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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Guys, I had an outdoor pool/patio constructed over the summer. The project is 95% complete, but I noticed that their is crack in the beam that goes all the way from below where the cement was poured all the way up to where the beam had a L cut out at the top for the cross beam to rest. The workmanship was done professionally, but I am concerned the the splitting of the wood is going to get worse.

The crack is 3/8" the entire lenght and there is a similar crack (only about 1'16" on the other side of the beam (leading me to think that the crack is all the way through.

Is there anything I should be concerned about or know about when talking to the GC about this issue?

thx.
 

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where's my table saw?
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your description is pretty clear...

Is there a way to post a photo? IF the crack goes all the way through, that would be a problem. Can you stick a wire through to the other side?

Solution:
Attach same width 2Xs to both sides and bolt them together. Seal the crack with liquid nails to prevent water migration if it "freezes" in your location, which would further crack the piece. You could cover the crack with a 1 X on each side to conceal it and seal out water.

FYI. Beams are horizontal. Posts are vertical.

If all else fails it will have to be replaced.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I can not put a wire hanger all the way through the Post, but there is a crack on the other side of the post the runs the length of the post, but only about 1/16" (or less) wide.
 

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where's my table saw?
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you could also ...

Just run some large through bolts with large washers every 24" down the post which would retain it's integrity.
They could be counter bored to minimizes the obtrusive look and periodic tightening would be a good plan.

Cedar, if sawn from the center of the log, will always check about the growth rings as it dries. It may not affect it's load bearing ability, but the crack being on the edge of the support may cause it to widen in my opinion. The crack is in a bad place and were it turned 90 degrees, it would have been better.

When making posts for the many steel beams through out my shops and house I always laminated several planks together and glued and nailed them. This would not have worked as far as the look you wanted, but it would have made a better structural element. JMO.
 

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What's holding the beam to the post? If there are not already I would put at least a couple of half inch through bolts through the beam and into the post. That should be good enough structurally even with the scary looking check.

I would assume you wouldn't want bolts running down the center of your post, I know I wouldn't. And it's really not necessary.
 

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This project is still under construction, but is also still under your GC's warranty. Have the GC replace the post. Bolt's going through will solve the problem but will look terrible. Also, splits that large do not happen overnight. Your GC should have seen that the beam was already split and should never have used it. The split could have been small, but everyone knows it will only get bigger. Be wary of your GC.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
thanks for your input everyone.

I'm glad I have not made the final 5% payment just yet (build was pool, bbq, and patio). Holding on to that until it is rectified.
 

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If it doesn't become rectified, another option might be to bolt the two split halves together and countersink the bolt heads, then conceal them with plugs.
 

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where's my table saw?
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Just run some large through bolts with large washers every 24" down the post which would retain it's integrity.
They could be counter bored to minimizes the obtrusive look and periodic tightening would be a good plan.
If it doesn't become rectified, another option might be to bolt the two split halves together and countersink the bolt heads, then conceal them with plugs.
That was suggested and not well received ...... :blink:

See post 6 and 7.
 

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WITHOUT more info, pics and a hands on inspection there are still several variables that can be going on.
1) Speak with GC and get his opinion.
2) Not knowing the species of wood, this could be a issue OR NOT as just a common drying check. Note checks normally only go to close proximity of the pith and not all the way through but may have a smaller check going from another direction due to the larger has relieved more tension.
3) Beams and larger timbers of differ species react differently to the drying stresses created as the exterior dries faster than interior thus seeing some that check and others that don't. The cut of the log has different effects. Boxed heart is a higher chance on checking than a piece with no heart/ pithe area.
4) A large misconception is "KD"ing on beams and large timbers......MOST are put in a kiln (which is a large room with specialized equipment) BUT are not treated/processed the same.
In furniture grade the moisture content is controlled to a higher degree according to interior MC specs, then sterilized.
With most large timbers it isn't financially feasible to get the interior MC down to building MC specs due to the enormous amount of time needed BUT they do lower the MC and do the sterilizing to kill the critters. Both processes are done in a "kiln" just one is more thorough.


Totalnewb, this could be a GC replacement IF this isn't a common drying issue. It does run straight from cut mouth down which is questionable as to a bad tensioned timber (not a GC caused issue but a normally a internal "shake" that the cut happened to "relieve") and they don't always show up until after install and then split. Still a GC / lumber provider replacement.

The pic appears to be western cedar. Is it stained or natural. How long before check appeared or was it installed that way??? Let us know what and how your GC handles this. Some, as I (TN lisc. GC), honor our workmanship and quality, but if the wood species is commonly known to do this checking it is a material choice and not a "defect" and wouldn't be covered as a warranty.

I hope this helps and gives good info on timbers and their separate drying issues.
 

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Hi Guys, I had an outdoor pool/patio constructed over the summer. The project is 95% complete, but I noticed that their is crack in the beam that goes all the way from below where the cement was poured all the way up to where the beam had a L cut out at the top for the cross beam to rest. The workmanship was done professionally, but I am concerned the the splitting of the wood is going to get worse.

The crack is 3/8" the entire lenght and there is a similar crack (only about 1'16" on the other side of the beam (leading me to think that the crack is all the way through.

Is there anything I should be concerned about or know about when talking to the GC about this issue?

thx.
I just noticed (reread) and you stated this goes below the concrete.... Not familiar with your build codes BUT as a totally new construction it should've been built on top of the slab not concrete poured around after erection of shelter. This is a common bad "legal" practice but creates more future problems and really more building headaches. There are times as a GC I've had to pour around a post due to existing building/top being there BUT I NEVER like doing it.
 
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