Parallam beam - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 35 Old 12-20-2015, 02:59 PM Thread Starter
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Parallam beam

Hers a couple with pored epoxy. There very heavy but seems to be the new thing..
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post #2 of 35 Old 12-20-2015, 05:12 PM
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It looks interesting for a table top but I wouldn't have one for a beam. These engineers come up with this stuff and test it but they don't stop to think whats going to happen 40 years from now when the glue starts breaking down.
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post #3 of 35 Old 12-20-2015, 05:24 PM
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I'll stick with LVL's for beams. Those look like particle boards.

As for using it for a table top, the top looks ok I guess if you're going for that type of look but I do not like the ends.
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post #4 of 35 Old 12-20-2015, 06:06 PM
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What is parallam?

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post #5 of 35 Old 12-20-2015, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul
It looks interesting for a table top but I wouldn't have one for a beam. These engineers come up with this stuff and test it but they don't stop to think whats going to happen 40 years from now when the glue starts breaking down.
In 40 years, well good question. Those beams are ridiculously strong. They are probably rated to carry twice what a same sized wood beam could. They are also expensive, like $7 per foot.
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post #6 of 35 Old 12-20-2015, 10:57 PM
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In 40 years, well good question. Those beams are ridiculously strong. They are probably rated to carry twice what a same sized wood beam could. They are also expensive, like $7 per foot.
For that price it would be about as cheap to use a steel I beam.
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post #7 of 35 Old 12-20-2015, 11:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul
For that price it would be about as cheap to use a steel I beam.
Probably so. but way harder to connect joist hangers for other joist.
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post #8 of 35 Old 12-20-2015, 11:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hwebb99 View Post
Probably so. but way harder to connect joist hangers for other joist.



Wrong. It fairly easy actually.
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post #9 of 35 Old 12-21-2015, 12:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeC
What is parallam? George
Just taking a wild guess here, it probably looks like this.

Parallam beam-image-1978920863.jpg

Why do you have to be such a PITA all the time. 3/4 of your post are unnecessary and unhelpful.
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post #10 of 35 Old 12-21-2015, 04:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeC
What is parallam? George
I Googled it, and came up with this:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallam


Essentially, it looks to me like a chipboard version of a structural support beam, using mass quantities of adhesive.

Turning good wood into designer firewood on a daily basis.....

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post #11 of 35 Old 12-21-2015, 07:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeC View Post
What is parallam?

George
"Why do you have to be such a PITA all the time. 3/4 of your post are unnecessary and unhelpful." I don't think he sounded sinister this time, just asked a question.

parallel lamination

Last edited by TimPa; 12-21-2015 at 07:44 AM.
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post #12 of 35 Old 12-21-2015, 10:13 AM
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Way cool. It looks like spalted maple! I want to get some to turn. I need to haunt my lumber yard looking for a scrap.
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post #13 of 35 Old 12-21-2015, 11:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TimPa
"Why do you have to be such a PITA all the time. 3/4 of your post are unnecessary and unhelpful." I don't think he sounded sinister this time, just asked a question. parallel lamination
It wasn't as bad as some, but his question was pretty well covered in the op's post.
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post #14 of 35 Old 12-21-2015, 02:42 PM
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It's extraordinary stuff, particularly for shaped structural elements. Join the 20th century. Paralam is long strips of wood with adhesive. Simple to join to other paralam elements. No, the adhesive polymerized, it's totally impregnated, NOT surface glued like home-grown furniture.

Friend used one in his house. It was designed pre-stress (shaped) so that it sat down straight when loaded. If you would prefer a creeping sag for a load-bearing element, that's up to you.
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post #15 of 35 Old 12-21-2015, 05:13 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hwebb99 View Post
In 40 years, well good question. Those beams are ridiculously strong. They are probably rated to carry twice what a same sized wood beam could. They are also expensive, like $7 per foot.
I believe the 3.5 beams are on 18" $20 a running ft and the 5 1/4 are $30 a running ft.

I haven't been involved in carpentry since the 80's but I can imagine there much more cost in the steel than in a parallam beam.

Last edited by Rebelwork; 12-21-2015 at 05:22 PM.
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post #16 of 35 Old 12-22-2015, 04:20 PM
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Back in the early 80 when microllams were being touted and used all over the place specs were over inflated. Beams we installed we had to go back to and double up and doubled beams had to be tripled up due to visual premature sag (in months not yrs). Engineered joists allowed unsupported floor areas to expand then as structures caught fire it was noticed that the fire ratings were sorely over stated. While these errors have been addressed over the yrs and improved upon I'd stay away from the new wonder products for GPs, let someone else absorb the expense and find out and what the hidden problems are.

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post #17 of 35 Old 12-22-2015, 06:43 PM
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This type product is not new. It's been around a long time. Over 20 years. It's called engineered lumber and it's primarily used in very large homes where the rooms have spans of over 12 ft with loads above.
Just one of many types of beams available.
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post #18 of 35 Old 12-22-2015, 07:08 PM
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The date of "invention" is not apparent

According to the Wiki article there was no date of invention, so I can't tell how "new" they are. Glue lams and engineered beams have been around a long time. What IS different about this lamination is the orientation of the strands of wood which are parallel to the length rather than a random pattern.
Quoting:
. The generic name for the product is parallel strand lumber (PSL). Parallam is made from clipped veneer strands laid in parallel alignment and bonded with adhesive. It is used for beams, headers, columns, and posts, among others uses

I think it's a good idea. I have watched the construction of vaulted ceilings in churches and other open spaced over time using the glue lams, essentially 2 x 6's laid on the flat and glued either over a curved form or straight. There may be sagging issues or other concerns with that type of construction that are either apparent now or will be over time. Who knows?

This type of construction on a curved form would be really strong, a interesting concept in my opinion.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #19 of 35 Old 12-22-2015, 09:41 PM
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Introduced at Expo 86, Vancouver, B.C. in 1986

http://www.manufacturing.net/news/20...amed-buildings

Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something -Plato

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post #20 of 35 Old 12-23-2015, 07:37 AM
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I installed a 50' long parallam 4" x 12" as the main beam in my house in 1997. we set it on the edge and rolled it over to the center of the foundation.

when it was on the side, it would sag maybe a foot in the span, on edge - no sag. very heavy
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