Laminated timber is fast becoming a favourite material for construction projects, as it offers both aesthetic appeal and high structural capacity, as well as numerous benefits for the environment. This sustainable product is perfect for creating the foundation of a home, such as framing and beams, and is quickly gaining traction in commercial projects for its low carbon footprint in comparison to steel and concrete. In this week’s blog, we thought we’d take a look at ‘What is laminated timber’ and the three common types of laminated timber used in Australia.
Types of Laminated Timber: Glue laminated, cross laminated & laminated veneer
What is laminated timber?
Laminated timber or ‘glue laminated timber’ are layers of engineered wood glued together with structural adhesives. This helps to create different sizes and shapes in timber that wouldn’t be easily sourced from natural wood. The most common type of laminated timber used is glue laminated ‘glulam’, as it’s visually appealing and easy to work with. The wood used has grains going in the same direction, so it gives the appearance of natural wood. This also means that the timber can expand in size and length just like natural timber. Laminated timber is made by drying out pieces of wood and bonding them together with moisture resistant glue. It’s typically made with at least three pieces of stress graded wood that are all the same size and thickness and is coated in a special water repellent sealant.
What is cross laminated timber?
What is cross laminated timber and why is it popular? Cross laminated timber (CLT) is created gluing together layers of sawn wood. However, unlike glulam, which tends to have pieces of wood glued horizontally, CLT has pieces of wood glued perpendicular to one another. This means the wood is less susceptible to shrinkage and makes it both strong and flexible. CLT is a favourite amongst construction projects, as it offers a steel like strength without the manufacturing timeline that comes with metal structuring. Laminated timber is also commonly used for bridges, sports structures, religious buildings, and multi-use facilities such as schools, libraries and more.
What is laminated timber: Biggest benefits
High strength to weight ratio: Unlike steel, laminated timber offers a high strength to weight ratio, and is considered one of the strongest construction materials.
Appearance: Laminated timber offers a beautiful, warm appearance, which makes it a preferred building material over steel or concrete.
Durability: Designed to last for decades, laminated timber is built to withstand high humidity, moisture, harsh weather and more.
Environmentally efficient: Laminated timber is incredibly efficient to produce, taking less time and energy than what’s needed to manufacture steel and concrete.
Fire performance: When it comes to timber, one of the biggest concerns is how it fares during a fire. As laminated timber is supported by multiple pieces of timber, it makes it harder for a fire to burn through. Laminated timber chars very slowly and can even be reinforced with a fire protective finish to increase its resistance.
What is a Laminated Beam?
What is a laminated beam? Laminated beams or ‘exposed beams’ as they’re commonly known as, are structures typically seen in the interior of a home. These types of beams not only help support the structure of a building but are also viewed as a stylish focal point for a room, making them very popular amongst homeowners. Laminated beams are typically made from laminated veneer timber, as it can be fabricated to narrower beam lengths and cost effective as a structural application.
What is laminated veneer timber?
What is laminated veneer timber? Laminated veneer timber (LVL) is manufactured by bonding small veneers of wood together with glue and is primarily used for framing and beams as it’s thinner in size than glulam or CLT.
Timber supplies Brisbane
If you have any more questions about ‘’what is laminated timber’ or would like more information about the types of timber we stock, get in touch with Versace Timbers on 07 3266 9000 or visit us in person at 33 Vauxhall Street in Virginia.