The Heartland Timber Homes building system is an innovative, fresh look at a traditional technique: the post-and-beam with solid timber infills between the posts. The initial design motive was to simplify and make construction easier by using short timbers that were milled instead of hand-crafted. The logic led to repeating, interchangeable components, which in turn led to ways in which these could be used to lock the structure together using wooden dowels for positioning, and half-lap joints on beams to tie the panels securely.
Some interesting effects followed. The design could build a wall of any length using short timbers that two people could easily carry. The posts, with half-lap joints on the beams could turn corners with no special adjustments. And when examined by engineers, the design proved to be exceptionally strong. It cannot sag, lean, wrack or warp. Because the entire roof assembly is carried on vertical posts, there is no structural settling as occurs with round-log “cabin” designs. And because we use such dry timbers, we do not need settling gaps over windows in the horizontal panels.
With floors and roofs acting as diaphragms, the HTH system can be safely built with multiple storeys. In Canada, solid timber buildings meet the building codes if they are rated safety by a structural engineer. We learned early on that our buildings could stand up to seismic loads, heavy snow loads, and high winds – simultaneously applied.
For the United States and abroad, we submitted the HTH system design to an engineering evaluation that rated it as conforming to the internationally recognized ICC 400 Design and Construction of Log Structures. You can build with confidence, speed, and precision.
Finally, because of its simplicity, the HTH system is designed to be produced by precision milling – which is why it may be the most cost-effective timber frame home on the market.