- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
- Specialist wikis
Last edited 31 Mar 2022
Balloon framing is a form of timber construction that was commonly used to build houses in the United States and Canada from the late-19th century to the mid-20th century. It was often incorporated in the Queen Anne style and Shingle style architecture of the period.
This technique was popular at a time when long timbers were readily available, but it was gradually replaced by platform timber framing, in which each storey is formed by floor-to-ceiling timber panels and a floor deck which then becomes the platform for constructing the next storey. The central difference between balloon and platform framing is that the studs in a balloon frame extend from the foundation to the rafters, whereas in a platform frame, the studs are independent on each storey.
One of the primary problems with balloon framing, aside from the availability of long timbers, was that, by creating continuous spans free of any separation, fire could spread easily. Indeed, fires were common in balloon framed houses. Platform framing enabled a fire break to be included between each floor.
In terms of existing balloon frame houses, fire safety can be improved by adding fire-stopping to the walls, particularly in the breaks at each storey. However, this can be a difficult and time-consuming process, as the interior walls or exterior siding need to be removed to allow access to the stud top plates to add the fire-separating element.
- Advantages and disadvantages of timber frame buildings.
- Delivering sustainable low energy housing with softwood timber frame.
- Fire-stopping in buildings.
- In-situ reinforcement of timber beams.
- Queen Anne style.
- Shingle style architecture.
- The use of timber in construction.
- Timber frame.
- Timber framed buildings and fire.
- Types of frame.
- Types of timber.
Featured articles and news
As energy prices jump up in cost.
With people in the UK from Ukraine.
Industry leader Steve Murray takes on role.
An abundant and versatile building material.
600,000 heat pump installations targeted per year by 2028.
Helping prevent those unwanted outcomes.
How has transport changed due to Covid-19 ?
Will you need it ? after June 15 and the new Part O ?
Create an account and write the first of many articles.
CIAT commentary after the first meeting.
Who is to blame?
Research recommends focussing on portfolio success rather than project success.
The revised standard for mapping underground utilities.
Cross-industry steering group seeks support in delivery.