Order Tara's Bicycle Touring Cookbook Today!

Timber Frame Cottage Ridge Beam & Rafters

by Tara

After everyone left yesterday, I had a panicky feeling in my stomach about all that we had left to do. The king posts needed to be installed, as did the ridge beam and the rafters. How on earth would we be able to do this by ourselves? I was re-living the dread I felt after the participants left our timber framing workshop last summer.

And so, when we got up to work bright and early this morning, I was bracing myself for a long, drawn-out ordeal. Surprisingly, it was nothing of the sort. Almost. After a briefly terrifying (see photo below), precarious, and totally inadvisable ridge-beam raising, it was smooth sailing.

Us Installing Timber Frame Cottage Ridge Beam

In a matter of hours we'd raised all three king posts, both ridge beam sections, and several rafters.

Tyler Affixing Rafter to Timber Frame Cottage Frame

After Tyler finished working for the day, we returned to the site and spent another several hours working on the frame, securing the rafters in place with 8" TimberLok screws. I am completely blown away by how easy this has been. If the rest of the process goes as swimmingly, we'll have a home before we know it!

Tyler Affixing Rafter to Timber Frame Cottage Frame


That first photo literally had me a little sick in the stomach and weak in the knees. I just can't relate to Tyler's seeming indifference to heights.

The last photo is so beautiful, and not only aesthetically. You guys so deserve a smooth & easy home-raising after all the roadblocks and frustration on preceding projects!
Posted by Jennifer on May 5th, 2014 at 6:32 PM
Before the sun greets the day, our little family is already having conversations about Tara and Tyler’s homestead building adventure. We are enamored with the level detail that you put into recording the process through prose and pics. We feel part of the fun, even though we are miles away. Much more to say about this later.

First a couple questions. What is the species of wood you used for the timber frame? How, where and when did you settle on the design of your strawbale house? Lastly, will you post a drawing/sketch of the house you are building so that we, the readers, can follow along through the process having a mental picture of the end result.

Much love from our family to yours!
Posted by j&j Gold on May 6th, 2014 at 7:31 AM
Wow, beautiful! Can't wait to see it finished! You now have two amazing structures on you property - impressive!
Posted by Nicole S on May 6th, 2014 at 10:30 AM
This is just amazing. Totally amazing and wonderful.
Posted by Elizabeth from the Berkshires on May 7th, 2014 at 8:39 AM
Looking good. I've been lurking for awhile watching your progress on Flickr mostly and visiting the site to get more details. Building a house...even a small one....SOOOOOO MUCH WORK! When my husband and I put the roof frame for our cupola up 20 feet I was pretty tense until it was secured in place. Here's a picture of the piece we had to hoist up there with ropes, etc.... https://www.flickr.com/photos/begotka/7924061826/in/set-72157631388961870
Good work yall.....you will so love your home when you finally get to move into it!
Posted by Sandra Begotka on May 7th, 2014 at 11:00 AM
that is looking awesome guys, keep up the good work.
Posted by aaron on May 7th, 2014 at 3:41 PM
Great job you guys (and everyone who chipped in), it looks amazing! Can't wait for the rest of the process.
Posted by Magalie on May 11th, 2014 at 8:06 PM