October 14, 2019

Northbeam Span Tables

Specifying Northbeam SG10 allows you to increase spans, improve stud centres and save on timber volume Stuart Dale, director of consultancy firm Architectural Promotions, spends a good deal of his working week talking with architects, engineers, designers and specifiers.

Delivering face-to-face presentations is part and parcel of his role - communicating the products and services offered by Stuart’s clients.

Stuart gets to hear about the many issues facing the architectural sector as they all strive to deliver innovation and efficiencies for their clients. It’s not an easy game. Finding that point of difference, that key innovation, clever idea, efficient use of space or cost-effective material, is often problematic.

One of his clients is a timber manufacturer in Waipu by the name of Northpine.

“They produce a range of high quality dressed and sawn timber beams, square posts and joists – from very strong Northland-grown pine – under the brand name Northbeam. They can be used for many different purposes – sub-floor, lintels, joists, rafters and so on … and for decks, exposed beams, walkways and pergolas. They are extremely strong and dense beams and posts capable of taking big loads.”

Best of all, Stuart adds, Northpine’s mill is set up to process beams and posts of SG8 and SG10 up to 7.2metres long. Most mills have a maximum length of 6m.

“The specifiers I visit in Auckland, Waikato and Bay of Plenty are sometimes reluctant to learn about a small timber mill up north, thinking it’s too far away to be relevant to them, but when they realise the enormous advantages they can achieve with Northbeam, it’s a light bulb moment.

They get quite excited about the possibilities when they realise how they can specify Northbeam in the plan.”

The advantages are numerous.

“Many specifiers these days don’t even consider choosing SG10 because they have been told that it’s simply not available. Not only is the Northbeam range procurable – at a price much more cost-effective than engineered wood products – but choosing the 7.2m length (SG8 or SG10) allows a specifier to get an additional 10% continuous span under the NZS:3604 standard. Architects just need to go to the span tables to figure out how and where it can work for their clients using SG10 at 7.2m lengths.”

As an example, Stuart cites a designer in Northland who had just finished specifying an engineered solution for all the rafters on one of his designs, because SG8 wasn’t going to span far enough and he couldn’t use a bigger timber size as the building was at maximum height.

“When I told him that he could now get SG10 from his local merchant he made the change and saved his client thousands of dollars.”

Another case involved a major Auckland housing company that changed their mid-floor joists on an apartment project from relatively costly engineered joists to SG10.

“They will not need to pack under the engineered beams to make them the same size as standard SG8 joists on that level and their builders will be delighted not to have different fixing requirements to deal with.”

Available from all timber merchants, Northbeam structural products are independently verified by GradeRight to SG8 or SG10 standard and are also BRANZ Appraised. Northbeam has been used for civil and commercial projects – from public walkways and wharves to farm gates and imposing entranceways – as well as in residential housing as exposed beams and rafters or pergolas and decks.

Northbeam products are cut-to-length (up to 7.2m) and delivered swiftly and efficiently from Northpine’s distribution yard in Silverdale to sites all over New Zealand.

Download the guide for architects, specifiers and designers here.



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