A Message for Architects and their Structural Engineers of Record

Are you an architect or structural engineer of record designing a structure using heavy timber framing or trusses? Is your client insistent on your taking competitive bids? Then, consider hiring a specialty heavy timber frame and truss engineer.


  1. Without the design and details being fully developed, bids cannot be ‘apples for apples’.
  2. Each timber frame and truss subcontractor bidding to the GC will have his own interpretation of what the final design will look like.
  3. The bids will vary accordingly and out of necessity, will have special provisions to minimize the risk to the subcontractor.
  4. The cost of any design cannot be known until the engineering has been completed.
  5. There are too many options regarding timber species, grade, curing, connection systems, etc. in order to get any consistency at all in the bids.

Conversely, using a specialty heavy timber frame and truss engineer will avoid these pitfalls.


  1. A specialty engineer can work closely with you and subordinate to the S.E.R.
  2. The fees for the specialty engineering are reasonable and you won’t have to pay twice for the engineering.
  3. Using an experienced and qualified specialty engineer familiar with the material and concepts will lead to design efficiency and construction economy.
  4. Specialty engineers will have the experience to offer options that may improve the aesthetic appeal of the design and reduce the cost.
  5. Having the design and details on the bid documents will insure that you receive multiple, competitive bid prices.
  6. Specialty engineers will know qualified and right-sized timber frame subcontractors who will want to bid your work and can refer you and the GC’s to them for bids.
  7. Delays in the bid process will be minimized because the typical requests for clarifications and additional information will be avoided by having clear and concise bid documents.

Please contact us for a specialty heavy timber frame and truss engineering proposal for your next project. If it is out of our area of registration or if we feel the project is not a ‘right fit’ for us, we’ll help you find another qualified engineer. Or, check out the Timber Frame Business Council at http://www.timberframe.org/timber-frame-engineer.html for an engineer in your area.

© 2011 DRemy & CO • Structural Engineering
Heavy Timber Engineering

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