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Re: "Home-Built" Trusses

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I do not recall anyone ever gluing truss connections in all I have seen in 
the residential  market.  The metal truss plates are mostly rated based on 
testing data and I think they have to be pressed into place, NOT beaten into 
place with 10 blows of a 20 ounce hammer.

I have been involved in site-built trusses (sounds more reliable than 
"home-built") in the 70s when truss plants were not so common to find.  We 
used plywood and nails to build the connections.  Once plants became more 
common, we never built anymore ourself UNLESS we did not have the money to 
buy them.  I do not see how someone can build them much cheaper than a truss 
plant unless they let the quality drop.  Incidentally, no one designed our 
trusses or connections.  We just laid the truss out in triangles and nailed 
1/2" plywood gussets over the joint.  Been over 20 years now, and none of 
them have fallen that I know of.

This may happen if you design them for the client:
1.  He will not like the size of gusset he has to use.  He is thinking of 
something in the range of the metal plate connectors.
2.  He will not have a large flat area to build them on. For this reason, the 
glue will not be as strong as calculations predict.  His gussets will not 
"clamp" very well.
3.  He will not have the equipment to handle them properly once they are 
made.  This may also affect the glue strength.
4.  He will be using the lower end of his labor force to build them.
5.  You will have to find information about how much force it takes to pull a 
section of the OSB or wood off since you do not have a fastener that goes 
through the entire thickness.  You will be relying on the plane of glue.

Even if the glue was good, I would not want to rely solely on it for my 
strength.  I would still want some reasonably amount of fasteners.  At least 
enough to equal the forces of the long term sustained loads.   

My thoughts,
Ron Martin (ex-carpenter)