Lake Naconiche Timber Frame Pavilion Workshop Begins

by ziggy on March 21, 2014 -- 1 comment -- Follow

Timber Framers Guild Lake Naconiche Workshop

April gets her set of timber frame plans ready to go

We’ve made it to Texas. Shockingly big, sprawling, and stunningly green Texas. Yesterday, the Timber Framers Guild Lake Naconiche Workshop officially began, and we starting chipping away at the layout work for the 32×48 timber frame pavilion. It’s hard to believe in a little over a week, the building we’re looking at on paper should be up in the air. The magic of timber framing has just begun…

We are being hosted by the Red Suspenders Timber Frame Shop, owned by Tim and Wynter Chauvin. We have a nice open workshop space to build in, well-shaded and with ample room for over 15 people to be comfortably working. The light quality inside is particularly nice…

Red Suspenders Timber Frame Shop

The Red Suspenders Timber Frame Shop, where all the action is going down this week

No tools other than squares, pencils, calculators, and the like made it out today on day one, as we will be completing the majority of the layout before we proceed with cutting out. The quality of the material we are using is extremely high — most of it is S4S southern yellow pine. That’s pine that’s been planed on all four sides. Oh, and it’s been kiln-dried. Needless to say, the dimensions are extremely accurate, and it allows us to use “mill rule” — basically, we can put a square on any face and rest assured there will be little to no error in making and transferring marks.

Timber Framers Guild Lake Naconiche Workshop

Jacob works on layout for one of the truss pieces

I know a lot of folks were scratching their heads today, as some of the joinery is compound, and multiple angles are abound. Yikes. Some good old fashioned story sticks and templates were used to make posts and braces, but the rafters and truss pieces presented some bigger challenges.

Timber Framers Guild Lake Naconiche Workshop

April works on center line layout on a huge tie beam

Timber Frame s4s Planer

This is a massive, antique planer responsible for producing the S4S timber material

I chose to work on the brace layout crew, as my memory of brace layout has been a bit fuzzy since our own Timber Frame Workshop in 2012. I got a great refresher from Jim Holzknecht, and we made a template, and pumped layout for all 28 braces soon after.

Timber Frame Brace Layout

Our very simple and effective brace template

Timber Frame Braces

Making initial cuts for the 28 braces


Lovely grain patterns in the southern yellow pine

The leadership team includes Curtis Milton, Gerry David, Jim Holzknecht¬† and Ben Loveland — clearly all very knowledgeable framers. It’s exciting to be exposed to so many talented folks in one space, and I expect I’ll be picking up lots of nuggets of information over the next week….

Nacogdoches, Texas

Texas is green and beautiful right now

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  • Paul

    I’ve been working with some little 2x4s from the early 1960s recently and you would be amazed at the difference in the quality of the wood between then and now. These 2x4s are heavy! The wood grain in your pictures says everything – look how far apart the growth rings are. I have a 8′ long 4×8 of heart pine from the 1920s and it is so heavy that you can barely lift it.

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