrated that mass timber constructions are more energy-efficient than steel and concrete buildings.
Mass timber construction has proved to be an efficient method. Some engineers and builders have reported that a mass timber project can be completed up to 25 percent faster than a similar project using concrete. Contributing to efficiency is the fact that mass timber weighs less than other materials and generally requires fewer trucks to deliver materials to a job site.
Enhanced Innovation for Mass Timber Construction
To make mass timber construction even more eco-friendly and efficient, construction teams are turning to new products and solutions designed to work with mass timber products. For instance, BECK’s LignoLoc® wooden nail fasteners perfectly complement mass timber construction projects. With a tensile strength that is superior, these patented collated wooden nails are the first of their kind. LignoLoc® wooden nails can be driven into solid timber – without pre-drilling -- using the FASCO® (a member of the BECK Group) LignoLoc® pneumatic nailer. Once installed, LignoLoc® nails form an inseparable bond with the timber product.
Additionally, LignoLoc® wooden nails have been recognized by VHT (the German Test Institute for Timber and Drywall Construction, an officially recognized testing, inspection and certification body), for a variety of properties, including pull-out and pull-through parameters, yield moment, tensile strength and shear strength.
If you have a mass timber project on your horizon, visit the BECK website to discover helpful products like the LignoLoc® wooden nails. BECK is a leading producer of fasteners and related products like tools and tool systems.