Timber trusses are wooden structural frameworks used to support roofs or other heavy structures. Fabricated from a series of triangles linked by a ridge beam and purlins, wooden trusses are structurally advantageous due to their high strength-to-weight ratios and corresponding ability to support long spans. However, these structural components can also be used for aesthetic ends, and when left exposed, can complexify, beautify, and open an interior space. Wooden trusses were likely used as early as the Bronze Age, around 2500 BCE. Since then, they were used by the Greeks in antiquity and for various purposes during the European Middle Ages; later, Andrea Palladio’s famous Four Books on Architecture even included plans for wooden trusses. In the 1950’s, developments in construction technology improved the efficacy of the wooden truss even further, as the development of the metal connector plate, placed at the joints of the wooden truss, permitted its more efficient prefabrication.
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