Straight Timber Connections – Precedents

Wood-to-Wood Connections

Cross Timber Joints

CNC milled connections


Steel Connections

Simpson Strong-Tie:

Variable Connection
installation video:

Expressed Connection

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-Olson Kundig Architects

Hidden Connection

-internally threaded and factory bonded:

node connection

Material Considerations when connecting wood:

-rings and shear plates can be used in laterally loaded timber joints-toothed plates work similarly but cannot be used for timbers with a density higher than 500 kg/m3.
-flexible out of plane and can be damaged during erection.
-developed with CAD
-designed in pairs, one on each side of a member
-punched metal plates tranfer member forces with smaller connection areas than are possible with hand-nailed plates.
-nail plates are basically a screen for nails to be hand-driven in


Nails are driven into the timber and push most of the fibres apart. They, therefore, do not reduce the timber’s effectiveness in carrying tensile stresses. The nails push against the timber and the friction that is developed between the nail shank and the fibre gives the withdrawal strength of the nail.
Because the washers and nut confine the timber adjacent to the bolt shaft, the bearing strength of the fibre in the connection is enhanced compared with the bearing strengths tabulated for the same species.
Coach Screws
These are bolts that are designed for applications in which a bolt would normally be used, but in which one end of the bolt is not accessible.
Split Rings
Split-ring connectors are not recommended for environments in which there will be significant changes in the moisture content of the timber.
Metal Dowels
Cannot resist forces along the axis of the dowel but is a hidden connection.


Geometric Considerations

  • Orientation of the force with respect to the axis of the connectors.
  • Angle between the force and the general grain direction in the connected members.
  • Whether the fastener is embedded into end grain or side grain.Number of rows of fasteners.
  • Number of shear planes in Type 1 connections.Angles between the various members that meet at the connection.
  • Structural action transferred by the connection (force or moment).
  • Spacing of fasteners – further divided into spacing parallel to grain, and spacing perpendicular to grain,
  • End distances – distance parallel to the general grain direction from the closest fastener to the end to the very end of the member,
  • Edge distances – distance perpendicular to the general grain direction from the closest fastener to the edge of the member.


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