Post Frame and SIP Homes

A recent development in residential construction is Post Frame home construction.  Post Frame has been around for years in the agricultural building market, but has not reached the residential market.

Post Frame is similar to metal framing and timber framing in that the primary structural loads are cariied in a framework that is later enclosed to create a building.  In metal framing, the framework is metal and metal frame buildings are generally covered with metal.  The metal frame is either bolted to a foundation or set in the slab into a sub-grade foundation pier.

In timberframing, enclosure is done with panels and the timber frame is either set through the floor deck on the foundation or the floor deck is supported from the foundation at the timber frame posts and the timber frame sets on the deck.   Mortisse and tenon joinery is used to join timber members together.

Residential Post Frame has similarities to both methods.

The laminated timber posts are generally installed into the foundation piers.  Trusses are bolted to the posts and other structural members using heavy metal brackets
Enclosure is generally done with structural insulated panels to maximize spans and close in quickly.
Most structures leave the structural members (posts, timbers, brackets, and braces) exposed.
Typically the posts are either wrapped with wood or painted.   Trusses and other exposed materials are often painted- sometimes to reduce their visibility, sometimes to increase their visibility.

The completed structure has many advantages:

Very fast to close in
Highly energy efficient
Often, very inexpensive to build- especially for large simple structures.
Virtually unlimited open space.
A very satisfying interior for a number of designs.  This system works well with rustic, craftsman, yankee barn, colonial, and other mostly-open design approaches.

Follow THIS LINK to a pdf format picture of a post frame pool room enclosure which utilizes post frame trusses and SIPs gives you an idea how architecturally clean the post frame look can be.

The leading proponent of this residential construction method is Dixie Builders ( ). They will be working closely with us to develop this system.  In addition to helping us at our exhibit in February at the Post Frame Trade Show in Nashville (2/26-28/2003 Opryland Hotel), Dennis Lee, of Dixie Builders, will also be exhibiting at Paducah Home Show (2/14-16/2003, Paducah Expo center) and the WICA Home & Garden Show (3/29-30/2003, Assembly Hall, University of Illinois, Champaign, IL).

If you are interested in being contacted when plans are ready, send an email to and put Post Frame Plans in the subject line.

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Post Frame home from Dixie Builders

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SIPs going on a post frame project

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SIPs being installed on a post frame roof

General Panel Corp

Johnson City, TN and Union, MS

(423) 747-8710