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Building a Timber Decking Joist Subframe

Today, timber roofs are a very popular addition to the English garden. A wide variety of roof kits are available online, and most of them are relatively easy to make – provided you have some basic equipment to do yourself and a little experience.

After you have planned the roof area and prepared the site, the next step is to create a subframe of the blocks.

There are different reasons for building a truss frame roof from blocks:

1. The timber frame provides a structurally strong base on which the beam is attached.

2. Only rare timber treated from grade 4 may touch the ground. Timber is the most common strength class defined largely by architects and builders for roofs and beams, among others. 

3. The timber frame provides much needed lateral rigidity.

4. Timber frames don't settle or fade – and don't hang or sink in corners.

Depending on the type of timber frame you are building, the timber can be installed in several ways. For a deck that is close to the ground, just make a timber that is above the free drainage space.

When the deck is raised, the timber is attached with lightweight alloy connectors – more commonly known as mini coat hangers. Raised decks should also use connecting trees called feet between each timber to add rigidity to the frame.

During the warmer months of spring and summer, there are often small cracks in the deck logs and beams – this is simply because the timber dries up and shrinks a little.