Building our timber frame house

Gill Deeks’ self build home blog: The Potton timber frame goes up on site
by Gill Deeks
10th April 2010

Over the past few weeks we’ve gleefully watched our house rise up from the ground.

The speedy timescale was amazing. By the end of week one the ground floor was up and by the end of the week two so was the second floor. As week three came to a close, the roof was on and we could see the skeleton of our new home.

This all took place after scaffolding had been erected round the slab. At one point a passer-by looked in and said: ‘Nice scaffolding, but where’s the house?’

Shortly afterwards the Potton kit arrived on the back of a lorry and from that moment on the house began to take shape. We were full of excitement and anticipation, so it’s a day we’ll never forget.

The skill with which the team manoeuvred the truck and the forklift on the site was incredible – I’m glad we didn’t have to take it on ourselves. There was little room to play with, yet they moved each part of the timber frame off the lorry and onto site with effortless precision.

Within hours of the kit arriving there were walls marking the boundaries and rooms for the first floor of the house. All we could do was sit there soaking up the moment. Everything was coming together after months of planning – and it was pure theatre!

From that moment on the erection team, which consisted of just three guys, worked tirelessly. They were fantastic and so was the weather for the entire three weeks they were on site. Once it was finished it seemed only fitting to crack open some bubbly and celebrate with them.

Here are some pictures of the process:

The timber frame panels are moved into position on site

1. The panels arrived shortly after the scaffolding was erected. The erection team swiftly moved the panels from the truck into position for construction.

Gill stands where the front door of her Georgian-style home will be

2. Openings for doors and windows are pre-formed. One of the first panels to go up was the one that will house the front door.

The timber frame's open panels are insulated on site

3. We’ve used open panel timber frame, which gets insulated as it goes up. Once the external walls were finished, internal partitions were erected.

The attic roof trusses are craned into position

4. We’ve specified attic trusses for part of the roof to give us liveable loft space. The weather held out, so work proceeded smoothly.

The roof structure is nearly complete

5. The trusses have to be braced on site once they’ve been craned into position.

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