Steel or Timber Frame?

Discussion in 'Information Resources' started by Kristine.., 26th Aug, 2011.

  1. Kristine..

    Kristine.. Broker and Raconteur

    Joined:
    1st Mar, 2001
    Messages:
    3,047
    Location:
    Melbourne, Victoria
    G'Day

    The Builder we are currently talking to offers Steel Frame or Timber Frame at the same price

    I notice that pa1nter has built a steel framed house http://www.somersoft.com/forums/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=4052

    As we are building in sand, I would not expect termites to be a major problem, however having said that, they are a winged insect at part of their life cycle and are happy to eat any cellulose product. Even a steel framed house has a lot of timber in it so my question is not about insect infestations, it is primarily about static in the house.

    Mike and I lived in a steel framed unit at Cootamundra thirty years ago, the static electricity was truly horrible, I crackled off every surface, my hair would float upwards and crackle when I brushed it, the TV had many interesting programs on 'snow' and I simply couldn't hear the radio if the units on either side had their kitchen fluoro lights on.

    So has anybody had any experience with modern steel framed houses?

    Happy to hear your stories on the good, the bad and the ugly.

    Thanks
    Kristine
     
  2. chrispy

    chrispy Member

    Joined:
    5th Aug, 2003
    Messages:
    1,606
    Media:
    21
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Kristine

    I had a holiday house built up on steel and found being so close to the beach that the steel constantly got coated with salt. In fact when I bought it the steel was rusted right through and I had to replace all the steel supporting beams.

    I found I had to coat them constantly to ensure the salt did not eat into them.

    Chris
     
  3. Kristine..

    Kristine.. Broker and Raconteur

    Joined:
    1st Mar, 2001
    Messages:
    3,047
    Location:
    Melbourne, Victoria
    Hi Chris, Thanks

    Yes, if the frame was exposed I would expect that the salt air would be harsh on the steel

    Alack and alas, this will be a conventional house, nothing flash, and the frame will be completely enclosed

    When we look around the area, we see how houses even as young as five years old, look about 15 years old if they are in the direct wind path - even worse if in the airborne salt droplet path – and worse again if builders have used ordinary nails and not stainless steel screws. Even under the paint the rust sets in and the paint blisters off quite quickly

    A previous architect had talked about using Corten steel cladding, which is designed to rust, but now that we are talking to a builder, not an architect, and we just want to get the darn thing built, I am just wanting to know if there are any benefits or drawbacks noticeable when people actually live in steel framed houses apart from painting all exposed steel on a regular basis (and my own experiences with electric fields!)

    Regards
    Kristine
     
  4. Norbulinka

    Norbulinka Member

    Joined:
    1st Oct, 2011
    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    South Yarra,Victoria
    MGP12 Pine Timber is a renewable resource with a smaller greenhouse footprint than steel.
     
  5. RumpledElf

    RumpledElf all fun in the big city!

    Joined:
    28th Apr, 2008
    Messages:
    5,641
    Location:
    Sydney
    All these bad things to day about steel and nothing good and they are the same price?

    I'd just go wood, personally. I can't think of any benefits of steel at all - the termite one is a joke if you have anything else in the house they'll eat, like gyprock, skirtings, architraves, timber floors, furniture, books ...
     
  6. Mr. Fabulous

    Mr. Fabulous Thought Criminal

    Joined:
    28th Sep, 2002
    Messages:
    6,127
    Location:
    Melburn
    Your nickname is now Sparky.
     
  7. Doovalacky

    Doovalacky Member

    Joined:
    22nd Apr, 2011
    Messages:
    702
    Media:
    15
    Location:
    SW WA
    Looking at the OP date probably too late now but I would go steel if no additional cost.
    Even if you have a termite or wood borer attack its only cosmetic damage not structural.

    As for static I would be looking at your carpets more unless you were right under a HV power line. Even then properly earthed you should not have an issue.
    If they use foil insulation TV/radio reception can be reduced, but at the same time can get that with timber frame.

    Any exposed metal should be hit dip galvanised then painted. Both materials require maintenance. I just had to replace a number of the timber boards on the apex of my roof that split from weathering.
     
  8. RumpledElf

    RumpledElf all fun in the big city!

    Joined:
    28th Apr, 2008
    Messages:
    5,641
    Location:
    Sydney
    Ah, now there's a good place you *should* use metal - high up, hard to access places.

    Our new house came with metal fascias and infill panels up at the top of the gables. Impossible to put an aerial on, but having just painted all the fascias at my last house, I'm glad these are colourbond.
     
  9. Donny1986

    Donny1986 Member

    Joined:
    11th Jun, 2015
    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Brisbane, QLD
    pros, cons and myths of using steel for house frames

    My wife and I are currently building a new house, so we've recently investigated this same question about steel vs timber.

    I found this youtube video very helpful ? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ru33LAcKfdQ

    It answered a lot of our questions and discusses the pros, cons and myths of using steel for house frames.