Incremental Change, Optimization, and Progress
Whether or not we realize it, we make incremental changes in our lives all the time. Small, seemingly inconsequential changes occur throughout our daily routines. Sure, some routines feel like they’re set in stone and will never change, but think about it. Aren’t we still finding...
Resurgence of Panelization?
What future does the Blueprint Robotics factory in Baltimore portend for housing construction? This huge German plant certainly rivals Pulte’s former facility in the same market (shuttered in 2008). And it may even eclipse the robotics/automation going forward in multiple truss plants IF...
Spida’s Expanding Product Lines
Well known for the best radial arm saw in the world, Spida Machinery has had a much broader product offering for many years. Square 1 Design has been expanding Spida’s product line offerings within North America in recent years. Returning from touring Spida Machinery, multiple component...
Willful Blindness Culture
Willful blindness is the common practice of knowing that something is wrong, but either pretending that the problem does not exist, or being unwilling to make a change or even discuss the issue. I was inspired by a TED talk video about the willful blindness of the town residents of Libby,...
What are the Acceptable Methods of Plating a Connector?
In a perfect world, our trusses smoothly flow from the assembly table to the finish roller without any problems. Each connector, on both sides of the assembly, is adequately pressed and a completed truss is the result. Unfortunately, we don’t live in this perfect environment. Stuff...
Robotics in the LBM & Component Industry
A book I read in 2015, “Rise of the Robots,” by Martin Ford, talked about the threat many people see that robots present to the employment marketplace. At the time, I was working with several different equipment manufacturers and clients on their automated/robotic equipment...
The Next Generation of Building Professionals
At the American Wood Council, our engineers develop state-of-the-art engineering data, technology, and standards for wood products to assure their safe and efficient design. They are also very involved in our work with building and fire codes, providing the technical background and research...
Countervailing Duty Preliminary Ruling...19.88%...Bearish For Lumber
Preliminary CVD announced at 19.88%
The pieces are falling into place. Department of Commerce has issued its preliminary countervailing duty on Canadian softwood lumber exports destined for the U.S. The rate of 19.88% is lower than the anticipated 30%. In addition, the four largest producers...
All Things Wood:
A Common-Sense Design to Create Durable Overhangs
Decay, or wood rot, requires three conditions to be present: liquid water, oxygen, and a favorable temperature (generally between 35 and 100 degrees F). Of the three, the only factor that can be managed by building design is liquid water. Hence, overhangs of sufficient width are critical to...
Treated Lumber and Trusses (and the One Condition Under Which MPC Wood Trusses Shouldn’t Be Used)
What do a chicken house, a water treatment plant and a raised wood floor system all have in common? Very likely, they all involve preservative-treated lumber. They’re also all examples of common environments in which preservative-treated, metal-plate-connected (MPC) wood trusses may be...