When did they stop using balloon framing?

Asked By: Tandy Cocchi | Last Updated: 28th April, 2020
Category: business and finance construction industry
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In the United States, timber framing was superseded by balloon framing beginning in the 1830s.

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Then, is balloon framing dangerous?

Well, of the three types of framing, balloon frame houses have the greatest danger of catastrophic fires. To be clear, there is nothing intrinsically more flammable about a balloon frame house. It wasn't built with kindling in the walls. The problem comes down to design.

Also, when was balloon framing invented? A popular myth suggests that a Chicago carpenter, George W. Snow, invented the balloon frame in 1832 and revolutionized construction practice. Chicago architect John M. Van Osdel erroneously attributed the invention to Snow in 1883, and subsequent histories accepted the story.

Moreover, is balloon framing stronger?

Though not as strong and imposing as a timber frame, balloon frames were eventually regarded as a more than acceptable way to build a house. And from the 1890s until the 1930s it was the most common form of construction in the country.

Why was balloon framing important?

The main advantage balloon framing has over platform framing is the increased wind load strength. The roof structure tied to the sole plate by the continuous studs make balloon framing very popular in hurricane-prone areas. Balloon frame structures also have less settling than platform framing as a result of shrinkage.

33 Related Question Answers Found

What does balloon framing look like?

Balloon framing is a style of wood-house building that uses long, vertical 2" x 4"s for the exterior walls. These long "studs" extend uninterrupted, from the sill on top of the foundation, all the way up to the roof. The balloon frame relies solely on nails to secure each piece.

What are the different types of framing?

Framing consists of light, heavy, and expedient framing. There are three principal types of framing for light structures: western, balloon, and braced. Figure 6-1, page 6-2, illustrates these types of framing and specifies the nomenclature and location of the various members.

What is stick framing?

Stick framing is building the roof on the construction site one piece or board at a time. Then dimensional lumber, called rafters, are cut to fit one piece at a time and shoved up to a framer on the roof that's balancing on scaffolding who installs the rafters.

Why is platform framing used more extensively than balloon framing?

Why has platform framing become the method of choice. Balloon framing has less vertical shrinkage from drying out of the wood, while platform framing is easier and safer to erect, uses shorter lengths of lumber for studs, and is automatically firestopped, for which reasons it has become the method of choice.

How are second floor joists supported when using balloon frame construction?


The floor joists for the second floor were usually supported on a ledger or ribbon that was let into the studs. Balloon-framing was replaced by platform-framing (today's building method of choice) when the trees that produced the long studs became scarce.

What two floor framing methods are used most often in current residential construction?

Three basic types of wood-frame construction—platform, balloon, and post and beam. The most common type of wall framing for both one-story and two-story residential structures is platform framing construction, also known as western frame construction.

What is the most common type of framing today?

Platform. Platform framing, also referred to as stick framing, is the most common method of framing in modern-day residential construction. The builder creates a frame using uniform-sized lumber pieces such as 2-by-4s spaced in consistent increments.

What is the purpose of a header?

What Is the Purpose of Headers? The header text repeats on each page of your document -- with such information as the document title and date, author's name and page number -- and helps readers pinpoint where they are in a document. Headers vary depending on the writing style used.

What size are floor joists in residential construction?

Looking at this table you will see there is a choice in the size of floor joist (2 X 6, 2 X 8, 2 X 10 or 2 X 12) and there is a choice in the joist spacing (12", 16" or 14"). The floor joist spacing is the distance between the centers of any two installed joists.

What is Western framing?


Definition of western framing. : a method of building construction in which the supporting studs extend from the top of each tier of joists to the underside of the tier next above so that each floor is independently framed.

What are floor joists made of?

Joists are either made of wood, engineered wood, or steel, each of which have unique characteristics. Typically, wood joists have the cross section of a plank with the longer faces positioned vertically.

What is a post and beam house?

In general post and beam is just a term for building with heavy timbers, be they logs, or milled square timbers. Consequently, the term Post and Beam Homes can be generically used to describe any home that uses these two basic building pieces in their construction.

How do you frame a gable window?

How to Frame a Window into a Gable Wall
  1. Step 1 – Measure the Rough Frame.
  2. Step 2 – Cut, Fit and Nail the King Studs.
  3. Step 3 – Place the Jack Studs.
  4. Step 4 – Nail the Window Sill.
  5. Step 5 - Nail the Trimmer Studs.
  6. Step 6 –Cut and Fit the Header.
  7. Step 7 – Make the Cripple Studs.
  8. Step 8 – Finish the Window Frame.

Is balloon framing still used?


It uses long continuous framing members (studs) that run from the sill plate to the top plate, with intermediate floor structures let into and nailed to them. Once popular when long lumber was plentiful, balloon framing has been largely replaced by platform framing.

What is framing in communication?

Framing Theory. Framing, as a theory of mass communication, refers to how the media packages and presents information to the public. According to the theory, the media highlights certain events and then places them within a particular context to encourage or discourage certain interpretations.

What are the commonly used framing members used in light frame construction?

Typical light-frame roof and floor systems consist of repetitive framing members such as rafters or trusses with wood structural panel decking. Framing components include solid sawn dimension lumber, I-joists, structural composite lumber, and parallel chord and pitched trusses.